29 December 2008

What a difference a decade makes

At 2341 on December 29, 1998 I became a mother.



He weighed 7 pounds 10 ounces and was 20 inches long. Not too shabby. A decade later, his stats are a little different, but he's still dang cute.



Happy Birthday First Born.


In unrelated news: Bought a new bed for the dog. That's not a dog.

Christmas recap

So to sum up: My mom still requires people to wear funny hats to open presents






















































The kids will no longer be able to do anything that is not Wii related


SHSO'C rocks out loud and now so can the boys


Steak knives are not to be used to open presents in lieu of asking for an adult's assistance


Sly believes his job is to keep blankets warm for later use, which he performs admirably


And a hundred years from now people will think my kids raised themselves as, once again, I cannot be found in any pictures.

26 December 2008

25 December 2008

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas my friends.

24 December 2008


"The stockings were hung by the chimney with care..." (Because it's hard to rhyme with "half-assed")

"The children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads." (Times have changed, because I'm pretty sure sugar plums are the last thing dancing in my kids' heads.)

So, my bad attitude notwithstanding, I am ready for Christmas. Sort of. The last present has been wrapped, the stockings are stuffed, the plan for tomorrow has been set. But I'm such a loser, I'm still filling out Christmas cards (which I made off my SD card at Target for $11..already has our name printed on it and I'm skipping any personal message....LAZY!), my house could be declared a national disaster, and my Christmas care package to Afghanistan is not even close to being done. I suck. The holiday stress must be getting to me because one of the docs today said I needed a bottle of Stoli in my stocking. And then she asked if I were on the rag. Which is pretty rich, coming from Bubbles.

So, here I sit, blogging away, thinking of already putting away Christmas decorations (hey! you try having a kid with a birthday 4 days after Christmas, try to make it a special occasion and not a Christmas leftover, and see how long you want Christmas to hang around), watching my yearly viewing of A Christmas Story, and reflecting on my year and my life. All and all, nothing to complain about. My kids are happy and healthy, I'm happy and healthy, I've had a wonderful 6 months I wouldn't change for anything, my extended family is acting a little less crazy than last year....what's not to like?

So, here is my Christmas Eve wish to you:


Why can't I sing like this?

23 December 2008

Disco baby!

So I found this on Factum and it cracks me up! First, it's Disco. Second, it's being taught by a Finn. Finland where my personal bubble is the size of a football field. Where speaking loud enough in a restaurant that the next table can hear you, is considered rude. Finland where you actually have to have an in depth conversation regarding if you know each other well enough to use the casual form of "you" rather than the formal.



Truly Finnish! Too sober to relax enough to actually make eye contact with the camera.
Okay, Let's talk about the snow and my bad attitude. This is what I've been hearing for a week and a half: "It's so pretty!" "It's so fun to play in!" "It's so festive!" To which I have been responding: "Blegh."


See, this is only pretty to those who have never lived in snow for long periods of time. Those who have, see it as pretty for about 4 seconds and then remember it's a pain in the ass. Keeping pipes from freezing, wrapping up in 16 layers of clothes until you look like an overstuffed sausage, 7 foot walls of snow in what used to be a turn lane because the plows only have so many places to put this crap, frozen doors, frozen keyholes, frozen windshield wipers, plugging your cars in at night so you don't have frozen crankcases, constantly semi-damp boots and gloves...the list goes on and on! The angst just isn't worth it. And it has nothing to do with driving in it, I'm confident in my snow negotiating skills. I'd rather drive in snow and ice than fog any day. It's just that snow is something I want to go visit, not co-habitate with.


The boys have been enjoying themselves but they keep forgetting, after having owned this dog for over a year, that he will steal and run off with any item they may deem useful or that they might desire. He only seems to take what will make them scream the loudest. You'd think they'd stop leaving things where he can easily get them, but nooooo! Which is how I found myself on my belly, in the snow, trying to fish a glove out from under the deck with a broom. Happy times indeed.

16 December 2008

Deja Vu

I'm in a patient room and the charge nurse comes to the door: "Can you come out for a phone call?" You've got to be kidding me! "Hi this is Shelley from Your Neighborhood School again...." Good grief, what could he have possibly done?

"Sos rolled up some paper and stuck it in his ear and it is too far in there for us to try to get it out."
Me: "Okay."
She: *sound of crickets*
Me: "Uh....is he saying his ear is bothering him?"
She: "No, but he keeps sticking his finger in his ear, and I'm afraid he'll push it in so far that you won't be able to get it out."
Me: *crickets* Thought bubble: what kind of training do you have, really? "Well, I'll see what I can do."

Mind you this was at 1400, school gets out at 1530. I tried calling my mother before remember that she was with my grandmother at the Major City Hospital doing something that was actually medically IMPORTANT. So, I call my BFF and ask her if she can go get him.

I finally get to my BFF's house after work and look in SoS's ear. I could see a piece of paper wedged pretty far into his ear canal. Miraculously, a pair of long forceps appeared in my hand *ahem* and I gently pulled not one, but two little balls of paper out of his ear. Apparently, it was a trifle loud in his classroom today, and he was trying for a little noise reduction.

My BFF then told me of her adventures with SoS, starting with "I'm not used to kids that don't stay right next to me." Her children are a little fearful of the world and stick to her like glue in public. Mine think the world is their toy box and need a leash and a shock collar to stay close to anyone who hasn't beaten them into submission. Like I have. "Oh, yeah, sorry about that, I should have warned you." She picked SoS up from school and then needed to run a few errands before she went back for the other kids. One of these errands was a bank deposit for the daycare, with the closest bank of choice being located inside a grocery store. She was in line for a while, looked down, no SoS. Looked around, no SoS. Asked the guy behind her if he had seen a little boy and, at his blank look of "it's your kid, lady," started panicking, hyperventilating, and tearing around looking for him, leaving her deposits and place in line. She found him over by the movies, perusing them intently. She towed him back to the line admonishing him to "stay close to me, you scared me!" He assured her he would and then proceeded to do the potty dance.
"Why didn't you go before we left school?"
"I didn't have to go then!"
"You didn't have to go five minutes ago?"
He then started holding the back of his pants. Signal a deuce! She races him into the bathroom, where he does what needs to be done and then shouts "I have poop on my hands." According to my BFF, she asked him how that happened and he said he wrapped the toilet paper around his hand, thereby mummifying it, to wipe. After 5 washings, a haz-mat clean up team and an ok from the EPA, they were ready to head back out on the town. This may be the last time she takes my kid anywhere.

11 December 2008

Skid Marks

Yesterday at work I was in the Recovery Room (baby won't come out!) and a co-worker told me a phone call was going to be transferred in. Uh, oh. (Don't be the school, don't be the school, don't be the school.) "Hi, this is Shelley from Your Neighborhood School and I have SoS here..."
He wasn't in trouble, not at all, he just decided to see who would win a battle between his forehead and the sidewalk. The sidewalk won. First Grandma's beanball incident, now this. Our Christmas cards ought to be stellar.


His only concern was that his favorite shirt got dirty. This one could never be called a candy ass.

09 December 2008

My Personality As Described By The Barenaked Ladies

Deep down this is me...I put up a damn good front. Ignore the scenes in the video with the security guard; BNL is not known for their videos having any relationship to the song whatsoever. Although the security guard was funny as Sonar in Down Periscope. Which I own.



I'm so cool, too bad I'm a loser/I'm so smart, too bad I can't get anything figured out/I'm so brave, too bad I'm a baby/I'm so fly that's probably why it feels like I'm fallin' for the first time.

All right! Outta my head!

And just for kicks: An acoustic "bathroom session" of one of my favorite songs. They're havin' some fun.

08 December 2008

One More

Okay, one more scene from The Ref. This is the first nine minutes of the movie, and may be the best nine minutes of the movie:


"And I still say getting laid by an 18 year old linebacker is JUST WHAT SHE NEEDS!" Heh. Heh heh.
One of my favorite scenes from one of my favorite Christmas movies. It stars Denis Leary, so language NSFW


Hard to reconcile Grandma with her role in Mary Poppins huh?

This may have been a sentinel event in shaping my semi-feminist outlook.

07 December 2008

Cool

Best. Present. Ever. Representin' the Alma Mater and the particular path my life is taking. *snicker* SHSO'C rocks out loud.


And look how happy my tootsies are!

YOOOOOLtide


Well, it's up. The tree has been decorated without bloodshed, mayhem, or threats of being grounded. No small feat when decorating the tree makes me a little owly and I was in a shitty mood to begin with. But I'd hate for my children's memories of Christmas to include "Mom was a complete bitch during the season of joy," so I suck it up, grit my teeth and think of Christmas Carols. And wish I still drank.

To cement everyone's suspicion that I am a complete nerd, not only do I have a talking Star Wars ornament, but this is my Christmas star:

Grandma Throws Beanballs

I go to pick the kids up after work and notice a bump on SoS's forehead.

"What happened to your head?"
"Grandma hit me with my HARD baseball."
Grandma: "It left a little dye from the laces."

Ah, no Ma, it's sort of dark in here and I can still tell that is an abrasion!
Watch out when you play catch with the old lady, she'll give you some chin music.


Working with Idiots

I work with idiots. Correction: I don't work WITH idiots, the people I work with are a great bunch of caring, intelligent people. I actually work ALONG SIDE the idiots. Otherwise known as the doctors. This is a drawback of working in a training wheel facility. I understand it is a teaching hospital (calling it a learner hospital would frighten the patients) and they are here to learn, but I expect a rudimentary handle on medicine if they are going to be the primary caregiver. Jeez!

I arrived in a not so swell mood after having had another knock-down, drag-out fight with insomnia (guess who won?) and assumed care of a patient whose water had broken at 0400 and she had been in the hospital roughly 2 hours. She had, at one time, been positive for tuberculosis but had been unable to finish her medication because she got fatty liver disease. However, she assured the nurse and doctor before me, she had had a negative chest x-ray. Great, I think. So, where's the documentation so I can get rid of the isolation cart and the particulate filtering mask that makes me so claustrophobic I may need psych meds. "Yeah, I can't find it." the resident tells me. Perhaps we could order one? I ask. This was disregarded as the resident was off-going and couldn't have given two shits whether I had to wear a hazmat suit just to take a temperature. The patient was also not contracting a whole heck of a lot and I inquired whether or not we should kind of help her along. This is at 0700. By 1000 the oncoming yahoos were out of a crash C-section and I asked them the same questions. The response I got was "Where did she have her x-ray done?" Call me crazy, but I think this is information someone should have had before the patient had been on the floor for 5 hours. I finally wrestled a chest x-ray out of them by noon, all the while badgering them regarding getting this chick's labor started. At one point my professionalism took a vacation, as it is wont to do, and I yelled across the nurse's station "We're looking at 10 hours since her water broke, do we feel like a little pit at any point or what?" The response? "Let me check on her x-ray." Okay, see, by this point I'm over worrying about that shit, and would like to move on to the whole reason she's on the floor in the first place. I was then informed that her lungs were negative for TB. Great. WHAT ABOUT HER UTERUS?!?

At 1400, just before they are ready to rush to the second crash C-section of the day, I practically tackled the attending and said, "What are we going to do with this chick?" She looked at me blankly and said, "well, she's on pit isn't she?" "Ah, noooo, I've been trying to get an order for that all day." She then whips around to the brain trust behind her, chews them a few new orifices, and says to me, "Start her on some pit." That's all I needed to hear. Morons!

06 December 2008

The Great Christmas Tree Hunt: part the third

Its that time again. Once more we ventured into the breach for a trip to the Christmas tree farm.. As my grandparents are here, we were free to borrow my dad's truck and search for the perfect tree unmolested! It has been unseasonably dry, so I left the kids in their tennies, instead of forcing them into last year's undoubtedly-too-small boots. And I was not in the mood to shop for more, so off we went. Unlike former years, the tree hunt went off without a hitch. No getting stuck, no lost cell phones, no lost children, nothing. The only downside was we did have to hike for about a hectare to get back to the truck after I cut the tree. I had the trunk and led the way, using the saw to guide and restrain SoS as needed, while FB had the top of the tree and whined like a pegged out Ford Fiesta. How did I raise such a candy ass?

Read part I and II taken from the abandoned MySpace Blog:


Intrepid Christmas Tree Hunters Dec 2006
There must be a universal law that states if I am going to get a Christmas tree, especially at a U-cut tree farm, that there must pour forth a deluge that would make Noah think twice about venturing out. It has ever been thus. One of my most vivid childhood memories is of trudging through a tree lot in the rain and falling on my back into a mud puddle. Today was no different. No precipitation all week; the day I go to get a tree...downpour!

Since this is the normal course of my Yuletide season, I bundled my children into my father's truck (sure, you can use it Sisu, in fact, I just washed it! Great.) and off we went to Gorst, singing mightily to The Chipmunks Christmas Album. The trip flew by, as I spent the greater part of it explaining which chipmunk was which, why David Seville exists, and why Alvin still got presents if he was so naughty. What the hey, it was a nice break from the Pokemon dissertation I usually endure in a moving vehicle. (see previous blog, the one where I knocked the garage door off the track because I had been Pokemon-ed to death) I digress. We arrive at the tree farm, picked up a saw and left my ID (yes, I realize that the saw was in slot number 7 and it is numbered 2, but it doesn't matter. Yes, I know where to put it back. Because I recognize my own driver's license, that's how!) and began the official tree adventure. I spied a little used track and ventured down, believing that there must be some choice trees since no one seemed to know of it. No, everyone else just had the common sense to know, if it were little used, it was little maintained. This realization came to me about the time I noticed the mud. Deep mud. Lots and lots of deep mud. A plethora if you will. Hmmm. Dad's truck is not 4 wheel drive. MY 4-wheel drive sat dry and unreliable in my garage 30 miles away. I decided a retreat was in order. So began a 90-point turn, muttering expletives related to excrement. A lot. At one point the tires spun and I nearly wet my pants. Here I sat, mired in the mud, miles away from humanity with two little NON-DRIVERS in the pouring rain. Meaning, if I got stuck, we were hiking. Luckily, through sheer stubbornness, I got us turned around and headed back out. What do I then see? Not one, but four, large trucks headed toward us! Hello! Do not expect me to back up, I just got out of that quagmire and I was not voluntarily heading back in.

Finally, we found a place to pull over and with a little bit of hiking, a little more complaining, and a bit of search and rescue (let's hear it for the bright yellow SpongeBob raincoat) we found a tree. I press ganged FB into carrying it with me, using the flat of the saw like a pair of reins to steer him toward the truck. With dire threats of dismemberment if they got any mud in Grandpa's truck, (wincing at the rooster tails up the side from the stuck in the mud incident) I packed the varmints in the cab and off we went to the office to pay. All in all, a full rich day. So full and rich, I can't find the energy to decorate the dang thing. Oh, well, it needs to dry off first.



The Great Christmas Tree Hunt: part deux Dec 2007
So, once again it is time to venture out in search of the elusive perfect Christmas tree. As my dad is now retired and my parents are constantly around, they think that it is ridiculous for me to do anything by myself when one of them could do it. Mow your own lawn? Why? What's with you cleaning your gutters? You get the point. I had mentioned last week that since this was my weekend off, the boys and I would like to borrow their pick-up and go get a tree. My mother's expected response? "Why don't you go with us and Dad can cut down your tree? Or, we were looking at this place in (name anyplace advertised in the paper) and thought that would be a good place for us all to go." I calmly and gently reminded my mother that I always go to the same place in Gorst, they have great trees, and it is a tradition that FB, SoS, AND I like to do.



Today, dawned cold, clear and sunny. Brief pause while I administer 500 Joules of electricity to restart my heart. FB didn't have Tae Kwon Do today, so after little ninjas we were going to be off for a tree. We get home, pack up, and head over to borrow the truck. My parents aren't home. The truck is outside. I know the code for the garage and know where Dad keeps his keys. Damn my conscience! I call to see if we can use the truck and am informed that they will be there shortly. And they will go with us. And there goes my gentle afternoon. After many more minutes we are ready to go and I (foolishly as it turns out) say to my dad, "This will be the first time I've gotten a tree without precipitation of any kind!" Poor naive soul. What? The sun was still shining. We didn't get to the Port Orchard exit before big fat flakes of mashed potatoes fell from the sky. In any case, we got to the farm, picked up a saw (no questions from the kids this time, long term memory is a fabulous thing) and went to get a tree. Leaving my dad's truck and my fabulous 4-WHEEL DRIVE in a fairly bare area, avoiding all less traveled roads. We quickly find suitable trees and cut them down. My dad did the cutting, because at this point I have accepted my fate and have given myself to the dark side. It wasn't until the second tree that I remembered he was s/p lap chole by only 3 days, and shouldn't be doing a lot of what he was doing including lifting. But, we made it back to the vehicles without incident, breathing a sigh of relief until I hear "GODDAMMIT!" Thinking my father was now copiously bleeding out of one or all of four surgical sites I ran to him....no it would seem he had lost his Blackberry some time between parking the cars and bringing back the last tree. Ohhhhh. Heavy snowing going on for most of this time. Ohhhhhhhh. We began calling his cell and attempting to back track our rapidly disappearing footprints when wonder of wonders we found the thing. Obviously, a sign to get out of Dodge.



Now my mother has several of those Christmas lawn ornaments, you know the ones, spiral trees, animated deer and the like. They are white wire. She mentioned that they might look nice on my lawn, as she wanted the grapevine ones, and did I want them. "You know, I don't really think so, but thanks." They dropped us off at the house with our tree and said adieu. Thinking the rest of my day was to be free, I fed the kids, went to Target to get new snow gear for the rapidly growing parasites, and came home planning on putting the lights on my house while the kids frolicked in the mashed potatoes that littered the lawn. My parents pull up. The bed of the truck is brimming with white wire and crystal mini-lights. "WTF?" Oh just hell! In the manner of all complete nutjobs, my mother took it upon herself to bring this stuff to my house. Can I ask her to take it back? No. My father would likely have a stroke from having to load all that crap back up. So much for putting up my lights. I have a system and they will likely screw it up. I bite my inner cheek as my mother orchestrates the erection (ha!) of the glorious Winter Wonderland scene in my front yard. I pull out my trusty Little Giant Adjustable Ladder (also made famous about this time last year) and proceed to place cup hooks on a certain part of my house that I cannot use my handy-dandy-swear-inducing light hooks on. And I refuse to staple gun the stupid light strings up again. I will soon pierce the cancer causing protective covering and electrocute my self! As I am earnestly laboring, dripping blood from a staple induced injury (didn't remove them last year, just pulled on the light string 'til they popped...I was so over Christmas by then), my mother asks what I'm doing. Deep breath. Just putting up cup hooks so I don't have to staple my light string. My mother then says, "Well, I thought with these up, you wouldn't have to put up lights." What she meant was, I think these are a fine decoration and cease from decorating your house the way you want because my ideas are vastly superior. Never mind that SoS has been mewling like a starving kitten every day, because all the neighbors have their lights up and we still have pilgrims and autumn festival items bedecking our abode. Profound deep breath. Count to 10. Have to start over. Finally eke out, "Well, I like my lights." Clench teeth and cause massive headache. So, I guess the report of 30-40 mph winds tonight did not reach the ears of my omniscient mother cuz these white bastards have fallen over several times. I went to unplug them tonight and it looked like my yard was the scene of a massive logging expedition and deer massacre. It's like 14 degrees out there, wind blowing, slush falling from the skies and I'm trying to figure out how to put this deer, that is now in 3 distinct pieces, back together. I contemplate ditching the antlers and making the damn thing a doe, when the long buried (and freezing) analytical part of my brain says "it goes this way, nimrod!" and I am able to put them all to bed for the night. I see much deer induced angst in my future.