Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Hills Are Alive With The Sound Of School Bells

Daughter started back to school yesterday- I think that she had a great day.I have to say that so far, I am really pleased with her teacher, and just the school in general. Florida ranks terrible for public schools, so I'm glad that our county tested #1 in the state. It makes me feel better about being here, even though we are a bit too far out from town for my taste. As we were walking in, her principal said "Hi (name)!". It really amazes me that with 600+ kids, he knows names, and especially of the smaller kids who have only been there a year or so. She's learned to read and spell, and has learned SO much in her year there. Color me impressed :)

I have to admit, and I hate to admit, that I am really having issues about her being in school this year, due to the whole Swine Flu thing. I can honestly say that this is the one and only time I wish we still lived in WV, back in the safe little bubble, feeling practically removed from society. My family has barely heard a thing about the flu, I guess no one is going out of town, and no one is coming in either in that area. So while as a nurse, I know what has to be done to keep from getting sick, there are only so many times that you can drill cleanliness into a 6 year old's head, and most likely it still will not strike a cord. I have tried to let her know that this can be very serious in some cases, and after all, I don't want any of us sick. Or worse. :( I think that I probably wouldn't be bothered, had we not had 4 deaths one county over from us, the most recent being a woman who was only 26- a year younger than me. Ugh. It's one of those things that is for the most part, out of my control. So I try not to think about it, but the bigger of a place you live, the more often you see it on the news. Damn the news.

In other not-so-exciting news, I had my annual GYN appt yesterday. I was 3 months past the time that I should have went- something that I've never done. Honestly, I feel like there are so many things wrong with my body, and then I feel like a nut case for mentioning them because at my age, I don't think I should have anything to complain about. But, I have been having dreadful periods, lots of cramping, and am SO tired that sometimes I am not sure that I can make it back off of the couch. Unfortuntely these are very vague symptoms, and so she's doing appropriate bloodwork to see if we can come up with any ideas. We have thyroid problems in the family, and she also suspects that I could be anemic or have a few vitamin deficiencies. She also said that my uterus is enlarged, and I may have fibroids. So, my friends, gynecologically I am falling apart. It could be a lot worse, so I will count my blessings and hope that my pap comes back normal. And hopefully soon, I can drag my ass out of bed and not pour a glass of Coke, so that I can get my bloodwork drawn. She was, at least, the nicest doctor that I have EVER met in my life, hands down, and I left out of there feeling like there may be hope after all. She also suggested birth control for my migraines, but I'm nowhere near that desperate yet. Don't get me started on how I feel about birth control, because I won't shut up about it. Let's just say, I don't take it. :) It has nothing to do with religious beliefs, I just hate the stuff, due to past experiences.

So there you have it my friends. A very, very boring update :) I have nothing of true excitement to report because we've been busy working on the house. Husband and I spent the entire weekend working on getting rid of things here to donate and sell, and I am pleased to say the least. Of course we didn't make it as far as getting it OUT of here, so once it's gone to Goodwill this weekend, I will be jumping for joy :) We have 3 closets totally full of stuff to get rid of, and threw away about 15 bags of stuff. Only about 2 hours later, it was more like 7 bags, because for some reason people came and dug through our trash once we went in. I can only assume that they take it and sell it. But seriously, they dug through my trash. It's true people, you honestly can't escape redneck, no matter where you live. :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I Live To Hear Another Day

Daughter and I survived our trip to see the Jonas Brothers. I honestly have to say that I've never heard anything so loud in my life. We've seen Hannah Montana in concert, and I've also been to many Nascar races without ear plugs. But this, my friends, was far more loud than those two combined. Just imagine over 20,000 screaming girls if you will ;) For a split second, I thought that I was never going to hear again. But thankfully, all is well today and the constant hummmmmmmmmm has disappeared.

I won't really go into too much detail because I am sure to bore everyone. We had great seats on the floor, 14 rows back. Of course anytime one of the boys came near us (there was also a walkway on each end, so at times we were a mere 3 seats away from them), the whole row squished on top of us for just a slight chance to touch one of them.Ugh. So seats on the floor? A definite mistake. When I went to buy them, it gave me seats in the lower level first and I got rid of them. I was thinking along the wrong lines- I was forgetting I was taking a 6 year old and not an adult. So for about 3 1/2 hours, we stood on our feet, and I held her the majority of the time because she couldn't have seen otherwise.

My arms hurt.

Some may say I'm crazy, or may say that you hate the Jonas Brothers, etc etc. Truthfully, I am glad that I can do things like this for my kids,and with my kids. Music has always been something that I love, and I hope that that passion is passed on to my kids. Music kept me going on many occasions in my teenage years, there are so many songs that I have identified with through my life. I can only hope that music is something that my kids love too, because it can be a great outlet. So as long as I think that what they like is appropriate, I'm more than glad to take them, regardless of personal opinion. I also have to say that I am a fan of talent. It seems like a lot of people these days make it based on so many other things. So to see a group of boys who sing, write, and play their own stuff is refreshing. There's nothing wrong with "just" being able to sing, but it's nice to see people who can play a guitar, and a piano, and drums, etc.

So what if my ticket collection ranges from the likes of Aerosmith to DMB to the Jonas Brothers? ;) I still remember in high school when my dad, the preacher, took me and a boyfriend to see Aerosmith because I was totally loving them. He didn't support the cursing, or the people in front of us getting high (lol) but he took me, for me. I remember that. What's important to me is having a great time,just like it was important to him, for me. When I was a teenager, I swore to myself that I would let my kids do whatever they wanted and that I was going to be a totally cool parent. Of course I'm nowhere near as easy going as I thought I would be, but anytime I can be the cool mom that I planned on being, I hope to do so. Sometimes, I feel much older than 27. Last night was a good example of that, but it didn't stop me from dancing and singing along, because I want to show daughter that having fun is possible no matter how "old" you are.

This little mini trip wraps up our summer travels. Looking back, we've definitely had an adventurous time over the last couple of months. From normal vacations, to my disastrous Bahamas trip, to our failed attempt at going to WV. I can only say that I am glad to end the summer on a high travel note instead of a low one. Sometimes I prefer not to go out in style, thanks.

Now we move into school mode on Monday, and then a few visits- my parents are coming for husbands birthday in September, and at the end of September is my girls cruise. Mother in law is bringing my best girl down with her, and we will take off to Miami the next day. Son did just fine here with husband while we were gone last night and so that makes me feel soooo much better about leaving him. He's been known to cry for me for hours at times, just when I'm making a trip to the store. So I'm hoping that a successful time away from me last night, coupled with the fact that he's been asking for mamaw, will mean that he's going to be fine without me for 5 days. Goodness knows I need a break and I'm excited for some girl time!! The ocean and beach soothe me, and the Caribbean sea is like a drug- I can't get enough of that beautiful blue water :)

With that, I will leave you with just a few pictures from our travels..

Daughter- in the car when our trip began:

A typical drive in Florida- long, flat, and sometimes rainy ;)

Tampa- or part of it:

Daughter, modeling her concert attire

Jordin Sparks from American Idol- she did a really great opening act, I was surprised and impressed!She looked great too!

A couple of concert shots- the second one being when they came out on a crane type thing and doused the entire lower level audience with foam and water. Personally I thought it was cool (and funny in a smart ass type way)- especially since they are boys and there are most likely a lot of girls in that audience that spent hours on their hair and makeup ;)

And finally, if you want even just a taste of what my eardrums were subject to last night, then view this and imagine it 100000000x more loud ;) It's at about the 1 minute mark where they are finally seen, and already singing. In person you could kind of hear it, on my camera it's so loud that you don't hear anything but screams. Whew.

I came, I saw, I conquered.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Another Day, Another Dollar (Spent)

Every time my mom comes to visit, she brings something for my kitchen. It's kind of a crack on my less-than-spectacular cooking skills, and also a running joke that we have going now. Anytime she mails a package to son or daughter, I always get a "present" too. Sometimes it's tongs, (not to be confused with thongs because that would be too much fun), sometimes a spatula, an egg flipper or whatever they're called. You know, the kind of stuff that you're just itching to get in the mail. ;)

I'm sure I've mentioned many, many times that I love to shop. So the other day it dawned on me. I need a better and more functional kitchen, and I also love to shop. Why not combine the two?

I started by tossing all of my plastic. There have been sooo many bad things in the news lately about plastic, and I was just tired of even having to worry about it. so I tossed all of our plastic drinking cups and replaced them with glass.

Instant sophistication Riiiight.

Then I tossed all of my plastic storage containers and replaced them with glass, and tossed my plastic serving pieces and replaced them with some really neat wooden ones.

Bored yet? This is fun to me people! (No really, I just lack anything else to talk about).

Then I wondered, as much as I love to spend money, why have I had the same pot holders for almost 7 years now? They are filthy, burnt, and just gross. They barely even worked to begin with. So I bought new pot holders, and new dish towels too.

I think the main reason my kitchen lacked in updating is because that's just not fun. I'd much rather spend my money on fun things for myself and the kids, not to mention my Jeep guzzles gas and so a good chunk of money goes to that too. Plus, it's much more fun to make my mom feel sorry for me and my culinary deficiency, then she goes out and buys me all sorts of new serving things and fun glass stuff. Partly because she wants me to have it, but mainly because when she comes here and cooks, she gets tired of asking me for something, only to have me say "I don't know what that is". ;)

Not joking though, I usually don't know what she's talking about..

The end result is something that would bore you all to tears, much like I am sure the rest of this post has, so I will just post a picture of my kitchen, and not all the crap I put in it, in order to pat myself on the back for all of my hard work. ;)

Woot Woot Kitchen!

Moving on.

Things around here have been normal, quiet, and dull. I appreciate that at most times. Daughter has a terrible attitude problem, but nonetheless, we are leaving Tuesday for the Jonas Brothers concert. Had I not bought her the tickets for all of her hard work in kindergarten, I would have sold them by now. But her hard work in school still deserves to be rewarded, and so leave, we shall. I have to admit that I'm looking forward to going and relaxing. It kind of seems like a contradiction to go to a concert of thousands of screaming girls and claim to relax, but that's just how I roll.

Our only other news of excitement is this:

It doesn't appear that any of these things are going to cause problems for us, except that Bill is huge and we aren't sure where it's headed. As of now it isn't supposed to come to us, but I am sure we will deal with lots of rain and wind for a few days at least. After many, many days of 90+ degrees, a little wind may not feel so bad ;)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Home again, home again, jiggity jig...

(Not our actual plane)

Home again, so soon, you ask?

Oh yes. I'm home.

Our trip (that never was) started off yesterday on a late note. Husband had a long day at work and came home about 6. We got on the road about 7, and headed to Orlando. No biggie, the airport is less than 2 hours away and we arrived with no problems.

We had a nice, new, hotel room. Of course with that came the new smell, and my overly sensitive nose. I managed to avoid the migraine that I was sure would occur, and so off to sleep we went.

Until I realized that we were in fact sleeping on THE loudest bed. ever.

I'm a total bed whore, and not in that way, just that I am very much in love with my own bed, and I have a hard time making it anywhere else. This bed wasn't nearly as rock hard as the one we had on vacation, but it was so damn LOUD! Seriously, every movement could be heard, and felt. Ugh.

When the alarm went off at 5am, I felt like I had just barely went to sleep..and I probably had :/ We got ready, and made our way to the airport for our 6:50am departure.

We squealed tires and screeched into the terminal with about 10 minutes to spare before take off, only to find out that the flight was delayed 30min. This actually played to our advantage because we were nearly going to miss the flight. Upon check in, the guy tells us that he cannot seat us together, we each have a seat in a separate row.

"So I'm supposed to let my 2 year old sit ALONE on a plane? Ha."

Thankfully, when we got to the gate we realized that he had sat us together after all- not sure what the mix up was. Oh and might I add, we weren't the very last people to check in- 2 guys beside us checked in and had to rearrange their luggage because they were going to have to pay a $50 overweight luggage fee. Why, you ask? Because he had a suit case FULL of drills, screw drivers, and tools of other various persuasions. When he found out that his suitcase was too heavy, he took them OUT of the suitcase and used them in his carry-on. Yeah, that made us feel safe. A guy with a bag full of drills and screw drivers.

Anyhow, we get to our gate and they make an announcement that the plane will not take off at 7:20a, but rather at 9:00a due to fog in WV. That's ok with us, we can tough it out for another hour. At 9:00a, the screen says our takeoff is "To Be Announced", and they come on and say that the weather is ok, but that they don't have paperwork on the plane that allows them to fly's lost, they can't find it.

WTF?! This turned out to be a non-issue before too long, because they brought another plane over, changed the crew onto it, and loaded the luggage onto the plane. Only apparently we would soon find that this plane was not inspected. Or maybe it was, but whatever.

We finally get on board about 10am, 2 hour and 10 minutes after we should have already landed. As soon as we take off, son starts saying "I want down! I want down!", and he didn't mean out of his seat, he meant off of the plane. I start freaking out, thinking that he was going to freak out for the next hour and a half. I'm sure that he could tell that I was tense, but if you knew me "in real life", you would know that I am terribly afraid of flying and so there was no avoiding my freak out. I even tried to be tough and not take my nerve pill before we took off, but apparently I should have taken both of them ;)

Shortly after take off, son falls asleep and so I try to do that as well (didn't happen). We get about 30 minutes into our flight, and the plane takes a hard turn, only when I look out the window, we are actually turning almost a complete circle. I ask husband "Did we just turn around??".

For the next 10 minutes, people look somewhat confused, and the pilot calls the flight attendant 3 times during this period. With the last call, she looks a little concerned, and then an announcement comes over the speaker.

"Uh..ladies and gentlemen, in case you haven't noticed, we have turned around and are headed back to Orlando. We know that you've had a very long day, but we are getting some readings up here that something in the cockpit needs to be checked out. reason for concern...just needs to be checked out..."

The next 25 minutes that followed were quite nerve racking. The plane did lots of weaving from side to side, a good bit of bumping, and due to being so close to where we took off from, we descended quite fast to be able to land. I was ready to have a heart attack, and throw up all at once. We land, HARD, and come to a stop. At this point I am telling husband "They have to let me off of here, you don't understand. I'm NOT staying on here and taking off again." Fortunately they made everyone get off, and at that point I am OVER the whole ordeal. It's been 5 1/2 hours and we're back where we started, son is exhausted and so are we, and 2 out of 3 of us are traumatized. At least son was being SO well behaved, I was quite impressed!

At that point, we make the decision to just go back home. They couldn't guarantee us when the plane would take off again or anything. It ended up only being 3 hours later, which wasn't so bad, but with a tired 2 year old and the bad flight, we just weren't willing to wait anymore. Husband called the corporate for the airline, and they actually gave us a full refund- or so they said. 24 hours later, it's not pending in my bank account, so I'm not sure what's going on there. Refunds through airlines are generally unheard of, but husband negotiates for a living most days, so it wasn't an issue ;) As long as the money goes back in there. If not, I just feel sorry for those people when he calls back. We are not the kind of people that are rude for no reason, or call to tell people off for the hell of it, but when husband called and the lady at corporate said "It's not my problem", well.. they are kind of on his bad side now.

We go to leave the airport, and I realize that son's carseat is underneath the plane as checked luggage. So a little bit more waiting, and coloring in son's notebook in the massage chairs, we were out of there. Husband was on such a roll that he even got us out of paying parking at the airport. Sometimes he is actually useful ;)

Of course the flip side to all of this is that while I was dreading the guilt we were going to get while visiting, we are now getting 10x more for not coming. I totally understand them being upset when we went from coming, to being late, to not coming at all, but the lack of understanding just annoys me to no end. No. End. I have to do what I can- as usual- to listen, but let some of it just roll in one ear and out the other- I can't deal with the constant guilt trips and phone calls of what we should have done, or what they would have done, etc etc. It's wondeful to be loved and cared for so much by family, but sometimes it can still annoy the crap out of me.

So now, husband has to get up at 5am tomorrow, drive 5 hours to meet mother in law halfway, get daughter, and then turn around and come right back home.

What a week......

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Another travel..

We're headed out again tomorrow-to WV. To "home", to pick up daughter- who has been there since the 26th of July. I think she's more than ready to come back, and we're more than ready to have her back :) She will more than likely come back with a big I can do anything I want, you're not the boss of me now, attitude. It's expected, and it will take awhile to get her back into normal mode, but I'm up to the challenge ;)

Due to what I am sure will be a guilt-induced,non-stop grief ridden trip, I've cut it short and have already planned out most of the time while I'm there so that I don't have to hear about living here and not there. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my family. They are awesome, and they have always been wonderful to me. You would never know by the insane amounts of complaining I do as of late, but I am very appreciative of the family I've been given. However, moving here put a strain on our relationships, and it's only just now starting to come back around. I know that for each person, they are only saying the things that they say out of love- but when you get those sayings from 5-10 people at minimum, I end up coming home emotionally spent. So I do what I can to be accommodating to others feelings, while drawing a line to make sure I spare my own feelings and sanity. It's what has to be done ;)

In the midst of all of this planning and preparing, son has taken on the task of completely disrupting his sleep schedule. I blame it partly on myself and summer, because we are a lot more flexible with bedtime during the summer, within reason. it started out with us just bumping bedtime back an hour for him- which put him in the 9:30ish range. When he goes to bed, he sleeps an average of 10-12 hours, which is normal for his age. However, over the course of the last few weeks, he has managed to push his bedtime back to midnight- and that's even with me not letting him take a nap. Ugh. I'm not really sure what has thrown him off so much, but it has definitely been worse since the Bahamas trip. I haven't really bothered to try to get him back on a schedule, just because we are leaving again tomorrow and I know that it would serve no purpose. Daughter was always good to sleep away from home, because we allowed her to sleep in the bed with us. However, I refused to have another kid in my bed for 4 years, and so son sleeps in his crib and does very well- but it makes travel difficult. Especially coming back home because then he wants to be in the bed with me since he's been able to do it while we were gone. Whew.

I say all of this to say, I am mentally beat. I go home, to two ill grandpas. My one grandpa who is living with the return of his cancer, and- against my advice- no one in the family has told him that they know that his cancer is back. It's a real communication issue, don't you think? My other grandpa was put in the hospital the day that we came back from the Bahamas- July 26th- and is just now being discharged. Only he has been in the hospital for so long that he is so weak. He's been through many, many, tests, and had to endure many days in a row that he couldn't eat. So he's very weak and has to be discharged to a local nursing home for rehab physical therapy. It's all VERY hard on my family, because he's nowhere near needing to actually be in a nursing home. He's very healthy normally, and very self sufficient, so for him to be in a nursing home is very frightening for him. Imagine being yourself- completely in your right mind and healthy, just weak, and being surrounded by Alzheimer's patients and people who are calling out and moaning all hours of the night. I have to admit for me, when I was in nursing school, the nursing home rotation was the hardest for me. You see lots of things that you don't want to see- you don't want it to happen to your elderly family members. You also don't want to see the people there that are neglected by family, and a lot of times neglected by the staff as well. It's a place full of people- often times too many- yet it always felt so lonely to me. So as you can imagine, having my totally healthy grandpa in a nursing home is quite traumatic for my family. If you've ever been in one, just imagine yourself there as a resident. Meh. :/

So in between seeking constant updates on my grandpa(s), dealing with guilt that sometimes creeps up on me for not being there, juggling a few personal problems of my own, and son's apparent late night party habit, I am spent. I can only hope that after this trip, life resumes some sense of normalcy and I can relax a bit.

Yeah right...