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Just a few reasons why my Dad is so awesome October 31, 2005

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One of these days I will have to put together a longer post on this subject, I could fill pages on all of the times my Dad has bailed me out (not that kind of bailing out thank goodness!), helped me through a major life transition, come to my rescue, etc. Of all the superlatives that I could use to describe him, the best one is unselfish. Despite his age and having his own physical ailments to think about, the minute he heard about my blood pressure and the almost-bedrest diagnosis, he immediately began thinking of all the ways he could help me and my family.

Last night, for example, he and his “lady friend” Jean (the kids call her Aunt Jean) brought over dinner from Boston Market. When they got to the one by his house it was full of a busload of girls from Ohio State so they drove a good ten miles to another one, then brought over enough food to feed all 6 of us plus leftovers. And can I just wax poetic here for a minute about how good that food was? Chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, butternut squash, green beans, corn, and those corn muffins….really, really good. I may have an unnatural love for that gravy!

He then informed me that instead of spending Thanksgiving at my Grandma’s house, which he does every year, he’s going to buy one of those already cooked turkey dinners sold at every grocery store around here and bring it to our house so Chris doesn’t have to cook and I don’t have to stress out about it.

Finally, he called me about 4:00 today and told me he was coming to my house tonight to pass out candy to trick-or-treaters while Chris takes the boys out, saving me from having to jump up and down off the couch every few minutes. He lives in a condo neighborhood of almost all retirees and gets almost no kids at his door on Halloween.

So how’s that for unselfish? And kind, and generous, and loving, and…

I’m one lucky daughter, that’s for darn sure.

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Happy Halloween! October 31, 2005

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Thanks to Dr.’s orders and the Sci-Fi Channel, I am spending the day lying on the couch watching the Stephen King Miniseries version of “The Shining”. Although I have great respect for the original, in my opinion this is a much better movie. One thing that Stephen King does really well is flesh out his plots with details, little moments that drive the characters and the story forward. The original movie just didn’t have enough time to do that. Jack Nicholson pretty much had to go from zero to crazy in no time at all. This version has Steven Weber as Jack (remember him from “Wings”?), and he has plenty of time to start out disbelieving and slowly succumb to the evil. It would be much better to watch on DVD though as the commercials ruin the momentum.

On Saturday my Sister-in-law, her kids and her fiance came up from Toledo to visit. They brought a bunch of stuff for the baby, including the Fisher Price Ocean Wonders Aquarium, which I am always seeing on parents’ lists of stuff they couldn’t do without. There was trick-or-treating at the mall, but I of course couldn’t go due to the fact that it would require me to be on my feet and all. I couldn’t believe what my kids brought home in their buckets. The smallest suckers I have ever seen, quarter-inch long tootsie rolls, Stickers, and COUPONS for the stores. Really, really lame. I think we’ll pass on the mall next year.

She also brought Ryan the Darth Vader Voice Changer for his birthday. It is VERY cool! If you need a gift for a boy this Christmas I highly recommend this. You’ll get even more bonus points if you include some kind of light saber and/or the DVD of Star Wars Episode III.

Well, this post is going nowhere fast so that’s all from me. Tomorrow I’ll post some pictures of the kids in their costumes, you do the same ( or pictures of you in your costume!), okay?

Hallelujah October 29, 2005

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The nurses’ strike is over at the hospital. I won’t have to cross a picket line to get there and I’ll be cared for by the regular nurses, not the temps. One less thing to worry about. This is a big relief for me and my pro-union family. Although the nurses did not get the retirement benefits package they wanted, the hospital agreed to immediately increase staffing in three units, which was the main reason for the strike. More nurses=happier nurses=happy me!

Kaitlyn’s Nursery Pictures October 28, 2005

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The reason I have not posted any nursery pictures is that I am a damn perfectionist, and because the room does not look like one of those “Us Weekly” Kelly-Ripa’s-exclusive-nursery photo spreads, I have been putting it off. After all the hours BC put into the refinishing, I wanted to have breathtaking photos that would elicit gasps of envy. But I don’t. Also, we still haven’t got the crib back from our friends, whose baby is still using it, but the deal was that they would transition him out of it, and besides Kaitlyn will sleep in our bed for a few months anyway. O-KAY! So here is what I’ve got so far.

The room originally had beigish-tan walls and dark brown carpet. Under the carpet? Beautiful, original hardwood floors soaked with dog pee. That’s right, we signed the papers and bought the house, funky smell and all, not realizing that the previous owners’ dog had been using our future nursery as a toilet.

We debated over re-carpeting versus painting the floor versus installing laminate. Laminate won. But first BC rented a floor sander and removed as much of the finish as he could, then primed and painted the walls so that any drips would be covered up by the laminate. Ryan and Nathan helped with the priming.

Next came two coats of “Ballerina Gown” pink wall paint, and a wallpaper border hand-picked by BC. There was paint leftover so they even painted the inside of the closet.

Nathan helped install the flooring. The lighting is bad here.

Here’s the view looking at the closet, you can see the flooring and the border. I saw one of those celebrity-mom-nursery photo spreads where they had taken the doors off the closet and I thought it was a good idea, especially since this is a small room already.

That’s all I have so far. Once we get the crib back it will go on the opposite wall from the closet, the changing table is to the right in the picture. We still need a rug to go in the middle of the room but so far we haven’t seen anything we like that we can afford. If anybody has any suggestions about cute rugs please post a link!

Oh yeah, it’s still missing one thing- the BABY!

The Truth Hurts Pt. 2 October 28, 2005

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As expected, Harriet Miers was Jon Stewart’s top story last night. But he kept himself in check, sticking to making fun of the news networks use of the word “stunning” to describe the announcement. How can you be ‘stunned’ by something that everyone saw coming weeks ago?

The best moment of the show for me was a clip of Senator Trent Lott, who when asked whom he thought the President would nominate next, said something like this:

“He should find the best man, woman, or minority for the job.” To which Stewart replied that Lott was obviously making progress as there was a time when Lott would have never considered a minority in the same category as a man or a woman.

Now we await the announcement of the next nominee, who is pretty much guaranteed to be not only qualified for the job, but a right-wing idealogue to boot.

This concludes our Table For Five political discussion. Back to regularly scheduled blogging.

The Truth Hurts October 27, 2005

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Harriet Miers has withdrawn her nomination. It is going to be an interesting couple of days news-wise. I’ll take an extra-long nap today so I can stay awake for The Daily Show. Because you know Jon Stewart is wetting himself over this one.

http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/10/27/miers.nominations/index.html

Week 34 October 26, 2005

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Just back from my week 34 Dr. visit. You don’t want to know what the scale said. Let’s just say I have reached the weight that shall not be named and leave it at that.

My blood pressure was high at 170/76. After a few minutes laying (lying?) on my side it went down to 136/60. The NP’s instructions are to spend “as much time as possible” laying down on my left side. Not just sitting, but actually laying down. I’m so lucky to not be working, and to not have another child to care for during the day. I don’t know what I would do.

Every day is a rollercoaster of emotions around here. Poor BC is feeling the stress of working all day and then coming home to unfinished laundry and an empty refrigerator. I sent him to the grocery store at 7:15 this morning to get bread and apples to make lunches for the boys. And now I have to tell him that my NP says I HAVE to do LESS around here. It doesn’t help that every little thing feels like such a big deal to me and there is bursting into tears at the slightest disagreement.

Don’t tell, but I am going to get up and go to Starbuck’s and get a Mocha Frappuccino. I promise to come straight home and lie down, mmkay?

Added: I know I said Starbucks but I went to Panera instead because their “I C Mocha” is almost as good plus there’s the Cinnamon Crunch bagel with the Hazelnut cream cheese. And I got to hear a sandwich guy call someone’s name for their order and when they didn’t answer he said “Bueller? Bueller?” which totally cracked me up.

My darling husband was very understanding about the whole laying down thing, he said he will “stop pouting like a 4 year old” and talk to the boys about dividing up the housework. And find me a milk crate to put my laptop on so I can continue to blog from a prone position. Heh.

Today’s Act of Stupidity October 24, 2005

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I almost dropped a TV on my head today. Well, it wasn’t so much dropping as causing the TV to slide off the stand and make contact with my head.

If you’d be so kind as to scroll down to my entry from Friday, Oct. 14, you’ll see me standing in front of the living room TV. See the cabinet it sits on? That’s where we keep extra DVDS and ancient videos we’ll probably never watch. I opened the cabinet to look for my “Firefly” Box set, and decided I needed to sit down on the floor. Because just bending down is kinda hard when your belly is the size of a large watermelon.

I opened the cabinet door, and began lowering myself to the floor. See where this is going? The sheer force of my weight combined with the fact that TVs are heavier in the front caused the whole thing to begin sliding forward. I narrowly missed being beaned with the clock, the speaker slid over my head, and it ended with me on the floor with the TV resting on my shoulder and head. My first thought? “You dumbass, that was really stupid. You could have been hurt!”

The “Firefly” Box set was not in the cabinet.

More Pictures October 22, 2005

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Since Belinda asked so nicely, here’s some more of my favorite pictures of the boys. I’m pulling them from our digital camera archives, unfortunately when Nathan was two months old the camera broke so there is a gap of almost 8 months. I have pictures taken with a film camera but no scanner. Anyway, here’s what I’ve found so far.

This was my birth announcement for Nathan. I got the idea from a magazine, probably Parenting or Parents. We color-copied the picture onto photo paper and mailed it in regular business-size envelopes. This was before most people in my family had email, it seems so archaic to do it that way now!

There are probably way too many pictures of me smooching my babies, this is Nathan again.

Ryan’s first Thanksgiving, he is 7 weeks old. I don’t remember what happened but he started laughing, fortunately someone on the other side of the table had a camera handy.

Somehow Ryan got the pacifier clip wrapped around his leg, but he was determined to get it in his mouth anyway.

Nathan looks so teeny in the double stroller. I couldn’t use it for very long because Ryan got too big for the front opening.

What’s amazing about this one is the absence of red-eye, you can actually see his blue eyes.

And finally, the three guys I love most in the world. I am luckier than I can ever put in words.

9 Years Ago October 21, 2005

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I got to thinking about the boys’ first Halloween.


Ryan was born October 2nd, so this was his first Halloween costume. The hat had a little green stem on the top. His nickname has been Pumpkin ever since.

Nathan was 10 months old for his first Halloween. I remember thinking he would never keep this hood on, but much to my surprise he did. It was made of a very soft brushed fleece and kept him nice and cozy in the stroller.

This is Ryan’s “Rugrats Halloween” costume, it is supposed to be Tommy dressed as Reptar. There was a mask that was too hot and a row of foam scales running from the top of the head down to the tail. He wore this costume every day for a month after Halloween. The deal with the carrot is this: Downtown East Lansing had a weekday afternoon where participating businesses gave out candy to trick-or-treaters, the kids made out like bandits. It was also the day of the farmer’s market, which was still running so it must have been warm that year. Anyway, despite a huge shopping bag stuffed with candy, Ryan saw this huge carrot and just had to have it. The seller washed it off with bottled water and Ryan proceeded to gnaw on it like Bugs Bunny. How do you say no to a 3 year old who wants a delicious fresh carrot instead of mini Snickers and Blow Pops?

P.S. Pictures of the nursery are coming, I promise!