Monday, October 08, 2012

Look What I Made!

Now, I don't like to read about other people's baby stories.  People seem to love to blog about that.  However, Ima tell you mine because it was short (nay, RAPID) and to the point and that was part of the problem.  Although, on this side of things it doesn't necessarily seem like a problem, however the brain does have a way of erasing ones memory... that's why some people have more than one kid, I suppose.

All of my little people have been one week late, except for Coop.  Being my first, it was a blessing that my water just broke three weeks early with him and I didn't have to wonder exactly when to go to the hospital. 

I decided to lay down and take a cat nap 5 days before my due date and coincidentally, on my younger sister's birthday, when I felt a... pang.  Ten minutes later... same thing.  Nine or so minutes later... same thing.  That's when I got on the phone and told the Hubs, "Hey.  Be on time today."  This was somewhere in the neighborhood of 1:00pm.  Hubs gets off around 1:30.  I figured I had plenty of time IF this was "it", but hey, why be the only one miserable??  I had probably only enough time to dial the phone and have a little convo when, hey...  we're at the eight minute mark.  I called right back and told the Hubs, "naw.  let's just come home."  (You have to be on top of things like this with the Hubs...  he can talk to ANYONE.  I mean ANYONE. And if I didn't stay on top of it, five hours could go by and he may still be chatting someone up or mosey-ing on home.  Yes, even when I'm in labor.)

I decided to hop in the shower all "I'm experienced and have plenty of time" like.  Ima shave my legs!  Wash my hair!  Chill for a while!  It was when I began leaning all over the shower wall that I thought, "hmmm... lets cut this one short."  I drug myself out and checked my contractions app...  seven minutes apart?  oh.  fun.

2:30 rolls around and the Hubs strolls in.  There's no Dick Van Dyke-fall-over-the-ottoman for him or forget mama and pedal-to-the-metal to the hospital like you see on TV.  No, I had to poke and prod him on along and convince the house, "no.  for serious.  I need to GO".  I am just very glad I decided to leave when the contractions were five minutes apart the very first time and not wait an hour like suggested. 

The car ride was just ridiculous.  As I watched my little contraction app, I got a little more nervous with every mile.  They were coming closer and closer together.  At one point, through a voice much like Reagan's in The Exorcist... I requested a Pearl Jam CD in the stereo.  I just thought, "concentrate on every word like the contractions don't exist."  It seemed to work... for a while... then I had to get out of the car... that is just a ridiculous feat for someone in labor.  Partly because I am hella stubborn and partly because I needed someone to lean on, the Hubs and I parked (instead of dropping me off) and made the long trek to labor and delivery.  This was 3:30pm.  I said to the Hubs, (Reagan voice):  "I won't be getting an epidural today."  He says, of course, "Aw, sure you will, honey."

I must have looked pretty damn amazing because I was offered a wheel chair upon entering the hospital.  No paperwork, no nothing... get that woman out of here!  Upstairs, the triage nurse decides some of my blood needs to be taken to the lab... seems my blood pressure goes up with each contraction (pray tell, why would it not?!  Its a nerve wracking experience.) 

I will seal the deal here and you will know my obsession with Eddie Vedder.  Once in my room, I decided screaming (or rather, guttural weird noises) were wasting my time and energy.  I went inside myself and imagined Mr. Vedder throwing me my own personal concert.  I also used the mantra, "let your uterus do the work."... whatever works right?  I just figured I wouldn't want to be embarrassed in front of Eddie, so I must maintain composure!  Later the Hubs told me it was somewhere around here I worried him because I went absolutely silent.  Closer to "Time" I moved my inner self to a beach complete with margaritas and Bud Light, focused on the deserted island off in the distance... figuring I couldn't maintain enough composure in front of my imaginary Eddie Vedder. 

Somewhere within my imaginary beach-happy-hour... look who shows up... well... it's the anesthesiologist.  Labs FINALLY came back and everything was fine.  (duh.)  It felt like forever, but I guess in reality (not on my Eddie Vedder Beach) it was really not that long.  I sat up to receive the great miracle that is an epidural and BAM.  My water broke.  Confused as to how the hell I would have someone plunge something into my spine without writhing in pain because of contractions, I was doubly confused as to how it would help in time anyway.  I considered asking the nurse, "Will it hurt even more? (during delivery)" if I didn't have the epidural, but only imagined her saying, "Fuck yeah, its gonna hurt." and maintained my silence.  I only shook my head when she asked me if I still wanted the epidural. 

It was a pretty amazing little circle, filled with women (and the Hubs...) like some sort of Red Tent or something.  They let me sit up and call the shots pretty much.  (Why the hell would anyone assume it's best to lay down while trying to push a bowling ball out of your hootenanny, I'll never know.)  The room was full of cheering and I felt like I could actually participate fully (but, fuck yeah... it hurt.)  I will say that the worst part is the last few minutes.  Even I wasn't sure what I had experienced until later when my midwife asked me, "How'd ya like that 'ring of fire'?"  Oh.  Dear.  God.  But ya know what?  The instant... and I mean the INSTANT it was all over, I felt like a million bucks.  Like, pack-my-bags-why-can't-we-all-just-go-home million bucks.  It was amazing.  And the little guy was bright eyed and bushy tailed like I have seen no other because he hadn't been medicated either.  Absolutely amazing.

I would HIGHLY recommend this whole natural thing to anyone.  Only... I wouldn't study it up too much before hand.  Something like this could scare the hell out of a person if it isn't just forced upon them...  worked for me anyway... 

So there it is.  Felt a pang around 1pm.  Left for the hospital around 3pm.  Had a baby boy by 5:30pm.  It was nutso.  But here he is: 

Mr. Finn Scott

Welcome to our crazy little family.  Glad to have ya.

...and thank you, Eddie Vedder. 

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

No Dying Via Smooshing Tonight!

What.  Up.  I am feeling freaking exhausted and I will tell you I don't necessarily think it's always because I am 21 months pregnant.  I haven't posted in awhile... mainly because the shit has hit the fan...  in a good way...  maybe??  Things are getting done.  I have implemented my 'Evil Plan'.  I may let you in on what it entails this week.  I will say that it has been working excellently and soon I will breathe again.  A recap of just the past 10 days... only in the order of which they come to my brain.

1.  One of the dead trees is gone.  Praise Baby Jesus.  I haven't gotten to 'try it out' yet though.  It hasn't freaking rained or stormed since.  I haven't been able to lay in my bed and think, "yaaaaay!  no dying via smooshing tonight!" 

2.  I had the mother fucking IEP meeting.

3.  On that note, I had five people sit around a table and after I asked, "well, we've knocked around the word 'autism' a lot...  do you think this is what's going on here?" they all simultaneously nodded and gave a "yup."  That was both the most gratifying and puke-able moment of my life.

4.  At same meeting, we were in like flynn to the school system's special needs pre-k.  Gratifying, yet puke-able.  Passed... nay... failed with flying colors.  Yay?

5.  I signed up for 'transportation' through the school system.  I will be putting MY THREE YEAR OLD on a bus four days a week.  I am not exaggerating when I say I fear it like I feared finding my father dead when he came home for hospice.  (Fun side note:  I got to be the one to find him, coughing... the 'marble sound' they speak of.  The sign it is 'beginning'.  Monsters are real, folks.)  My brain lets me think it out in my hyper-vigilant, extremely detailed way only to the point he gets on the bus.  Then my brain goes fuzzy and I lose a bit of breath.

6.  Bought a pump for the washer.  What the what...???  We'll be doing laundry NORMALLY again!

7.  Not only have we been putting in resumes, but receiving new dangled carrots from the employer... either way, we're working on it.

8.  We have been cleaning out our clutter like the Hoarders on TV.  This is both for physical space and psychological space.  Mmmm... feels good.

9.  Lola finally got baptized.  According to my mother, she can now go to Heaven... whereas before, I suppose if something untimely had happened she would have suffered in the pits of Hell.  I don't know if my mother and I worship the same God...  at least, I haven't SEEN Lola commit any mortal sins at the ripe old age of 22 months...  hmph.  Either way, glad it is done and it was a most fabulous day with the Sis and good friends.

10.  Coop is OLD.  He is 7.  This also implies *I* am old.  I swear I just popped him out yesterday.

Well, that's all I can think of.  Dumping it here always makes me feel better.  Hopefully it is also moderately entertaining.  Some here, at church, at various places, probably assume I've finally had this baby due to my absence... nope...  just sitting over here, solving the worlds problems and quietly teeter-tottering on the edge of insanity.  

I leave you with pics of our picnic near a little pond we found over the weekend.  It was amazingly quiet and somehow relaxing even with my crowd.  I'd say its just what we all needed.

Twas a must that we go on a picnic ON Labor Day because that is exactly what the sticker said on Labor Day.  Z also expected us to pack everything that was on said sticker...

How's THIS for large??  Wowza.  Put me out of my misery.

I couldn't get Coop out of the pond.  He wanted to stay there instead of going to the playground.  Like a good Cub Scout, he even picked up all the litter he could find without being asked.  It's things like that that warm my heart.


After the pond/playground adventure, I quickly retired to a well-deserved nap.  After this little nap, I awakened to find my living room had been turned into a man-cave so as to enjoy video games.  What the hell??

It was a good day.


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

BAM! Done.

Every year before homeschooling, we have a bit of an informal meeting.  We talk about the things we want to learn, the things we don't want to learn and the things we have to learn.  I try to write down a list and actually attain some of these goals.  This year I got the following wants... in order of...want.

dissect a frog
horseback riding
camping and field trips

Singing & whistling
horseback riding

Some of these things I was able to say, 'BAM!  Done.' due to Cub Scouts.  Others left me giggling (singing and whistling).  And yet others were baffling (dissect a frog).

When Uncle Bro said he was coming to visit with his biology-teacher-girlfriend, I was elated.  Not just because of frog-dreams, but damn, what a bonus.

I realize we are a weird family.  I am okay with this.  Actually, I am more than okay with this and honestly, think its the shit.  So, where normal parents surprise their kids with sweet treats, little gifties, outings... I surprised my kid with a... frog dissection.  It went smashingly and it's still talked about today.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Kid Quotes 8.21.2012

Here's where we put the crazy stuff that falls out of my kids faces...

As Cooper was running across the kitchen yesterday he spotted something odd on the floor.

"What in the name of Pangaea?"

My brain quickly said "What the hell?"  My mouth said, "Uh, by 'Pangaea' do you mean the large land mass that was the Earth millions of years ago?"

With an eye roll he mumbled, "uh... yeah?"

"mmmkay."  So goes our conversations during afternoon 'quiet time'.

* * * * *

The next 'quote' is hella hilarious to me.  I don't mind giving you the context because, hello, I am pregnant with my fifth kid.  Let's not kid ourselves:

Last night, after doing what-mommies-and-daddies-do-when-they-love-each-other-very-much, The Hubs opened our bedroom door to find a Cooper wielding a booklight in the dark of night.  Hubs was taken aback and asked him what he was doing there.

"I came up to go to the bathroom and then I wanted to make sure you guys were okay."

Thinking quickly... and awkwardly... the Hubs told Coop he had a really bad leg cramp.

"Oh wow.  It must have scared mama pretty bad then."

"uh... yeah...  it was really, really bad... and, and mama had been asleep and... it startled her."

"oh.  okay."

...I thankfully haven't had any weird questions (yet) today. 

* * * * *
And the following is a pic Coop took last night:

He claimed he wanted to document what his evening looks like for everyone to see.  To this I give a big raspberry.  =oP

Monday, August 20, 2012

Fuck You, Last Week.

I really hope that title was subtle enough.

This entry will present itself as one of those letters you're told to write to a dead friend.  Or mayhaps a letter a  psychiatrist tells their crazy patient to write and then burn.  Either way... it'll help me feel better.  Better than a lot of other responses I could have presented.  Better than being imprisoned for blowing something up or running down the street waving my arms and screaming obscenities.  Maybe you'll get a giggle.

Last Monday was the Hubs birthday.  *My* birthday was pretty awesome 2 weeks before.  Not because our babysitter decided to go party and cut us short, and a friend of mine was a no-show, but because the Hubs somehow managed to present me with a Kindle Fire.  We're pretty old fashioned up in this hizzy so this thing has been treated like the brand new Nintendo our family got circa...uh...  1990??  It hardly ever gets put down.  I am in love.  And I've managed to still regularly go to the library, so I still stand on my soapbox.

Anyway... point:  my birthday was good.  I wish his had just been bad at least... or maybe a little sucky.  I myself began this day with a 'Bad Max Day'.  Insane behavior all over the place.  The kind that makes you call the school system you've been dealing with SINCE EARLY MAY and quite nearly spurt out, "WHAT THE HELL?" literally.  I instead gently reminded this waste-of-oxygen of a woman that we had seen the system's psychologist a month ago.  She giggled.  The woman fucking giggled that my son's paperwork with the psych had been lost, in fact, never evaluated and whoopsy...  they had done it again.  This is where I considered driving to her place of employment, calmly punching her in the nose, and getting back in my car.  Instead I flatly said, "This is my number.  Straighten this out.  Set up the IEP meeting" and hung up.

Meanwhile, at work, the Hubs apparently was taking a psychological beating.  He had an interview for a promotion weeks ago and was waiting to hear what was decided.  Managers and co-workers had congratulated him ahead of time.  Hearing through the grapevine he had gotten it, assuming really.  It was not going to be major, but rather a landmark for our family.  A place where we were growing.  Hope that things are always getting better.  He came home bleary eyed.  I asked him what was wrong and he promptly went to puke.  On his birthday the company told him he should just stay at his position at his meager pay.  He's simply too 'good' to move up.  They need him right where he is.  You are awesome.  Please except this lack o'raise.  Thank you.  This made me incredibly sad.  Hopes dashed.  There it was.  It's done.  But to hear who got it.  OH.  MY.  GOD.  It was a slap in the face and in mere seconds my mind raced to things I had heard and realized this asshole had been groomed for the job right under our noses.  And the very person that will have to help train this person will be, of course, The Hubs.

I left him at the kitchen table, amazingly upset and bewildered.  I had to get to a doctor's appointment that I was sure to be late for.  Sitting down after finding out I weigh a million pounds, I exclaimed to the nurse (the same idiot as this) "I will have high blood pressure.  It's been a very stressful day".  "Man troubles?", she asked.  WHAT?  Sure enough, I had to talk my way out of a situation that could have been very complicated by what seemed to be a 35-week-pregnant woman with high blood pressure.  I could only imagine calling the Hubs sitting back at home at the kitchen table and telling him, "eh... headed to the hospital...guess I'll see you in a few days..."

What was swimming in our heads, the weatherman threatened to make a reality.  Storms.  Wind.  Possible hail.  I have dead trees.  We called someone who was going to help out with these back in May.  And June.  And July.  And then 2 weeks ago.  One of the trees is so dead I lie in bed at night praying to the Lord Baby Jesus to keep me and all those sleeping on my corner of the house safe.  Friday I finally called a tree guy who proudly pointed out a few trees that need to go.  Pregnant, barefoot and embarrassed I asked him which ones were the most dangerous for lack of the million dollars per tree he was asking for.  He chose my target of prayer and said, "I do not even want to be parked here".  This is where my brain turned to oooze and flowed out my ears.  Keeping my big girl panties on, I asked..."you'll be able to cut it down before the storms tonight?"  He cackled and said, "Oh, no ma'am! It'll be late next week before I can get to it."  sigh.  This is where I thanked him politely, scheduled it up and calmly ran into the house before calling the Hubs and completely losing my shit.

I am tired.

And I am tired of people.

Really tired of people that say, 'Ima do this for you'... only to disappear.

Maybe prayers worked.  It never rained on Friday.  Not one iota.  It had been a 70% chance of storms earlier that morning.  The Hubs came home on time.  His 'new boss' had declared no more over-time.  We played music, made finger paints and painted models with the big kids.  I ordered pizza.  I declared it over.  All the ridiculousness.  I'm not taking it anymore.  There won't be another week like the last.  Things are going to change around here.  It's already happening. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Kid Quotes 7.25.12

My kids say some crazy shit.  Now, I know everyone thinks their kiddos do, but I just have to share some things.  Here I'll present you with a few weekly.

* * * * *

The other day I was cleaning the kitchen while singing at the top of my lungs.  I do this often.  Coop mumbles to me, "You know, even your angel thinks you're awkward."

I stopped dead in my tracks.  Definitely not because I don't think I'm awkward, but rather, I didn't remember teaching him about angels.  (Dammit.  Catechism.  Need catechism books this year.  One more thing for the budget.)

"What did you say to me?"

Guarded, but firm, "Even your angel thinks you're awkward."

"What does this mean?  What angel?" I played along.

"Well, we learned at church that everyone has a guardian angel and yours probably thinks you're weird."

I slumped my shoulders and sighed.  "Eh, Coop, that's just one more, eh, 'being' to think so."

I turned the music back up.

I have been (trying to?  attempting to?  pretending to?) potty train Maximus.  This has not been easy.  At.  all.  But at least he's gotten on the pot.  Since he's on the big pot... because Lola took over the little one...  it's important we keep the bathroom quiet (as far as the Awesome Abode allows) so I can hear if he potties.  I explained to him, "Shh...  listen for the 'tinkle, tinkle, tinkle'!"

When Daddy got home that night... and Max was again on the toilet... I said, "Tell Daddy what your potty says!"

"Drip.  Drip.  Drip."

All I could think was "ouch."

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A Warm and Cozy Place, Episode 2

The Hubs and I are a lot alike.  I've been preaching that we need to declutter the classroom for days now.  It isn't horrible up in there, just, well... shouldn't part 2 be the decluttered clean room and then part 3 the painted room???  We are impatient people I think.  We like to hop to the fun part.  Let's just paint right around that junk!  Problem is, we'll either put off the decluttering for a long, long time or pretend it doesn't exist. 

Alas, here's what it looks like now.  I was told to not take the Hubs' picture...  I told him he wasn't in these.  Our secret, mmmmkay???

The yellow looks great!  I wanted a warm yet somehow bright color and this one worked perfectly.  It also doesn't stick out with the colors in the rooms surrounding it.  (Well, maybe my bright orange laundry room, but that's MY laundry room and MY orange... stay the hell out of the laundry room... ahem.)  While at Home Depot picking out colors, Coop decided brown or black would be the very best colors and nothing else will do... he's learning to deal.

A really unique and special add on to our "classroom" is the water hose running through the middle of it, don't cha think??  Really spectacular.  This is our "repair" for the effed-up-laundry-situation... straight out the garage and watering the grass... and driveway... and whatever.  It's a new external pump we need.  We also need 12 more hours a day and 2 more days a week.  No big whoop, right?  We'll get there.

So, next few steps...  rug, armchair, bulletin board, big ol' map... oh, and decluttering... argh.  Almost there!  I think we'll be starting school August 8th!

Friday, July 13, 2012

The Squeakiest Wheel.

I try not to blog when I'm irritated about something.  However, lately I'm afraid I would just have to shut the whole damn thing down for lack of material.  One of my favorite blogs lately is:  People I Want to Punch In the Throat.  She did it the right way... she lets ya know straight out the gate she's going to bitch and bitch a lot.  Maybe I should have done that.  If anything, I guess it is truly "always one more thing".  Well, anyway, if you don't want to hear another rant, you should probably exit here.

So last Friday we were kicking it.  I got Max off to the pediatrician, albeit... dangerously...  I thought, anyway.  The man of the house fixed those brakes right up.  Things were looking up.  At least if the school system was going to suck it, I could find help medically for Maximus.  The pediatrician I love so much had her nurse call me MONDAY to get the ball rolling on a referral to a developmental pediatrician.  Done and done.  It was good to sit down with someone who knew me, knew my kid, heard me out and woah... hold the effing phone... did what she said she was going to do.

I was walking around like a plump peacock all impressed that I was owning it and putting life where it needed to be.  (a little life maybe, no, not the effing laundry situation.  we're still baffled.) But at least some of the more important things.  I was chilling out at my desk, vegging out to some Facebook Tuesday morning when a call came through from a number I didn't recognize.  Yes, I screen.  After I got my voicemail, I was winded, shaking, seething and sensing a bit of a puke-tickle.

The driest voice says something to the effect of...  'Hi, Mrs. Awesome.  This is so-and-so's office.  I was calling in regards to Max's referral for a developmental evaluation.  Please give us a call back at your earliest convenience to set up Max's appointment.  Please note, we accept ONLY Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance.  If you have any other insurance you will be expected to pay the out-of-pocket charge of $1,200.'

She went on to say that I could make payments of $400 each.

And then I dropped the phone.

I'm sorry, what was that???  How can a person get away with that?  $1200 for ONE visit.  I can't describe how pissed off I was.  Is this normal pocket change for others?  I felt preyed upon... or something...  there aren't any words.  Except 4-letter ones...  I certainly did not call this insane woman back.  I couldn't think of anything decent I could possibly say to her... I knew diarrhea of the mouth would suddenly take over and I would scream at her for every little shitty thing that had happened in the last week.

After sharing a bit of diarrhea with the Hubs, I decided to use my ferocious momentum to call the school system.  I knew they weren't at their desks yet, but I would leave messages every fucking day until someone finally called me back.  I started with one hand written phone number on our IEP.  I have literally 5 different numbers and 5 different emails and 10 different faces from our last meeting.  I figured I would just keep calling numbers until someone knew SOMETHING.  Imagine my surprise when someone actually answered the phone.  THEN I was mad because they WERE there and hadn't called.  Oh, the nerve.

I left a message for the contact who actually called back within 10 minutes.  She had the very best possible excuse as to why the school system never called back regarding more specific testing for Max:

'I am so sorry, Mrs. Awesome.  We had lost his paperwork and forgot.'

What do I say here?  My feelings have ranged from homicidal to down right sad that no one seems to care... or that they'd rather make a buck.  Everything regarding 'special needs' seems costly, or slow, or overwhelming or just... careless.  I said to the pediatrician the other day, 'I just need the TOOLS.  I can do whatever the hell I need to do with the TOOLS'.  Can someone please just stand up and tell me what the hell is going on here???

I went to sleep that night with all these seething thoughts marinating in my brain.  It suddenly occurred to me that I had requested referrals for audiology and speech pathology in the first place.  The pediatrician was taking me down a whole other avenue.  Developmental Pediatrics???... they diagnose... autism.  Is this what we're doing now??  Maybe I'm just jumping to conclusions.  I'm probably jumping to conclusions.  But there's a huge difference between googling 'autism', talking about 'autism' and actually pursuing 'autism'.

I've since found my own Developmental Pediatrician.  One who actually accepts insurance... including mine.  My doctor called me back within 15 minutes with a new referral.  And after a broken promise that someone from the school system would call me back yesterday in regards to the next phase of testing, I called them again too.

I've heard it and I knew it... but I didn't really know it...  YOU are for sure your child's only ally.  The only one that will speak up for them.  The only one that will fight.  You cannot sit back on your haunches and assume ANYONE will voluntarily do the right thing for them.  I am in the midst of this lesson.  I've been pretty naive, but I am coming around.  It is true, the squeaky wheel gets the most attention.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Itsa Poop Fest!

Tips for hand washing cloth diapers.  Because maybe you like to pretend you live in the 1800's.

1.  Approximately 1 week before attempting to wash your cloth diapers by hand, begin feeding your wee babe a diet of cheese and apples.  This will ensure they create those cute little turdlettes that roll right into the toilet leaving the diaper nearly clean.*

2.  Approximately 3 days before attempting to wash your cloth diapers by hand, use your tub to shave your legs.  I chose 3 because you don't want to turn into Chewbaca, however you don't want to give your husband the expectation that you'll be shaving your legs any more often.  Also, after you see what floats in your tub, you won't want to take a bath in there.

3.  It should go without saying, but every time your little darling poops, flush it down the toilet!  The job is long, nasty and TERRIBLE if you don't.  This is true whether doing this by hand or using your washer.  Even if you use disposable diapers, you're supposed to do that.  No, for reals.  Go check the side of the package...  I'll wait...



see????  No, no one does that... but you should.

4.  I keep my diapers in a 'wet bag'.  They are AMAZINGLY awesome. I used to just throw them in old grocery bags 'til wash day, but that was just nasty.  The wet bag keeps the smells to itself.  Of course, after a few days of sitting in a bag, the dirty diapers could very easily burn your nose hairs.  I filled the bath tub for the first soak, set the wet bag in there and filled it up with water.  I never smelled a dang thing.  'Twas a better smell experience than using the washer!

5.  I use a big paint stick to slosh 'em around.  Not because I'm worried about getting my hands dirty...  I long ago gave up on that...  it's the bowling ball that prohibits me from bending over correctly.

6.  Approximately......  *here*'ll be glad you shaved your legs.  Drain tub.  Fill with warm water.  Use detergent.  Soak forever.

7.  Drain the tub.  You're nearly there.  Fill back up with warm water and detergent.  Scrub 'em up!

8.  Drain the tub, rinse 'em out and SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEZE.  You'll never do as good a job as your washer.  (frowny face.)  Hang them out to dry and fluff them in your dryer so they're soft for the lil' one's tushy.  Your electric bill will thank you.

9.  Get yourself a cold drink.  You'll feel like you worked all day, but you only did one measly, very specific laundry load for the day.   Everyone else still expects clean clothes too.

10.  Don't feel bad for me.  We just haven't had the time to fix the effed-up-laundry situation.  We're thinking 'pipe-snake' before we go full-on new pump.  We've got A LOT of ridiculous stuff (no, really, you wouldn't believe me if I told you) coming to a head (gross analogy) this weekend... then it's project laundry and project classroom.  Hell or high water.  Really.

*Don't be a moron.  Some of these things are just silly.  Don't really feed your kid a diet of cheese.  Although it may seem handy.

Friday, July 06, 2012

Five For Friday

What, what??  it's been awhile since the last Five.  This has been the week from... eh, hell.  Yup, I think that sums it up.  It has not only felt like hell, see as how the temperatures have been in the 100's... but it's also been a psychological hell.  Yay!  oh the fun!  Next week will be better.

I command it so.

1.  I just got done taking Max to the doctor.  Yesterday, while grilling, The Hubs remarks, "we need new brake pads tomorrow."  See as how I have already budgeted his paycheck to zero, I go a smidge nuts-o because the kids had already gotten me teeter-tottering right on the edge anyway.  I put myself in timeout.  This equates to me just sitting in the bathroom staring at a wall.  Now, the children get a minute of timeout for every year of age.  I find it unfair that I do not get 31 minutes of timeout.  When I was back to homeostasis, I inquired about any squeaks that the brakes were making prior to the big announcement.  I got a manly, "yeah.  They've squeaked a bit."  I got in to take Max to the doctor and HOLY SHIT, BATMAN!?!  Grinding.  Wailing.  Squeaking.  Rubbing.  I damn near turned around to head home, but so desperately needed to get to the doctor.  So now the weekend will consist of the Effed Up Laundry Situation and The Car Situation.  Sounds like fun to me!

2.  If you know me, you know I freaking LOVE OUR PEDIATRICIAN.  She has literally saved the life of Max when he was just a little newborn.  She is freaking amazing.  I cannot say it enough.  I love her.  I love our rapport.  I just want to kiss her cheeks whenever I see her.  (I will stop.  I sound like a stalker.)  Anyway, due to a school system that frankly, doesn't seem to give a fuck, I took Max to see the doc to see what she had to say.  I've often wondered about apraxia or his hearing.  The kid is as smart as a whip.  I wonder if he's not just a little Stewie all locked up inside simply because he cannot speak adequately.  She heard me out and we'll be on our way to the Children's Hospital here in Atlanta sometime soon.  We'll probably swing by our audiologist too.  Ima need a nanny though because I'm already anxious about how we're going to get anywhere with 5 kids, 1 vehicle and a Hubs that works constantly.  It'll fall into place.  Right?  (right???????!!!!??????)

3.  Caleb goes home tomorrow.  I haven't told you guys all the drama that has surrounded his visit this time.  ...And I'm not gonna.  so there.  Suffice it to say, there will be a lot of tears and it may be the very biggest, bravest thing the 'Awesomes' have ever had to do.  He is going back to a home that simply isn't good enough.  Isn't warm enough.  And is not supportive enough.  It makes me sick.  Whatever you believe in... juju, prayer, chicken sacrificing... please send a little my way.  We're going to need a little extra ooomph this weekend.

4.  This happened yesterday:

I'm pretty sure I'm going to use this against Coop in a few years.  I don't know why the goofball chose the dress, but it was hilarious.  I highly recommend a costume box for my peeps with kids.  Every so often they just come up the stairs as someone else.  It's good for letting the ol' imagination wander.

I too have worn this dress.  I think it was... mmmm.... circa... one million years ago.

5.  Something positive.  Something positive.  Let me see...



I love the Hubs.  Yes, this should be obvious.  But life is never easy and we just keep trucking, most of the time with laughs and silliness.  It is true that I am still a kindergartener when it comes to affection.  If I pick on you... I must love you.  I never grew out of it.  The Hubs will often force my hands around him in a hug and say, "Let us begin affection class."  I am awkward when it comes to showing affection.  I blame this guy:

That's muh Dad.  It has been said between the Uncle Bro and I that we knew Dad was dying when he said, "I love you."  It sounds sad, but that in absolutely no way means we didn't already know he loved us.  You didn't need to hear it.  It was all around you.  Yet apparently 'normal' families hug and what not...  this is where 'affection class' from the Hubs comes from. 

During this phase of life, when each day brings some new ridiculousness I just want to say to the Hubs... Thanks for that surprise Coke here and there...  Thanks for understanding I have a hyper-vigilant anxious reaction even with things I cannot control...  Thanks for just getting the fact that I 'need' 'affection class'.  and I.... I.... I... LOVE YOU.  phew!

Have an awesome weekend.  I hope I haven't whined too much.  Ima bust through this weekend and come out a brand new sparkly person.  This is my plan.  It is also my plan to stay in air conditioning at all times.  We'll see how all that goes.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

A Warm and Cozy Place, Episode 1

We are a bit like goldfish, my husband and I.  Back in 2006, due to a flurry of family emergencies, we were in a hurry to find a new home for our family.  I remember looking around our present home, just one of many we had checked out that particular day, and thinking, "this place is so huge!  There's no way it could be ours."  Fast forward five and a half years and three kids later and no, it doesn't feel like that anymore.  Neither does my van that seemed so spacious when we purchased it around the same time.  You could faintly make out an echo when we hollered back to a little Coop.

So we've grown and grown and grown.  There's no "new" space in the house.  No place that has not been conquered by someone and all their... stuff. 

Except one.  It looks like this:

We've called it 'The Classroom' for the past two years.  Before that, it was the 'Massage Room' and no, it didn't really resemble that either.  But I am bound and determined that it WILL actually be a 'classroom' by August 1st.

When I first began this crazy homeschool journey, I began Googling and researching 'home classrooms'.  Yes, because I am a nerd.  ...But also because I really don't have any design smarts.  Whatsoever.  My design plans usually include a lot of sporadic 'throw-that-over-here' and 'doesn't-that-look-purty'.  Anyhoo... the Googling was really interesting and made me begin dreaming of huge decorated bulletin boards, maps, posters and cute little desks all in a row.  Then, I ran into articles AGAINST  making a homeschool classroom in your home.  Shtuff I hadn't thought of.  The line of thinking was this...  if you're going to take your kid out of the public school environment... the 'sit-down-shut-up' environment... then why would you sit them in a desk for hours in your home?  So my brain scrambled itself for a while and continued to just throw junk in the junk room.  We 'do' school everywhere in our house...  the couch, our bed, homemade tents, our back porch, a whole bunch of it at the dining room table and we've really enjoyed it.  But in our goldfish way, we've spread out and gotten noisier.  A LOT noisier.  When the Coop is trying to learn phonics rules or complete math problems, it's just too much.  Here's my new theory then...  time for a classroom for quiet time and the rest of the house for... the rest of it. 

Over the next few weeks we're going to try to transform this pig sty into a warm and cozy place to read and be 'alone'.  As alone as possible anyway...  (I don't get to pee by myself, let alone read so I may have to use the space myself!)  With the Coop getting older (2nd grade) I will need an area that he can retreat to after I've given him his initial lessons. I do believe the Z will need more of my time too as he is wanting to learn everything under the sun and has nearly conquered his letters and their sounds.  Oh, yeah... and I'm going to pop another baby out in September... anything I can do to promote a little quiet in this hizzy is going to come in handy!

Now if you're here with a big interest in homeschool classrooms, I've Pinterest-ed (yeah, I made that a verb) some classroom decor I've liked.  Feel free to check 'em out.  There isn't a bunch there... and most of it's just dreaming, but I'll keep pinning!  I'll also post how we're gettin' along on our journey every so often so you can be jealous, jealous, jealous of my new space!  (or rather, hold me accountable...) 

Monday, July 02, 2012


I'm in a bad mood.  Period.  A fantastic time to blog, eh?  Currently I've been sending out emails around my county to figure out what the hell *I'm* supposed to be doing next regarding Max and speech therapy through the public school system.  I am beginning to form opinions.  I was the cool homeschooler that was open and casual regarding homeschool vs. public school.  ...was...  They are not making this easy for me.  I left Max's IEP meeting with a promise to further testing along the autism scale in a convenient and timely manner.  A very re-assuring "WE'LL call YOU."  One chicky got back to me the very next week.  After that test she even admitted, "I don't know why we have to drag you through all this.  He obviously needs Speech."  That was May 15th.  What... hmm... 7 WEEKS AGO?  Max's case worker through Babies Can't Wait once told me, "The squeakiest wheel gets the most attention".  That statement is amazingly valuable.  I'm not good at being a squeaky wheel.  In fact, I find it to be embarrassing.  However, I am about to get hella squeaky on their ass.  Vent over.

Well, the weekend was fantastic.  I took a few pictures for you:

Mmm... hmmm... that about sums that up.  Mess.  Mess.  Mess.  Yes, we are still working on the effed-up laundry situation.  So the first picture, my friends, is... a load of laundry... in my bathtub.  Do not underestimate the weight of a few wet towels!  I do not have a damn clue how the previous owners of this house did laundry, but since the laundry room is down stairs, it needs a way to pump water UP to the pipes to go OUT.  Our washing machine is working just fine... our pump... not so much.  Being on the ol' cash plan, its going to be interesting pulling it together to buy a new pump... but... I have no idea when the Hubs will have the time to put it in.  Just as an example, the guy worked until 10pm Friday night!  (After getting there at 5am... you'd think he was the dang CEO or something.)  The psycho part of me thought, "Hey, it might be fun washing clothes like this!  Just like the pioneers!"  A few minutes later, the normal part of me thought, "damn. this sucks."  Always something, right?? 

I did get out this weekend.  If only for a little while.  I put a few more minutes into my 'Don't-go-ape-shit-crazy' bank.  When things have gotten nutty on this fine 100 degree Monday, I have whisked my brain back to the dim light of the Longhorn Steakhouse table featuring grown-up conversation.

The three older kiddos got out to see Madagascar 3 this weekend which fueled my spontaneous, "POLKA DOT, POLKA DOT AFRO!" outbursts.  I can't help it.  It just comes to me.  Maybe because my life is a circus.  And by the way, my Siskel and Eberts highly recommend it.

So I will leave you now with a few pictures.  While not exciting for you, I love to log this shit so that one day, while sitting in the lap of luxury (or what is left to FEEL like the lap of luxury), I will look back to this day and proclaim,


And Edith will add...

...those were the days!

Friday, June 29, 2012

A Preggo Update.

I'm "supposed" to be doing this right??? Do you like baby updates? Do you care? Would you hate me if I said I don't. I don't care. Once you have a few babies, its just not as mushy squishy. In fact, yesterday when the midwife said, "See ya in two weeks!" (instead of one month) I asked her why??! Well, it seems I'm just THAT far along. Oh. Good to know. Don't get me wrong, sometimes I do wish it was mushy-squishy-er... its just that life gets in the way and before you know it, you've got a full-on kid and you're wondering where the time went.  So for nostalgia's sake Ima fill out this survey thing that floats amongst the blogs and then add my very artistic picture of the 'bump' as the others do.

How far along?: 28 weeks and 2 days

Total weight gain/loss: 11 pounds gained, bitches. (This is an unfair question. I gained 60 damn pounds with Cooper. I simply don't need to gain a bunch of weight because so much of Cooper IS STILL THERE. Plus, I lived in complete luxury when I was pregnant with Coop... I'd sleep when I wanted, ate whatever and whenever I wanted. Now I'm chasing 5 kids (Lola should count for 3 though, honestly) in 100 degree weather. Damn, I am worn out.

Sleep: Well, I am blogging at 4:30am... so... you make your own conclusions. I'm telling myself I'll get a nap during "Quiet Hour" somewhere around 2pm. That should sufficiently eff up my sleep schedule. I'll catch my boyfriend, Jimmy Kimmel, tonight and then keep the cycle going.

Best moment this week: My mind is clouded with the fact that my thermostat, couch and washing machine "situation" (it is a situation. A rigged eff-ed up situation we inherited with the house... I won't go further) all shit the bed on the same day. So... my most interesting baby moment had to happen yesterday when the nurse at the midwives' office decided to cram in nearly every detail of her life in 10 minutes. She began the appointment thinking it would be hilarious to yell, "Come on down!" in the waiting room. She then babbled on about how clumsy she was as a child and all her various childhood injuries. She finished her long winded story by adding, "yeah, I can't walk and chew gum at the same time!" snicker. snicker. I did not give much thought to her saying this until I was standing alone in the next room, ass bared to the world, waiting on her to get someone to help her with the rhogam needle she had just fucked up. I hate shots like anyone else, but when the nurse declares something like this and then abandons you, its a little unsettling. I just don't know how people like this always find me...

Movement: my babies don't kick in a way that makes me say, "hardy-har-har! This one is a soccer player!" Nope, they SQUIRM. Its relatively reminiscent of the Alien movies. I say this with love. Every so often I hear one of my ribs click because of it.

Symptoms: I don't get this question. Of pregnancy? Well, I do look as though I am smuggling a bowling ball... I'm not nauseous, but I am just ridiculously tired. Mentally and physically. Other than that, I'm chugging along.

Focused on: a damn name. No, no, make that TWO names. What an ingenious idea to not find out the gender! Its been hard enough to decide on names otherwise. Now we need two... one for either! After having Coop, and nearly right before going home from the hospital, the nurse came in to remind us we needed to fill out the birth certificate info before we left. We procrastinated til the bitter end. It's only gotten harder since. I have parameters: must be a decent CEO name, must not have a weird and trendy spelling, yet must be unique, cannot be within the top 50 baby names of the year, must not remind me of someone that sucks. It's hard being me.

Food cravings: yes, please.

Food aversions: nope! Feed me, Seymour.

Nesting: I do not believe with a family my size, I am allowed to 'nest'. There's always shit that needs to get done. I HATE the term 'nesting'. Anytime a pregnant gal gets up to straighten something, some asshat needs to smile and say, "awwwwww, she must be nesting!" Mayhaps we like to keep a clean and organized home too?! ...stepping off the soapbox.

Gender: I've gone over this one. EVERYONE asks me what I think 'it' is though. I usually say 'human' so as to move the conversation along. I will say our family has a history of a bunch of boys. Lola came out of no where. ...But I am carrying a lot like I did with Lola. I truly don't mull it over very often. We will just see.

Labor signs: The more kids you have... the sooner, more often and more ridiculous the little fake-y contractions. Joy of joys!

Belly button in or out: always in. Due to a gall bladder removal, I do not believe I am capable of 'out'... did this question enlighten you? That's what I'm here for.

What I miss: running up and down the stairs without having to stop in the middle. Getting up and down off the floor without looking like an over-turned turtle. Seeing my toes.

What I am looking forward to: seeing the Little One for the first time. I thought I knew so well that Lola was the last... this little person is such a mystery to me!

Well, as promised. An artistic picture of 'the bump':

I'm sorry. I didn't say MY bump... did I? That's not a pretty picture at this point... for I do not have Photo Shop to make it so...

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How NOT To Tell If Homeschool Is Working...

Since forever my Cooper has not given me the satisfaction of telling me what he wants to be when he grows up.  Never.  Even Zander has said here and there that he would like to be Spiderman.  Coop has never uttered a single opinion on the matter.  Except...

For quite awhile now he has had his mind made up that my brother has THE life.  Being a young bachelor, he has his own quiet apartment, plays lots of video games and loves to sit with his shirt off.  (You can do that when you have your own place, apparently.  Hell... with these temps, I shit you not, I would be wearing nothing if it weren't so... well... gross...  certainly isn't attractive... at.  all....)  So to a then five year old, now six year old THIS WAS THE LIFE.  And I can't say that I don't agree... that is, until I factor in all the adult crap that suddenly occurs to me the longer I dwell on it... you know, rent, bills, food and car and all... But anyway, Cooper had decided he'd move right on in with his Uncle as soon as he was old enough.  Yes, the dream life... two bachelors.  video games.  no shirts necessary.  (and a lot of pizza apparently, says Coop.) 

Cooper's young mind was stunned yesterday when I sat down to pick his brain.  He's quite the conversationalist (I think) and I enjoy throwing random weird questions at him.  "Ya know,"  I started, "[Uncle Bro] has a girlfriend now."  Blank stare.  "What if this girlfriend moves in with him one day??"  Blank stare.  "It may be a little weird what with you sittin' around on his couch all day playing video games with no shirt on."

His eyes became as big as saucers.  You could almost see the trickles of thoughts as they soaked through to his brain.  "[Uncle Bro] might have a family of his own one day,"  he said.

"Yep.  Will you ever have a family of your own?  You might want to rethink your living situation after you leave this house," I said.

He thought quietly for only a second and then started and I knew it would be quite the scheme.  "I'm not going to have a family of my own.  I'm going to live in my own apartment."  And this was the moment I had been waiting for...  I knew he was going to tell me what he wanted to be when he grew up.  Some inkling of an idea, a small rabbit hole into the brain of an intelligent six year old.  Wait for it... oh the anticipation!  What could it be!!?

"I'm going to work at a GAS STATION.  That way I can GET PAID AND BUY CANDY BARS from the same place."

My shoulders slumped.

"Then I'll go home and play video games for three hours.  After that I'll go to bed and then wake up and do it all over again."

Oh, the inspiration.  The motivation.  The...  whatever.

I can tell this homeschool stuff is really working.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Loose End, Loose End. Cut! Cut!

Oh, Monday.  Hello.  There are some days that are just so full, I don't know where to start.  There's just so much crap going on lately and so much to be accomplished that I just almost can't see the forest for the trees.  It's like my big messy garage... there's so much shit in there, I throw up my arms and say, "Eh.  Later."

I thought I'd tie up some loose ends for you.  I mean, because I know you are on the edge of your seat about some things. 

The Damn Weighted Blanket:  not complete.  Well, not started.  Oops.  Could we still use one?  Mayhaps.  Max still wakes up in the middle of the night.  I wouldn't say as often though.  ...and I got such weird advice from everyone.  It's hard to decide where to start... like, SEVERAL people suggested I use BEANS for the weight.  As in, yum-yum-these-beans-are-tasty beans.  Wha???  What happens when he pees the bed?  Can't wash beans.  The Hubs stands by his idea to have my mom crochet washers into a blanket.  Chain-mail?  Sounds painful.  The little booger seems to be doing okay lately.  Back in MAY the school system said THEY would call ME for more specific testing.  Have I heard from them?  Hell-to-the-no.  Thank you for confirming my suspicions, school system.  On a lighter note... due to the sensory issues (I believe), Maximus never wanted to use a cup.  It seemed to cause anxiety over potential spills.  Over the weekend he just decided, "Ima do this."

Now this doesn't mean when it spills he doesn't go ape-shit-crazy.  Screaming, crying and asking one million times (no, for serious), "water-spill???  clean up???" in his Cookie Monster voice.  But at least he tries again and that is an improvement.

Panties?:  I continue to get multiple hits everyday because I have uttered the word 'panties' on this blog.  It was pretty hilarious at first and now slightly annoying.  Here's a non-traditional blogging tip:  use the words fucking, boobs or panties to up your stats, if you're into that sort of thing.  The world is a dirty, dirty place.

Eddie Vedder:  still hasn't called.  What is WRONG with that guy??  sigh.

Rosacea:  it's back bitches.  Two months (?!) ago the dermatologist put me on antibiotics.  Do you know what long-term antibiotics do to a gal?  A pregnant gal???  We won't go there, but I'm done.  If stress is my trigger, it ain't going anywhere.  I'll smear on the cream, think happy thoughts and invest in some plaster-like makeup.  (PS... I hate you, rosacea.)

Anyhoo... we had a pretty shiz-nit weekend.  Here's the pics.


 Well, Ima go kick this Monday's ass.

 Here's to you and me having one great get-it-done week.

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