Tuesday, December 13, 2011

I don't think it's supposed to be so funny...

Tonight was Sonny Boy's Christmas program at the school. It was a program that involved the 1st and 2nd grades from his school. You know me, the one that will have "heck I'll do it" carved on her tombstone offered to video the program and got prime seats. I didn't think it would be so entertaining.

I taped the show and only really saw two big gaffs. One was a kid tripping over his feet and falling as the 2nd grade was doing a little dance thing. The other was a girl overheating (and nerves too I suppose) fainting.

When we got home however to burn a DVD for the music teacher, BOY HOWDY! did the funny things become visible. Things we, including me who was aiming the camera, missed. By far the funniest was a kid that was parked on stage next to the narrator. "Bill" has CP and doesn't walk so good, therefore Bill was exempt from leaving the stage with the rest of the second graders while the 1st grade sang. Program moves along we get to a section where the narrator is reading and Bill is right beside him, no way to crop him out of the shot and he's sqirming around and we see him raise his left arm, sniff his pit, and then wave in front of his face like he smelled bad. Later in the program we see him reach over to feel the velvet dress of a girl standing beside him and then later feel on her knee. Before you go nuts and think I'm picking on the disabled kid, I'm not. The kid is totally there mentally and it would have been equally funny if another kid would have done the same. Other things missed and picked up when re-watching the video (and editing Bill's sweaty armpit scene completely out because it was going to school tomorrow) was Sonny Boy putting hand on his dancing partners rear end, some very dramatic singers and realizing that 6,7 & 8 yo generally have no rythym.

I realize though as I was dragging out the camcorder it's been ages since we used the thing and really need to use it more. I quit using so much because I couldn't really enjoy what ever was happening cause I was behind the dang camera. Made me realize I've got to use it every now and then.

Gosh it's late, Goodnight.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Happy Holidays....

The TMJ headaches are giving me a breather the last couple of days. THAT I am thankful for particularly since I woke up on Sunday morning curled in a ball and telling Hubby he should really just go get his shotgun. I think if I was a dog he would have. I survived through the miracle of modern drugs and some help from Hubby - he actually had to pick me up out of the bathtub and put some PJ's on me. It was bad. I did live however to make it to the second appointment with the new TMJ doc. He evaluated me and said "yes you do have TMJ disorder" WOW, no shit Sherlock, I told you that. The then marshaled me into another room to present me with what it would cost for treatment. After I saw the figure I knew then why they moved me away from the other patients. OMG!! Anyway they told me it would be 6-10 weeks before we knew if insurance would pay or not. There is NO WAY I can go that long without some treatment so I told them I would pay out of pocket and pray that the insurance pays at least some portion of the horrendous bill. I may make that medical tax deduction after all this year. Yeah (sarcasm font)

Thanksgiving went well. I cooked and had a nice meal on the table. I put the whole turkey on the table to take the "Norman Rockwell" shot before shuttling back into the kitchen for carving, and then back into the oven. The turkey wasn't done, and then when we declared it done it was overdone. That's the last time I try to cook a turkey without an oven bag.


We went to the local Christmas parade. It was cooold. We happened to sit in front of the house that was hosting Santa and Mrs. Claus on their porch. I took the picture with my camera phone and frankly it just stinks. Igor was super excited to talk to Santa and has made me promise to take him to see him at his "house" that is set up in the town square this weekend.



Yesterday in my quest to get chores done while I'm upright I decided a photography session was in order for the Christmas cards. If you get one, it will be adorned with the above picture. The following are some of the reject shots. I thought they were funny and thought you might get a giggle too. Boy am I glad I didn't have to pay to have film developed to see these.


Not too bad if it was in focus, Sonny Boy would smile better and Igor's tonsils were not visible.



All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth! (and a flattering picture)





Bad photographer or fast kid? I'm not sure.




My next career will not be photographing children!


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Blogging for Books - A Sound Among the Trees

Blogging for Books Review
A Sound Among The Trees
by Susan Meissner



Please take a moment and go rank my review. I might get goodies if you do! If your interested you can always sign up for the Blogging for Books program as well. Typically not my genre of reading, but it's always good to expand your horizons right?


Honestly this book took me by surprise. I expected yet another stale tale of romantic love gone bad and then good again. In fact the novel Ms. Meissner wrote is a gripping story that points out how people hang onto wrongs well past their due date and forget to live in the present. The story has predictable parts and could use some more character development and fleshing out of the setting in general but the writing flowed easily along and didn’t involve characters that were not part of the general plot. The first few chapters were slow moving, but after getting past those and into the meat of the book I happily read along until the end.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review

Friday, December 2, 2011

Still Living...

barely.

The TMJ issues are getting out of hand. I'm horizontal more than vertical, and the vertical days are spent trying to catch up and get ahead for the inevitable horizontal days. I went to the new TMJ doc and I'm going to try his treatment. Of course that takes a series of appointments and a new appliance so it might be several weeks more. I go back next week for a big exam and I'm going to ask for some drugs to get me through. Doctors are so stingy with those. I need to find me one of those Hollywood docs who will prescribe whatever I want.

Thanksgiving went well. Igor's bug lasted about 48 hours, and while he ran some pretty high fever and felt rotten he wasn't too bad.

I'm buggy from a headache now, and have a list of chores as long as my arm I've got to get done. With the general chaos of Christmas going and battling the TMJ I likely won't be posting much in the next few weeks.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Fun Holiday

Somebody really should invent a sarcasm font. Read below if you haven't already.






Igor has the flu.

Twas the day before Thanksgiving...

and I'm winding down on the cleaning frenzy. The house hasn't been this clean in months - at least not all at once. My mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law will be here this afternoon to spend Thanksgiving with us. The funny part is I'm not even doing the crazy cleaning like I used to when she'd visit, just hitting the high points and making sure things aren't gross.

Igor has been battling a chest cold for the last week. I picked him up from preschool last Wed and he was getting horse. This morphed into a hacky cough by morning and I kept him home on Thursday and Friday. This weekend the cough developed into a chesty nasty cough but he has never ran fever or acted as if he felt bad. Today he went back to preschool and when we got home he curled up in the recliner with a blanket and I asked if he felt bad, he told me his tooth hurt (more on that later). I was on the phone with my mother and chatted with her a few more minutes and when I got off the phone discovered he was zonked out in the recliner. I hope this isn't a symptom of the bug he has but just being tired and overstimulated at preschool. I felt his head and it was warm, but he's also wadded up in a big blanket so it's hard to tell. I'm letting him nap for now, if he seems feverish when he wakes up I'll take him to the walk in clinic before the holiday weekend. Now he just woke up, by gently rolling himself out of the chair and still tells me his tooth hurts. Hope we aren't making a run to the MD this afternoon.

Igor snuck a new tooth in. Last week I was helping him brush his teeth and discovered he has a new permanent tooth that is growing in behind his baby teeth on the bottom. It doesn't take a degree in dentristry to see things aren't quite right so I have a consulation set up with an orthodontist for the middle of December. The lower tooth is loose which might result in a visit from the toothfairy soon for him.

The toothfairy is fickle though as last night Sonny Boy popped his second front tooth and put it under his pillow. Tooth fairy forgot him. Darn tooth fairy. Sonny Boy is excited and plans to sing "All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth" for the duration of the holiday season.

Well gotta run. Igor is running some fever so off to the walk-in and see in we can stop this before the holiday.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Is it Two Timing?

I've been seeing the same TMJ disorder specialist for a few years now. Initially I had great results from her treatment. The splint she made was a god send, and I went from barely being able to open my mouth to put a fork full of food in it, to a somewhat normal range. The clicking, locking, and all that jazz quit.

However with the correction of those little problems I had an increase in facial pain. I've blogged here before how I seem to have a constant headache at times. Most days I wake up feeling like somebody went three rounds on my face, I'd swear they did, if I had some bruising. Needless to say that coupled with my "not a morning person" personality makes me a screaming banshee most mornings. I don't like being a screaming banshee.

So today after about two solid weeks of waking up and my first stop is a bottle of ibuprofen, even before I pee I decided I had to do something. I had noticed there was a dentist that has TMJ treatment on his door, next door to my regular dentist. I called and made an appointment. I'm just going to go in for an initial consultation to see if he would do anything differently. The unfortunate part is that TMJ treatment isn't covered by insurance so we'll see.

Honestly I don't think I'm doing more than getting a second opinion, which is what any wise person does. However, I'm doing so as I don't seem to get any other treatment options from my regular TMJ doc than "you can go to physical therapy" well yeah, but lady I have two small children, one who isn't even in school full time, a husband who has the most inconsistent work schedule known to mankind, and frankly it's time consuming and expensive to go three times a week to have them put ultrasound on face and rub my neck and cheeks (though I admit it feels great and does help to an extent)

In other news I'm trying to get the gumption up for the holidays. Thanksgiving is around the corner and I haven't given one thought to the menu. Hubby's mother and grandmother are coming for visit which will be fun. The kids can't tell me anything they want Santa to bring other than Legos and video games which at this point I'm utterly tired of spending money on those. The one thing Igor has said he wanted is one of those power wheels drive cars and that's not gonna happen for too many reasons to list. When I told him that I didn't think Santa could get that in his sleigh I was promptly corrected by Sonny Boy who reminded me that Santa brought that giant race track a few years ago. Yeah, but what Sonny Boy doesn't know is that Santa was crying at 1:00 am Christmas morning because said track was an expensive piece of junk that wouldn't go together properly. Ahh Christmas memories, now I know why my mother was so glad all the Santa ruse died.

Hubby did text me earlier this morning and asked if I wanted to meet him half-way to his work to eat lunch. That was nice, till he said "make sure to bring my wallet" ha ha

I debate on if I should even say anything, but hey it's my blog. There is a blogger, I read regularly. The lady is in the process of adopting two young children from Russia - quite an expensive process - and has had fundraisers and the like and has not been the least bit shy asking for items to put in online auction, or please donate to the chip-in etc. Fine, whatever, I understand it's expensive. What's got my goat is that this week she announced that she and her husband are going to go on a cruise. REALLY?!? Your asking people for money, or stuff, etc to raise money and your going on a vacation that is fairly expensive, announcing it and then try to justify why your doing it. I just don't get some people. I wonder how much her donations drop off now?

What's your opinion of this?

So, I must run and put on some make-up, brush my teeth and gather up hubby's wallet and Igor from preschool.

Ciao

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Updated Look in a Dumpy Mom Town

I've recently splurged and got a few new clothes. Nothing fancy, nothing paticularly dressy, certainly nothing designer. Definitely an upgrade from my typical jean and Arkansas sweatshirt look. Today, had some shopping to do so I donned my new duds and a little cloche hat I picked up at Tar-shay and pulled out what I lovely refer to as my "Ukraine" boots (you might see me in them in some of the adoption trip photos at the bottom, not sure) and went shopping. I hit all the fancy places in town. Kohl's to buy a new belt for Hubby, the only day a 15% off coupon and a $10 merchandise coupon converged. Menards to buy some speciality light bulbs for the house -seems like all the odd ones went out all at once. And of course no shopping trip is complete until significant time is spent in Wally World. In all places I drew glances like I was wearing a cheese head.

I know wearing a hat - beyond one to keep warm - is a bit rare. I'm all for bucking trends though, and think we should all start wearing hats like we belong to the English royal family. Hat's are great, cover bad hair days, bad hair cuts, dirty hair, frame your face or let you hide it. I'm not proposing we all sport that ugly Dr. Suess looking creation from the royal wedding, but certainly a little fedora, or pill box can be quite attractive.

Did you catch the remark "let you hide it" well right now I'm not exactly putting my right cheek forward. I had a few zaps with a laser the other day to get some sun-spots removed. The laser makes the spots even darker and then they start flaking off. It's not a horrible looking in process, in fact it's not near as bad as I expected, but honestly having flaking, dark brown spots on my face isn't exactly attractive. I do think it's helped, under the flaking I see that the spots are lighter. I'll probably have to do another round of zapping but it's not so bad since it works. The spots were getting darker and wouldn't cover with regular make-up anymore so I needed to do something. The moral of this story is, wear your sunscreen girls. Or if you have a time machine back it up and put on the sunscreen.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Whirlwind of Life

Just a bit of typical American family whirlwind lately. Highlights include but are not limited to:

Roughly 17 hours in the van over a three day period.

I got a new pair of jeans, a couple of sweaters and sore feet in the Mall of America.

I got some cool lanterns to go on the front porch at Christmas from IKEA.

We saw my Sister-In-Law's new house.

Spent an hour on the side of lake Mil Lacs in MN because that was the first place Hubby's computer would connect and he had emergency work to do.

Trick-or-Treated in some nasty weather. Sonny Boy was Darth Vader, Igor was Spiderman, I was cold.

The cold Hubby brought home from Canada has now morphed into a sinus infection that I am trying to tough out without the use of antibiotics since I have now become allergic to a couple of different famlies, don't want to agravate things more in case I've got to have those wonder drugs.

I'm watching a marathon session of Mad Men on Netflix. Something like the first four seasons are on there and I've never watched it. I'm about halfway thru 50 or so episodes.

I washed and dryed a red and green crayon in a load jeans, some minor laundry god intervened when I liberally sprayed Shout! on almost every square inch of denim in the load and the worst of what looked like a drive by perpetrated by paintball shooting Christmas elves washed out. Did I mention that new pair of jeans was in that load of laundry as well?

I'm planning on sewing all the pockets shut on the boy's pants.

The upside to having a sinus infection is that I now sleep with my mouth wide open. Makes me feel like I had rodents living in my mouth when I wake up until I brush my teeth, however I'm not waking in pain with the TMJ. Maybe I'll start sleeping with a nose clip that swimmers use?

I hear the boys duking it out in the lawn, gotta go intervene and start supper and go to scouts.

Yay

Sunday, October 30, 2011

I am now a published author!

Well kind of.

Does internet publishing count?

Go here, to read my stuff.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Time Marches On...

If you could peek into my house right now you'd probably get the giggles. The kids are in bed after spending most of the day in the yard playing with the neighbor's granddaughter. I'm on my knees with the laptop on a rubbermaid bin typing on the blog. Hubby is talking to himself - or to phone to time the presentation he is giving in New Jersey in a couple of days. Hubby's voice is going from talking for the last 30 minutes about things that make my eyes glaze over and because he came home from Canada with a nasty cold which he promptly shared with me. We are both hyped up on cold medicine. I really could just move the computer downstairs and sit on chair, but that would require unplugging the computer, and since the battery has bit the dust I would have to re-boot and honestly I don't have the patience for that right now. Hubby is sitting at the desk and we are stuffed in the only room in the house that does not have a radiator. Smart huh?

I survived the sing-along. Lost my voice by the end and broke into a flop sweat during but nobody was covering their ears so that was a success!

The lawn has been mowed for likely the final time of the year. Just waiting on the leaves to fall - the rest of town is bare, but we live up on a hill and are "blessed" to have leaves well into November most years which stinks cause we've been known to get snow before they all get picked up.

Pee Wee football season finally ended. The team only had one win out of 6-7 games. Disappointing but Sonny Boy has learned much about football. His outstanding hitting at the beginning of the season waned as he learned it hurt some to put a shoulder into somebody. However I think he has some good there. A few weeks of calm and wrestling will start up. One perk is that one of the football coaches will be a wrestling coach as well, so he'll be known and not just another kid in what tends to be a pretty large group. This week is blissfully free of scheduled stuff, no scouts, no practices, no doctor appointments. Sonny Boy is out of school Thurs and Fri, but Igor still has preschool. Toying around with some plans but nothing has really been set yet.

I guess I should put something insightful here, but the cold medicine is not allowing. I do think I'm going to curl up in bed and turn on Mad Men. If you have Netflix on demand it's there like 52 episodes of it's glory. Can't decide if Don Draper is a sexist pig, or just sexy.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

So Bored, Yet so Busy

" 'Splain Lucy" you say. Well quite frankly I'm bored out of my mind. Yes I always have a To Do list a mile and half long. Of course some of it is just pure procrastination. Facebook must be checked for the 20th time today instead of mopping the kitchen floor. But it's not just that, even when busy with most my chores I'm pre-occupied with about 10,000 other things. Some as mundane as mopping the kitchen floor, to world events. I suppose it's the product of not having a very stimulating conversation for days on end. This week Hubby is in Cananda, roaming is a whopping $3 a minute on his phone so he has it off. I've chatted here and there with other adults at school pick-ups, and concerning scout stuff, but haven't really had a conversation with anybody since Saturday. The life of a SAHM mom I guess.

I do think I'm starting a good base of friends in cub scouts. Who knew I'd like it more than Sonny Boy? Since I am officially "advancement coordinator" for the pack, I'm getting to know the other moms and leaders as well. It's nice, though if your a woman (I'm guessing most of you are?) you understand that hanging out friendships don't develop overnight, or even over months.

The so busy part is just normal life. Taking kids here and there, groceries, errands, chores. Certainly enough to keep me busy - but also mind numbing.

The outdoor pack meeting has been rescheduled to be indoors tonight. Thank goodness, I wasn't really looking forward to hanging out in a pic-nic pavillion in 40 degree damp weather with howling winds. That doesn't get me out of the public song leading though - dang. It does squash the flag retirement that was planned, which is a bummer as the leader organizing that had even found a bugler to play taps.

I suppose I should enjoy the relative peace of life now. Something is sure to surface that makes it a nightmare soon enough.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Me and My Big Mouth

This is what will be carved on my tombstone:


Aw, heck, I'll do it.


Because that will likely be my famous last words. I'm such a sucker, always volunteering for this or that. This time got myself pretty tied up. Guess, you'll never guess what I'm doing on Thursday night....no, not streaking at the local football game, THAT I wouldn't be as nervous about, maybe colder, but not nervous. I am, ahem, going to lead the songs at the cub scout pack meeting. Ha Ha Ha, yeah there is a reason I type on a blog and not try out for America's Got Talent. I cannot sing. I cannot even kind of sing. Remember when I was trying to teach Sonny Boy "America". Hubby told me to stop and find a video.


The pack meeting this month is taking place at the local boy scout camp where there will be a bonfire. Ultimately the bonfire will be used for a flag retirement ceremony so I will start the boys out with some rowdy jumping around songs and settle them down with some slower more sedate things ending with "God Bless America". Hopefully this will lead into the flag retirement ceremony that one of the groups of older boys is going to do. In order to lead songs I figure the kids (and the adults too) might need lyrics to some of the songs so I've been typing them up to make a little half sheet flyer. I'm also going to be telling "ghost" stories. Basically I'm going to be the stand-up act for the night. Unlike Hubby, who has a terrible fear of public speaking (but he's conquering it) I'm not that worried about the actual speaking part, though I know my thick southern accent will be called out. I'm more worried about the singing aspect, the other scout adults told me they will get up and sing along with me (they better) so I'm certainly going to hold them to it. I suppose I won't die, but I sure wish I had a half decent singing voice, not even good, just decent.


Sonny Boy's game was played this morning. Cripes we were up before daylight. To add insult to injury the beautiful fall weather we've been having has ended and it's now pretty crisp and the wind has howled the last two days. Igor and I sat in the van until it was time for the game to start and then I sat in a sleeping bag the entire game when normally I pace the sidelines so I can see the action. You wanna know even worse, we played the other team from our town that is the same division 30 miles away from home. The coach for the other team actually lives down the street and that team practices in the park behind our house. Couldn't we have all just pitched in a dollar to have the refs drive here? I would have. We lost, however Sonny Boy had a good game. A fumble recovery was the highlight. He would have had a sack, but he face masked the kid and got called on it so not really a sack. Sonny Boy was also the cause of turnover by pressuring the quarterback hard which led to an interception for our team. Despite all of his heroic efforts on defense the offense was hampered and they outscored us. The team's record is pretty dismal with only one win this season. We have another game next week, and where I'd like to see the kids win and move on in the playoffs, I'm kind of hoping for it to just end. The coach was quoted to me by Hubby "We have good hitters but they are slow, we have fast kids but they can't hit, if we could get a combination we'd have it made" and that about sums up our football team. Yeah, that's a lot of talk about football.


There's my brain dump for the evening. I'd really like to crawl in bed and watch TV but Sonny Boy is in it watching a movie I've been promising to let him watch for a while. Gonna haul the laptop to the printer and print some stuff off.


Later Dudes

Friday, October 14, 2011

Looking for Some Cheese....

to go with my wine whine. Yes I'm going to speak more whinese today, because I can and daily life is utterly mind blowing dull and terribly busy at the same time.



  • My face hurts, and has hurt almost constant for a week solid now. I've taken an arsenal of meds, and every home remedy in the book. I've even resorted to eating a lot of soft stuff. Really it's making my days miserable and it makes me feel even worse when Sonny Boy complains that I always feel bad - yes I do son, I so want to be pain free for a while too.

  • The oven died. Normally this might be an occasion to do a little dance and get out of cooking for a few nights. However Hubby is the ultimate tightwad and won't let me just call a repairman. Last night he took it apart and discovered the igniter was literally broken in half. Honestly not a big repair, but finding a part and getting it back together before he leaves for week on Sunday morning is gonna be a witch if it even gets done.

  • Sonny Boy's football game is at 8:00 A.M. tomorrow at a field that is half an hour away and the coach wants them there 30 min early to warm-up etc. I'll have to be leaving the house at a time when I get out of bed on a weekday. Who the hell thought up this schedule? It's PEE WEE FOOTBALL, can't we do this at like 10:00 or something? Evidently the people that put this together are morning people.

  • Did you happen see that foreshadowing of Hubby's leaving AGAIN for a business trip? Yeah, this time a week in Montreal where he will be wined and dined. While I eat chicken nuggets, likely warmed in the microwave and then ran through the blender if this jaw doesn't start getting better.

  • House chores are piling up, and quite frankly I just don't have the heart to care.

  • Here it is October and I haven't been to the gym since May. I reasoned that I get excercise doing yardwork but that doesn't cover the membership fees. I'd cancel it, but I'm pretty sure I'll have bad cabin fever come Feb or March and then I'd have to cough up the joining fee again. I need to do the math.

Yeah, so a whole post of nothing but bitching. Lovely eh?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Adventures and Other Stuff

The kids and I came home from somewhere the other day and this little guy was on the tree in the yard. It's a squirrel looking over a branch down at me. Notice his tail? I have better pictures of him on my phone, but what a pain to get them off. This was after I'd snapped a few with my phone and came back out with the real camera and found him up the tree.



Sunday the boys and I went to a tiny section of a bigger state park. We'd never been there before so I thought it would be worth the adventure. At the park is the "highest peak in xxx county" a whopping 1233 ft! Well of course you must put a fire tower on that and this a view from the top.


There was a lady painting at the little pond. I thought she seemed quite idyllic.



Sonny Boy was hoping to spot some birds for his Cub Scout Bird List he's doing and elective on. I made Igor pull off his horrible hat so I could see his face and got mussed up hair and that goofy grin.

We went hiking down some cross country ski trails while there. I admit some of them would be BRUTAL on skis, they were steep on feet, but at least not overly long.


On the way home I remembered that a local tourist trap has these old electric trains that run in the fall. Originally they ran spoked out all the way from Milwaukee around the turn of the century and were decommissioned in the 30's. This little town managed to hang on to them and a few miles of track. The charge an arm and a leg for a 7 mile ride, but the kids enjoyed it as one had never been on a real train before and the other has no memory of his overnight train ride.


Hubby is rounding the corner with his illness but is still quite weak and tires very quickly. Still no official word on what he actually has/had, whatever it was hit him like a ton of bricks.


In the meantime I'm running a little crazy trying to bully him into drinking and such like he should, keep the kids running and catch up on housework I'd let slide. I read a quote the other day attributed to Phyllis Diller and thought I should stitch it on a pillow or something. " Doing housework while the kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk while it's still snowing." More true words have never been spoken. However if you don't do some of the housework while there growing the state come and takes the kids away! Off to do the shoveling!











Monday, October 10, 2011

When it Rains, it Pours...

and I'm not talking about the weather, that's been just gorgeous. Hubby came home from his hunting trip sick. Not just the sniffles, but wishing he would die sick. I'm thankful for his buddy that had gone along with him as he ended up doing the entire 13 hour trip drive home by himself while Hubby laid in the back of the van wishing a quick end to his misery. Hubby came in about 10:30 last night running fever and running for the bathroom. I drove the buddy home across town and he unloaded his gear and I came back home to find Hubby in a hot bath up to his ears shivering. I dragged out towels, PJ's and comfied up the guest room for him. The guest room has a half bath in it, our bedroom doesn't. I got him out of the tub and into warm, PJ's and he downed a bottle of gatorade and was wanting more so I ran to the convienence store and bought a pack and he downed another and glass of lemonade as well. Hubby declared himself feeling a little better and crawled in bed and so did I.

I wake up this morning to a RAGING migraine. The worst one I've had in months. I didn't even go to the coffee pot, just my stash of Relpax. I managed to get the boys bowls of cereal poured and somehow not die. I looked in on Hubby to make sure he was breathing and that was about all I could manage. In my housecoat still it was time to take Sonny Boy to school, as I stepped out the door my neighbor was taking her granddaughter and I yelled across the yard if she would mind giving Sonny Boy a lift. No problem she said, and Sonny Boy got off to school. I sat Igor down in front of PBS kids and told him "Momma is sick, Daddy is sick, stay out of trouble. If you need something come get me I'm in my bed." I then went upstairs and suffered until I could take a second dose a Relpax (I rarely need two doses) came down checked on Igor who was happily wasting away in front of the TV, took my drugs and went back to bed. I woke up two hours later to Igor chattering away in his room playing with blocks. I was starting to feel human, not good, just human. I came down, drank some coffee, ate some toast, fed Igor lunch and checked on Hubby who had made no improvement. I dress, go the grocery and buy just enough food to get us by for today (the cupboard was bare of course) come home and bully Hubby into drinking more gatorade. He's still in bad shape, and I declare he's going to the doctor. Hubby is so weak he can hardly walk so I put him in a wheelchair and wheel him up to doctor's office. The bad part is that the doctor appointment was at the same time that Sonny Boy's school let out. I called his scout leader and asked her to snag Sonny Boy and she brought him by the doctor's office and I met them out front. We wait around the doctor's office for a while, then the lab and it's a likely diagnosis that Hubby has a case of food poisoning. While I'm sorry he's sick, I'm glad it's not contagious.

So now it's about bedtime, Hubby has some anti-nausea stuff and orders not to eat solids for a few days and drink as much liquid as he can stand. I'm still not 100% and looking forward to tucking the kids into bed.

Tomorrow holds promises of lots of laundry, more grocery shopping, football practice and maybe enough time to sit down and post pictures and tales of the boy's and I adventures to a local state park.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Wooo, busy day

I knew today was gonna be a kicker so I got the kids settled into bed early last night. I was developing a whiz banger of a headache so I took some benedryl (yeah, that actually helps - or at least knocks me out cold) and then didn't fall asleep till like midnight. Great I needed to get up at 5:30 am so I could shower and have a cup of coffee before I got the kids up - I'm much less crabby after a cup of joe. The alarm went off and I banged at it a couple of times before I realize that I can't keep doing this. Crawled downstairs started the coffee pot and then went in got in the shower. When I cam out of the shower Igor was up asking me of some article of clothing was OK to wear. It's not even DAYLIGHT out, you gotta go back to bed kid, so I tucked him back into bed, I knew he wouldn't go back to sleep but you play what cards you have, ya know. Came down, drank a cup of coffee and then went and got the already awake Igor up and helped him pick out clothes and dragged Sonny Boy out of bed and found him decent clothes, fed them, blow dried my hair, loaded them up and dropped Sonny Boy off at before school care a good hour before school started and drove to Milwaukee. Traffic in Milwaukee was brutal taking me 20 minutes to go about five miles, but I got to the doctor appt on time. Did the Orthopedic doc who looked at Igor's feet, the intern? looked at his back for scoliosis (common with connective tissue things) we discussed the connective tissue thing and it's lack of name. Agreed the SMO's needed some work and scheduled an appointment for 6 months out. Then Igor and I traipsed across the skywalk to the lab and had a blood draw for genetic testing. Strangely that went way better than I ever could have expected, not even a whimper out of the kid. He was nervous but did better than I've seen MANY adults do. Drove partway across town - traffic much better now and was two hours early for the orthotic appointment. Hey there's a Target a block from the orthtist office, we'll roam around in there. NOT. Igor decided he was not under any circumstances going to ride in the cart, and I WAS NOT under any circumstances letting him not ride in the cart. We went back to the car. Igor huffed and puffed for 20 min and then decided he could go back in and ride in the cart. We go in, he rides and then sees a book he wants. "I want a book" was his chant for quite a while till I got fed up and we went and sat in the car again. I called the orthotic office to see if we could squeeze in early, no such luck. I drove to the orthotic office and we sat in the parking lot for 30 min or so while Igor acted quite the toot. He soon got over his snit and became interested in watching the digital clock in the car when I told him we could go in at 1055. We go in and see the orthotist lady who looks over the SMO's and says it's gonna take her a while to work on them, if we want to go somewhere for a bit. We go to Sonic which in actually in the parking lot and ate. MMMM Sonic - you can take a southern girl away from the south, but you can't replace that Sonic burger and that's the only Sonic I know about. We go back to the orthotic place and hang out another half hour or more and then the lady fits the new orthotics on Igor's feet an makes sure they work with the new little hiking boots I bought him. We drive home. Igor sleeps the entire ride home.

When we get home I declare Mom nap time, Igor plays in his room and I get to sleep for an hour or so before we pick up Sonny Boy from school. Pick up Sonny Boy, stop at playground to burn some steam out of both kids and some buddies from school show up and the parents and I chit-chat. The weather is just gorgeous so it's hard to drag inside. Drag the kids home, Sonny Boy starts homework and I water some grass seed I had sown yesterday. I then drag out the lawnmower and mow until it runs out of gas (didn't really finish the yard, will tomorrow) and then drag out the leaf blower to clear the driveway and sidewalk. Call the kids in, feed them a turkey sandwich for supper. Put Igor in the tub and clean the upstairs bathroom while he bathes and then Sonny Boy bathes. Put Igor to bed. Now I'm typing the very rambling post to explain why somedays I'm so stinkin' tired.

In the very near future Sonny Boy will go to bed (less than 15 mins) I will bathe and crawl in bed to find something on tube to fall asleep to.

Tomorrow I have to finish mowing the lawn, and spread the two cubic yards of mulch I had delivered yesterday along with 2001 other piddly thing that if they don't get done the machinery of life in Winnie's household will grind to a halt.

Then try reading this all in one breath and you get a feeling of what my life felt like today. Ha.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Why most women don't hunt.

As I write this Hubby is scuttling around the house gathering the last bits of gear for a duck hunting trip in North Dakota. When this trip was planned I raised hell, because hey I want to go somewhere fun to! That led to the compromise of the trip I took earlier this spring with my mother to the horse farm. But it still annoys me.

If you have a hunting/fishing spouse you soon discover that the seasons are not spring, summer, fall, and winter. It's more like, deer, duck, ice fishing, regular fishing, turkey etc etc. The only thing that keeps Hubby from doing it more is that we live in a pretty populated area of the state and there are TONS of people in every available spot to hunt or fish. What I envy though is not the gathering of gear or even the large amounts of money spent on the newest gadget or license it's the absolute ability to declare "I'm going deer hunting this weekend" and never give a second thought to arranging care for the kids, shuttling to & fro, doing the laundry so there is clean underwear to pack and the like. It's assumed that all that is taken care of - and it is.

Maybe that's my fault, but I don't think I'm alone in my sentiments as I've heard other hunting widows complain. Even when you can plan to run away it seems like more work than it's worth, doing laundry up so you only come home to small mountain and not Mt. Everest. Laying out the kid's schedules, stocking the fridge (while Hubby cooks he's expensive if he goes to the grocery store) and getting the 200 things done you'd normally do in the time your gone done. Just once I'd like to declare "I'm leaving this weekend" pack a bag and walk out the door leaving a mountain of laundry knowing it will a) be the same when I return or the even better b) washed, folded and put away.

I think it's the ability to just go that drives me the most nuts. Not that he goes, but that he just assumes I'll take care of things, and when I go it begins a logistics nightmare.

Monday, October 3, 2011

I've Had It!!

I've about had it, I'm at my wit's end. The TMJ issues are driving me nuts. Daily I wake up feeling like someone punched me in my face. IF I'm lucky I take a couple of ibuprofen and walk around slowly for an hour or three and start feeling somewhat human. Today is a not so lucky day the face pain is bad and it's crawling up my head and trying to feed a migraine. Once that migraine starts (which is pretty evident it's going to) I take my expensive pills that put me down like a horse tranquilizer. They get rid of the pain - thank God, but I feel as if I'm walking around in jello, and quite frankly make me useless.

Insurance can't agree that it's dental or medical - though if my knee hurt like this they'd cover it. I see a dentist who specializes in it and wear the nightgaurd splint like I'm supposed to, take the meds I'm given which those things do help, however flares happen and when they do I'm a couple of weeks or more of misery. I've tried acupuncture, chiropractors, reg MD's , pain MD's, neurologist and massage. The TMJ doc I see prescribes physical therapy which does help some, but getting there is a nightmare with kids issues and Hubby's unpredictable schedule. Not to mention the expense.

Googling on the internet shows a nightmare of treatments available all with mixed results, all with expensive price tags, all insurance considers experimental. Evidently no one with any pull at an insurance company has ever had TMJ issues before.

Sorry, nothing but venting. So if you see me looking like I'm drugged, I probably am. If I looked pissed off figure I'm sitting there in pain. I'm off to feed the little guy and find him a long lived cartoon to watch.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Ode to the Quiet House

Well, not really, I'm not poetic and you don't want to read that drivel. I'm surprised you read the nonsense I put forth here.

It's Friday morning, Sonny Boy is off at school for the day and Igor is in preschool for the morning. Hubby has gone off to work. I should be doing about 1.5 million things including but not limited to the gym, taking a shower, cleaning up the mess that masquerades as my home. However I'm not. I'm sitting here at the dining room table looking out the window watching the trees thrash around in some pretty strong winds and being glad they are not really dropping leaves yet. I'm enjoying the quiet with only the clicking of the keyboard and the hum of the laptop fan. IT'S SOOO NICE.

Before I had children I would always have the T.V. on, or a radio going, something just to make noise. Now I crave quiet like I crave chocolate and it's harder to get. It always seems that one child or another is either talking to me, at me, or asking a question. If they are not doing that the TV is running or a video game is going or the kids are just simply playing and making noise. Quiet in my life has become such a commodity that I often stay up late into the night after everyone goes to bed just to have a little of it.

I suppose the actual physical need for silence stems from being an only child in a single parent household. Wasn't much noise there - though I can remember my mother telling me to turn down the radio a few hundred times when I was a teenager. But overall I suppose we were two quiet people. Hubby, while a natural talker with a loud voice that carries doesn't talk non-stop and we often have lots of time of just sitting together not saying anything ( I guess that means we've been married a long time)

Wisdom tells me to savor the time with the kids while they are young, I know Igor talking a blue streak will end - Sonny Boy eventually quit and he did it too. I know light saber battles, crashing cars into lego towers, and 98275402875 questions a day from Igor will end. I will try to live now and not let it get on my nerves, but I will seek the quiet and I will try to store it up in order for it to last until the next time it happens.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Cub Scout Wolf Elective 11a

I don't really remember actually sitting down and learning the words to America (aka "My Country tis of thee") somehow in someway the first verse sunk it's self into my lexicon of songs without study, the first verse of the National Anthem as well - though I do remember learning subsequent verses. I'm sure I could sing from America from memory by third grade easily as it was done daily after the Pledge of Allegiance.

Sunday was one of those days we were cooped in the house without much to do. Hubby was working on his honey-do list and the boys were climbing the walls. Sonny Boy, needs a prod to take action on things occasionally such as earning awards for Cub Scouts, he likes getting the awards but wants them just to magically happen. Anyway I decided it was a good day to tackle Wolf Elective 11a - Learn the first and last verse of America. Honestly I didn't know the last verse either, but it's a short verse similar in vein to the first. We got on Youtube and I found a video with the lyrics overlaid on majestic shots of American scenery. The video sang ALL the verses but I soon learned just where to advance to to skip the middle verses. We watched the video OVER and OVER and OVER and OVER and OVER. Sonny Boy soon started getting the song down but would still stumble and trip over lines. Worse is that he would chant it, something like have an antique English rap artist in the house. I kept instructing him to SING the song as that would make it easier to learn. We struggled, but I was proud of him for sticking with it and he finally got down with only a couple of prompts and I signed the book. This morning he could still get through it stumbling as did I on the second verse - hey I hadn't even had a cup of coffee yet.

Now what concerns me most is that while working on learning the song Sonny Boy said he'd never even heard the song, they don't sing it at school, it's not taught. I get that maybe the middle and last verses could be somewhat controversial - the song is practically a hymn - but the first verse I can't see be offensive to anyone's religion, and frankly it's a whole lot easier to sing than the Star Spangled Banner. Do we not teach even a modicum of patriotism anymore to kids? I get that some people are opposed to pledging allegiance to the flag (though what that flag represents gives the right to be opposed) I get that people don't want prayer forced upon their kids if that is not what they believe, public school is for the masses, and church is for your religion. That being said I think it's time that a few patriotic themes are taught in school. I shouldn't have to sit down and beat AMERICA into my son's brain when it's a song that anybody over the age of 25 doesn't remember even learning, that it just sunk into their brains through osmosis.

Another worrisome thing I learned is that my son has NO musical ability. I don't just mean unable to sing - I can't do that, and most kids I know can't really carry a tune well, tending to shout. I do think Sonny Boy is lacking more than most though as along with the inability to carry a tune he also has no concept of rhythm in song, speeding up and slowing down at random. He's said for a couple of years now that he does not like his music class and when asked why he tells us it's because his teacher sings in soprano and well being a kid I don't guess he realizes he can take it down an octave. I'm thinking it's a lack of being able to sing along with the other kids. I'm not sure, I may make a point of hunting down the music teacher when parent teacher conferences come along and get her take. I've always know the kid lacked rhythm, but I didn't realize it was such a severe case.

Next Cub Scout elective to tackle 11b - The Star Spangled Banner. Yeah, I'm a sucker for punishment, but even if he chants it at least he won't be embarressed by Jay Leno.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sometimes....

I almost want to coach Sonny Boys teams, then I remember I'd have to deal with their parents over inflated egos and change my mind.

As shared previously Sonny Boy is playing tackle football in the county league this fall. He's not a star but holding his own. He'd have more and better plays if the coach would just put him on the defensive line and keep him there. Sonny Boy is an aggressive tackler but lacks speed to catch anybody once they really get running. The kid is not going to be a track star. The boys have played two games now and the first game Sonny Boy played on the line and had three tackles and his hand in a few more gang tackles. The team lost by one touchdown. The second game Sonny Boy was moved off the line and was playing somewhere in the safety position ( it's 9 boy football so the positions aren't all the same). Sonny Boy had one tackle and a block that saved a touchdown run by the great little quarterback. The team won by one point which was a miracle as they were down three touchdowns in the first quarter. Sonny Boy didn't have the best of games personally and I think the coach realized as now he's back on the line again tonight for a scrimmage practice against the first team they played and he had way more tackles and was in o the play much more. Sonny Boy's personality is a good fit for football, he loves the tackling and hitting aspect of the game and it's saving poor little Igor from being his tackling dummy constantly. The good news is that he likes it enough he's drifting away from baseball (yay!) which I'm hoping we can leave by the wayside as it eats into summer so much and I'd much rather drag the camper around.

A cool thing is there is a local guy that takes sports pictures with an ultra high grade camera (his nephew is on the team) and puts them up on the Internet to purchase. The pictures are great and many look like Sports Illustrated shots. Hubby and I plan on purchasing a few and making Sonny Boy a scrapbook of the season. I'm glad he comes to the games as he gets pictures that are WAY better than I could ever get. One of the parents was speculating that he has a 4K camera set-up and I'm sure that's not far from the mark. Makes my little point and shoot look silly. I'd give the link, but sadly all kinds of identifying information is easily picked out on that website and I try to keep such information on the QT here on the blog so I can keep it public. However if you know me on FB or in real life let me know and I'll give you the link. There are so many pictures per game it's like watching in stop motion animation at times.

I do think Sonny Boy will try wrestling again this winter and possibly do a tournament or two and see how that goes. He did it on a little trial basis last winter and had a lot of fun. He didn't do any tournaments but showed some promise even against kids larger than he. Wrestling was fun to watch as it was obvious he was having a blast the entire time with a big grin plastered across his face constantly.

I feel bad for Igor as he won't get to do too many sports. Doctors have pretty much limited him to swimming. I'm going to look into what age the swimming leagues start and see about getting him some real swim lessons. Right now he's right on the cusp of real swimming without having an actual lesson so he might do quite well with it. I just hope he can see well enough without his glasses to see the blue line on the bottom of the pool.

Even with all the sports talk I don't really have big sports ambitions for either kid. Grant it a scholarship to Podunk U would be great considering the cost of a college degree, but I do think being involved in a sport is good for a kid, not just the physical aspects but the whole thing of learning to win and lose graciously and play fair.

Other than football life has been pretty calm, or as calm as it can be with all the running around we do. I can't imagine what it will be like when Igor's activities are thrown into the fray. Sonny Boy usually has one sport and Cub Scouts going at most times and then we'll end up doubling the Scouts and throwing another sport in there. Oye. That's why I'm excited when Sonny Boy proclaims he doesn't want to play baseball in spring.

School is going well for both boys. Sonny Boy is getting good reports from his teacher and his test and the like are coming home with good marks. Homework is tough, he's had enough of focusing at school and getting him to pay attention for the 10 or 15 homework problems he has plus a little reading is difficult. If I stand over him and keep him on task he can finish the work in a reasonable amount of time, if I don't it takes him forever. I try to balance my getting after him to stay on task with letting him linger and do it as his own pace as I figure he's got to learn to do it independently without mom hovering over him constantly. Igor is getting good reports from his preschool teacher. She remarks what a good kid he is. I personally think she just can't believe that he comes from the same household that produced Sonny Boy whom she taught for two years. Sonny Boy was a handful. Today Igor was assessed for physical therapy at the public school. I'm pretty sure they are going to drop him from that all together as the only thing he couldn't really do was throw a tennis ball accurately and catch it. The catching I'm pretty sure is do to his vision issues. Throwing is more from lack of practice. That's fine though as I feel he's pretty typical kid now and I don't see anything amiss in his development academically. I do feel he is a little immature emotionally but not severely so.

Hubby and I are trucking along. Hubby is enjoying his job and is thinking of taking on some speaking stuff at conventions. Pretty amazing for him as that's a huge step for him - speaking in public. I'm proud of him for pushing himself to do something that I know gives him more just butterflies.

Well I'm so busy being Mom I can't turn around. Shuttling kids, housework, volunteer work - both Cub Scouts and at the school and just the junk of everyday life has me hopping.

Life is Good

Friday, September 16, 2011

Random Rants, Because REALLY?!?

It's possibly I'm just grouchier than normal, I don't know but a few things are really getting under my skin lately.

Snack at school. Yeah, it seems pretty innocent but is it really necessary to feed kids two hours after their breakfast and one hour before their lunch. Has anybody not noticed that the average rear end in this country has expanded greatly in the last 15 years. Don't you think teaching kids that they need to eat every hour on the hour contributes to this? I also don't like the way it is done in Sonny Boy's classroom. You see I am a sucker volunteer and I am now a teacher's helper for one hour a week while Sonny Boy's teacher teaches math. My job is to hover around the back of the classroom, and redirect the daydreaming kids, make sure they have their books out, following directions, have the right page etc. All this is going on while the kids are nibbling on crackers, fruit snacks, granola bars, juice boxes, and assorted matter of "snack foods" - not one REAL piece of fruit did I see. The kids are trying to drag stuff out of their lift top desk while working hard not to dump a water bottle or baggie of crackers all over. How they really expect 2nd graders to pay attention to a math lesson while trying to see what goodie Cindy across the room has brought with her is beyond me. Honestly, I can't imagine what a mess it makes as I had to help one kid mop up a water spill off of his desk. REALLY, it's not necessary to feed them in the a.m. I know this does not make me popular with Sonny Boy who wants to carry his own snack that I oppose. He has breakfast, he has lunch, he has an after school snack and a dinner that I hope we all get to sit down to. I fix him a plate he must eat all of (a reasonable serving) then he can go back for seconds on whatever is there or have some yogurt or whatever treat is going around the house. Constant eating is not good. Now before everyone gets themselves in a tizzy, I understand that their are kids who have some REAL MEDICAL REASON to eat a snack and of course those children should have something, however I'm sure they are few and far between and the 27 kids in my son's class are not likely to suffer from such medical condition.

Even more worrisome is this problem coming up in kindergarten with Igor. He's such a poor eater at most meals, snacks are VERY small and very limited with him. 10 goldfish crackers is enough to keep him from eating a decent lunch. Hopefully things will change in his food behaviors in the next year as I see a battle coming on concerning him and a snack in kindergarten.

To continue on my ranting tirade.....

FACEBOOK. I like FB, it's fun. But really it's not your place to impose your religious views or political views, rant about your children's father/mother, or other people. If that's what you want to do start a blog, it's free, look in the right hand corner of this page. In the last few weeks I've seen a person rant about the "corporate establishment" the very same one that earns him a comfortable paycheck weekly, another has blasted "Christian" young women for their immodest dress (really I'm sure somebody thinks the fact she wears make-up, cuts her hair, and wears pants is immodest too). I've seen another rant about having to pay child support - really their YOUR children, take care of them. Several post terrible remarks about exes they have children with - honestly you shouldn't talk about your children's mother/father like that on a public forum even if they are total buttheads.

Things I do think are OK to post. Good news, new jobs, new babies, new house, new car, heck even a new pair of shoes if your excited about them. Maybe no so good news, Aunt Jane passed away the funeral is Tues at 4:00, I lost my job, I'm now looking. Funny things your kids do or say, kids' accomplishments. The Aww Geez I'm tired of life, stuff everybody else deals with too, like having to mop the kitchen floor two hours after you just mopped because kid spilled juice. Really people THINK before you post.

What I'd like to hear from you dear readers, should I put snarky comments up when people are ranting about something that probably should not be on FB? To the person complaining about child support say "well you had 'em, you pay for 'em" the one proclaiming that people dress immodestly quote bible verse that it is obvious they don't follow. What do you do? So far I've stayed out of the discussion/fray and kept to myself but oooo how my fingers itch to type out a snarky remark.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Really?

If this running around to activity after activity, and forcing homework down a tired 2nd grader's throat is what I'm up against for the next 12 years or so I'm going to call it quits.

SOOOOO tired.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Egads, has School Started yet?

I see several online friends and my southern network have all started back to school. We still have a couple of weeks to go but I have already purchased the back to school supplies weeks ago. You see I'm one of those moms who can't wait for school to start.

Someone I was chatting with was telling me the other day that when his child started kindergarten last year his wife told him the moms were in two camps. One camp was crying, their baby was starting kindergarten, the other half was saying "bye" and planning a get together at a local bar (the bar does breakfast too) I'm in the latter camp.

While I do wax nostaligic that the boys are growing up, I'll be glad to see the backside of summer vacation. The fighting, the bickering, the constant motion, the constant mess and chaos. Yeah, can't say I'll miss it over much.

Emma the dog is back with us. She's been with us about a week now and will be going home this week. The boys - Hubby included have had a good time with her. She's a good dog in general. The only gripe I have about her is her sloppy drinking habits. She'll fill her mouth up at the water bowl and dribble it all over the kitchen leaving the floor a constant mess. Yuck. Other than sneaking onto our beds occasionally she's really a very good dog. Hubby has had fun teaching her hunting skills and the kids have been throwing balls non stop. I think Emma has run more in the last week than in the last year.

Currently Hubby and I are in the process of painting the garage. The house we had done by contractors but we are cheap and decided to to do the garagw ourselves (not so tall) I've been scraping for a couple of days and have the bulk done. Hubby replaced some rotten siding we are close to throwing the paint on which should go quickly. Hubby and the neighbor tell me I'm over picky with the scraping, but my opinion is I'm only gonna do this once, not again in a year or two.

Well off to tuck the little one into bed, the big one will follow shortly and I'll enjoy a little peace before bed.



Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sonny Boy Tackles

Yeah, the coach is in the way, but at least the phone was turned in the right direction!




Sonny Boy is the kid in the reddish T-shirt doubling as a temporary practice jersey.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Random Pictures From the Summer

With Summer coming to a close I thought I might drown you with images of the summer. It's been busy!



Sonny Boy enjoyed his second season of baseball and says he wants to play again next year.

In June we had some wind damage that knocked over our partially rotten fence and made that tree in the background horizontal. We also had a large elm split and that had to be removed as well.



Sonny Boy's legs finally got long enough to reach the foot pegs on the motorcycle so he got his first ride from Dad. Without tags or insurance it doesn't come out of storage much.




A trip to Six Flags in early July netted a long fun day.





Yeah, I know the big Ol' tennis shoes don't look good with capri pants but hey I was going for comfort over fashion here.



Igor rode tons of rides and this was his favorite...



though it doesn't look like it here!




He was game a few more times with his brother later though!



The camping trip with one of the cousins to Flambeau River, Wisconsin




The very recent camping trip to Razorback Lake, WI (you know the Arkie in me loved that!)


A BIG storm moving away from Razorback Lake, if you look REALLY close the speck behind the reads almost against the dark shoreline is Sonny Boy and I in a canoe. Thankfully we were never in this storm, but I believe it did some damage further east.


Eating ice cream on the beach!


Sonny Boy in pursuit of crayfish (or crawdads as southern people say)


Conked out after a hard day of play in the camper



Early mornining fog on Razorback Lake, it got kinda nippy at night.



Summer has been good. Really busy but all good things come to an end. Registered Sonny Boy for 2nd grade today, first football practice is tonight, and the nights have that chill that says summer is drawing to a close. Alas the real craziness starts with a ball practice or Cub scout thing almost every night of the week. I think something has got to give.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Three hours is too Long

I will leave in aproximately three hours to pick up Hubby from the airport. He has been gone to training for work for the last four weeks. In those four weeks I have taken two camping trips, spent countless hours hearing "Mom, Watch this!" as a 4 yo bobs under water at the local pool. Worried over painters ripping me off, - not my stuff, just not doing the work well. I've mowed the lawn a few times, started trying to revive my contractor trampled flower beds, taken the kids to the dentist, had Igor's glasses adjusted and repaired twice, made countless stressful trips to the grocery, baked a birthday cake, paid bills. You get the picture - kept the house running and the kids entertained. Not by a long shot am I claiming to have done even one of these items perfectly. Nor am I claiming that any or all of these things are things I wouldn't normally do if Hubby were coming home on a nightly basis.

But you know what gets my goat? Know what really pisses me off? I'm the bad guy. No matter what I do, no matter what I cook, no matter how many hours I spend sunbaked and chlorine caked at the edge of the pool I'm still the bad guy. I'm the one who asks " Did you wash your hands? Who peed on the toilet seat?" or issues the following edicts " No more TV, video games or DS. No we cannot go to the pool today because I told you ten times to do XYZ before you did it." Today I had a child EXPLODE because I told him to put on a clean shirt so we could leave the house to run ONE errand. The kid didn't even know what the errand was, we could have been going to the toy store for all he knew, but he had to turn off the damn TV. That's when the TV suddenly got turned off for him for a week. Hubby will come home and the kids will all be happy to see him and suddenly find their halos for a few days. Hubby will be loathe to be mean since he's been gone for a month and I'll still be the witch of a mother that hands out the chores and the punishments and makes the kids go to bed on time.

Really, I get that single parents do this crap day in and day out and I give them all the kudos in the world. Don't get me wrong, it's hard. But I tell you this Hubby traveling for weeks on end crap is like being a single parent without any of the perks. If your single at least you might have the luxury of being child free every other weekend to revive, you don't have to compromise on what color to paint the house ( I did ) or scheme and plan the family vacation with anybody else in mind.

Honest to God as I sit here at this computer THE MINUTE Hubby climbs in the van I am no longer on duty. I refuse to do any kid crap for a full 48 hours. If the kids beat the crap out of each other, fine, if they play in street that's good too. I refuse to be the witch, I refuse to tell them to go to bed, I refuse to say " Quit running in the house" Because I'm not mean, I'm not the witch, and Hubby can put on his big boy pants and make sure the little brats behave.

I can't even have a margarita cause I gotta drive to the dang airport - this is torture!

P.S. Just got a text, they are de-boarding his plane so only God knows when he's gonna get home.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The little Swimmer

He's come a long way from the toddler who was so terrified of a bath that the first one I gave him traumatized both of us.




I apologize for the bad quality, I'm just learning how to do this stuff!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Blogging for Books - Plain Wisdom

Previously I have reviewed books for a program called "Blogging for Books". This post is a continuation of that program and my second review. Please go to this LINK and vote for my review. It can win me prizes! On to the Review.

PLAIN WISDOM
Cindy Woodsmall & Miriam Flaud


First I would like to say this isn’t my typical genre of book to read. I don’t normally read anything very spiritual or even that much non-fiction so I am not familiar with the typical format on this kind of book so it’s possible that I am way off on my review of this book. Honestly I read the book a while back and have had a hard time really forming an opinion of the book.

Plain Wisdom is a sweet little book with each chapter having a section written by Mrs. Woodsmall and Mrs. Flaud that details how God worked in their everyday lives guided by certain principals in the Bible. In general I found the book to be well written, but it lacked continuity throughout the chapters and I felt as if I was reading a string of stories that were only slightly related to the previous chapters. I expected a book that would chronicle the differences in Mrs. Woodsmall’s modern Christian life in contrast with Mrs. Flaud’s Amish beliefs. Instead I found a book that showed that no matter how far apart Christian practices are, there are still the same guiding principals underneath all the artifice given in differing denominations.

Overall I found the book only mediocre.


I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review and it in no way colors my opinion of this material.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Pictures

Sonny Boy had a birthday too. His main present was a trip to Six Flags, but of course mom made him a cake. Not top quality but that was my first time trying that technique. Anybody have a guess as to who the figure on the cake is? It says " May the Birthday Force be With You" The kid is REALLY into Star Wars lately.


Of course you can't go camping without roasting marshmallows.







This is my new toy. Not some monster travel rig for around the country but will get us around the state and be drier and more comfortable than a tent. Cooler and warmer if we ever end up at a sight with electric.


pictures in horrible order, but I promise more to come the next time I sit down and get something up on the 'net.



























I wanted to post some video, but that will have to wait. I'm too tired to fool with the computer and find my self excited I got these off of the phone.














Friday, July 22, 2011

Nope, havent dropped yet...

...but the days are getting long.

Hubby has hit the middle of his marathon training session on the east coast and I'm at the tail end of single parent for a month status. Yay.

Busy and bored all at once.

The camper finally finished. The kids and I took it for a trial run to a nearby state park last week for a couple of days before the big heat wave hit. Everything went well except for backing it into the spot and a nice guy at the next campsite took pity on me and parked the trailer for me. I did run into a spot of trouble with the tongue jack which broke on me as I was trying to hitch up at home. I did some jerry-rigging and carried some jack stands along, and used the jack out of my mini-van to get the trailer set up and leveled. A little more hassle than it normally would have been but it worked. I tell you having a camper is like sleeping at the Ritz compared to tent camping. I was even able to take something resembling a shower AND scrub the kids before bed and that was without water hookups. It rocks. The only downside I see to the whole thing is that I can almost see the gas gauge on the van drop as we go down the road.

I finally joined the new "smart phone revolution" and got a droid phone. It's cool. My favorite Ap so far is one called "Out of Milk" which keeps a grocery list and a to-do list for you. The best part of the grocery list is that it will automatically enter the item by scanning the barcode. There may be a way to share this list with hubby, we'll figure out our synching techniques with calendars and the like when he gets home.

I have cool pictures and video, but of course got to figure that out. Honestly even this post is alot for me. By the time the kids are in bed I'm wiped and stringing two sentences together is harder than algebra for a third grader.

Kids are doing well. Sonny Boy is a little stressed and believes I'm picking on him and is overly sensitive. Igor is being being defiant and testing boundries and often gets "counted down" into compliance. Makes the days long. The kids aren't really being bad, just kids. I just don't have a break and simple errands like the grocery store turn stressful as I go through as fast as possible, missing half the stuff I planned on buying and therefore requiring two or three trips a week and upping that stress factor again. You see the snowball effect happening here?

Baseball season has officially ended and football will start in a few weeks. The football league called me and moved Sonny Boy up a level as he was on the border for size and they needed space in the smaller group. I hope the kids aren't too much bigger than him, he's a little bruiser though so he probably won't notice. Baseball season didn't go too well. The team did win a few games but I think he needed a more focused coaching crew. Three of the coaches were city cops with rotating schedules so often one or more were not there for games or practices. I also think they didn't practice enough for the boys to really get the hang of the game. Some of the teams we played looked like much more experienced players than they really were. Sonny Boy declares next year he wants to play "minors" which require a try-out. I worry about this as Sonny Boy's batting skills are probably above average, his throwing and fielding skills stink. We'll see, that's in the spring, I hope he changes his mind by then. Baseball is taken WAY too seriously here and they are nursing a little league world series team along making national airtime on ESPN last year and won some big tourney that puts them on the same route again this year. Good for the kids, but I'm not really ready for that much seriousness in kid's sports, especially when my child is not the most athlectically gifted.

The painters are supposed to start on the house on Monday. I'm really stressed about this as my neighbor had a horrible experience with the last painters he hired. Of course I did not hire the same people but I don't want that slap-dash job done on my house. To add to the stress of that I have a camping trip planned with my MIL and nephew (and the kids of course) next week so I won't be here to supervise and pick at what they are doing. I know the check will not be written until I'm satisfied the job is done correctly. We did decide on a color scheme and painted a section on the street side of the house. I've had many good comments on it so I think it will look nice. It be good to leave the blue and yellow french provencial colors behind for something a little more soothing. Basically a couple hues of tan with some reddish brown accents here and there. From all I've read a little more historically accurate than the pastels that now grace the house. I'm not one of those historically accurate crazy people, but do think houses tend to look best in the color scheme that was prevalent at the time they were built. (at least on the exterior, we all agree avocado and orange shag carpet must go far far away)

Well that's about all. I'm going to play with the phone for a minute while I'm still upright and add some pics. Of course they are gonna be in crazy order and in the previous post but hey you get to see them.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Igor JUST has a funny shaped head!! Thank God.

Yeah, I know not the most flattering title to put on a blog post, but it's the best answer and quickest thing to read.

The craniofacial doctor called just about 20 minutes ago and confirmed that Igor's CT scan results were normal, he just has an unusual shaped head "like mine" he said, referring to himself. I didn't notice he had an odd head, but I guess if your a craniofacial doc you know if your head is "normal" or not. The eye doctor also pronounced that Igor does NOT have the eye bulging thing either so we have pretty much ruled out any craniostynosis diagnosis. Woo, I don't have to tell you what a relief it is to get that news.

The ruling out of the craniostynosis also puts the genetic doc's best guess at a syndrome at odds as well since that is a major marker of the his preferred guess. We still haven't done the genetic testing yet. It was not approved by our insurance as they deemed it "experimental" I contacted the genetic counselor lady and she had the doc call the insurance company who then agreed to do some of the test (probably the cheaper part) I just got that news yesterday afternoon. However with the skull issues not being a factor I don't know if the genetic doc will want to run testing in the same strain. We'll see, I have craniofacial and opthamology sending their reports on to genetics. I'm certainly not going to drive up to Milwaukee for a blood draw right away when it appears things may have changed.

Makes my mind SO much lighter. I feel like a HUGE weight has been lifted and the summer no longer has this horrible dangling nightmare hanging over it. I'm prepared for a genetic diagnosis, just not a major skull remodel surgery.

Speaking of remodel.... the camper is making headway. We have now finally sealed the leaks (we think) put the floor down and have installed a bulkhead wall that divides out some pass through storage. We cut the vinyl floor last night but could not put it in due to the fact we had to put some patching compound on a transition area to level it out and that had to dry. We also found some mildew growing under the vinyl in another area (wasn't wet, wasn't soft, old leak we are guessing that had been fixed) so that got scrubbed with some bleach water and needed to dry out. We are down to putting the furniture stuff back in and system checking everything. Just in time for Hubby to leave on his long training trip. Guess I'll take it on it's maiden camping voyage alone - that should be interesting. Here's hoping the van can tow it!

Well I suppose that's it for now. I just wanted to give an update and thank you for the prayers.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Nerves

By this time next week we'll have some sort of idea on Igor's skull issues. The waiting is the hard part, I want action. Why I can't just barge on up to Children's and put him in the machine to be scanned, have the doc look at this eyes and be done. Then I could plan. I'm a big planner. I'm not one to have every minute of the day scheduled but I do like to know roughly what's going to happen. Igor and I are alike in that matter (though he likes things timed to the nano-second) For this weekend I'm trying to not to worry and think about it. This blog post is gonna be my last worry session until we have some real news. I REFUSE TO GOOGLE!!! However my mind keeps drifting back to brain injury and while they may not be technically doing anything to his brain it is too close for comfort. I've delt with brain injuries, my mother had a stroke, and while she survived and is doing well she's not the same person I grew up with. That's my biggest fear is to have my little Igor handed back to me and not be the sweet little kid who's kisses have a daily theme.

A good distraction this week has been Emma. Emma is a friend's dark chocolate lab that has stayed with us this week. She's a good dog and likely the most calm labrador I've ever been around that wasn't 102 years old. Emma has been great with the kids, putting up with all their crazy antics with aplomb. I will say Emma comes from a household with three kids though - two of them roughly Sonny Boy's and Igor's ages so kids are old hat to her. Sonny Boy and her have really bonded and she's been sleeping in his room (and bed) every night. Gonna take me a week and a gallon of Fabreze to remove the dog smell from there - she's not dirty just doggy. Emma goes home this evening.

Work on the camper continues at full bore. We are having a hard time finding the source of the water infiltration. We fix one issue, spray down with the water hose and then find another. Ug, we've used a lot of sealant that doesn't come off your hands with anything short of a sandblaster. We have all the supports for the flooring in, insulation cut and are ready to lay the floor but just keep finding water leaks. My hopes for dragging it around Northern Wisconsin for a few weeks in late summer are slipping away.

We have finally picked out a color scheme for the house. I did paint up one window on the street side and have had compliements on it. I guess I should post a picture, but you know me and putting pictures up. I've taken the heat gun and removed paint from some of the detail work here and there. 120 years of paint build-up can kill a lot of tiny details in woodwork. I still have one section to do. I didn't really expect painters to take the time to get things as cleanly done as I have done them, much less strip to bare wood, they'll just get the loose paint.

Our new neighbors will move in this weekend. They closed on the house last week and spent last weekend pulling up old carpet and cleaning. We went over and met them and they seem like a nice young couple. No children, much to Sonny Boy's disappointment as he wanted some playmates close by. Sounds like they have big plans for the house which is nice to hear as it needs some work and a little love. They got a good deal on it, I like the lot much more than our own and wish the house would have been available when we were house shopping. I hear they are going to paint which makes me happy as there has been an epidemic of vinyl siding lately with even our next door neighbor pondering it (it would RUIN his house) so I've been trying to gently talk him out of it.

Well I suppose I need to get off the computer and do some chores. The kitchen and laundry are my never ending battles around here, but I suppose they are for everyone. Maybe I'll bake some cookies for the new neighbors?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Well at least...

Well at least we managed a scheduling miracle. Today the CT scan scheduler lady and I managed to schedule Igor's CT scan on the same day as the eye doctor appointment next week. It will be a long day hanging out in Milwaukee as there is a little bit of time between appointments, however at least it won't require driving back into town for another 15 minute appointment. Going to call the lady at the genetic clinic who is supposed to be fighting the insurance for me and see if we can get the blood draw for the genetic work-up while we are there as well then it will be three birds with one car trip.

Thankful Hubby can work from home that day and leave Sonny Boy here to hang out with his Dad (i.e. watch a lot of TV and play too much Wii) but it will beat wrangling two kids all day in a boring place. Not to mention Sonny Boy is much harder to deal with when bored.

That's about it.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Worrisome Times

I'm beginning to hate Children's hospital. It seems my interactions with that place lately have not brought good news. Every appointment brings hope that I'll be looked like some over paranoid mother and sent home. Unfortunately that hasn't happened in a long while.

This year Igor has seen orthopedics for the broken leg and to get SMO's, Opthamology for continued monitoring of vision, Cardiology which diagnosed a heart condition, Genetics which has diagnosed a connective tissue disorder with only a good guess as to the actual name - waiting on expensive genetic testing we are still waiting insurance approval on. Cranio-facial who did say there was no cleft palate (a tiny bit of good news) but there is definite craniostenosis - the sutures in the skull closing too soon - which could be putting pressure on his brain. This is forcing another trip back to Opthamology to rule out some sort of eye ball bulging (there is a fancy name for it but my brain is fried from trying to keep my head together today) if the eye-ball bulging is there he will definitely need surgery and I'll be getting a phone call in the next day or two to schedule a CT scan to see how extensive the cranio-stenosis is and see what that brings. Yay (that's supposed to be in the sarcasm font that should be existent on blogger) Send up some prayers that Igor's funny shaped head is simply funny shaped. I want an MD to say we've over reacted.

This comes on the tail end of finding out that my high school boyfriend of six years passed away on Saturday afternoon. I meandered back and forth for a day or two if I should load up the kids and drive down to Arkansas for the funeral. In the end I decided against it. It's a sad situation as it seemed he drank himself to an early grave at age 39. A wasted life. My mother attended the memorial tonight and said it was sad. Perhaps the only good thing to say is that he never had children who would have lived through the hell of an alcoholic father and the loss of him young. My mother said that somehow his family had come to the conclusion that I had been killed in an accident up here in WI and thought I'd been dead for several years. Must have been quite shocking when I friended his sister on Facebook a few months ago. Like Mark Twain said "The rumours of my death are greatly exaggerated".

Thankfully the overly stressful events of the week haven't sent my body into a tailspin. Mornings have been rough with a couple of nights bad sleep. My allergies are flaring up something horrible but eye drops and Claritin are helping to keep them in check. I've had other friends in the area complain about allergies lately too, seem to be rougher than normal this year.

We have cancelled our plans to take Sonny Boy to NYC and DC while Hubby was out east. The plane tickets are outrageous and couple that with the upcoming medical expenses and complications (which we hope we are just being too careful with) we don't want to buy non-refundable tickets. Hubby's corporate headquarters are in New Jersey so they'll be other trips to the east coast to piggy back on at another time.

In response to not taking the NYC trip we've promised Sonny Boy a long camping trip. I finally conned Hubby into letting me get a camper. The camper wasn't too old but had rotten floors but was otherwise beautiful. Hubby agreed to let me get the camper as it was cheap due to the floor issue and is working on getting the floor repaired. I'm excited to get it up and running, Hubby is charged with getting it operational by the time he leaves for his training stint. He fusses about it, but I know he really kind of likes the challenge of the project as all the house projects we've had this year have been given to contractors. Igor is excited about the camper too and keeps asking questions about where we'll all sleep and can we do XYZ and when we go camping and the like. Sonny Boy is pretty blase as he proclaims he wants some huge giant motorcoach fit for a rock star.

So there's my worries on a platter. Maybe I can sleep tonight, I don't know. Maybe I should just go take a benedryl or two and kill two birds with one stone - sleep and allergies. Looks like my summer just got interesting in a way I did not intend.