Thursday, December 30, 2010

It's over!

The holiday season is over! I don't count New Year's Eve as part of the holiday season because I don't really celebrate it. I often try to, but it seems like it gets thwarted every time. Last year, we were supposed to celebrate at Busch Gardens with Sadia, but Meg's flight was delayed and we got there really late. It was an incredibly special night for my future husband and me anyway, but New Years wasn't a big deal.

This year, Meg is in Seattle. My New Year's Eve date from last year is now my husband. Jack was born. Every single part of my life has changed. If you think about it, New Years Eve of last year really was the dawn of a new era for me.



I don't have resolutions. I think they are ridiculous. I do have some hopes for this coming year though. I hope that the seeds that we planted this year will continue to be nurtured into something that will be enjoyed later (and I'm not talking about the seeds from my dead tomato plant.) I hope that the decisions I made throughout the year will continue to be the right decisions. I hope that all of my friends will stay healthy or get healthier.

I hope you have a fun and safe New Year's Eve. Have a drink for me. Use a designated driver or call a cab if you need one. (If you have to ask yourself if you need a ride, you do.) Don't forget to stake out your midnight kiss ahead of time and be in position when the ball drops. I'll be living la vida loca at home most likely.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

A New Holiday Tradition

As many of you know, earlier this year I got married. When I got married, I had never met my husband's family and I had never really considered the implications that this union would have on the holiday season. Anyone who knows me knows that no holiday is ever simple. This is probably true for most people, but I have a blended family and that means that I have to work together with all the many members of our different family groups to try and make sure everyone feels that they had the best holiday possible. Getting married added a whole lot more family.

One of the things that has made the holidays doable for me has been the fact that the vast majority of my family lives in Central Florida like me. I can reach the majority of my family in any number of directions in about an hour. My husband is the only member of his family who lives here and that has changed things up a bit. This year, for the first Christmas ever, I'll be away for Christmas. Can we say road trip?

I'm nervous for a number of reasons including and not limited to:
  • New people that I have to like. When I was married before my husband had a grand total of ONE family member. This is a lot of pressure.
  • Traveling with a baby who is just over two months old. I'm not sure how to make this work without ruining his sleep schedule.
  • Introducing my husband to my father. My dad and my grandparents live in North Florida so we get to visit them too, but my father has never met anyone that I dated.
  • Integrating into the previously mentioned new family. My husband apparently told his family I would help with the cooking. In my family, despite the fact that I am thirty years old, I'm kind of a junior member. By the time I arrive everything is finished and if I do bring anything it's either dessert or drinks. They have the whole routine down and they've been doing it since I was a baby, if not before then.
I'm sure we will figure it all out, but right now it's kind of in the planning stages.

    Tuesday, November 30, 2010

    Mall Adventures and National Believe Day

    Today, Jack and I are heading to the Mall to have his picture taken with Santa. I think he'll be alright because he's too little to be afraid. I plan to use the mall's breastfeeding area to feed him right before getting in line. A fully fed Jack is a happy Jack.

    I suppose we'll stroll around and look at the newly hung decorations and if our mall has a Macy's we'll stop by. I want to see if they actually have a big red mail box. December 10th is National Believe Day and Macy's is donating $1 for every letter to Santa they receive to the Make a Wish Foundation. If you need some help, they also have celebrity letters for you to check out.

    The web site for National believe day is absolutely beautiful. Even if you don't believe, I suggest you stop by and take a look.

    Also, for those of you who were wondering I'll be starting up my Santa Can Suck It site again for the holiday season. Just because you believe in Santa, it doesn't mean you have to like it.

    Saturday, November 27, 2010

    Happy Holidays

    I'm sitting here with Max and we are watching A Christmas Story. I've seen this movie about a hundred times. It's the one holiday movie I remember my family religious watching, though there's nothing religious about it. I remember becoming a teenager and finding certain parts of the movie annoying. For instance, when the little brother Randy is eating like "Mommy's little piggy" at the dinner table it was awful. It breaks one of my food rules and grosses me out. (The infraction is against the rule that says food does not touch the outside of the body which the exception of the lips and fingertips when necessary.) As an adult and a parent though, I really understand it more.

    My daughter is Randy. She rarely voluntarily eats. It's like waging a war every time food is served. Breakfast is less of a challenge, but I think breakfast food is sweet and can be fun. Also, when Max and Annie are with me I simply ask them what they want for breakfast and them make it. It would be pretty silly of her to ask me for something and then refuse to eat it. (Don't get me wrong. She's done it, but generally she doesn't.)

    Courtney Fun Fact: My favorite scene in the movie is when, after putting the soap in Ralphie's mouth, the mother tries the soap herself. Brilliant scene!

    We spent Thanksgiving with my Grandmother and some of our family and then we went to my Aunt Rayna's for leftovers yesterday. My favorite thing at Grandma's is the collard greens. I ate a big spoonful. Then I ate a bunch of broccoli cassarole. Normally, this would not be a problem, but poor Jack was in misery yesterday. I'm breastfeeding and apparently one or both of those things that I love so very much gave Jack a terrible case of gas. Yesterday, I sampled a little tiny bit of my aunt's broccoli casserole. I hope it was the collard greens. I can give up one or the other, but to give up both is simply cruel and unusual.

    Today, I am making my own turkey dinner. I just love turkey and I don't have a problem eating it repeatedly. I have to make a ham this week too. I love the leftovers.

    Tuesday, November 16, 2010

    Dancing With The Stars! AKA Maks and Brandy were robbed.

    Since I'm not working right now and I have time that I absolutely must be sitting on my behind. I've spent much of this time rotting my brain with TV. I've become a fan of Dancing with the Stars. They had me from kicking off the Hoff. My early faves were:
    • Kyle
    • Kurt
    • Margaret
    • Rick
    When Margaret, Rick, and finally Kurt were voted off, I wasn't surprised. I might have been a little surprised about the order in which they were voted off, but honestly I thought the only one who had a chance based on dancing ability was Rick.

    I am pleased beyond belief that Kyle has made it to the finals. He's a good dancer. He's incredibly entertaining and gosh darn it, I just like him. He's worked very hard and he deserves to be there.

    Jennifer looks wonderful and has mastered not only the technical details, but also exhibits both an artistic aspect and an epic amount of grace for someone who has struggled with injuries the entire series. I love that she's in the final and she absolutely deserves to be there, though my husband insists on calling her Grandma.

    We watched the show tonight and when Brandy and Maks stood next to Bristol and Mark I felt so sure that America would have done the right thing.  My husband claimed that it would be impossible for Bristol to make it to the finals because her dancing ability was completely lacking in comparison to Brandy. (Granted, She's not Kate Gosselin bad. That woman has all of the grace of a refridgerator.)

    I'll be honest. I was not rooting for Brandy at all. I find her appearance off putting and her reactions to the judges drive me crazy. She cries about the most ridiculous things. (Granted, I'm a weeper so I should really shut up.) However, I love Maksim Chmerkovskiy. He is very forceful when he dances. I like that. Also, he's hot. I'll admit it. He's painfully hot. It should be a crime for him to walk around looking like that. As a matter of fact, that's probably why he came to America. He was going to be prosecuted in his own country for extreme hotness. (Sorry. I shoud be ashamed of that last paragraph.)

    Imagine my horror and the horror of Maks and Brandy when their names where called. Bristol had the good grace to look apologetic. Mark seemed genuinely overcome with emotion. He managed to look horrified and then remembered he was supposed to be celebrating. Maks looked like he was desperately struggling to not reach over and strangle Bristol and Brandy cried. This time, I could have wept with her. What an absolute freaking tragedy. It's just wrong.

    I visited Bristol's DWTS "Meet the Stars" page. There is a comment section and tonight people are furiously lashing out and claiming that she's only in the finals because people voted for her based on their political feeling about her mother. I completely agree with that. However, her fans insist that anyone who thinks that is sad and small minded. WHY DON'T YOU JUST SAY IT? Am I not a real American because I didn't vote for Bristol?

    I can only hope that Kyle or Jennifer win the competition. I feel so much sadness that someone, who admittedly tries so hard but dances so poorly, could win this competition.

    Tuesday, October 26, 2010

    And... We're back!

    It's been a while since I've blogged, but I've got good reasons. On October 16th at 11:25pm, Jackson entered the world. I'd been in pain for about 48 hours, but after going to the hospital on Friday night and being told it was a false alarm I held out when the pain worsened on Saturday. My husband finally had enough and told me to call the doctor. The contractions were about 15 minutes apart at that time. I wanted to wait longer, but my husband had the good sense to insist that I make the call. We left the house shortly thereafter and on the way to the hospital the contractions got MUCH closer together. By the time we arrived at the hospital it seems like they were a lot closer to five minutes apart.

    The nurses were all very calm when we arrived. They were prepared for another false alarm. They took me to triage where they started monitoring contractions and they took my measurements. The nurse suddenly became a whole lot less calm when she announced we were 8-9cm. After all those months of waiting, we were kind of surprised to be in the home stretch all of a sudden. I sent my husband to call everyone and then we headed up to labor and delivery. The nurses flooded the room to get everything ready. The person who inserted my IV used the largest needle I have ever seen in my life and could not get it in the original vein she tried. She tried again in another spot and thought she got the needle in. (Unfortunately, she did not, but we didn't find that out until the next day when my hand swelled up and it looked like a golf ball had been inserted underneath my skin.)

    The nurses started calmly leaving the room to my confusion. The nurse who seemed to be in charge of my delivery started to walk out and said to call her when it was time to push. I let her know that the time to push was NOW. That sent everyone into a frenzy again and suddenly the doctor was there and saying I should push.

    Do you remember that moment in Knocked Up where Alison decides she wants an epidural, but it's too late? I had that moment. It feels like you are on the tip top portion of a roller coaster awaiting the plunge and you suddenly don't want to be on the ride anymore. When we arrived at the hospital it was already too late to give me anything other than an epidural since we were so far along. They had to wait to get my labs back to give me an epidural, but they said they would give me the option at that point. Unfortunately, Jack was not waiting for anyone or anything so he just barreled right along. The cord was around his neck, but the doctor acted like that was normal. He calmly cut the cord, directed me to push again, and after a few pushes he was out.

    My husband was like part of the crew with the nurses and doctor. He held my legs back with them and when I wasn't putting my chin to my chest as instructed he moved my head chestward. He was perfect. He watched the entire process and asked me if I wanted to see things as they happened. (The answer is no. I really don't.)

    Jack was 8lbs and 11oz. He was 20 and 5/8 inches long. He was born hungry and within a few minutes of being born latched on to me and fed for about 40 minutes. He's got all of his fingers and toes and is everything that we had hoped for.



    I feel like I haven't had the time or energy to blog until now, but I feel much better and I am getting used to my sleep pattern being significantly different. In a few weeks, I hope to be able to leave the house on a regular basis, but for now I am alright with being home all the time.

    Wednesday, October 13, 2010

    A letter to my STILL unborn son.

    Dear Jack,
       It's your due date. There's no pressure or anything, but Mommy is a fan of being punctual. Also, I made cookies.We've been joined, literally, for 40 weeks now. In the scheme of our lives, this is not long. You won't remember the womb, which is probably a good thing. It's dark in there. You won't remember your birth or the first couple of years you are alive, but I will.

       Your father and I are probably going to take entirely too many pictures of you doing things that will seem mundane later in life, but they're miraculous to us now. We'll have pictures of you covered in your first foods and your first birthday cake, which will totally freak me out, but I'll play along for a few moments before spastically wiping you off. We'll look at and analyze your first and subsequent poos like some ancient tea leaf readers. Your grandmothers, and you've got a lot of them, will ooh, ahh, and coo at your every move.

       You have a brother and sister who are waiting as patiently as a nine and seven year old can. They are thrilled that we've named you Jack. Annie is worried that you'll beat her up later, but you won't. Max is afraid that you'll be annoying. You will be, but it won't be your fault. Little brothers are always in awe of their big brothers, especially because Max is nine and a half years older than you.

       You're going to love it here. We have really amazing food. We live in Florida, but there is a whole world out there that you'll get to explore if you want to. We have animals of all colors, shapes, and sizes that you'll get to see and study. Starting at home there are three cats. They aren't really sure why I've gotten so fat and I can't walk properly. They are mostly upset about my complete lack of lap, but I know they will find you interesting. You guys will have a lot in common. Mostly, they sleep all day and they depend on me to feed them and clean up their poop. I'll be bathing you more and you'll get to sleep in my room for a while. Also, you'll be going with us wherever we go, and they just chill out at home like lazy security guards.

       I hope that this letter in some way inspires you to hit the eject button, but if you don't we're going to do some strong convincing on Monday at 6:30am. Please come sooner. Daddy is not exactly what I would consider a morning person and neither is my mother, who you'll call Mimi. Since they are my support team during your blessed entry, I'd like you to arrive when they have some pep in their step. (I won't lie. You know how I said we had amazing food here? We totally do. If you do come in the morning time, I'm sending Daddy or Mimi to get me breakfast and they are more likely to go get me exactly what I want if you come a tad later in the morning.)

     I can't wait to meet you.
    Love,
    Your mother.

    Tuesday, October 5, 2010

    Where is Sarah Jessica Parker when I need her?

    Jack is not coming out. He's very comfortable. I, on the other hand, am very uncomfortable. What we have here, folks, is a failure to launch.

    I know Jack isn't due until October 13th. I understand that he'll come when he's ready. I just don't know how much more of this I can take. To a certain extent, it's not even the pregnancy that is driving me crazy. It's the being home alone with very little to do. I'm not really a good housewife candidate.

    Here is what a typical day is like for me:

    • Wake up when my husband's alarm goes off.
    • Ignore his "go back to sleep" command.
    • Stay in bed and watch him iron his clothes and head out for work.
    • Attempt to go back to sleep.
    • Exit the bedroom, still in jammies, and greet cats.
    • Make a cup of tea and allow it to steep.
    • Check email. facebook, and RSS feed while watching my neighbors with a life walk their dogs, go for jogs, and leave for work.
    • Realize that an hour has passed and I forgot my tea. Start the tea process again.
    • Take phone calls and texts from my mother and friends where the answer is essentially "NO, I have not have the baby yet."
    • Remember the tea. (Awesome. Earl Gray, I love you.)
    • Pace around the house, talk to the cats, and struggle to think of things to do.
    • Do laundry. We always have at least one load since we have a tiny washer.
    • Consider making a baked good despite the fact that I probably won't eat it and my husband probably can't eat it.
    • Take another round of phone calls in which the answer is still "No, I haven't had the baby yet."
    • Attempt to take nap and fail.
    • Fold the laundry.
    • Wait for my husband to get home and sometime watch Dancing with the Stars.
    I'm not a whiner, but I can't wait until Jack gets here. I know that the next couple of months will be hard and that I'll basically be begging God to let me sleep just a little, but at least I'll have a focus.

    Monday, September 27, 2010

    Thoughts on Eddie Long.

    I'll be honest. I'm no fan of Baptist doctrine and I am especially not a fan of mega churches, but I do find the allegations against Eddie Long very sad. Bishop Long has been accused of coercing young men from his church to have various types of sex with him and using his power and money from the church to entice them further and keep them quiet.

    He states that the allegations are untrue and that he will fight against them. He really has no choice though. A mega church is a business. Bishop Long is the head of the business and he can't allow anything to get in the way of what his business does. Whether you believe that is making money or saving souls, it doesn't matter. If Bishop Long is innocent and steps down (that way that Roland Martin suggests in his piece on CNN) he appears guilty and weak. If he stays and fights the allegations from the pulpit, he gives his followers some hope. They don't believe that he would stand in front of them and lie about something, fully knowing that the proof would never be able to set him free. One of the men accusing Bishop Long claims to have photographic evidence that should clear this all up.

    I think the truth of the matter will be discovered in a relatively short while. If there are photos of the Bishop and his boys in the act then I really don't know why he'd bother to showboat, unless he felt that he could financially satisfy the accuser. If you'll notice, there are no criminal charges being filed. I don't find it very strange to be honest. I think that you'd be hard pressed to find the physical evidence or evidence of any kind that these men were forced to engage with the Bishop.

    The fourth lawsuit is very interesting to me. The supposed victim was allegedly showered with gifts like a car and tuition. If that was the case there should be a paper trail of some kind (unless he paid for the car and tuition with cash, of course.) Surely, someone would have noticed the time that the Bishop spent alone in hotel rooms with his young male followers.

    It is my experience, from situations I have witnessed within churches where a scandal erupts, that when we have a situation like this that people within the church know. Not the parishioners, but typically the leader in question will have a power circle. This circle excludes his wife. She's given other duties typically in the women's ministry. The power circle is an incredibly small group that believe so strongly in the leader that they unquestioningly follow every order. These are the people that the lawyers need to get to. It won't matter really, even if they do find them the members of this small group will lie on the behalf of the leader because being part of this group gives them a significant amount of implied power. I'd look for one or two couples that are always around, not necessarily high ranking members of the church.

    I think the biggest outrage that some people feel is that Bishop Long has long been an outspoken anti-gay leader. He preaches and campaigns that marriage is between a man and a woman and that if you are gay his ministry can cure you. (It is my opinion that by "cure" they mean to humiliate and use fear tactics to shame you into behaving "appropriately".) What does it say about Bishop Long if he's been preaching so strongly about this topic, only to be "struggling" with it himself?

    I do not want to hear that it means he is human and we need to forgive him. (Frankly, it's not any of my business to forgive him. He's not harmed me in any way.) I also am not sure that I agree with the fourth suit that claims the church had an obligation to warn these guys. I suspect that even if they allegations are true, that "The Church" had no idea what was going on. "The Church" believes very strongly in mentoring and training up young men to be leaders and I believe that is what people thought was happening. I do not believe the attendees of Baptist churches or Mega Churches are bad people. I think they believe very strongly in the doctrine of the church and that the Mega Church provides a strong sense of community and belonging. The Mega Church is so large that sometimes things that could never fly in a small church, can be easily brushed aside or looked over in this larger environment. I think that the lawyers are targeting "The Church" because what they really want is "The Church's Money."


    I also wonder why it took the fourth victim so many years to become disillusioned with the Bishop's message. (I'm not blaming the victim. I just wonder about these things.) If the Bishop's message in the pulpit is "Homosexuality is bad" and his message in the hotel room is "Homosexuality is rad" you'd think it would have brought up some questions a little sooner.


    The best way to sum up my feelings on the matter are to say that it would be refreshing to see the Bishop cleared beyond a shadow of a doubt. I don't agree with his message, but I dislike people who use false claims to damage other people even more. I hope that this causes his followers to take a good hard look at what they believe and ask themselves important questions. I hope that if the Bishop is found to have been participating in homosexual acts, that he stops faking his hetero lifestyle or at least finds a way to come to terms with it. I feel terrible for the hard time his family is going through either way and I hope that a resolution of some kind can be reached soon.

    Thursday, September 23, 2010

    At least they're honest.

    I saw this last week and I figured they would change it, but today I was stuck in traffic so I could get a picture for you guys. It totally cracked me up.


    Saturday, September 18, 2010

    Welcome to the weekend.

    The weekend is finally here. It's been a very long week. I was training a new person at work and I haven't felt particularly well and neither of those things created a good week.

    I dislike training people. I'm not particularly good at it since I would much rather be doing the work myself. I recognize the necessity at this point since I'll be leaving on maternity leave shortly. This particular person just isn't computer literate, so it adds an extra level of difficulty. He's trying hard, but I want to literally throw him aside and do it myself. I generally try to give all trainees to other employees, but he only wants to work with me.

    I think the long hours are finally getting to me. By the time I get home I am in misery. I want to rip out my own spine. It's a strange feeling to feel so angry at a part of my own body. I am not upset with Jack, obviously. I just don't understand why this hurts so badly.


    This weekend we are going to a birthday party, buying my daughter some shorts, and hanging out with the kids. I'll update you soon!

    Friday, September 10, 2010

    I love this song.

    Earthbound by Rodney Crowell





    I am really not sure why this song appeals to me so much, but I like it. It just feels so pleasant. It's a song about reasons that we might want to stick around and not die too soon. I think there are so many songs about how horrible peoples lives are and how great the afterlife is going to be, but not many songs that talk about enjoying what we have while we're here which is the entire point of living.

    Wednesday, September 8, 2010

    Weekend Update

    I know it's Wednesday, so technically the weekend is long gone and a new one is fast approaching, but I figured I'd fill you in on the weekend anyway. This was one of the most relaxed weekends that we have had in a while.

    On Friday, I left work at 2pm to go get Max from school. After some delightful banter with the school's secretary in which she revealed that despite the fact that Max is in her son's playgroup she had no idea that Max had a step mother. She was so surprised that I had to ask her to check the card to see if I was, in fact, Max's mother. She then proceeded to announce (to a guy who had been sitting there the entire time and had probably figured it out on his own) that Max's "REAL mother" was here. These people have my son's birth certificate on file and I have always been on his paperwork, so I am unsure why she acted like it was the strangest thing in the world. I also told her that we didn't consider the multiple mothers thing a big deal and that Max calls both of us mom. Max kindly demonstrated this fact seconds later by walking in the door, shouting "MOM!", and hurling himself into my massively pregnant body. As we left, I felt more amused than anything.

    Later that night, we took the kids to Long Horn Steakhouse. We had to wait about 40 minutes, but it was worth it. I always get the same thing despite the fact that I know I should probably try something else at some point. Max ordered the kids sirloin and proceeded to destroy  it. It was actually cooked perfectly, which surprised me since they never asked how we wanted it cooked. In the future, I'll remember to switch out the fries for something he'll actually eat. Annie got the chicken tenders which actually looked kind of gross. I can't imagine she cared since she hardly ever eats anything anyway.

    Saturday we hung out at home for the most part. The kids played Wii Monopoly for a good portion of the day. Then we went over to our friend John's house for dinner. We had burgers and fries and great conversation. I was pretty wiped out when we got home and so after a brief snack for the kids we all went to bed.

    Sunday was a big deal. We all got up and got fancy because it was the day of our Baby Shower. It felt like everyone on my mother's side showed up. My uncle Fred brought his inflatable kayak and Max took paddled around the lake for a while. My cousin Brittney got some great pictures of him and everyone else. Uncle Fred used his camera to get a giant family photo. It's been quite a while since we have had this many members of the family together at once.

    My mother made meatball subs and barbecued turkey sandwiches. They were really great. We also had a huge salad, tons of watermelon, cole slaw, and a huge cake that had a baby on it. We were all pretty well fed. Mom made the cole slaw for my husband because he loves it, and I think he probably had three bowls of it. (I'm glad he likes it because that's one of the few things I will not eat. Yuck.)

    It was seriously hot, but everyone stuck it out and did their best to stay cool. Right when everyone had about had it with the heat a storm rolled in. We had just enough time to open our gifts, have cake, and start saying goodbye when the sky opened up and dumped a huge amount of water on us. It was nice to finally cool off a little. I was completely tired and covered in sweat, so we decided to head home and shower and then later we would head to Steak and Shake. Max likes it there and he was staying with us an extra day since Max and Jenny were still at Dragon Con.

    Monday was spent relaxing with Max and going to the grocery store. We also took him to the Mellow Mushroom for lunch. It made me want a beer pretty badly. They have beer on tap and in the bottle of all kinds. It's kind of torturous actually, but I know that soon enough I'll be able to have something good with my pizza.

    Saturday, August 28, 2010

    Well, I haven't done that in a while

    Today, I was listening to Pandora and I heard this song that I liked so much that I actually bought the CD from Amazon. The song is called Groovy Gravy and it's Quincy Jones and Bill Cosby. I really love it. I know I probably could have downloaded the MP3 or whatever, but I still like my CDs.

    Thursday, August 26, 2010

    Nesting

    Nesting is a polite way of describing a phase in which a pregnant woman goes crazy. My current obsession is my hospital bag. I have nothing packed and I am completely freaking out. I don't even think I have an acceptable bag. I'm sure that I have something that is perfect in the garage, but until it's in my hands, I'm going to freak out.

    Once I have the bag itself I'll need to make a list and put things in it. I know my husband will be with me, so if anything is missing I can send him to get it. Also, Hooters is across the street from the hospital, so should I need something greasy and delicious or if he needs a break he can always head over there.

    The most important things will be:
    • Clothing for me and the baby
    • Snacks for my husband during the labor. (Usually, the babies kind of shoot out, but just in case.)
    • Phone chargers
    • My iPod
    • A sweater
    • A hair brush. (I don't carry one in my purse.)
    • Admissions info and related paperwork for the birth.
    • A digital camera
    • Baby blankets and travel gear
    I think that covers everything that I would care about that the hospital doesn't provide.

    I'm sure I'll obsess over this later. Now, I need to figure out what I'll be eating for lunch.

    Wednesday, August 25, 2010

    Update

    It's been a hell of a week. I feel like there are problems coming at me from every direction. The biggest problem is that I simply do not have the ability to fix the problems. They are completely out of my control, but I am still being looked at to fix them.

    Last night, Meg had a computer problem at her shop, so my husband went over to fix it. I sat there and was pretty useless, but Meg showed up and we just sat and talked while he worked. It's amazing what a few hours with your best friend can do. We went to Chili's for dinner and we spent the whole time telling stories and laughing. When we left, I felt more like myself than I have felt in weeks.

    We have reached the portion of the pregnancy where I feel like I want to have the baby right now and I am equally terrified because we are not ready. We still have not purchased a car seat. We can't bring the baby home without a car seat and I need to find one that isn't insanely expensive, but that also has a base available for sale separately. We also need a dedicated space for baby clothing. We have rubbermaid drawers that my older children used to use. I think I will clean one of those out and separate the clothing by size.

    I think the stress of everything, in conjunction with the pregnancy hormones, is causing me to have weird dreams. Last night, I had a dream that Paris Hilton wanted to date me. Um. I have no idea what the heck that's about.

    Thursday, August 19, 2010

    Ooh! New furniture.

    As many of you know or may have guessed, I'm not really the most materialistic person in the world. So when my husband expressed displeasure in our current living room set, otherwise known as The Futon, I just let him figure things out. I sincerely hate shopping for pretty much everything that isn't edible.

    We ventured out to Ikea and tried every couch they had and came out without a couch. It was a long drawn out affair that involved children flinging themselves across couches and beds, eating Swedish meatballs and Lingonberries, and marching around the entire store TWICE. Needless to say, I considered the couch game over. I filed it under "SO not worth the effort" and moved on.

    My husband was not so easily thwarted. He, for reasons that I don't know, called the futon "The Fart Sack" and had no intention of giving up the search. Last Sunday, he hit the furniture jackpot. I was busy stuffing my face full of Five Guys' burgers and fries. He was perusing the weekend edition of Tampa's TBT and casually eating. Suddenly, he saw an ad for a one day furniture sale. Unfortunately, that one day was Saturday. I said that it was too bad that we missed it and went back to the face stuffing.

    Note: My husband and I are similar in that if we know what we want we will find a way to make it happen. His thing is apparently furniture. My thing is generally cat related.

    We finished lunch and headed over to see the Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. (It was AWESOME.) When the movie ended we searched Westshore Plaza for Ice Cream. Alas, they had none. (Seriously, what self respecting mall doesn't have ice cream? Really?!) We decided to head back to the car.

    When we got to the car, I found myself sitting in a started car in billion degree Florida weather while my husband, once again, perused the paper. I gave him my "Are you serious?" face. He gave me his "I'm always serious" face. He decided he would not give up on the couches. He began to call the local stores to find out if they still had any. I called my mother to pretend this wasn't happening and hoped this furniture storm would pass us by. One of the stores called us back. They had one set left. My husband whipped the vehicle across two lanes of traffic and within minutes we were pulling into the big old furniture store of my nightmares. (Okay, I know I'm being dramatic here, but furniture is seriously boring.)

    My husband zeroed in on the couch like a man on a mission. He made me sit on it. He made me put my feet up. He tried it out himself. He was sold. I was then told to sit on the couch and not let anyone even dream of purchasing it. This consisted of me taking a mini-nap on the couch while he ran to get an associate. When the associate came they began to discuss the details and I found that I was needed in the restroom. When I emerged some time later, my husband and his sales associate friend were missing. I wandered around the store hoping to find them, but about ten minutes later I ended up asking another associate if she knew where my husband was. Surprisingly, she did. I arrived just in time to hear them finalizing delivery details. While they were handling things I could completely care less about, I found the bed of my dreams. Sure, it's $4,000, but it was gorgeous. It was a huge 4 poster bed with leaves carved into the columns and a canopy. It looked like something out of a music video or a "Visit Jamaica" commercial. My husband was not in love with the bed, but we don't have 4K for a bed anyway. A girl can dream.

    This morning, our couch and love seat arrived. My husband seems happy, but Obi Wan seems to be happier.

    Tuesday, August 17, 2010

    Blurbs

    It's been a busy week already and so I thought I'd treat you to a few things that I'm thinking about.

    • Moving my blog to WordPress. Why? Basically, it's prettier. I like the comment functions. I like the text editor. It's a blank canvas.
    • Family and Friend Obligations - Are you obligated to go to birthday or candle/purse/Amway parties if you really don't want to?
    • I've been thinking about a CNN Poll asking if I felt The Westboro Baptist Church had a right to protest military funerals. (I plan to expand on that later.)
    • Would there be as big of an uproar if the Mosque near the World Trade Center site was a Cathedral? (I plan to expand on that later too.)
    • Am I ever going to have this baby? Granted, it's not time yet. We're not due until mid-October, but still. He's a real mover and shaker and frankly, I'm too old for his party lifestyle. (I know, just wait until he's born.)

    Saturday, August 7, 2010

    Today's adventure

    After I posted this morning, we left the house and drove to my mother's office. We were welcomed in, handed water with lemon, offered sliced apples, and then my husband entered my mother's office. The children played with the Nintendo DS and ate apples. I tried to relax, read CNN on my husband's iPhone, and waited for my turn.

    My husband came out looking refreshed and was whisked away to talk to someone else in the building. My mother brought me into her office and began my treatment. It was absolutely wonderful. She laughed because I was so incredibly tense, but that's nothing new. Relaxing is not something I'm good at.  Her office was incredibly soothing with soft music in the background. It was the best hour ever. I left that room feeling refreshed and more relaxed than I'd felt in months.

    After we finished with my mother, we went to Tastee Treat and we all had ice cream. I love soft serve ice cream. I briefly considered how much it would cost to get a soft serve machine in the house, but I didn't see my husband living the dream with me so I let it slide.

    After that, it was onward to Ikea. We planned to be there for a short amount of time, but it's like being sucked into a vortex. It was suddenly 6pm and we were all starving. How convenient that they have a restaurant with things I love there. We all got Swedish Meatballs except for Annie who stuck with pasta. We all got full meals, drinks, and 2 desserts. It was $17.62. I was confused. Apparently, they are running some sort of "Kids Eat Free" promo. How awesome was that?

    After we ate, we took another stroll around the store. It was quick and to the point. We bought two bath mats and a rug for our living room. By this time, I was ready to leave and take a nap immediately. I'm not getting a nap, but we did leave. I remain ready for a nap, but in about an hour we're all going to bed, so I can't complain too much.

    Ikea kind of sucks the soul out of you. You're so excited to be there, but by the time you're finished you feel like you've visted Hotel California.

    End of week update

    This week was kind of a mixed bag. On the one hand, we made it through the week without any freak outs from people at work. On the other hand, technical issues kept us from completing many of the tasks that I felt should have been completed.

    I had a sonogram on Monday, and Jack is perfect is every way and exactly where he ought to be growth wise. As I imagined, the doctor felt that my blood sugar scores were entirely too low. That led to a call from my Diabetes counselor who basically said eat more carbs, keep a food log, no sweets at all ever in your life, and keep a log of your physical activity. Frankly, I don't like her. If I want to have one or two cookies I don't think that is a problem. My scores are always really low anyway and I don't think having something I like once or twice a week is going to kill me or hurt the baby.

    My husband and I went to see a play on Thursday at the Straz Center for the Arts. I plan to write about it next. I liked it though I'll admit it through me for at least one loop. It's another enjoyable performance by the Jobsite Theater.

    Now that the weekend is upon us, Max and Annie are here. Max has been solidly whiny about everything and I have no idea why. He reminds me of someone else, but I suppose it's not very nice to say who. I just don't know what his issue is. I made breakfast, it was something he asked for, and he refused to eat it. He dropped a bagel into his lap and then looked at me as if I had done it. He even went so far as to say "Nice. NOW I have to change my shorts." I never would have dreamed of speaking to my mother that way and I finally sent him from the table and told him that I didn't care if he was hungry later, I'm not feeding him again until the rest of us are ready for lunch.

    My husband and I have appointments with my mother and her office for a facial later. If you haven't visited her skin care blog yet, I encourage you to do so. She knows her stuff and she writes from a very genuine place. Her blog is at http://www.tampafacials.com/blog. If you are in the Tampa area and are interested in knowing more about her services, let me know or comment on her blog.

    Saturday, July 31, 2010

    Briefly: Anne Rice

    It was news yesterday that Anne Rice left Christiantity. I didn't bother reading the articles yesterday, but this morning, in between dealing with the plague and snuggling kittens, I decided to take a look. I am ever so glad that I did.

    Honestly, I'm not a big Anne Rice fan. I have some of her books, but they don't really get read much. However, her comments are completely spot on.

    "My faith in Christ is central to my life. My conversion from a pessimistic atheist lost in a world I didn't understand, to an optimistic believer in a universe created and sustained by a loving God is crucial to me," Rice wrote. "But following Christ does not mean following His followers. Christ is infinitely more important than Christianity and always will be, no matter what Christianity is, has been or might become.”

    The biggest deterrent from Christianity today are Christians and those that call themselves ministers, priests, and (for goodness sake) prophets. I'm not saying they are all bad, but the faith as a whole has very visible leaders who are absolute criminals. It's embarrasing to thing that people are so uneducated in their own scripture that they choose to follow these people.

    Christianity is about a relationship with Christ not with other Christians, so I think Anne is making the absolute best decision possible.

    Friday, July 30, 2010

    Fedex Smartpost

    Exactly what is smart about Smartpost from Fedex? From what I can tell and what I have experienced, it's a ridiculously slow service. It's more expensive than USPS, but slower. The absolute only plus side is that you have a tracking number that is actually functional. USPS first class has no legal obligation to ever update their tracking information, but I have had pretty decent luck with them anyway.

    When I pay seven dollars for Old Navy to send me a half pound shirt, I'd like to get it in under a week. They could use priority mail for under five dollars and have it to me in two days after leaving their warehouse.

    COURTNEY DON'T PLAY THAT, OLD NAVY! I know shipping times and costs. I got an email on Monday that the package had shipped and it won't be here until August third. Seriously? Where is the convenience of the internet now? I could have actually gone to the freaking mall by this point, and you guys know how much of a procrastinator I can be.

    Comments on CNN stories I may or may not have read.

    Today, I've decided to comment on stories from CNN, since I can't really talk about other things that are going on in my life. I'm not planning on reading all of the stories, but I do plan to comment anyway.

    Headline 1. Lohan's jail comfort food: Twizzlers
    Comment: Who cares? Seriously, I don't care if she's eating stink bugs. She's in jail because she is an idiot. She's correct when she says she hasn't been treated fairly. Anyone else would have been in jail a long time ago.

    Headline 2. Pattinson inspires underwear line
    Comment: Does he even have an ass? Taylor Lautner could inspire a whole lot more than an underwear line. (Please tell me he's 18 already.)

    Headline 3.  No Charges for 7 Jackson Docs
    Comment: Are we really surprised? Not to mention, MJ would have taken the drugs no matter what. He could buy them legally, illegally, and semi-legally. He could ask his fans and they would deliver them directly. An addict will do drugs as long as they can get them or until they come to a place where they begin to recover. He had no desire to recover.

    Headline 4: Mom, 22, dies after silicone shots
    Comment:  Plastic surgery is ridiculous for most people, and especially ridiculous for a 22 year old. I'd like to see this country step away from the looking like an absolute freak of nature phase and step into the "focusing on health" phase. Your body is beautiful. Work with it. Nurture it. You aren't a literal piece of clay. Stop with the mutilation. I'm not against plastic surgery for reconstructive purposes, for (actual) medical purposes, or to remove large birth marks and things of that nature. I've had minor plastic surgery a few times myself for medical reasons. However, for the majority of folks who die, knowing the risks of plastic surgery, it really seems like more of a "only the strong or smart survive" thing. You weren't smart enough to accept yourself for who you are and you weren't strong enough to survive the surgery. Game over.

    Headline 5: Home Births Can be Harmful
    Comment: I actually read this one, though it was just a blog post. The story glosses over any actual facts. It says that a "STRONGLY WORDED EDITORIAL" in Britain says that home births double the risk of neonatal death and that hospital delivery should be the preferred method. Ironically, home births in the US and Britain are increasing. The first comment hits it right on the head though.

    "Likely, the cause of this increase (in the United States, anyways) is a lack of health insurance (due to unaffordability) and the incredible high cost of delivering a baby in a hospital without health insurance."


    As a person who has done research on how much it costs to have a baby in the hospital, I can tell you that it's more than I would pay for a new car in most cases. (It's like two of my car brand new, actually.) I think that there are actually two reasons for the rise in home births. The first is economical. The second is that people want to be in charge of their birthing experience. I'm very direct with my doctor. I let him know ahead of time what I want, but that I am open to change. I don't want an epidural or drugs of any kind, but if this labor stretches out for hours I might just say "Shoot me up, doc."

    Headline 6: Essence Defends White Editor Pick
    Who cares? Essence has the right to pick anyone they want for the position. They could hire my cat Obi Wan and no one could say a damned thing about it. (Granted, Obi Wan is black.) Also, they are a fashion editor. No one gets angry when a women's magazine has a male fashion editor. It's the same concept. Welcome to the future. Equality works both ways.

    Thursday, July 29, 2010

    I must see this.

    I know it's ridiculous, but I can't help it. I get giggles every time I see the trailers.





    I wonder what the heck is on this sound track though?

    Tuesday, July 27, 2010

    After this week...

    I think I need this book.

    Monday, July 26, 2010

    What a freaking Monday!


    You know what the the only thing worse than feeling this way in the morning is? Getting to the end of the day and realizing you probably would have been better off if you had just stayed in bed.

    Thursday, July 22, 2010

    How Not to Impress the Folks at the Diabetes Institute.

    • When asked to show up early to fill out paperwork for a class that starts at 2:30pm, show up at 2:27pm.
    • Conveniently run out of test strips during the class.
    • After conveniently running out of test strips, have your sugar crash.
    • When the instructor notices that you've suddenly started sweating, shaking, and breathing hard and asks you if you are ok, completely burst into tears and wail "I DON'T KNOW!"
    • Borrow another test strip from a fellow student and show the teacher your ridiculously low score, sending her into a fury getting you both glucose tablets and a glucose drink.
    • Allow the teacher and the class to discuss everything you ate for the last 24 hours and discover that you have completely failed to have anything resembling a normal carbohydrate intake. Green beans, despite the fact that I've eaten a ton of them, are not carbs.

    The class was very informative and it helped me to see that I need to eat more and more often. To combat yesterday's problem, I brought my appropriate snack bag. 

    Tuesday, July 20, 2010

    Tuesday Tunes

    Today I heard some good stuff on the radio. I listen to a lot of different kinds of music, but recently I've been letting Country and Bluegrass fill up my mornings.

    This song is so pretty, but incredibly sad. Personally, I'm glad I saw it without the video. What is happening to their heads? It's like the Bee Gees stylist from the 70's and Justin Beiber's current stylist got together to form some Hellmouth of hair. I'm going to get sucked into the 13 second mark and buzz those boys. Also, what's with the weird suits and skinny ties? I think the woman is very pretty in the kind of striking way. She has a mouth like Tyne Daly, who I like a lot. Her hair reminds me of Rod Stewart, but that's okay.

    Lyrically, it's a lovely song.




    I hadn't heard this one for a long time. I was about a block from work, sitting in traffic, when it came on. Thank goodness for that, because I cried my face off. You can't be driving down the highway crying. It's just dangerous.

    It just reminds me of a conversation I had with my father when I went to see him for the first time since I was about 4 or 5. I was in my early twenties with children of my own and it put me in a perfect position to try and understand.




    This one is really happy, thank goodness. In all honesty, I started my morning with this, but after the other two I figured we could all use a happier song.

    Monday, July 19, 2010

    Sugar and Me.

    Sugar and I have always had a good relationship. I don't eat a lot of it. I respect that sugar is delicious, but that if I eat too much of it there are consequences. Recently, my definition of "too much" has changed. Not because I have changed my mind about how much I think is alright, but because my body now fails to process it.

    Plain and simple. If I eat too much sugar, I feel it. In the past, I could have a sweet tea with lunch and be fine. I can't do that now. I thought that it was just being pregnant when it started happening about a month ago. Sometimes, I would have desert with lunch and on those days I felt miserable. I had no idea I would be diagnosed with gestational diabetes. If my sugar gets too high I feel heavy, very tired, and I can't think clearly. I feel like I am breathing through mud.

    To a certain extent, putting a name on these feeling has empowered me to feel better. If I make the right choices, I feel fine.

    Another thing that has been helpful is monitoring my blood sugar. I get my supplies today, but we had extras around the house so I started this weekend. I will now have to check my sugar four times a day. I thought it would bother me, but literally after the second time I was fine.  I don't enjoy it, but I don't dread it. When I check about an hour after I eat I can see if the food I ate was something I should eat again or not.

    I never really thought about it, but milk has carbs in it. (Whole milk has 12g in a 1 cup serving.) My husband has been drawing carbs to my attention constantly. At first, I was annoyed and it was hurtful, but I really think he's attempting to make me aware. If I have one pint of milk and a Twix bar that's over 50g of carbs. (When I say Twix bar, I mean if I eat both of the bars in the package.) That's more than I eat in most meals.

    I still have no plans to count carbs, but I do think it's currently important to be aware of them.

    It's now time to head to the Doctor for my regularly scheduled exam. I leave you with this. Please replace the word lover with sugar. It fits.

    Weekend Update

    • 1 child
    • 3 games of Monopoly
    • 1 Urbz Penthouse acquired
    Max was over this weekend for a make up weekend. It's rare to have him alone, but we had a good time and everyone seemed happy. He slept slightly later than usual, but he stayed up slightly later too, so that had a good deal to do with it.

    Saturday, we took Max to Hardee's. He'd never been there and he wanted to try it. I personally thought it was an experience he could have lived without, but in the interest of letting him try new things, we went. It was pretty mediocre. He didn't like the hamburger, but he thought my chicken tenders were good. He ate my onion rings too. James and I agreed that the oil was not fresh, so everything could have been better, but it's Hardee's so you can't expect too much.

    We got home early on Friday night, so we played Disney Monopoly. My husband spent a good portion of the game sitting in jail and insisting that it was the ultimate strategy. I argued that it was against the rules since they explicitly state that you may roll the dice three times, but then you have to pay to get out of jail. He argued that if you had no money you might be allowed to sit in jail. This was a non-issue since he had more than enough to pay to get out. He was also angry because there is no "Pot" or reward for landing on Free Parking. He said that every game he has ever played had a pot. I showed him the rules and he couldn't believe that I was right. He then said that the game encourages "House Rules" and that should be one of them. I disagreed because I felt like it lengthened an already lengthy game. That night, I won.


    Saturday, night we played again. To appease my husband, we allowed a pot. To appease me, we agreed that you couldn't sit in jail indefinitely. He won that game. Sunday, after taking Max home, we played the original version of Monopoly. (My husband dislikes the use of Tinkerbell in the Disney version. She moves whenever there are doubles. If you land on her space she pays your rent or buys you the property.) It looked pretty desperate for me for a while, but after landing on Free Parking I was able to win the game.


    This morning, I felt tired but ready to go to work when I woke up. XM Radio helped by providing the following:



    (I remember listening to this when I was little with my mother. TELL ME CAN YA FEEL IT?)



    Chatham County Line - Out of the Running. (I cried when I heard it.)

    Friday, July 16, 2010

    There is no substitute for diet and exercise.

    For today's chat, I would like everyone to grab a mirror, look themselves in the eyes, and tell themselves:
    • There is no substitute for diet and exercise.
    • There is no substitute for diet and exercise. 
    • There is no substitute for diet and exercise.  

    No matter how much we wish there was a drug that make us thin, there simply isn't. Even if there was, you shouldn't take it. Your body is made to work in a very specific way. Jamming chemicals into it to force it to dump weight or burn calories or whatever the miracle promise of the moment is just won't work. It may work temporarily, but when you stop taking it your body will begin to behave the way it did before the drug.

    My thoughts on this topic were brought on by the FDA not approving a new diet drug.

    For those of you who don't know me well, let me define what I mean by the word "Diet." I do not believe in dieting in a traditional sense. I do not believe in depriving yourself of everything delicious. I do not believe in no carbs, all protein, no sugar, nothing white, all cabbage or any other ridiculous thing. I believe in moderation. If you want a cookie, have one or two. Do not eat the entire plate. You CAN have whatever you want, you just have to share and watch your portions.

    I believe in having an active lifestyle. Live your life. Run, jump, play, swim, take walks, bounce in place, have sex or do whatever makes you feel good.Exercise comes in many forms. Find one that works for you.

    I have a friend who says it is unfair for me to say anything about weight loss and weight loss drugs because I am not fat, overweight, or whatever term you prefer. I'm certainly not tiny, but I don't worry about weight. My family has always focused on eating right and being active. We don't eat diet foods, but we love fruits and vegetables and try to not eat a lot of processed food.

    It is my hope that we stop looking to the drug companies for solutions, and start looking at ourselves and seeing what we can do. I don't think dumping "bad foods" is a good idea. I think it leads to stuffing yourself later. I recommend steadily increasing your intake of good food.(Not that I'm a dietitian or anything.)

    You get one life. Don't waste it alternately starving yourself and stuffing yourself. Be the healthiest happiest you. Also, don't look at magazines and movies. You are a real, non-photoshopped, person. Your curves are beautiful and genetic. We are not all meant to be 5'10'' and 120lbs, thank goodness. We are not all going to be ripped.

    Okay, I'm going to go have a donut.  

    Wednesday, July 14, 2010

    Seriously?

    Today, I took and failed my second Gestational Diabetes test. I have officially been diagnosed as having Gestational Diabetes. I'm not terribly worried about it because it's totally manageable and I'll only have it until our son is born a few months from now.

    Sadia and I were discussing whether is was too soon to blame things on my blood sugar, since I had just tripped and nearly flung myself across the office. We were just joking around, but then she joked that my husband gave me Diabetes. I laughed, but the mail person who was standing there looked at me, in all seriousness, and said that it was totally possible. His face was so serious. I stood there for a moment, mouth agape, and realized he wasn't joking. I laughed and gently told him that it's not contagious.

    It really reminded me of all the misconceptions people have. Not just about medical issues, but about the world at large. (For instance, I know people who honestly believe you can get AIDS from a toilet seat or living with a gay person.)

    Tuesday, July 13, 2010

    YES! SHOE VICTORY!

    Have you ever had a shoe that you liked so much that you didn't want to get rid of them, despite the fact that they are now treadless and worn so thin that a mouse fingernail could shred them? Even when you eventually come to the conclusion that a new shoe must be purchased, you hold out because you can't find the exact shoe you want? The shoe you actually want was purchased for you about 3 years ago by a friend and they don't sell them anymore. The shoe you actually want is currently (barely) on your foot. That was my dilemma.

    This morning I decided to go to the website of the store where there original shoes were purchased, just to take a brief look. The shoe fairy, knowing I'm notoriously lazy when it comes to shopping, granted my only true shoe wish. There, on the front page of the women's shoe section, were my dream shoes. (Please cue Dream Lover by Mariah Carey. FINE, I'll do it for you.)




    Here are my tried and true, brown, gold, and blue shoes:
                                             (There will be no mocking of my incredibly white legs.)

    Here are soon to be new, brown, gold, and blue shoes:

    I plan to play this when I buy my new shoes. (P.S. They are on sale at JC Penney and on their site here.)

    Monday, June 28, 2010

    Weekend Update and Music Monday!

     This weekend flew by. We had dinner with my mother on Friday night. We went to Sweet Tomatoes. It's one of those situations where the kids like getting to pick whatever they want to eat and I like that the choices are pretty healthy.

    Saturday, we saw Toy Story 3. I cried a lot. I'm not going to give anything away, but I think if you liked the other two you'll like this one. We had ice cream after the movie and then we went to our friend John's house for dinner. John made homemade wings and french fries and our friend Norb brought some amazing pizza. It was from The Pizza Oven and if you are in the Tampa area and you like Pizza I recommend you try it. (Also, try the flan. I don't even like flan most of the time and this was amazing. It wasn't too gelatinous, if that makes any sense. I can't deal with slime and this is a nice custard. Follow them on Twitter here.)

    At one point during the evening, John's dog dropped his bone down the stairs and chased it down. It sounded like a body to me, and I wasn't the only one to think so. Before I could get to the stairs and find out if everyone was alright, my daughter yelled "Mom!? Are you okay?!" She knows me pretty well. I am the Queen of Clumsiness.

    Sunday, we just chilled out at the house. Max and I made chocolate chip cookies. Annika played TMNT: Turtles in Time. I made a pretty sweet lunch that everyone actually liked for once. I made a pork loin, black beans and rice, and then we had a salad too. The black beans were really good. I didn't even mess up the rice this time! It was like a pre-4th of July miracle. Especially when Annika cleaned her plate with minimal fuss AND said the beans were really good. I was thrilled.

    Sunday night, James and I took it easy and had dinner at Steak N' Shake. Is it wrong that I think Hardee's has better onion rings? (I never used to eat there, but my husband says where he is from they have them all over the place and in some cases they are more popular than McDonald's and Burger King. I only have had a few things there, but I like their Frisco sandwiches. My love of Sourdough bread strikes again, I suppose.) We came home, he played around on the computer, and I played Urbz: Sims in the City.

    Now, Monday is here. I cried when I woke up because I didn't want to get up and go, but then I told myself to stop being a baby. I'm having a baby, not becoming one. I don't necessarily feel any better, but then I don't feel any worse.

    This work day was brought to you in part by the following:





    Michael Buble - Cry Me a River.
    (Very large opening, musically. I love it.)




    No Doubt - Spiderwebs




    OutKast - Morris Brown
    (Yes, I do have a very weird taste in music. Very simply put, I like it. Well, unless I don't.)

    Thursday, June 24, 2010

    Doctor's Office Observations

    • When I ask upon arrival if you need a urine sample and you say you don't and that I can feel free to use the restroom, it really is mean of you to change your mind ten minutes later. Especially when your response to my confusion is "You're pregnant, you've got it in you."
    • There was a woman exiting the waiting room. I noticed she had the word "Girl" tattooed on her wrist. Was she concerned that she might forget? Wouldn't it be easier to look at your permanently affixed sex organ?
    • Asking me if I signed in as I'm leaving the office really makes no sense. How would you have known I was there if I didn't sign in?
    • You should probably have your electrical equipment charged prior to my arrival. It's slightly bizarre to have to wait because the light in the device that looks inside my ear isn't charged.
    • My doctor's office has food EVERYWHERE. He has granola bars and fruit that I like, but I always feel too guilty to take them. Is that weird? He also has candy in every room of his office. Apparently, he understands that dangers of a hungry pregnant lady, but has underestimated my need for his permission to take it. They need to have a sign that says "Take ONE."

    Monday, June 14, 2010

    WAKEY! WAKEY! Music for Monday.

    I heard the following on my way to work this morning. It made my day.








    Friday, June 11, 2010

    Watch out for that bus!

    Urban Dictionary defines throwing someone under the bus as "to sacrifice some other person, usually one who is undeserving or at least vulnerable, to make personal gain."(Granted, Urban Dictionary isn't usually a reference I'd use.)

    If you make a habit of doing this, it is going to drive me crazy. Beyond that, it makes me lose respect for you. It doesn't even have to be me rolling around under there. I can't deal with seeing it done to other people. The bottom line is that we should take responsibility for ourselves. If it's not your fault, stop wasting time with tattling. Simply fix the problem and move on.





    Thursday, June 10, 2010

    Mid-Week Update

    It's been a while, so I'll start from last week. Pregnancy has taken my ability to stay up past ten and, until yesterday, I didn't have a personal computer to use at home. Now that I have this laptop setup, I should be on a more normal schedule.

    Last week was my son's ninth birthday. It was hard to believe that he was already halfway to legal adulthood. Beyond that, it's hard to believe that 9 years ago I had my first child and later this year I'll be giving birth to my third child.

                                               Annika at Max's birthday party.

    I already feel so connected to this little unborn boy. I'm not able to think of him as a fetus or anything other than a baby. He moves around constantly. It feels like having a giant fish bowl in your body. We still have not decided on a name, but I'd be a big fat liar if I said I hadn't fallen completely in love with the name Jack, though Jackson is also acceptable.

    I've been watching huge amounts of The Big Bang Theory. It's arguably my favorite show of all time, after Star Trek. I find myself laughing hysterically and almost to the point of tears. I feel like I know these guys. They remind me so much of my friends. If you've missed it, I recommend you catch up. Now. I'd also be lying if I didn't tell you that I'm terribly attracted to Sheldon, played by Jim Parsons. You know I can't pass up a smug know it all.

    An interesting thing that I learned this week. My husband vacuums the futon. Seriously. He uses a regular full size vacuum cleaner and no attachments. I suppose this is not terribly abnormal. It seems quite practical really, but I've always been the type of person to simply wash the cover.

    This morning, I have a doctor's appointment and then a long day at work.

    Tomorrow, my son and his brother will be doing a fashion show at Countryside Mall. (He claims to be a fashion model now.) The show is at seven, so if you want to see children modeling mall clothes come see me!

    Monday, May 24, 2010

    Weekend Update

    This weekend was pretty quiet.

    On Friday we went to the Friends and Family opening of BurgerMonger in Tampa. I liked it, but more than that I enjoyed hanging out with my friends. I feel like I have been staying home a lot more lately. While I think that is a good thing, I do miss adult conversation with folks from the outside world.

    On Saturday, James slept until 11am. I played Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando. James later insisted I stop and play the games in order, so I started playing Ratchet & Clank. I had to put it down at one point because I got to a point that I couldn't pass because I kept drowning and I felt compelled to throw the controller. James wants a new TV, but I'm pretty confident that he'd be pretty angry if I destroyed this one in a violent rage.

    I spent the rest of Saturday reading Shifting Plains and Little Stalker. I can't believe it was a two book weekend, but I suppose it is fitting since I was forced to get rid of so many. As it is with every book purge, I sobbed uncontrollably. I forced myself to think of Jainism. This helped me to think about the weight of my soul. In Jainism, one belief is that the things that we are attached to weigh down our soul. I am not my things and I can replace them whenever I want. I'll admit that I did shed a tear when I let go of The Devil Wears Tartan. I know it's a stupid romance novel, but I've read it at least three times. I also couldn't find my copy of Guardian's Key, which is one of my favorite books. This didn't help with the crying.

    Bella knew I was upset and alternated between rubbing me sympathetically and looking angry, as pictured below.

    I always am reminded of Oscar the Grouch when she makes this face.


    Sunday, I played more Ratchet & Clank, but I stopped before I forgot to eat breakfast again. I then went to WalMart and bought tomato plants for our balcony. I spent about an hour in the Garden Center. It was hot, but I was fine when I was outside. When I came inside to get some groceries it was as if my body could not regulate it's temperature. I couldn't cool down and I admit, I was freaking out a little. I had a battery put into my watch and the store employee expressed concern about this unending hot flash. I assumed that it would end soon, but it didn't. I found myself in the middle of Walmart completely freaking out. I wanted to cry for a second or call James to come get me, but then I just got angry at the whole situation and decided that i am absolutely not putting up with this. I am not going to completely fall apart for no apparent reason in the midst of a grocery store and that I have made it just fine for the past nearly 30 years without calling people for help. I am not going to become a fainting WalMart lady. I am going to get my entire damned list of groceries, check out, and drive myself home. I am not becoming a showcase on People of Walmart.

    I went home, made a banana cream pie and a pot pie, and watched America: The Story of Us.

    Wednesday, May 19, 2010

    Restaurant Notes

    Recently, I moved to Riverview. It's near Brandon and not far outside of Tampa. I've been to a bunch of restaurants since I moved, but none of them were full post worthy. I would imagine you have tried some of them yourself.

    • Crispers - It has a feeling like Panera or Atlanta Bread Company, but they bring the food to your table. It's not a bakery, but they do have cookies, shooter desserts, and a gelato station. I've been a bunch of times now and we like it. We took the kids and they really liked it also. We usually get the "Pick Two" special which allows you to get a salad and half a sandwich for $5.99. That's generally the perfect amount of food for me. The kids get a wooden nickle, so when they finish their lunch they get two mini cookies. The employees are not tipped, but if you leave one it will be donated to the United Way. TIP: The Tomato Bisque is very good. Smooth tomato taste that is followed by a warming spice blend.
    • Mellow Mushroom -  The Mellow Mushroom is decorated exactly like it's name. There are huge mushrooms EVERYWHERE. I'm not going to lie. I liked it the design. I felt like I was Alice. The food was fairly priced.I know it is a pizza place, but I had the Tomato Bisque. To be honest, it was marinara in a bowl. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't what I would consider Tomato Bisque. The real story here is about the beer. They feature a wide variety to choose from including selections from Rogue Brewery, including Dead Guy Ale. (They get extra points for that.) I think next time we go I'll try the pizza. 
    • ABC Pizza - I know everyone in Tampa Bay has tried it, except for me, but today I changed that. Sadia needed to eat and she planned to drink a glass of milk and a pain pill for lunch. I was not having any of that talk. (She's not anorexic, she has an impacted wisdom tooth.) I asked her what she wanted and she decided she wanted ABC Pizza's $2.99 Spaghetti lunch special. Another employee wanted the special and I decided on the $5.95 calzone and salad lunch special. When I went to pick up the food I was surprised at the amount of food they give you for $2.99. They give you what appears to be about 2 cups of spaghetti and sauce, two meatballs, and two pieces of garlic toast. Sadia and the other employee who I have not asked permission to list here said that the spaghetti was good, but they felt the sauce could use a slight amount of tweaking.
              My calzone was pretty good too. I didn't add anything to it, so it was just a cheese calzone, but I thought it was pretty good anyway. The crust seemed too hard at first, but when I actually ate it I had no complaints. It was good. The salad was very confusing. It starts out with about 1 cup of shredded lettuce. That is followed but one half slice of beef steak tomato, one half slice of cucumber, a sprinkle of Feta, and an olive. I ordered blue cheese dressing, but I got what appears to be their Greek dressing. I usually cringe at shredded lettuce because it tends to be bruised and browning, but this was fresh and crisp as if they had made it while I drove over. The best thing about the salad was the dressing. It was amazing. I didn't miss my blue cheese at all. I liked the freshness of the salad, but I would have made it with more tomato and cucumber. 
      
    The restaurant we want to try next is Joel's Steakhouse in Valrico. Have any of you tried it? It looks interesting.

    Monday, May 17, 2010

    Update: What the heck's been going on?!

    Recently, work has been incredibly busy. My boss moved away from the office and all of my work time is actually 100% necessary for completing the work that I do. In the past, I had some time to jot things down. I feel like a neglectful pen pal.

    As you all know, I got married a few months ago. I then moved into my husband's house. That has been an adjustment. I think that I underestimated the sheer volume of things that I would lose and things that would have to change. I still feel kind of overwhelmed by it, but it's getting better. My cats seem to have adjusted pretty well. Instead of sleeping with me, they sleep by the door. I've only about killed myself tripping on them a million times. You'd think I would remember them being there by now, but it's not really the first thing on my mind when I walk out of the door in the morning.

    Now, we're having a baby. I mean, not this exact moment, but at the end of the year. This is a definite change. Max and Annie are completely thrilled. James and I are very happy about it, but I am nervous. I am not really concerned with my parenting skills or about labor and delivery. It just seems that the moment I have a baby that everything goes completely wrong. I am less worried about it this time, because I am a lot older. I know what to do in case of things hitting the fan. I know what I am capable of. I worry less about what to do if that happens and more about how to keep it from happening.