Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Things That I Say....and Kenny, too.

To a friend I met through ECI (which provided services for Emmi before she went to school):
"Am I going to have to pop out an other deaf baby just to see you again?"

A conversation with Kenny about the dog:
"Macy you are a puss!"
"KENNY, what the fuck? Don't say puss in front of the kids."

To Jill when she was misbehaving:
"If you don't stop, I am going to spank your butt."
"No you won't."
"Okay, fine. If you don't stop, I am going to lick your face."

To the kids when Kenny let them lick the bowl I made brownies (that I wasn't sharing) in:
"What is this?"
"Chocolate sauce. Just lick it and be happy."
"But what did you make?"
"Chocolate sauce for you to lick."
"It looks like brownies, Mom."
"To me it looks like runny poo. Or mud."

Talking to Kenny about Jill's homework:
"Is she actually reading the exact words on the page, Kenny."
"No. She is close. She understands the story."
"That is not the point. She is reading for fluency."
"Who cares, Tricia? She is a good reader."
"She has to."
"Why? I never do."
"Riiiight. Which one of us graduated with honors, Kenny?"
"Good point, Tricia. But, um, which one of us makes twice as much money as the other?"

A conversation with a crying, screaming child of mine:
"You never let me do anything I want to do!"
"Like what?"
"Play webkinz, write on the dry-erase board, live in the attic."
"I never said you couldn't live in the attic."

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

18 work days.

Apparently, this little thing called a job comes before my blogging. So my blogging has suffered. I have been working between twelve and eighteen hours per day. At least six days a week. The good news is this schedule won't last long, and the rest of the year my job is a dream.

I will take a quick minute to update everyone on the hearing aid and the coach. We brought the hearing aid to him last night. We called the gym to figure out a good time to go. They got one of his good friends in on it. He gave me some of the background information. I found out that his other hearing aid needs a new ear mold, too. His friend told him he would have a visitor at the gym, but would not tell him who. He was extremely confused when we showed up.

He was still confused as I was explaining that I had a hearing aid for him. I don't think he understood that I was giving it to him. I had to outright say, "IT IS FREE!" You could see the relief on his face. The tension released from his shoulders. He just kept saying, "I am trying not to cry here at the gym." He didn't understand why someone who barely knew him would be willing to help him out.

It was so much fun. The kids had a blast. Jill is still talking about it tonight. I am very glad that we have been able to help out. Not only do I feel good about it, but I have taught my children how great it is to be able to make someone's life better.

I have more on this, an email to share with you all. But I have not sat down and stared at the TV in days. Or, you know, talked to Kenny. So I am going to do that now. Tomorrow, I will share the email and go give you all some comment love (Lee and Erin...I have to get on Kenny's computer to read your blog, so I have really neglected you! Sorry)!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Not so simple, but oh so good.

So when I first concocted my little plan about giving the hearing aid to the coach, I thought I would just show up at the gym the next day with it. Then I started doing a bit of research, and figured it could get a little more complicated. First, I needed to know if hers was for pediatric use only. Turns out, no. Then, I needed to figure out if there type of hearing loss was compatible. I know that he has severe loss. This hearing aid is perfect for it. The next piece in the puzzle is releasing it from Emmi's name. We have to get an audiologist to contact the manufacturer and switch it to his name. And then, the last little bit, is of course getting it programmed (these babies are digital). I was going to leave it up to him. Let him work that part out. After I started placing phone calls, I got some other people on board. They are working on finding him someone that will do the audiology on a sliding scale for him. Meaning, he will be out of pocket hundreds (or less!), instead of thousands. Very exciting. And I did all of this. Go me!

You would think I deserve some good karma.

I spent the better part of my Sunday (and Saturday when I couldn't sleep in the middle of the night), arranging the donation of a hearing aid to someone in need. I may even have gotten donated Audiology services. One would think all this goodness would make the stars align and the gods smile favorable on me. But no.

My sore throat and congestion that has been mildly irritating for the past few weeks turned into a full blown illness in the middle of the night. I woke up with that crazy, out-of-control spinning. You know, turn your head, and the world turns with you. Most people would think the cure for this kind of illness would be a trip to the doctor. Not me. No. It is coffee (and maybe a trip to the doctor too). More specifically Starbucks coffee. I waited. I woke up at six am. But I waited for coffee until both kids were off to school, so I could hop in my car drive to Starbucks.

I was happy. I had my coffee. Glorious Iced White Mocha Non-Fat. One little sip. That was all I got out of my drink. One sip. Before I dropped the damn thing. And. Spilled. It.

I seriously contemplated licking it off of the ground. You know, if bending over wouldn't make me so dizzy.

And also....after all of the buzz about people suing each other over blogs and people getting fired and the ramifications of talking about your children and whatnot, I am seriously considering going a bit more anonymous. Yes, I know it is already out there. But I can limit it. It has been on my mind lately. Removing names. Possibly pictures. Still thinking about it.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Why didn't I think of it sooner?

The girls went to a birthday party at gym where Jill takes gymnastics on Saturday. The coaches that ran the party were Jill's class coach and another coach that we have made friends with. We met him a few parties ago (because EVERY kid...mine included...has their party there) for a classmate of Emmi's, and this coach was specifically requested for the fact that he himself is almost completely deaf. He wears hearing aids and reads lips, and really understands kids like Emmi. Right away, we really liked him. Kenny and I talked to him a lot about what his childhood was like, what he has been through. He was very open and honest. We ended up requesting him for Jill's party. So we were excited when we saw that he was the coach for today.

Emmi ran up and hugged him, and I followed to say hello. The last time we saw him, we had gotten into a conversation about the cost of replacement parts, and how many things we had lost, and how many strange places we had lost them (coil..which is a magnet..found on a door hinge two days later). So immediately, he says, "Guess what! The very next day I lost my hearing aid. I am down to one. I am going back home next month, and a family member is going to help me get a new one. I have to pay for the replacement, and it is $5000.00!!" I was shocked. He has already gone over a month without it. He plans to go almost another month, and you know he has had to beg relatives to help him out. It is ridiculous. I was outraged. I just kept thinking there had to be something I could do.

And then, when I couldn't sleep from my sore throat and stuffy nose, it occurred to me. Emmi's old hearing aids. The one's from the trial that she had to do before she could get an implant. She wore them maybe ten or twenty times. I still have them store away in the container with the little biscuit that keeps the humidity away. It would have to be reprogrammed. He would need a new earmold. But I did the research online. The hearing aid itself is the big chunk of the cost. And it is the same style (BTE) that he wears on the other ear. From what I can tell, she was given one of the best brands. I can't wait until the gym opens. I know he is working. I am going to have Emmi bring it to him, and offer to give it to him.

I really hope he will take it. The thing is he has already given so much to us, and he doesn't even know it. We watched him, this obviously well-liked, happy, out-going guy, who was not at all held back by his hearing loss, and it gave us confidence that Emmi would be like that one day. I have always feared that self-consciousness would catch up to her. He shared with us his stories of is his behavior as a child, and I began to understand Emmi's thinking a little more. He gave us insight into her world when we really haven't had any. For that, I think he deserves to be thanked.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Current Gripes.

1. My throat has been sore for two weeks. Allergies. No, really. But nothing is helping.

2. I miss Dr. Pepper. It is hard to decide what is worse. Migraines or lack of Dr. Pepper.

3. Fucking iTunes no longer burns cds. And their online help? Is no help. They tried to blame my computer. Right. Three computers just magically broke on the same day. I had to download a program to convert all of my songs from iTunes format to wmv, and then burn discs in windows media player. It takes FOREVER to burn cds. And it took me like a week to figure out how to do that.

4. My bangs won't grow out fast enough. It is driving me crazy. And this in between hair? Looks like mommy hair. That mommy, driving a suburban, and living in a middle class, gated community. Oh wait.

5. How come my kids can operate a Blackberry, a video ipod, a computer, a dvd player, and are the only ones who know the unlock code to the DVR, but the CAN'T FLUSH THE TOILET?

Friday, April 25, 2008

Lessons in History: + Kenny = Four

I didn't mean to start dating Kenny. Really, I didn't. In Dallas, I had met and dated a few that I thought had turned me off of the whole species. I was done with dating and men and whatnot. At least for a little while. Let's face it. I didn't have the best track record. I was much better off being single. That was the plan.

Kenny and I knew each other for years. I actually first met him through my ex-husband way back in high school. The memory is clearly in emblazoned in my mind. Kenny has no recollection of it. Maybe because he was drunk. I had no clue who he was at the time, and I immediately began making fun of his drunkenness. That is until Kris informed me I should probably shut my trap, considering we were at Kenny's house. Apparently it isn't polite to make fun of the host. Or something. Obviously, we didn't become good friends then, but our paths would continue to cross over the years in college (or actually, mostly I hung out with his girlfriend) and later through work.

I came to Houston often. At least once a month to see my friends. It was a birthday party that brought me to town the time I got Kenny's number. I invited my friend Matt, who invited Derval, who randomly had just started working for Kenny. Soon enough Kenny had joined our group that night. By the end of the night I had his number. You know. For work. No really. For work. But we also became friends that night.

I planned to stay for a full week over Christmas. The kids would be gone. I would have a week of freedom in Houston. Kenny, being ever so polite (it had nothing to do with trying to get a girl to spend the night with way), offered to let me stay at his house instead of paying for a hotel the whole week. It was the perfect plan. He had a whole house to himself. He insisted it would be no problem. I would save a lot of money. He failed to mention that John had moved in, leaving no spare bedroom. Yeah. He didn't plan that one.

I never even saw it coming. I thought we were horribly mismatched. Here he was living the ultimate single guy life style, going out to bars with the guys, travelling, staying up late. His house was the house were everyone gathered. On any given Friday or Saturday there were bound to be groups of people sitting around in the garage or out back. We had talked before about how he had never even really been around kids. He had made jokes about how he wouldn't even know how to talk to a kid. We lived in two different worlds. So it never even crossed my mind that he would be someone I could or would date.

Honestly, I don't even know how it happened. Or when. Maybe from the first moment I walked in the door? But we were just together. I don't know that we ever even discussed it. It just happened. And I knew after that trip and the time I spent with, not only Kenny but, all of my friends that week that I needed to be back in Houston. I would miss my family, but Houston was my home. I was a different person around the people I went to high school with. I was confident and happy. Relaxed. Sure of myself. I hadn't been that girl in years. I needed to be back home.

And so I moved. And Kenny and I became inseparable. And I couldn't ask for a better person. He has never once complained that his bachelor life has been taken over by field days and ballet classes. He comes to doctors appointments and surgeries (even the ones that are four hours away) and school activities. He immediately seemed better at this whole parenting thing than I ever was, knowing just how to talk to Jill to calm her down, making me structure the kids' routine more, arranging family dinners, and taking time off of work to attend every event for the kids.

By the end of a year in Houston, it seemed stupid to continue to pay for two homes. His roommate had long since moved out, and the spare room converted into a room for the girls. Flowered bedspread, matching walls, and all. We stayed weekdays at my house, so that I could walk Jill to the bus. On the weekends, we stayed at his house. We found a home not far from where we currently lived, and moved in together. We have lived together for a year and a half now. And? I really think he might be damn near perfect.

Sure, he does things that annoy me. Really, why can't he put his cups IN THE DISHWASHER? And am I the only one that sees the mountain of laundry (although, my boycotting the laundry has really helped with this!)? But, if that is my biggest complaint, I really don't have much to say. He is nice to almost everyone, because he believes that you never know when someone will come back into your life. I have never heard him raise his voice, except when completely necessary. We have been together through some hard times, and yet, he managed to still be the same good person. He is a better person than I am. This much I know.

For a long time, I thought I would never get married again. Now I know I will. I am in no rush. But I am looking forward to it now.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

I tempted the gods.

I think perhaps, even writing about Emmi, I have pissed off the gods. We have been on the look out for signs that Emmi's kidney is failing. Today she skipped off to therapy happy as can be. We went straight from therapy to dance. Minutes before going into dance class, Emmi started saying "Emmi sick." She has had some allergy problems for days, and I taught her to say that. She had been saying it everytime she coughed. I brushed it off, and sent her into class.

Then? She came out of class three times to go to the bathroom. Except she didn't go. She just grunted. I thought maybe her stomach hurt. But she said, "No." Then she pointed to her back and said, "Owie." And that is when I began to think something was up. Except, she didn't seem to be having any other problems.

Fifteen minutes into class, I saw Emmi's eyes roll back into her head and she staggered to the ground. She was burning hot. She has spiked a fever quickly. I raced her to the doctor. She has a kidney infection.

They started medication. They took labs. They moved her next renal ultrasound up.

It could just be a simple kidney infection. Or it could be a signal that the kidney is finally failing.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Lessons in History: How to Breathe.

After I left Tim, he spent the first few months attempting to woo me back. Then he got mad at me. Then he just disappeared for awhile. When I started dating again, he suddenly had interest in seeing Emmi. Of course, only when it interfered with my plans. After awhile we settled into a routine that allowed us as little contact as possible, and I focused my attention on starting a new life and Jill and Emmi.

I was always proactive about Emmi's care. When she wasn't progressing like she should, I sought out help. I got her into therapy and took her to specialists. I found a pediatrician who listened to me and took special interest in Emmi.

Emmi kept having these choking episodes. No one could figure out what they were. Then one night when Emmi was about seven months old, the episodes changed. If I didn't have seizures myself, I might not have even recognized what it was. But I knew instantly that she was seizing. We saw a neurologist the next day. He scheduled a hospital stay that included a 48 video EEG. It would be hell. They would test her for everything they could think of. Not one time did she choke or have one of the seizures. We left thinking we knew nothing more than when we came.

Three weeks later the results of the bloodwork came back, and I learned that doctors only meet with you on their lunch break for bad news. You never want the lunch break appointment. It means you are dying.

I can tell you the exact day and time that I was told that Emmi would probably die before her first birthday. I know what I was wearing. My right leg was crossed over my left. I had a hangnail on my left thumb. My hair was in a ponytail.

The bloodwork revealed that Emmi had a very rare metabolic disorder with a life expectancy of one year. Her body can't process protein correctly. It is a genetic condition. One that occurs in 1 in every 80,0000 births. For perspective, downs syndrome is about 1 in 800. At first they assumed, by the bloodwork, that Emmi had the worst form of the disorder. We now know that she doesn't. But we didn't at the time.

So I quit my job, and instead of sitting and waiting for my daughter to die, I made my life about doctors and hospitals and injections and medical foods and making sure she lived. And then she turned one.

And now she is four. Her life is not easy. It never will be. I think a lot of people assume that the only "disability" (cause it isn't really holding her back!) she has is being deaf. But that has been the least of my concerns. She can't die from that. She signs. She now speaks and hears with cochlear implants. It is a non-issue really. The surgeries were a big deal. But the deafness itself is not. What bothers me is that I have to watch her like a hawk when she gets a simple cold. A cold could send her into a tailspin in which her body is unable to maintain her glucose level sending her back into a coma causing more damage to her body. One of her kidneys is badly malformed. She may lose part of it. Her soft palate is not formed correctly making it impossible for her to drink from a regular cup without choking or talk normally or eat tortillas or chips. She is hypotonic, meaning she lacks muscle tone. Doctors are baffled at how she even stands, she is so weak. She has brain damage in the part of her brain that regulates reflexes like the startle reflex. So not only does she not have any balance (common among people with hearing loss), she is also missing other key reflexes. Quite frankly, she should not be able to walk. Granted, she can't walk in a straight line.....but hey! She is tough. She is a fighter. The doctors tell me that the longer she lives the more chance she has for beating this. Apparently the ones who make it past a year, tend to live generally "normal" lives. You know, if normal, includes nine specialists and being deaf and four surgeries before your fifth birthday and such. And most important, she is happy. And funny. She is really funny. And naughty. Which I also find funny.

And somehow through all of this, I managed to figure out how to keep breathing. And raise Jill to be the spunky little thing she is. And somewhere along the way we picked Kenny up and suckered him into our crazy lives. And with the addition of Kenny, I think we all became better people. Happier.

When I came to Houston for a visit I never imagined how much my life would change. I had no clue how Kenny would factor into it all. But that is the next chapter.....and I am going to leave you hanging. Cause I mean like that.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Lessons in History: And then.

Before Tim, Kris and I did a lot of back and forth. I left him when Jill was two months old. I let him come back for a few weeks when she was about six months old. Then again when she was almost one. But I had to finally break away. I was always more content when he was gone. I missed him, but life was easier without him. It was hard to make a clean break.

Tim was a distraction. He made the break final. He was everything Kris wasn't. At first that seemed good. When in fact, he was much more lethal then Kris. Kris was docile. Kris was kind. Tim was mean and controlling. I didn't know that at first.

At first I saw a man who had a good job. He was in control of his life. He did things in a certain order. He didn't drink. He didn't care that I was going through a divorce. We had been friends for several months before we started dating. He already knew Jill, and always treated her very kindly. I thought it was perfect. And at first it was pretty good. We were engaged quickly, but I actually didn't want to get married. I never really admitted it to Tim, but I wasn't sure I ever wanted to get married again. He seemed okay with us going along being engaged. Over a year into our relationship, I was pregnant with Emmi. We picked out a cute little house in a nice neighborhood. I quit my job to stay home with Jill while Tim worked. I thought I would finally have that perfect family.

Then, once I had quit my job, things got bad quick. Again, there had been warning signs that I had ignored. Things I didn't want to see. But I let it slide. I let the situation build. The details are not important, but he was both verbally and physically abusive to me. Jill witnessed more than any child should ever see. I don't know how I lasted almost two years in that situation. But I did. I never thought I would be one of those girls who would stay in a relationship like that, but I was still so shell-shocked over the divorce from Kris that I wasn't thinking straight. And I was pregnant. I didn't know how I was going to handle two kids on my own. And mostly, I didn't want to be that girl that had two kids with two different dads, AND wasn't even with either one of them. So I stayed. To save myself some embarrassment. I stayed until it got too bad.

When I did finally leave, life was so much better. Calm. Jill had just turned three, Emmi was a few months old. I moved to Dallas to be near my family. I got a good job. Tim mostly stayed out of our way. There have been a few incidents, but it has all ended well. I was back in control. For a brief moment.

We knew that something was quite right with Emmi from birth. We just didn't know how bad it would get. I would find out soon.

B Jobs

I normally don't allow the kids to watch movies in the car. But I have been lazy and haven't disconnected the DVD player in the car after our trip. (I generally disable it so that they can't turn it on back there!) I just don't see the point in watching a movie for the five minutes it takes to get to the store or dance lessons or such. What is wrong with singing to the radio? Or, I don't know, staring out the window and using your imagination?

But. It is still connected, and The Bee Movie has been playing for days. I have never actually seen the movie. I just hear it playing along behind me. I can quote most of it. But today, part of the movie caught my attention. I thought perhaps I heard it wrong. I rewinded it. I listened closer. No. I definitely heard right. But maybe, just maybe it was my perverted mind that read too much into it. I mean certainly they didn't mean to make a dirty joke, did they? I mean, really, they meant absolutely nothing when that little bee said

"Most bee jobs are small. But most people know that even small bee jobs, when done well, are worth it."

Uh. Yep. I think most men would say so.

Lessons in History.

Allie has been blogging about her past a bit. And, well, I decided to copy her even though Kenny keeps trying to tell me I am a leader, not a follower. Besides, when I started this blog most of my readers where my real-life friends. They didn't need any kind of explanation of who is who. But now that I have some new blogger friends who haven't been around since Hubby No. 1, it might be time to go back and explain......

In high school, I wasn't at all unpopular. I wouldn't say I was the most popular person either. People knew me. Mostly because I was a bit mean. And I seemed to have everything. But quite frankly, I was a mess. I suffered from depression for no good reason. I craved attention. Generally I got it by being loud and obnoxious. But my junior year of high school, I caught the attention of Kris. He was tall, good-looking, and everyone knew him. He was well-liked by everyone. He was a star basketball player, holding district records, and destined for college ball just like his older brother, who was currently playing for Texas Tech. I loved the attention. And the new found "fame" of being Kris's girlfriend. I was horribly sad when he moved days before senior year started.

Our relationship ended then. But not really. We always stayed in contact. His brother switched to UT, where I was at school. He would visit. We would get together. When his brothers both moved to Houston, he moved in with them. I left school, and moved back to Houston. Kris and I were officially back together. Even then, I knew that Kris had problems. But I was still in love with the image of who I thought Kris was back in high school. Even though he never made it play college basketball. Even though he had dropped out of high school. Even though, he had by the time he turned 21 been in alcohol treatment facilities multiple times. I didn't see it. I just saw that rising star that was loved and adored by everyone. And so I stayed with him.

We were married. The wedding ceremony was wonderful. My uncle owned a five-story historic home in Portland, Oregon that was featured in Architectural Digest. We all flew to Portland for the wedding. Literally, traffic stopped outside the large windows to watch the candle-lit ceremony. It was picture perfect. Our marriage was not.

He was never mean. Or rude. He never raised his voice to me. He never called me names. He bent over backwards to make me happy. He spent a solid month searching for the perfect birthday gift for me, then spent a week celebrating my birthday. When he was sober. But he was drunk a lot. Even when he drank, he wasn't mean. He just wasn't...anything. He couldn't get a decent job. He didn't contribute financially. He would leave for work and not come home for two days. Once, when I was pregnant with Jill, I was hospitalized with pneumonia. They finally let me go home, but I was still weak and sick. We got home that day at about 1:30pm. I had missed lunch. Kris left to go get me some Chic-Fil-A. He didn't come home until 4am. Drunk. He even brought in the nuggets and fries that had been sitting in the car since 2pm. As if that would make it okay.

I didn't finally leave for good until Jill was involved. If I never had Jill, I am pretty sure I would have continued to put up with his behavior. Maybe because he was never mean. Maybe because when he was sober he was truly the nicest person I knew. But I could not let Jill ever see her father like that. I promised myself she would not know her father i\was an alcoholic for as long as I could manage. It was horrible for me. It wasn't like some divorces where you hear people say, "I just didn't love him anymore." Love was not in question. In fact maybe it was because I loved him that I couldn't let his daughter not love him. I was scared she would grow up to hate him, if she lived with him.

Now years later, I can honestly say I no longer love him. It has come from watching him neglect Jill for years. Going months at time without calling her. Moving states away so that he could be closer to his brother, his drinking partner. Going on skiing vacation after skiing vacation, but then claiming not to have enough money to come to her kindergarten graduation. When she does go to Kansas City, he spends maybe an hour a day with her while she stays with his parents (which she has to is in the court order). She loves him. She knows that is her father, but she already gets it that he is never there for her. She, at six, makes comparisons between Kenny and Kris. When Father/Daughter events come up at school, she doesn't even hesitate when she asks Kenny and not Kris. It is sad. That is the very thing I wanted to protect her from. I really wanted her to be as enamored with her daddy, as I am with mine.

And so for a brief time it was just Jill and I. And everything was great. Gilmore Girls had just come out, and Jill and I would cuddle up on the couch and watch it together. She would fall asleep in my arms on the couch, and I would sit and imagine (corny as it is) that we would be something like that. It would be us two. We would be friends. And life would be great.

But then along came Tim.

Monday, April 21, 2008


So, as you can see I have been experimenting with some changes to my blog. It is still in the works. I am not 100% happy with it just yet. I want to work on the fonts and colors and backgrounds and such. But I spent quite a while coming up with the idea for the new graphic. I went through about fifteen versions before coming to this one, which I am sure I will continue to improve. I tried to put as much of me in there as I could. A little "Fourbucks," some magazines, a book.... If you look closely you will even find the complete Gilmore Girls series. Tiff doesn't know it, but even she made it into the new graphic. See. That is her on the phone. I can't tell you what we were talking about, though. But I'll give her a hint (loaning you fifty bucks! HOLLA!). I multi-task like no one you know. And of course, the fam is hanging out there on the wall. I still want to get the dogs in there somehow, and a few other funny little things. Look for changes over the next few days!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A wedding.

The wedding was this weekend. The one where I got to wear my wonderful David's Bridal dress. Even though the alterations I spent a fortune on were not done well, and my boobs threatened to pop out any minute. Guess it is a good thing I don't really have any boobs. It was hard for them to do any popping. All in all, it was fun. I think I spent more time talking to Ashley, my old neighbor (who is much, MUCH better than my new neighbors) who was the photographer, than I did talking to the bride. And? There was a lot of the typical wedding hoopla.

Preggers Bride and I at Rehearsal

I made Kenny leave an hour before the rehearsal because Preggers Bride had been texting me since 7am threatening to kill me if I was late. It started at 4. We got there at 3:40. We beat her by half an hour. The groom's family showed up fifteen minutes before the thing ended. He spent most of the time on his cell phone trying to hunt down groomsmen and his family, with Preggers Bride giving him death looks the whole time. Which, of course, made me giggle. When his sister arrived, much to her dismay, she discovered she was last in line of the bridesmaids. This. Pissed. Her. Off. I mean, she is family. She should be second in line. Right after the maid of honor. Or at least, that is what she announced fifty times. Which, of course, made me give her death looks. Seriously. It is not that big of deal. Who cares where you stand. And quit trying to take my well earned second in line position, hooker. But I mean, it doesn't matter where you stand. Just cause I got second in line. Before all the rest of you. Doesn't mean anything. Me? I didn't complain one time. I stood on my spot, smiled pretty, walked when they told me to, corrected the idiot of a wedding coordinator when she forgot key points, and soon we were on our happy little way to dinner.

As far as brides go, Preggers Bride, was relatively calm. She laughed and joked. When she asked which way to wear her veil and I made a quip about it looking more virginal around her shoulders, she fired back with, "Immaculate conception, Bitch." Then proceeded to pull it all the way around her shoulders and give me the most innocent and demure look I have ever seen. I almost believed her. The lack of formality of this wedding (remember, Kenny and I have been part of the country club wedding scene for awhile now. IE Big, formal, to the letter, by the books, weddings.) drove me slightly crazy at first. Where was the bridal luncheon? The massive shopping trips? The forty-five events I must attend prior to the actual wedding? Ahhhh, but in the end, it was so nice to actually be able to enjoy the wedding that I was part of. They didn't care if I wasn't sitting at the head table precisely when she started her first dance. No one yelled when the maid-of-honor and I were so busy cracking jokes that we missed them shoving cake in each other's faces. I actually talked to Kenny. I sat down. I ate the food that was served, instead of running around like crazy. I think I could get used to this laid-back kind of shin0dig. It was nice. It was pretty. It wasn't tacky in any way, but it just had an air of informality that made it easy to enjoy the party. Which to me is what a wedding should be.

Kenny and I have talked a lot about what our wedding will be like. I won't do things like Preggers Bride did, as we have different taste. But I want the same feeling. I want my bridal party to walk out the door and say, "Well, that was fun." And actually mean it.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

I have much love for them. Really.

This morning at the bus stop, one of my neighbors excitedly announced that they had finally made all the arrangements. What arrangements you ask. Well, the ones for the Girls Shopping Weekend. The one they didn't invite me to. But that they discussed in detail, down to who was sharing what room in front of me this morning.

Seriously? Who taught these women their manners. If I acted like that, I swear to you, my mother would disown me. (Hi MOM! I know you are reading this....and grumpy and disgruntled as I am, which I got from Dad, you did raise me much better than that!) Really, they make jokes about how young I am, then they act like little high schoolers. And quite frankly, like hell I would have gone. But it is the principle of it. If it would not ostracize Jill and Emmi, I would say something. I have rehearsed it many times in my head. Instead, I stand to the side, and smirk, knowing I am twenty times more mature than they are. And also? As much as I enjoy getting a little jab in here and there, I truly am a good person. This I know without a doubt. People who really know me get this about me. But my neighbors. Not so much.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

They got me. They win.

I forgot to change my the time on my alarm. I woke up thirty minutes late. This morning was a rush. And then the traffic was bad. And then my dentist told me I, who anally brushes and flosses and has the worst teeth in the world, needs two crowns replaced. Did I mention they can never get me numb? I either have dental work with an anesthesiologist or without any kind of numbing at all, depending on how big the job is. They sent me home with a prescription for Valium or something of the such, and told me to come back in a week. It should be fun times. I was already in a foul mood by 9:30 this morning. And I had not even had time to drink my coffee this morning. Bad mood. No caffeine.

I pulled into the first Starbucks drive-through I saw.

"Gooood Morning. Welcome to Starbucks. What can I get you this fine morning?"

"Tall, iced white mocha, non-fat."

"Nope. All out."

Huh? How are they all out? "Of what? They white mocha, the ice, or the non-fat?" My response was met with laughter.

"Eh. I was just kidding. That will be $45.75, please pull forward." I wasn't quite sure if the price was a joke or not.

I made my way to the window, ready with a wise little joke about not messing with people prior to giving them caffeine, and then a hand reaches out the window with my drink. My drink. That has whipped cream and strawberry sauce dribbled over the top.

"I made it special for you," he grins.

I do not smile at all. I hate whipped cream. Blech. I stare at him. He grins more. The guy behind him working the register giggles. I am NOT amused. I continue to stare at him.

"What? You don't like it?"

"I hate whipped cream." I am giving him the meanest look I know how to give.

"Ooooo. Good thing I know magic." He waves his hand over my drink. Then he removes the extra lids that contain the whipped cream and strawberry concoction neatly separated from my precious drink. Both guys practically fall down with laughter. There are tears streaming down their faces. I was had.

Damn. That was good. And there is really nothing I can but laugh with them.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


Kenny and I aren't married. Most people don't realize this. because we are really good at pretending. It is the house in the suburbs, and the two kids that look just like him. Tricks. And for awhile, I didn't really want to talk about the whole marriage thing. I mean, I figured one day we would get married and all. It was just awhile away. But now. It is getting closer. And I am really bad at waiting.

So I do things like call Kenny and say, "KENNY! You have to help me! I am frantic. I can't find it!"

And he will say, "You can't find what?"

And I will say, "My engagement ring, Silly."

And he will not even respond. Not even one little laugh. So then sometime after he comes home, I will sneak outside a tape a picture of, like, a $189,000.00 ring to his steering wheel with the words "FOUND IT" written across the page in black marker. And part of me will be sad, because in the morning I won't be there to see his face when he finds it.

And even though he pretends I am not funny, I know the picture will end up in the file marked "ROCKS" which I hope is more in reference to the diamonds and not the large weight that will be dragging him down once he succumbs to marriage. And sometimes, he even reads the articles I leave out about selecting the perfect diamond. And yes, he even sat through hours of looking at dresses on the Internet so that I could get a feel for his tastes, for, you know, the time that I actually might need to go dress shopping. So while he pretends he has no interest in my ring talk, it is actually what I have asked of him. I want a complete a total surprise engagement. I don't want to know what is going on until halfway through. I want that moment. And even knowing that is what I want, it is still driving me crazy not having some sort of time frame. Six days. Six months. Six years. Who knows?

Except maybe his closest friends. Which is why today when I ran into his friend's wife, and she congratulated me on my engagement, I began to get the suspicion that something was up.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Animal Adventure

A few weeks ago, Emmi's speech therapist suggested we take the girls to the Bayou Wildlife Park. They had just gone, and her kiddo loved it. It's one of those animal parks where the animals roam free. I think, perhaps, I was more excited that the kids were. My parents took me to one when I was younger, and it is one of my favorite memories. My dad had a car with a sunroof. I can remember we couldn't get the ostrich to get it's head out of our car. It was fun. Slightly scary. Creepy damn birds. But fun. So we packed the kids up and headed across town.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

My turn.

I was tagged by David from Life in a Cone of Silence. It looked like fun. I was in the mood to play along. So here goes......

Question 1) What I was doing ten years ago?
If I tell you exactly, then it will completely date me. Not that I care if you know how old I am. Twenty eight to be exact. I just feel like I am not taken seriously when people know my age. I want to be older. But....ten years ago, I was in school. I was happily oblivious to anything else that would happen in my life. I thought I knew it all. Had it all figured out. I was smug. I was also wrong. At the time, my plan was to graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Masters in Architecture. I actually never intended to work. Really. I was one of those people who figured I would marry rich and have kids and never use my degree. But, dude, I would sound smart when I said I went to UT Arch.

Question 2)Five Snacks I enjoy:
1. Mmmmm chocolate. Dark chocolate.
2. Apples with caramel dipping sauce. Okay technically they are for the kids lunch, but so what. I bought them. I like them. I will eat them if I want.
3. Yogurt. Vanilla. The low sugar kind. Dear Lord, I am boring. But I eat, like, three a day.
Is it bad that I can come up with nothing else? I don't snack much. I enjoy a good slice of cake from time to time, but that is a dessert, not a snack.
4.Oh wait, can I count coffee? I like coffee. Especially in the afternoon.

Question 3)Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
I've thought this one out a lot. See, when I found out that Emmi had a serious medical condition that would plague her for the rest of her life and also keep me from working a normal job, I was a single mom with two kids. I was working full-time, but missing work constantly for Emmi's doctor's appointments and such. I was very lucky. My family was able to help me out, and my aunt offered me part-time work that has evolved into my full-time, very flexible position. But I have no clue what other people in my position do. So I want to help other parents of disabled children. I want to start a foundation, which I plan to do with or without a billion dollars.
And also? I would buy a house in Mexico, so I could go hang out there whenever I want.

Question 4)Five jobs that I have had:
1.Camp Counselor at the neighborhood tennis club. They had a sports camp. I worked there three years.
2.Gymnastics Instructor. During college.
3.Director of a Montessori School.
4.Realtor. This is actually how I started talking to Kenny (you know, since he is my broker!)...worthy of a blog one day!
5.Data admin something or another. I have no idea what my title is. I do computery type things!

Question 5)Three of my habits:
1.I have to go to bed with freshly shaved legs. Every night. I can't have prickly legs touching my sheets.
2.I ride in the car with my feet on the dashboard. Always. There are foot prints on the inside of the windshield to prove it.
3.I have to watch TV before I got to sleep. Even if it is just a few minutes and I don't actually watch it. I turn it on, stare at it a bit, and then feel like I got my down time.

Five place I have lived:
1. Port Arthur, Texas
2. Longview, Texas
3. Houston, Texas
4. Austin, Texas
5. Dallas, Texas
and back to Houston....

Technically I should tag five people, but Jill just came home sick from school. I am going to fall short on this one.
But Tiffers, I think you do this!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Yummy Donut

Dear Man in Line Behind (Now IN FRONT) of Us,

Good Morning! I hope your day started off well. Yes, thanks for asking. Ours is great so far. Well, until you practically clobbered my six-year-old in the parking lot of the donut store.

See, the thing is, I hardly ever let my kids eat donuts. So my kid was super excited to get donuts. Really. And we pulled up, like, a full minute before you. In fact, we were already out of the car before you pulled in the parking lot. And she wasn't walking slow. THERE WERE DONUTS IN THERE! She was in a hurry to get those pink ones, with the sprinkles. She loves those. So, we were about to the door when you got out of your car, and, man, were you in a hurry?! You must love those pink ones with the sprinkles, too. Anyway, my daughter was just about in the door (the one I am holding open), when out of nowhere you cut right in front of her. Good thing she is agile! She was able to jump out of your way just in time. Even the ladies inside the store were shocked. So shocked they offered to take our order before yours.

You immediately protested. Your loud screaming voice at 8 in the morning was quite persuasive. And yes, you made a great point when you mentioned that you made it in the door before us. However, I think we should deduct two seconds for trampling a six-year-old and four seconds for letting a woman hold a door open for you. By those calculations, we win. However, my child, quickly determining in her head that you can't possible buy all 23 pink, sprinkled donuts, decides you should go first. Just to shut you up. Although, she put it much nicer than that. That is what I would have said. So you ordered your donuts, which thankfully, did not include all 23 pink ones, and you are on the way out, and you give us the smug grin. Apparently you feel really good about yourself and the cutting in front of a six-year-old.

But do tell. How did it feel when she slowly grinned, waved, and said, "I really hope that cutting in line makes those donuts taste better."

The Lady in Line Behind You With the Six-Year-Old Who Is Smarter Than You

Friday, April 11, 2008

Balloons and Hookers. (Search that!)

I was so going to write all about how I went to pick up my bridesmaid dress and it all went wrong. Shoes not dyed. Alterations that I paid an arm and leg for not complete. But what happened afterwards definitely takes the cake. Sorry David's Bridal. Not even your stupidity could top this.

The girls got balloons last night at Family Fun Night. Emmi brought hers with us to go get my dress. We had not been out of the car the two seconds before the damn thing was whisked out of her hand by the wind. I frantically jumped around the parking lot trying to catch it. No balloon. Just one pissed off Emmi. I promised her another balloon. I signed "more" and "wait" and "later" and hoped she would get the message that I was going to get her another balloon. She seemed content. We made it through the appointment with no complaints from Emmi. As soon as we were back in the parking lot, she starting saying, "balloon," over and over again.

We stopped at CVS on the way home. On the card isle, they had several balloons already blown up. They were all birthday. And ugly. I wasn't buying them. I took Emmi to the rack with the balloons you can purchase for them to blow up. While we were looking, a little boy streaked by, no mother in sight, a balloon hanging from his mouth, twelve toy dinosaurs in his hands. He growled at Emmi as he ran past. For some reason, Emmi found him funny. And she liked his yellow smiley face balloon. She picked the last two smiley face balloons. One for her. One for Jill.

We took our purchases up to the front of the store. The line was long. There was one cashier. While we waiting, the crazy child ran by a few more times, abandoning the balloon he had been playing with. Being one of those parents that believes in, I don't know, watching your children, I was already annoyed with his non-existent mother. Really? Who lets a four-year-old wander around a store by himself? The fourth time he ran by, he got in Emmi's face and screamed. I contemplated tripping him. But, knowing my luck, his mama would appear and she would be twice my size. Besides, I had already caused my fair share of trouble for the day at David's Bridal.

When we got to the front of the line, the cashier rang us up, putting the packages with the balloons into the bag. "Ummm....aren't you going to blow those up?"

He looks at me pleadingly. The line was still long. I think he really thought he was going to pull that off. Like I wouldn't figure out that I wanted them blown up. "Can you wait just a few minutes? I am the only one here."

I thought about being a smartass. Saying something about me already waiting. But I just didn't have it in me. And he looked like he didn't either. I agreed. Stepped aside. Waited. Finally the line died down. He blew up one balloon, attached the string, and handed it to Emmi. He blew up the second balloon, reached for the string, and the balloon slips out of his hand, floating high up to the ceiling, well beyond anyone's reach. Shit. That was the last one.

But then I remembered the abandoned balloon on the other side of the store. The one the little crazy heathen had been playing with earlier. "Hey, there is one blown up back there I can get," I explain. The cashier looks relieved. Emmi and I walk to the back of the store. I grab the balloon and hand it to Emmi. Out of nowhere the crazy kid materializes with mama right behind him.

He knocks Emmi over. "THAT IS MY BALLOON YOU HOOKER!" He jerks the balloon from her hand. His mom does nothing. She just stands there. Oh hell no.

"Oh no it isn't. We just bought that balloon." Then I grab it from him, and I turn on his mother. "What kind of parent are you? Seriously? First, trying watching your kid in the store. Second, when your kid pushes another kid, how about you do something other than stand there. And third. Hooker? You teach your kid to call other children hookers? What kind of idiot are you. The correct term is 'prostitute'."

And with that, I walked out.

Family NO FUN Night.

Once a year, Jill's school has a huge event. A Family Fun Night. Games. Prizes. Cake Walks. Pie Your Teacher in the Face. Catering from Texas Roadhouse. The works. The kids have been working to gain Bear Bucks for the past six weeks to earn tickets for the booths. Jill has been talking about it for weeks. Months really.

Until last week when she decided she wasn't going. She didn't get a ticket to the "Pie in the Face" booth. I tried to explain that I could still buy tickets when we got there. It wasn't the same. She didn't want to go. Fine by me. I threw the order form for the Texas Roadhouse meals in the trash and called it a day.

As Thursday approached, Jill started mentioning Family Fun Night again. I told her we could only play the games, not eat. The deadline has long since passed for ordering food. She thought about it. Thursday morning came. We stood in the bathroom, doing her hair for school. She talked about how she was sad that she had not earned a ticket for "Pie in the Face." Then, in that conversation, I found out why.

When she switched classes a few weeks ago, her teacher (the one who grabbed her arm to the point of hurting her after Jill talked in her classroom) took away her Bear Bucks for tattling on her! Oh hell no. All 21, she had earned. She had since earned another 15, putting her well over the total needed. I flew into a rage. How dare that woman, who was in the wrong, punish Jill! First she uses physical punishment on my child, now she makes her think it is not okay to tell someone if you are being hurt by an adult?! What the hell is wrong with this teacher? Kenny called the teacher a slew of naughty words, threatening Jill with her life if she repeated them. At least outside of our home. By 9:30 in the morning, after meeting with the principal and speaking with Jill's new teacher, Jill had her 21 Bear Bucks back. She came skipping in the door at 4pm, "Pie in the Face" ticket in hand. She never looked so happy in her life.

Kenny came home early. The girls had dinner, were bathed, and ready to go by 6pm. The were both excited. On the way to the school, Emmi babbled away happily in the backseat, clueless as to what we were doing, but aware that Jill was excited. They raced up the lawn of the school and to the back parking lot to the games. The lines were long. Jill didn't know where to go first. They got their faces painted. They picked up ducks in a duck pond for prizes, they did the cake walk. Then. Finally. We got in the VERY long line for "Pie in the Face." The kids chattered happily about which teacher they would pick. They could choose Art, Music, or PE. Jill was having trouble deciding. I noticed a bit of a commotion at the beginning of the line. Something was up. Some of the parents looked mad. The kids were starting to cry. Then. The news hit the back of the line.

They. Were. Out. Of. Pies.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sometimes I am really wrong. REALLY.

Last week, Emmi's dance class went badly. Given her past history with preschools and discrimination and such, I braced myself for her to be kicked out. I prepared every argument. Other children don't stay with the group. In fact, several others are worse than her. Yes, yes, I know she kicked a kid in the head. After she pushed the kid to the ground. But damn it that kid had been picking on her the WHOLE class. And I didn't let it slide. I made Emmi leave class. But still. All week I worried. I lost sleep. I rehashed it. To the point that Kenny told me to shut up about it. Kenny never says shut up. I had it all planned out. When they inevitably told me it would not work out to have her stay in the class, I would threaten them with deaf advocacy groups and such. It isn't her fault she is deaf. It isn't her fault she has brain damage! I did my research. I was prepared. I was shaking when I walked in the door.


They had a special stand for Emmi to hold onto in class, she could keep her balance better. They thought that might be why she wasn't staying with the class. And why she was so frustrated. And also? They talked to the group after we left last week about not picking on Emmi just because she is different. From now on, anyone who picks on Emmi will be asked to leave class.

I think I love them.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

It's Payback, Bitch.

My ex-husband called to give me yet another lame excuse as to why he hasn't paid child support this month. Or um, EVER.

In retaliation, I put Jill on the phone.

For two hours straight she has been teaching him Hannah Montana songs. And fussing at him for not having a good singing voice.

I might let her stay up late tonight, you know, if she needs some extra time to get in a Jonas Brothers song or two.

Monday, April 7, 2008

It's the thought that counts.

This morning, I snapped at Kenny over something small. And really, it didn't even affect me. It wasn't me who would be late this morning for not getting Emmi up on time. It was him. So there was no point getting irritated with him. I felt bad.

I thought about cooking him a big meal as an apology, but lets face it, I don't really cook. The house is already clean, so he won't be thrilled to come home to a clean a house. He has cold beer in the fridge, and, really, he doesn't drink them on the weekdays anyway. I had all day to come up with something. I really did owe him an apology.

The bus was late, because of construction at the entrance to our neighborhood. I took advantage of the few extra moments to sit outside in the sunshine. It was then I noticed the weeds in the flower beds. And the leaves. Geez. You would think, with a landscaping company that we would have the nicest yard on the block, not the one that needed to be mowed. But what's the saying about the shoemaker's children? (Although really, you have to see our kicks ass.)

While I waited, I picked weeds. I had both flower beds finished before the bus arrived. I wheeled the trash can out to throw the leaves into it. The bus arrived, and Emmi settled down next to me to watch my work. I grabbed one handful of leaves. Then another. Then anoth....wah...are the leaves moving? And the I see them. Snakes. Two or three on the ground, and several in my hands. I scream, throwing snakes into the air, and running for my life, leaving Emmi behind to fend for herself.

And you know, I never did finish picking up the leaves. But hey, it's the thought that counts.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

By the way, forty isn't old!

My neighbors are all at least ten to fifteen years older than Kenny and I. They try to make this apparent as often as possible. Since we moved in, they jokes about us looking like high schoolers or the nanny are endless. The thing is. Kenny and I find it funny. We know it is because we make them insecure. And being Kenny and I, instead of acknowledging that and letting it go, we play up their insecurities. Often. In as many ways as possible.

We got home from Bastrop around lunchtime Sunday. I wanted to get at least an hour of work in before I took the kids swimming. I managed to get in almost two before they asked. I sent the girls up to change into their swimsuits. I am standing at the bottom of the staircase, when I see the neighbor's daughter walking up to our house. Shit. I don't want anyone over here. I was planning on a quick swim, then a quiet afternoon while I worked some more. I ran up the stairs, shutting the door to Jill's room, praying that Jill would not hear the doorbell ring. The dogs are barking like crazy. I watch Jill to see if she notices. Nothing. I take my time getting the girls into their swimsuits, guaranteeing the coast will be clear before we head downstairs.

Crisis averted, the girls and I settle in outside. I cover them in sunscreen. I set up towel on my lounger. I take a sip from my glass of ice water, and take the first magazine off of my pile. The girls have jumpd into the pool, my cell phone rings, and I check the caller ID. It is my neighbor. Seriously? Your kid just knocked. No one answered. That should give you your answer. I hit the ignore button, and go back to my magazine.

A few minutes pass. I hear a car out front. Then. I hear someone calling my name, and the latch at the gate rattling. You. Have. Got. To. Be. Kidding. Me. I put down my magazine, and make the kids get out of the pool. I can't watch them and make my way through the dog run to the gate. The kids are mad. They just got in. I open the gate to find my neighbor standing on the other side, her daughter standing next to her swimsuit, with a towel and a change of clothes.

"Hi," she says, smiling. "I figured you guys might be in the pool. We tried the front door, and I tried to call."

I stare at her. This is when most people give up. Not going barging into other people's backyards.
Her smile begins to falter, slightly. But she has a mission. "Anyway, we thought we would see if Jill wanted to play." Obviously by "play" she means, her daughter swim in our pool. Jill does not look game. The girls have not been getting along lately. But I don't know how to say no to the little girl who is standing three feet from my pool already clad in her bathing suit. Damn. Her mom is good.

"Uh sure," I reply. Jill gives me a look. I mouth "sorry" to Jill.

"Okay, well I am off to run some errands. Her dad is home if they get tired of playing. But she brought a change of clothes over, so she can stay for awhile." And with that, she is gone. And suddenly this no longer feels like a play date, and more like babysitting while her good-for-nothing husband sits at home on his ass.

After an hour of swimming, my children are ready to go inside. They swim everyday. It is nothing exciting. They don't need endless hours of it. The pool will still be there tomorrow. They wrap up in their towels, and sit on pool loungers to dry off in the sun. Devil Neighbor Child begs to swim longer. She attempts to talk Jill into asking me to swim longer. Ha! Jill is halfway in the backdoor. Good try. When it becomes obvious that she is not going to get anymore swimming out of us, she decides she wants to go home. Fine by me. I have work to do. You whine a lot.

As we approach her house, I find the "errand" her mother had to run was actually sitting outside with all of the other mom's in the neighborhood. The all have fruity cocktails, and none of the other children are around. I vaguely remember Jill mentioning some of the others being off with theirs dads and such for the day. This is why her child had to be dumped at my house. I, of course, am not invited, because, well then who would be babysitting her child. As I walk up, one of the moms offers me a chair.

Another mom makes a quip about how as I walked up they were trying to figure out who I was, because I looked like one of the know, "being small and dressing so young and all."

I smirk. They have made it way too easy. Someone really should warn the idiots. I cock my head to the side. "Hmmmm....well, how should I dress? Old? Like I am forty?" Then I feign embarrassment as I "realize" that is their age. Oops.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Go Eagles! And such.

A month or so ago, I got the card in the mail for my high school reunion. I was actually kind of shocked that they found my new address. Then Kenny reminded me that the school probably had access to their own records. And considering we are zoned to our old high school, I was probably easy to find. The post card is sitting on my desk. I still have not decided if I want to go. Now, Kenny's reunion....I am all over, there are so many people I want to see! At dinner last night, Kenny and I start debating whether or not we were going to mine.

I make the point that I keep in contact with several people from my grade. The others, I lost contact with on purpose. I can't honestly think of one person out of the 600+ graduating class that I didn't either have the email address or phone number of that I have any desire to see.

Kenny makes the point that everyday is like a high school reunion. The group we are meeting up with later that evening includes around twenty people. All from our high school. Although, we get creative, we blend graduating classes.

I make yet another point against. Not many of my friends are going. Leah and I talked pretty much the day the cards came in the mail, and neither one of us seemed really thrilled about going. Cate has a wedding that weekend. The list goes one.... Ashley on the other hand, has already planned the whole weekend out for me. Down to what I should wear. She really wants to go. Kenny and her hubby get along good, so we would have fun with them.

But yet, even though I keep coming up with reasons not to go, I think I might. I mean, after all, I am skinnier than I was in high school. And that's what counts, right?

Thursday, April 3, 2008

A bit of random creepiness.

Emmi does not speak clearly. She can't. Her soft palate is not formed correctly. It is our to-do list of surgeries. But some words are okay. Ones that begin with M sounds, for instance. Or have "ah" or "oo" sounds in them. Kenny, Jill, and I have learned to understand her. Most people have to ask me to translate.

Jill has taken up scrapbooking. I got out the photo albums to let her pick out pictures for her scrapbook. Afterwards, we were going to CVS to make copies of the pictures she choose. Emmi and Jill got side-tracked. They never realized I had so many photo albums of pictures. Their whole lives in photos. That I arranged in order. They sat for a long time looking at photos. Some of them. Some of family members. Some of me and my friends through the years. Emmi pointed to each person, named them, or demanded to know their name. She'd ask, "Oo's ah?" Jill turned the page. It was a group shot of several of my friends from a birthday party. It was the night Kenny got my number. The girls knew a few of the people in the picture.

"That's my Stacy," Jill exclaimed!

"Enny!" Emmi excitedly pointed at Kenny's picture.

Then her hand slid across the page. She became very excited. She was pointing at Matt. My friend who died a few months ago. "MATTHEW," she yelled, in perhaps the clearest voice I have ever heard her use.

I started to visibly shake. Jill asked what was wrong. Then she wanted to know why Emmi thought that person was named "Matthew."

"He is, Jill."

"How did she know that!" Jill asks me, confused, because she knows most people that Emmi knows.

Except I don't have an answer for this. She had never met him.


I suck at blogging lately. My shoulder hurts. Jill has not been sleeping, therefor I have not been sleeping. Emmi's behavior was so naughty today that I took her home from dance early today. I tried to get a little retail therapy in this morning. But apparently "You can be home at noon for the bus" actually means call me after I leave the house to tell me that you won't be home at noon for the bus even though we just talked about it twenty minutes ago.

So I don't have the energy for blogging. Maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


I have been tagged by Allie over at Friday Night Ambulance for a survey. After posting 100 things about me, I am not sure what exactly more I can say, but here goes.... besides, Allie said I wouldn't do it. That sounds like a dare. We all know I know I don't back down from a dare.

Here are the rules

1) Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog

2) Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.

3) Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.

4) Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. I find extreme pleasure in making stupid people look even more stupid. For instance, when the girl at the Nestle store declared my card had been "declined" in front of a line full of people, I made her squirm until she admitted she did not know how to enter the number on the card when it wouldn't read the strip on the back. She kept saying, "Ma'am it was declined." And I kept saying, "Nope. The strip on the back is no good. You have to manually punch in the number." I waited until she had called the manager over and admitted to him that she didn't know how to do it, before I offered one of the other three cards, readily available in my wallet just to keep the line moving. Ha!

2. It stresses me out when my kids are noisy. Or messy. Or you know, anything that resemble kids. If they could sit and be little adults, that would be great. They don't tend to go along with this. I tend to be stressed out a lot. They, on the other hand, are extremely happy!

3. I think I used to be a compulsive shopper. Not big ticket items. Just little things. Now I just obsess over what I want to buy. Like the shorts I currently want. I check them out online at least once a day. I have some from the same company that I love. I wear them once a week. The fit well, are made well, definitely worth the fifty dollars. But somehow I just can't actually purchase them. I just look at them everyday. Sometimes a few times a day. I even get my credit card out at least once a day to buy them. Never do. It is insane. Kenny laughs at me. It is not my fault. It is just the extreme opposite of compulsive shopping. The inability to buy even things I might use.

4. My latest injury is a stress fracture in my scapula...oh yeah, Mom, I went to get an X-ray yesterday. I forgot to tell you. It is fractured. I am supposed to wear a sling, but it makes my back hurt, so instead, I just walk around with my arm stuck to my side like a broken wing. I am not clumsy, but I get lots of stress fractures. My doc thinks I need a bone density test. He said no one should have three stress fractures in less than a year. Especially when all I was doing was leaning over, keeping Emmi from falling into the creek while hiking with my family. But in all fairness, I re-injured an old injury.

5. I am a big time creature of habit. I do it with everything, food, what I wear, what time I do certain things, which routes I take when I drive. I can't go to the bank without going through my old neighborhood. It is slightly out of my way (maybe one or two minutes). But that is the way I always went, since elementary school, riding with my mom. I can't change it up now. That would be craziness! A few months ago, I was craving Quiznos. Apparently it was a Monday. I didn't realize it, but the Quiznos people informed me that I have been their first customer every Monday since. Not only that, but I always look at the menu, as if I decided what to get. I order the exact same thing every time. I also had not noticed he had already started my sandwich before I walked in the door. Like he does every time. It is a sickness.

6. My tastes in clothing, tv, and reading material may never mature beyond high school. Sure, I own some sophisticated pieces of clothing, but I always feel like I am playing dress up. I am most comfortable in a pair of jeans (mind you, the trouser style...not the slouchy kind) and some form of a t-shirt (again, not hanes. Ribbon trimmed or such). And while I occasionally reading intellectual reading material, most often, it is silly books or star magazines. Same for movies and TV. I have a good reason for the books/tv/movies. I have enough drama in my real life, I don't want to deal with it in my escape. About all I can handle is teen angst. I have no good reason for dressing like I am in ninth grade. At least, Jill won't have to take me on Maury for the "My Mom Dresses Too Provocatively" segment.

7. I know I have said it before, but I love coffee. Sometimes, on bad days, I treat myself to a Grande Iced White Mocha at "Fourbucks" (nickname borrowed from David at Life in A Cone of Silence....which has become one of my favorite blogs to read).

Which unofficially becomes number 8. I have taken to reading David's blog. We have learned more about what Emmi might be experiencing through David's blog than we ever could have imagined. Besides, he is just outright funny. And, it is refreshing to find another person who can look at the humor in every situation. It is something we try to do. I am known for moments like when after yelling Jill's name with no response for the ninth time at a block party, I exclaimed, "And Emmi is the deaf one!" Or for laughing hysterically when Emmi runs smack into the side of her bus....the SHORT BUS, none-the-less. Or while Emmi is sleeping off sedation from a hearing test, and the Audiologist is breaking the news that Emmi is profoundly deaf (which actually, I already knew) a whisper, as not to wake first question was "So you are saying, she can't hear speaking voices at all?" And after she nods, solemnly, I said, "So why are you whispering?" Some people think these moments are mean. But you have to realize, I chose every day to laugh or to cry. I chose to see that there is a little bit of humor in everything. And I make fun of it. David strikes me as having this kind of quick witted, personality. And he tries to be positive, even given that he has been through quite a lot in the past few months. We should all strive to be like him. Not just to steal his term for Starbucks!

And I know I am supposed to tag other people, but I just don't have the time. I have a lot of work to do today, and Tuesdays are a therapy day. So, hey, at least I filled it out!