Monday, January 31, 2011

it's my blogoversary!

today's my 1 year blogoversary. is it weird that i just gave myself a cake? blogging seems to fit me and my current lifestyle very well as i've figured it all out and learned the ropes. when i wrote my first post, i didn't even know what a follower was or have any inkling of what i was getting myself into. who knew i'd have 160 posts inside myself, just waiting to come out in the course of one year. or that i'd get 500 hits on that one crazy post about shaving my head.

when i look back on that first night of writing, it reminds me of how far i've come in the past year. how much my life has changed and how you can learn and adapt to anything that's thrown at your way if you're willing to try. that was a really rough period (and i don't mean of the red, sloppy variety) because my husband was sick & suffering & we were trying to adjust to life without 2 vehicles. i seriously thought i'd be getting a replacement car at some point shortly after the dead one died, but instead, i learned to write & to cook. not exactly an even exchange, but valuable, none the less.

at first, i wanted to write out all my ideas as fast as i could. my posts were sometimes ridiculously long, but i wanted to squeeze every funny thing i thought of into each post. they were often of a listy nature rather than a story nature, but since then i've learned that i can do a story more justice by letting it stand alone as a solo post rather than abbreviating it and putting alongside several other amusing stories. these are not facebook statuses that need to be short & witty. this blog's not going anywhere, so i can slow down & tell a story the way it's meant to be told. i think i may extract portions of my older posts that i wrote back when i had hardly any readers. some of them are pretty good & it's a shame to let them disappear into history, so if you guys don't object, i may rewrite them & present them a second time around.

another thing i didn't realize is how much i'd come to enjoy reading the blogs of others'. i didn't know that i'd get drawn into the lives of so many people by reading their posts regularly, as if each one is a chapter in a book. or an episode of a tv show, but one where you can interact with the characters through comments. i can spend hours a day just reading through and commenting on people's posts. i love commenting, especially on someone's blog who doesn't yet have a lot of followers or commenters. some of them are truly gems & i wonder why they don't get more traffic. i want to encourage them and let them know that they're doing well & they're appreciated. they have value, even in the mind of this humble stranger.

thanks to all of you guys who stop by. you are appreciated & i like you, even if you just lurk in the shadows in the middle of the night. if you want to come out into the light of day & introduce yourselves, i'd love to meet you. you've seen my place & i'd love an invitation to yours too. we could sit & chat, maybe exchange boob stories or laugh about that time when you called that bearded lady "sir." you tell me one of yours & i'll tell you mine and we'll laugh and cry together. and maybe on occasion, we'll do both at the same time.

Friday, January 28, 2011

shut it, kid

today has been one of those days on the homefront where i shake my head & wonder why it's too late to go back & use some birth control. because my kid is straight up driving me NUTS! the chaos & crying that periodically take over my wee one are enough to make me want to take up smoking & drinking all over again. and perhaps indulgence in some smokable organic substances that shall remain nameless. i haven't used them before, but today seems like it might be the day to start.

we recently studied an indian tribe and we learned that when their babies were born, any time they cried, the parents would pinch the baby's mouth and nose shut so that it couldn't breathe. when it stopped crying, it was allowed to breathe again. their lifestyle of hiding and hunting depended on stealthiness. they didn't leave the kids with granny while they went on their stealthy missions, so the kids had to learn to hold back any and all sounds, even if they got hurt. otherwise, the whole tribe could go hungry or get scalped due to some kid stepping on a thorn with his little bare foot and letting out a yelp or a howl.

this is sounding like a very good idea to me today. do you think it's too late for me to do that to brooke?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

yes, she showed me her scar

i believe i'm going to need to apply the kitty rule again for this post. i'll use one i took yesterday since it's handy.

i try to never make fun of anyone other than myself on my blog and since there are miles and piles of things for me to choose from in my own list of stupid or embarrassing events, i rarely need to look elsewhere for blog fodder. but there's a story from many years ago that just makes me giggle every time i even think about it, so i'm going to tell it tonight, in spite of the fact that it involves my husband and a moment of delightful (for me) confusion.

i was newly pregnant with brooke, so it was about 9 years ago, when a friend came for a visit. she already had a baby, which of course meant that there was lots of talk about pregnancy & baby stuff during the visit. she mentioned, in the company of our husbands, that she'd had a c-section with hers. i asked if i could see her scar, so we went into another room and she showed it to me.

here is a diagram of what a c-sec scar should look like if done in a hospital around this time in history, just in case any of you aren't familiar with such nitty gritty. and yes, i did crop the boobs out of the picture cuz i get enough google hits from people looking for naughty stuff that's really not here. and my dad reads this blog sometimes & i don't want to distress him cuz i'm usually nice like that.

after our friends went home, my husband asked me about the c-section scar viewing.
he said, "did she show it to you?"

me, "yeah."

him, "how big was it?"

me, "like, this long" & held my fingers about 4 inches apart.

him, making a horrible face & cringing.

me, "i think that's pretty standard. though i haven't seen many of them. that's a scar that's rarely seen by others."

him, "no kidding! i'm surprised she showed you."

me, "what's the big deal?"

him, "how did she show it to you?"

me, "she pulled her pants down a little."

him, "... and then what?"

me, "what do you mean, then what? she pulled them down & showed it to me."

him, "but how? did she bend over?"

me, staring blankly, trying to work out just how i'd see a scar on her stomach if she was bending over. "of course she didn't bend over. it's right here!" and i drew a line across the bottom of my stomach.

we stared at each other for a few seconds, both of us totally discombobulated, before i realized what was causing the confusion. being that he was new to this whole pregnancy/baby/delivery business, he'd mixed up the words "c-section" and "episiotomy" (thank you, wikipedia for teaching us everything we need to know and want to share) and he'd thought that she was showing me the OTHER scar. no wonder he was so surprised at how nonchalant we were being about the whole topic. and no wonder he was cringing when i said the scar was 4 inches long!

Monday, January 24, 2011

oh the things you'll see behind closed doors

i've been cleaning houses for several years now and while it's totally not my ideal job, it does work for my life. it pays adequately well & has the flexibility that i need. there was a period of time where i had to take brooke to work with me frequently and that certainly made for some very long days. some of my houses take up to five hours or even longer to clean and she was 3 when i started carting her to my jobs with me. she wasn't quite old enough for me to expect her to help or i totally would have gotten some labor out of her.

she kind of liked going because most of the houses were quite large & often there was no one home, so she had the run of the house while i was occupied scrubbing and mopping or with the vacuum running so that i couldn't even hear her. for the most part she was very well behaved & she learned some valuable lessons about never snooping or peeking into the personal spaces of others. i don't know what people keep behind their cupboard doors or in their bedside drawers and i don't want her to know either. some of the houses had children & therefor toys, so she was allowed to play with those toys until i ran the vacuum through the room & declared it finished & off limits.

one day, she was with me, playing in one of the upstairs kids bedrooms. i was at the other end of the hallway cleaning a bathroom. she yelled, "mooooommm! where are yoooouuuu?" i replied, "i'm down here in the bathroom." a couple minutes later she came in & showed me whatever it was that she wanted to show me & i went on about my work.

a bit later in the morning, the man of the house came and found me, which in & of itself was rather odd. he was fairly quiet & not one to look for excuses to chat, but generally stayed out of my way.

he said, "did brooke tell you...?"

me, panicked that she'd broken something valuable, "tell me? no, she didn't tell me anything!"

him, "oh. uuuh..."

me, choking back a massive wave of anxiety. i couldn't afford to lose this job.
"what did she do?"

him, "she just came into my room."

me, "i'm so sorry, i didn't realize you were home, so i didn't tell her to stay out of there"

him, "actually, she came into my bathroom."

me, "oh my gosh, i'm so sorry!"

him, "and ... um... she... um, i mean, i was just stepping out of the shower when she walked in."

me, mouth hanging open. eyes bugging out of my head. face turning purple.

him, "i hadn't even had a chance to grab a towel yet when she walked in. so she... saw.... well... everything."


him, blushing, "i just... she didn't tell you?!"

me, choking for air & trying to stop the horribly inappropriate hysteria that had taken over my head, "no, she didn't tell me anything!" gasp, heeheehee. "she didn't even act funny. i told her i was in the bathroom and i guess she thought i meant yours.... HAHAHAHAHA! i mean, i'm so sorry, i shouldn't be laughing." gulp

him, "i just wanted to tell you so that if she says anything about it at some point, you'll know what happened and the circumstances."

me, finally getting a grip on myself through a major act of self control, "thank you very much for telling me. i am so, so sorry she did that. i'll talk to her about it and it will never happen again. " snicker, snicker, giggle.

he walked away and as soon as i was alone, i collapsed against a wall & laughed the hardest i've ever laughed as silently as i could manage at the absurdity of the whole situation. i asked brooke about it and she was totally unfazed. didn't seem to have even noticed that he was flashing the full monty.

that might have been the best/worst cleaning day ever.

innocent wonder

i thought i'd participate in one of these photography challenges this week. the subject is "innocent wonder" and this picture makes me happy every time i look at it. it says happy, innocent childhood to me.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

be nice, smile for a change!

do you ever go out shopping or to the movies or anywhere in public & see a kid dressed like some wacky thing? it might be a super hero or a furbie or a princess? and maybe that kid seems to you to be too old for wearing costumes out. but you don't know that kid. or that family. and there might be a really good reason to smile at that kid rather than smirk or whisper in a mocking sort of way to your companion. have you ever seen the show parenthood ?  if you have, think of max braverman and his pirate costume.

so when you see this girl, be nice, please! this is brooke. we're pretty sure she has aspergers and costumes make her gloriously happy. they are harmless and fun. they hurt no one and cause no drama except when strangers are rude.

the next time you come across a kid in a costume, smile! maybe even wave. that's a happy kid you're seeing, even if their face doesn't show it.

but if you see this lady, feel free to mock & throw tomatoes. she needs to take that thing off her head.

the fresh man and the young woman - a romance novel

once upon a time, there was a young woman. she thought of herself as cute, perky and funny with a dash of sexy thrown in. she spent much of her time making herself pretty and trying to smell good. she went out on dates with many possible suitors, but knew that each of them wasn't the ONE. she kept her eyes open and her weekends available, but eventually she grew hard hearted. she started to think that most men were only capable of lust rather than love. she was starting to despair that she'd ever find the man of her dreams. her knight in shining armor.

then one day, a fresh man arrived. he was new to the kingdom and was charming and kind. he loved the young woman in spite of the others she'd tried out before him. he only looked toward the future, never the past.

it wasn't long before the young woman and the fresh man fell madly in love. they couldn't stand to be separated and paged each other with silly codes whenever they were apart. the young woman wanted her man to always see her as a dainty flower. one who could do no wrong. she always wanted to be adorable and lovable so that the fresh man would never turn away from her and break her heart.

then one day, the young lady was lying on her stomach on the floor to get her back cracked by her fresh man. he leaned down & pressed on her back, producing many wonderfully stress-relieving cracks. the fresh man then proceeded to sit down on the young woman's backside & tickle her. he thought it would be funny to trap her in this way and make her squeal. little did the fresh man know, this was a very bad idea. the young woman wasn't capable of controlling herself when she was tickled. much to her horror and shame, the young woman let loose a jarring poot, directly onto the fresh man's bottom.

things changed between them after that. the illusions were gone and reality set in. and henceforth, the fresh man's name changed to Mr. Musty and the young woman's name was changed to Thunderpants.

and mr musty and thunderpants lived happily ever after.

what would your honest fairy tale name be?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

ninety nine

great googly mooglies, i've got 99 followers! i never thought i'd see the day that i had more than 33. and i say 33 because i sat there at 33 for several months without moving at all. that was okay since i don't really need anyone to read my crap in order for me to benefit from the free therapy that i get from writing. but it is kinda nice when i write things & then people read it & comment. you know, comments like "that's funny." or "you're so gross, i puke into my computer when i read your stories." or "dammit, i just piddled down my leg." or "american woman are the anti-christ and are perverse whores who must be killed." oh wait, that last one wasn't on my page. i did see it on several other people's pages in the past few days & i'm feeling a little bit left out for not getting spammed with the weirdest one yet. but i did get a nice one once about bad breath.

bad breath said...

hope this helps you. I had awful bad breath and tonsil stones. thank god my only friend told me to check Oraltech Labs advice as it got rid of her bad breath and her post nasal drip. I've been following Oraltech Labs advice for about 4 months now and I feel much better, also at work people are not avoiding me anymore so it seems to have cured my bad breath as well, so good luck. Jenny NY

poor jenny from the block and her tonsil stones.

i see a lot of people who do the "follow me & i'll follow you back" thing when they're blog hopping. i get the concept - they're trying to have more followers for whatever reason. maybe they've made themselves a personal goal & they're going to do whatever it takes to reach it. or maybe they're trying to make money from their blog & they can't get advertisers unless they have gobs & piles of followers. or maybe they're lonely & rarely leave the house so the internet provides them with the only friendishes in their life, so they're trying to boost their numbers in order to feel more popular.

but i can't do that. i'm happy to follow anyone who's site i find & like. i don't do the sites that are only about product reviews or giveaways. i don't care what you think about a product, i want a peek into your life. i want to know how you feel about your pets. or what gets you up & out of bed in the morning. or about that time in elementary school when you got caught pooping in a urinal. or how God pulled you out of a nasty spot & set you back on your feet again through the kindness of strangers. or how you have IBS and crapped yourself while running through walmart. oh wait, that's my story.

i mostly just want to thank all of you for being here. for laughing at me when i expose my underbelly. for supporting me when i fall & bruise my dignity & my knee. for saying nice things when i tell you about my dead cats. for telling me that my kid is cute even though she's always wearing ears & a tail. you are supportive and amusing and thoughtful and you make my life better simply by coming by to visit. your comments make my heart light up. thanks for that.

you make me feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside. like i have a cat sleeping on my head.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

scab reservoir

a few days ago i was tip toeing through the ice block that is my driveway in order to put something in the mail box & as i jumped over a particularly gnarly patch, i managed to hit a spot of black ice & completely wiped out in a squealing heap on the ground. my hand and arm are sore and one of my knees is ganked up like a grubby little kid. usually i think that children who go around showing their boo-boos to people are dramatic little attention hounds, but as it turns out, i'm feeling the need to do that very thing. it's taking a lot of self restraint for me not to whip out the camera to photograph my owie so that i can show it to you & hope for a scrap of sympathy. and maybe a kiss on that rotten oozing place that refuses to form a scab because i'm apparently too old for my scabbing mechanism to function properly anymore. or maybe my brother was right all those years ago & you really do need to eat your scabs when they fall off so that you can store them in your scab reservoir in order to scab over more quickly after future accidents.

p.s. don't google images for scabs if you're eating. cuz, EWW!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

pablo, my love

i'm implementing the kitty rule. as in, when you're going to post a picture on your blog that might be racy or gross or in some way shocking in the dashboard of your readers, you post a picture of a kitten first so that's the one that will show up in the reader. here is the gratuitous kitty picture. (this was one of our kittens in the spring)

this is not pablo.

i have a little secret to confess. you guys can't tell anyone because it might cause problems for me at home. ok, i've found a new love. his name is pablo.

pablo is truly amazing when it comes to meeting my needs. in this relationship, i'm not expected to give anything back at all, it's just take, take, take on my end. pablo doesn't ask anything for himself. he's a great listener. smooth and sleek. he knows how to get into me and give me pleasure like no one ever has before. when i reach for pablo, i'm reaching out of desperation. out of pain. and i know that pablo will never let me down.

pablo, i wish i'd found you sooner. i don't know how i lived my whole life without you. you fulfil a need i have that no one has ever been able to even get close to before. where others are weak, you are strong. and let's be honest - you are curved in the best possible way. i think about you frequently. i can't go a whole day without you. when i'm out with my husband, we can be sitting there at dinner or in a movie, but sometimes i can't think of anything but you. i need you! sigh. i have to get my pablo fix frequently. i just need to grab you & put you straight into my mouth. aahhh, the relief. the satisfaction. you're like a drug to me.

judge me gently, people. meet my lover, pablo the tooth picker. he can pick teeth like nobody's business and he'll never splinter like a wooden toothpick. shun the wood. go for metal!

if i could afford some dental care, i might be able to kick pablo to the curb, but until then, the affair continues.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

why am i telling this story?

this is going to be a dark one with maybe a few funnies tucked in around the edges. abandon ship if you're not up for it.

when chris & i were first married, we got a cat. she got kitty aids & died really soon after we got her. it was awful, foaming from all facial orifices. (you were warned!)

shortly after she went to kitty heaven, we got another cat, named onyx & she was my furbaby. she was the one who i snuggled with & adored while i was going through infertility crap for a couple years. she was gentle & friendly and she liked to be nurtured by a needy, wanna-be-mom, or so i told myself.

one night, chris & i were hanging out, taking turns playing on the computer & playing with our little onyx before retiring for the evening. we were in a really good mood, lots of laughing & a general sense of wholeness and contentment. we had just crawled into bed & were still giggling when we heard a noise from the other room. i thought it was probably the kitty knocking something off the dresser. it wasn't a big noise, more of a little thump. but chris, being manly, stood up, thumped himself on the chest & declared, caveman style, "i am MAN! i investigate noises in the night! OOG!" i clapped appreciatively and bounced around a bit because that's what cavewomen are supposed to do when their man saves them from scary noises.

he was only gone for a few seconds before he yelled, "oh no! come here, quick!" all fun and games vanished in those five little words. i dove out of bed & into the guest room where he was crouching down. he was leaning over the cat, who was lying on the floor, motionless. the noise we'd heard was onyx falling off the window sill. she was dead. with no warning, she went from frisking about the house with us one minute to dead on the floor the next.

we were beside ourselves trying to figure out what we should do. we'd never had a pet die in our house before and neither one of us really wanted to touch her. we held a mirror up to her nose to check for breath. we called 911 to see if they'd direct us to a number for an all night animal hospital (they did. don't mock me. it felt like an emergency to me.) because we were too spastic to find it in a phone book. we debated giving her mouth to mouth, but by then, it had been at least 10-15 min & surely it was too late, plus, ew. frenching our dead pet somehow seemed like too much even to us at that point.

we finally decided that our poor kitty baby was really gone and we needed to figure out the next step. um... i couldn't bear the thought of her being in the house all night. i knew i wouldn't be able to sleep knowing there was a dead family member in the laundry room who might possibly have gone grossly stiff & have her legs straight up in the air when i awoke the next morning. she needed to go away. immediately.

but it was 2am. and it was raining. and it was cold outside. but she needed to be out of our house. i knew that sometimes coyotes ran through our neighborhood at night because i could hear them howling on occassion, so we couldn't just put her outside. the thought of waking up to find bits & pieces of her carcass spread around the yard complete with teeth marks and blood spatters was too much for us, so we decided that we'd bury her. but again, it was the middle of a dark, cold, rainy night.

we bundled ourselves up in dark clothes. we put our kitty baby into her favorite bed & then double bagged her into garbage sacks in hopes that the critters wouldn't smell her & dig her back up. we went out to a big empty field that was behind our house & through some brambles and brush. it was one of those fields that was used for growing hay, so we knew she wouldn't get dug up by a farmer plowing his field in the spring.

it was kind of horrible with some hilarity thrown in at the same time. we took turns digging in the hard ground until we felt that we'd made a hole big enough and deep enough to fit the cat & her bedding comfortably. we felt like some kind of treacherous body hiders as if we were committing a crime, because who else would be out at 2am burying a body? a car drove by at one point & slowed down a bit, so we hit the dirt & lay still until they passed because we didn't want someone calling the police to report suspicious individuals digging in a field in the rain. we didn't want to have to dig her back up later to prove that we really were just burying a cat & not a trash bag filled with human remains. or pirate booty.

it took much longer than we would have liked & we were soaked by the time we stumbled back home. we showered til the hot water ran out to wash away the dirt & cold & sadness that we seemed to be covered in. we sobbed in each others arms because we'd just lost our second beloved baby. the whole thing was too overwhelming. i think i wept for the human babies i couldn't conceive as much as the furry babies i couldn't seem to keep alive. it was a night that will forever stand out in my mind as one of my biggest losses emotionally and one of those growing up moments that we never like, but we all go through sooner or later.

goodbye, onyx. we still love you.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

crusty deliciousness

i was hanging out with a good friend the other day, having dinner & eating all the cookies in the house. because, well, because she's pregnant & is free to eat to her little heart's content & not to be outdone, i felt the need to consume as many as she did, you know, so she wouldn't feel embarrassed or lonely in her snickerdoodle frenzy. and while we were busy eating a whole pan of ziti and about 15 cookies, i remembered a story back from my own days as the knocked up chick.

chris had taken me to macaroni grill to celebrate our 4th wedding anniversary and we'd taken full advantage of the unlimited bread they bring to the table. i'm not sure how many crusty little loaves we consumed, but i'm sure it was more than the average amount for a table of two.

we had a long, leisurely dinner of happy chatting & relaxed laughs, enjoying some of the few moments left before we would be carting around a baby and piles of equipment of every kind. just us & my purse and large quantities of food.

as the meal finished up i realized that i wasn't just full, i was pregnant full; meaning, baby was in the place where all the food needed to land & i found myself needing to lean waaaayy backwards to try to accommodate everything that was jockeying for position in my gut region. i felt my stomach gurgle - right behind my left breast. baby was kicking & rolling & making things decidedly more uncomfortable, but in all fairness, she was probably just trying to find a position where 4 loaves of bread & a pound of pasta and cream sauce weren't sitting directly on her head.

chris helped to haul my huge ass up off the bench i was wedged onto and i very slowly wound my way through the restaurant toward the door. i was wearing a long green dress & i was leaning back with one hand on my lower back & one hand flapping around out front, trying to keep my balance. i noticed that i got a whole lot of stares from our fellow diners and it was going beyond the usual, "whoa, that's a lot of belly" kind of looks. it was like i'd reached the point of shock & awe and i wasn't sure that i liked it. by the time we reached the exit, i'm sure i had a snarky scowl on my face because i was very uncomfortable and i was tired of getting the circus freak eye from so many different people.

as we were walking to the car, i mentioned to chris about the rude staring & that's when i looked down at my giant stomach and realized - my entire belly was covered in a massive quantity of bread crumbs. like imagine this stomach

with this entire loaf of bread broken up into little bits of crusty deliciousness and strewn willy nilly around my grotesquely swollen flesh shelf.

i finally understood why i was getting so many peculiar stares from the other folks in the restaurant. so i did the only sensible thing at that point & proceeded to eat all those yummy little bits from my dress because it would be a shame to let such culinary beauty go to waste.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

kids in costume

photo freak is having a contest of kids in costume & that is one thing i have loads & loads of pictures of since my child is in costume just about every single day and my camera is out annoyingly often.

i was thinking about which one is my favorite costume picture & i think it's this one. you don't see the joy in her eyes, but when i look at it, i know she was fully immersed in the moment & feeling like a truly wild creature, hiding in a tree. and wild cats who are hiding don't smile because hiding is serious business.
now the only question is, is it better in color or black & white?

word verification wednesday 4

it's that time again... the time when i take the stupid wiggly "words" that some people have on their blogs before you can post a comment & i breathe life into them. i give them meaning so that they can go forth & be useful.

gozoodi - an instrument played in ancient times by tribes in australia. as in, "i love to watch a skilled gozoodi player work his magic on those strings."

chumpita - a nickname for females in a latino gang. as in, "those chumpitas are actually better graffiti artists than the dudes."

moright - correct to a higher degree than someone else, as in "forget you, i'm moright this time and you know it."

ratwagg - what one might call a woman who's sneaky and underhanded. as in, "that ratwagg ran her mouth to the tabloids one too many times."

morteasm - what the squaw does when she wants her brave to join her in the teepee for some nooky. as in, "did you see pocahontas doing the morteasm in the doorway of her hut last night? tonto falls for it every time."

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

how to give eye drops to a kid

have you ever had to give a kid eye drops? when they were awake? i'm not sure if it would be easier to sneak up on a sleepily unsuspecting kid & drop them in then, but when my girl is awake & needs a drop, all hell is about to break loose up in this mutha.

i decided that maybe i should put together a manual to help any of you who might ever need to do this because it is a much more daunting task than one might imagine.

1. determine that your kid really does have some sort of eye problem that's bad enough to need drops, but not bad enough to need professional medical attention. as in, is the kid crying and/or holding dastardly eye with hand for extended period of time, but the eye isn't shooting blood? could it have gotten something, like oh, possibly ashes from a campfire in it? ok then, proceed to the next step.

2. get some saline drops. not visine or other form of drops known for getting the redness out. those can burn & cause more shrieking from the wounded animal  child. the saline really feels like nothing more than tears in the eye & won't hurt, so don't believe the animal child if they claim that drops will make it worse.

3. position yourself & the child into an open space so that any flailing or jerking will not cause further injury to either party.

4. lay child onto his/her back while keeping the bottle of saline close at hand.

5. sit on your child's chest so that the arms are pinned down & cannot slap, beat, pinch or choke you. be careful not to sit so hard that you cut off child's air, no matter how much they struggle & piss you off scream pernicious things ask you to kindly remove yourself.

6. take a deep breath & sing a happy song in your head to counteract the screaming & kicking that is most likely now occurring. focus on the end goal. you can do this.

7. using your left hand, gently push the child's head to one side so that the vexatious eye in on top. hold it firmly in place with your forearm.

8. grab that saline bottle with your right hand.

9. try to maneuver the fingers of your left hand to the eye area & get ready to pry the eyelids apart as soon as you drop the juice in the eye socket vicinity.

10. aim that bottle at the rotten eye in question & give a big squirt. most of the fluid will likely fly around the child's face and floor around the head because of the struggling & screaming & your lack of proper aiming technique, but this isn't the time for precision. just get it in there!

11. left hand PRY. get those eyelids pulled far enough apart that at least one drop makes its way into the eyeball. this is a very important step because if none of it gets into the eye, you will have to repeat the whole process again and most likely the child will be even more irate than he/she was for the first round.

12. release your grip on your child and quickly move away for long enough to determine if there will be any immediate retaliation. when you feel sure that your child will not pummel you for this kindly service you just provided, scoop up said child for some hugs & sweet murmurings while wiping the remnants of 1/2 cup of saline solution off of his/her head & neck with your shirt.
13. drink wine and vow you'll make your kid wear safety goggles all day, every day to prevent the necessity of ever having to repeat steps 1 thru 12.
you're welcome.

Monday, January 10, 2011

who me? stylish? you must have the wrong girl.

today i got an award from the exciting and always entertaining lady estrogen over at adventures in estrogen. we just discovered each other recently, but i like her, even though i can't be certain that her stories are safe for reading when the wee one is lurking about.

How this works...
1. Thank and link back to the person who honored you with this award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award 15 recently discovered bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award!

and here's my list.
1. i could live on cheese and potatoes for the rest of my life.
2. sitting down onto a warm, recently vacated toilet seat is like accidentally eating a piece of popcorn that someone else has sucked on & then spit out. gives me a bad case of the shuddering yucks.
3. i chomp & chew on gum like an agitated 12 year old girl all the time.
4. i love watching holly hobby movies with my daughter.
5. when i was a kid, i had a rabbit named bunz and he died from having too much diarhea. i guess his buns were rotten.
6. pepto bismol is a tasty treat to me. i can drink it like a smoothie and if i eat with too much abandon on those cheese & taters, i need it.
7. my idea of exercise is a good, brisk sit.

i don't know about 15, but here are the blogs i'd like to award this time around because for most of them, i just found them recently & i like them. now go & read & show them some love!
a little sprite

facing 50 with humor

in the gutter

into the chrysalis

happy hoots and photo shoots

it's always funny in colum-bubble

it's time for the burkalater

ow, my angst

pink satin sashes

cake and cup

no botox allowed

the little gray house

for those of you who are getting this award from me, feel free to do nothing with it unless you want to. i just wanted to share some love, not push you into a post you don't feel like doing.
happy hopping!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

the watcher

i know that my most recent posts have been mainly stuff about my kid and cats & you can only keep that up for so long before people start to tune in elsewhere. because no one thinks your kid is as awesome as you think they are. but i took a picture last night that i felt the need to share with you guys. the book in the picture is one that was a christmas gift for brooke and she was falling asleep looking at it last night. and what a page to leave it on when she laid her little head down for a rest!

The Paper Mama

Friday, January 7, 2011

it's mommy time

brooke's upstairs on the phone with a friend of hers & they're letting their zhu zhu pets talk to each other through the phone (it's on speaker, so lucky me, i get to hear both sides of that conversation). both girls just said, "i'll go ask my mom! EEEEEEE"

brooke came down & asked me if she could have this friend over next saturday and i said that was fine. there was a loud squeal & running up the steps when i heard brooke yell to her friend, "she said YES! it's a GO and it's a DITTO! EEEEEEE"

i'm sure they're planning more zhu zhu weddings, complete with a trip to the zhu salon for grooming first. you know how the hamsters always like to have their fur looking spiffy when the wiggle down the aisle.

on another & totally unrelated parenting note, a couple nights ago we returned from dinner & brooke discovered that her naughty kitten had ripped up her beloved real fox tail. brooke has a thing for wearing ears & tails & she found a beautiful gray one at a renaissance festival a year or two ago. it hooks onto a beltloop & she wears it around the house all the time & in public frequently. unfortunately, naughty kitty baby loves it too & took her opportunity to kill it when it was left out while the people were gone. brooke immediately got her camera to take a picture of it & then asked if she could blog about it for some "writing therapy". here's the link to her sad, sad story.

today, a package arrived in the mail from mimi with a new tail that's longer & fluffier than the last one & it's been hooked to her butt ever since. yay! mimi to the rescue!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

chuckle bucket

i don't have a whole story here today, just a couple snippets of funny to share.

when i was painting, brooke (8 yrs old) came in & was examining the freshly painted surface of a cabinet.

she said, "mom, there are little fuzzy hairs stuck in the paint."

me, "i know. i'll have to sand a bunch of it down & give it a third coat."

brooke, "wouldn't it be funny if a cuticle hair got stuck in the paint?"

me, checking my cuticles for hair...

brooke, "wait, not cuticle... PUBIC! that's what i meant to say! i knew it was one of those ick hairs."

and then there was the moment between loads of laundry when i looked at the washer & noticed a fluffy tail sticking up. so i looked down in & found this.

and then there was brooke yelling from her bedroom, "come quick! you've got to see this!" so i ran in & found the kitten once again up to no good. slapping the ceiling fan.

the end.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

tool time

for christmas, i got a couple of gift cards. usually the gift cards i get are either for restaurants or clothing stores, but this time, one was to bed, bath & beyond. i was instructed to buy something that's been needing to be replaced for a while. whatever we felt we needed. i had to stop & think about that for a bit because a few years ago i realized that i can't afford (and generally don't have space for) both pretty & functional things & since function is necessary, i had to relinquish the pretty.

ever since then, i've tried to stop noticing how my house looks as long as it's not filthy dirty and then i don't feel frustrated. i try not to see the ripped up bedspread (thank you, cats) or the faded, bleach-spotted towels that are fraying around the edges. i am instead grateful that my bedspread keeps me warm & comfortable & our towels successfully dry our skin. (yes, my standards are very low)

i decided to use the gift card to buy a new shower curtain. we've been using all the same bathroom stuff that we got as wedding gifts 12 1/2 years ago & they work, but i'm so ready for a change. i tried to stick with the same color theme so as to be able to still use some of what's already in there, but i fell madly in love with this brown & aqua shower curtain. i looked through hundreds of options in 2 different stores & this was the one that called my name. i wasn't sure chris would like it, but it was such a rare thing for me to get out with no kid (sleepover, delight!) and with money to spend that i declared myself the decision maker & just got it. then i raced around 2 stores picking up every possible thing i could need for the new arrangement - towels of every shape & size, curtain liner, bath mats, memory foam rugs (angels sing when i stand on them). i was almost giddy as i carried my 2 fat bags in & ran up the stairs with my coat still on to rip down the old & install the new goodies.

my plan had been to keep the tags on things so that if chris detested it, i could return it all & let him help pick. he's not one of those guys who just says, "yes, dear. whatever you want, dear." and since he lives here as much as i do, it only seemed fair to let him have a say. but once i got the stuff set up & arranged, i knew that i couldn't bear to take it down or put the old junk back up. so without a second's hesitation, i grabbed the scissors & started chopping the tags off every single item & then i threw all the towels into the washing machine.

it's strange to me that i was once the girl who could shave her head & wear silver vinyl pants, but now i feel like i'm living dangerously when i cut the tags off towels before i got the hubby's stamp of approval.

anyhoo, once i got the stuff all in place, i realized that my new colors looked pretty bad against the old cheap wooden cabinets that are in there. this is a 30+ yr old rental & it was low end stuff when it was put in & it's never been upgraded at all. i decided that it needed to be painted white & thankfully my landlord is a young guy who knows nothing about decorating or colors, so he's told me i can paint whatever i want in here. it was 10:30pm by then, but i raced out to walmart with a stupid grin on my face to buy paint & the other necessities for the job.

the man who helped me find all my stuff in the hardware section told me that he was impressed that i knew exactly what i was looking for & would need for the job. i think he was also rather surprised to find that i own a toolbox & some power tools. yeah, i was feeling like heidi from tool time.

since brooke was sleeping over with a friend & chris was at work till the wee hours, i didn't have to worry about noise, so i cranked up some 80's tunes & was shaking my groove thang to def leppard and george michaels while i spackled, sanded & painted. i finally washed out my roller & brushes at 4:30am & crawled in beside my slumbering honey. the next entire day was spent working in there also. who needs food or showers?

i didn't think to take pictures before the frenzy began, but i did get pics of the cabinets that i painted before i started sanding. and i took a pic of the old software that i've had forever, so that you can fully appreciate the change.

i couldn't bear to put the nasty old handles back onto the one that had handles, so i bought new ones today to spruce it up a bit. and i decided to put handles onto the lower cabinet too since it'll make it look more modern. top one, using the old holes, no problem. then i got out my drill & marked the spots where i would put the new holes. it's been a while since i've drilled, but i felt confident that i could handle it. almost as soon as i cranked that bad boy up, i snapped the bit in half. crap! it made a gouge & ripped off some of my fresh, pretty paint. dammit! then i discovered that it broke because there was already the broken end of another bit in there. ok, get over it & try a bigger size. oh yeah, and put on safety goggles so that if another one breaks & flies into my face, at least i won't go blind. umm... i don't own safety goggles, so i settled for a pair of old sunglasses. cuz i'm cool like that, yo. that one started smoking & smelling like it was on fire, but finally popped out the other side.

safety goggle chic

on the next one, i snapped another drill bit in half because i actually had it going in reverse because i'm a dumbass like that sometimes. another gouge & scrape. more adventures in potty mouthery. (thank goodness chris had taken brooke to the grocery store)

ruination of paint job

drill bit cemetery

eventually, i got all 6 handles installed, but i've got to putty & paint the rotten mess i made, so i don't have pics of it totally completed, but overall, i think i've done well & i'm really happy to have one room in my house that's fresh & lovely.

contented sigh....

Saturday, January 1, 2011

on to the next

2010 sucked in a lot of ways, but no one comes here to read my complaints, so i won't tell you about the bad stuff. however, i discovered blogging this year, so that's been a definite positive. i've found an outlet for the swirling vortex of thoughts in my head and i've found some people who i've never met IRL, but who i like an awful lot. i get all happy when i get comments or emails from those of you lurking out there in the blogosphere. it's a community that adds quality to my life even if it's not in a tangible way. thank you all for that! i really like you.

this week my parents were here for a few days & yesterday it was 65 outside, so we got to go to a park for some exercise & fresh air. the weather here has been nutty. here's a picture from christmas day.

and here are a couple from yesterday.

there's a game my family plays with scrabble tiles where everyone works with no board & you just try to form words out of a few letters at a time. my mom almost always wins, but i keep playing with her because it makes her feel good about herself. (or because i'm pretty sure that one of these days she'll slow down mentally & i'll have a chance to win for a change.) last night we introduced brooke to the game for the first time since she's old enough to spell some words on her own now & we relaxed the rules for her so that it would be fun instead of being like a spelling test with time pressure. she really liked it a lot & was squealing with laughter at the combinations of strange words we'd written. at one point she wrote "lol" for her word & shortly after that she spelled "tit." my mom clicked her tongue in disapproval & i leaned into brooke's ear & said, "do you know that tit is actually a rude way to say boob?" and she nodded vigorously & replied, "oh yes, that's what i intended!"

and so the new year begins.