Thursday, June 30, 2005

Summer O'Fun Day 7

Sunshine! We had sunshine! What a nice break. I watched Ash's kids for a few hours today. The kids played relatively nicely together then I took my kids to the library after Ash picked up her kids. Dex insisted on borrowing a Spanish-language Rugrats video. He said he knew Spanish because Dora speaks it sometimes and he knows what she is saying.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Found at Katie's blog:

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Summer O'Fun Day 6

We had a picnic at the park with lots of friends today. Then the kids ran around the baseball field for a while, playing baseball (with wiffle bats), soccer and just being crazy. It was nice to have them in an enclosed area. Tomorrow we are going to the library and maybe we'll work on our American Flag. Also, Gav is due to come over in the afternoon to play.

Tonight, Ash, Glo and I went out for drinks. We walked to the local Mexican joint. My margaritas were yummy. Glo and Ash put back quite a few. No wonder they insisted on walking there! Glo has to get up for work in the morning too. Good luck to her. It was a lovely night to walk home. Why are the skies so friggin clear at night but overcast during the day!? Forecast for tomorrow? Morning clouds with sunbreaks later in the day and clearing in the evening.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Summer O'Fun Day 4 (I don't count weekends)

Jax went to C's for the day. C is his friend in class whom he always gets in trouble with for being silly. The teacher had to email me about 3 or 4 times throughout the year about Jax's behaviour. How embarrassing! Anyway, about two weeks before school ended the teacher told me she is going to have to recommend that Jax and C are placed in different classes next year. Even MORE embarrassing! Anyway, Jax spent a few hours there today and he had a good time. C is coming here next Thursday.

Dex was in a foul mood today and he did not want to do anything so we did nothing.

Tomorrow we are meeting some friends at a park. The rain is due to stop so hopefully the sun will shine.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Not much happened this weekend. Yard work, errands, etc. I found out last week that "The Bead Man" was closing today so I had to go and stock up on some silver wire. The cost of his beads were never a deal. My first shaker bracelet cost over $100 in supplies but the next one was closer to $60 because I bought my crystal beads from ebay. But, I did take the class there that taught me how to make bracelets so I am grateful for that. Now I only have Michael's and Joann's to chose from unless I make a trip to Shipwreck Beads in Olympia.

For Mother's Day, Jax gave me a coupon which stated he would take me to buy some jewelry. I thought today I could take him to The Bean Man and he could pick out a nice crystal bead that I could incorporate into a bracelet (so he would not have to spend more than $1.00). He picked out a pretty amber 6mm Swarovski Crystal bicone which costs $0.85. Great! Then he started looking around and saw some glass beads for $0.25 and thought he would get me one of those instead so he would not have to spend as much money. What a cheapo!

I had three people come up to me after church today to tell me I was brave to handle three boys by myself during Mass. How is that brave? You do what you have to do. They were all very well behaved anyway (they just played and coloured - I told Jax that starting in September he had to start paying attention because he will be going for his first communion next spring). Anyway, I don't mind taking all three with me because Stephen's guilt about not going with us (he is anti-church these days, thanks in part to Skeptic magazine, I'm sure) makes him vacuum the house and mop the kitchen floor while I am gone. ;)

I have spent 2 hours trying to figure out the cheapest and most convenient way to book our vacation. It is impossible. I feel like just calling American Express Travel and letting them do it. You cannot book minivans in Toronto through any airline website or via air+car with Travelocity or Expedia dot coooooooom (don't you just hate that jingle? It is stuck in my head for the night now).

We haven't told my mom or Stephen's parents that we are for sure coming yet. I guess we'll wait until we book it then let them know.

Remember that lovely Stellars Jays I was raving about a couple of weeks ago? Well the freaking things starts awk-awking at 5 in the morning each day and continues throughout the day! Last night nosy neighbour dropped by for a bit and while we say in the backyard one sat on the fence awk-awking at us the whole time and it drove us bananas! Plus they are pooping all over the Gladys Kravitz Perch and the new bbq! Where are the bloody neighbour's cats, that normally poop in my yard, when I need them?!

Friday, June 24, 2005

Summer O'Fun 2005 - Day 3
I have arranged for Jax to go to his friend's house on Monday to play. Now what will I do with Dex? I will have to see if I can get a friend of his over to play.

I spent my 4 hours of me time shopping at Costco. Well, 2 hours of it going to Costco, shopping and then home. I also went to Pacific Fabrics and bought some plain white fabric to make an American Flag to display at the 4th of July bbq.

Per Katie's request, here are some photos of the boys wearing their tie dye shirts. Only Cars's turned out really well. I used some Rit Dye on the others and it is not nearly as vibrant.

I also took the elastic bands off too early when rinsing the shirts. I'd like to try it again sometime now that I know what I am doing.

My SIL called and they are finally settling in the house in Minnesota. I had to laugh though because the phone company screwed up their name and the last 4 letters are showing up as BERG rather than BERT on the caller ID. Hehehe

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Summer O'Fun 2005 - Day 2
Nothing much today. A trip to the library and we played outside most of the afternoon. All the while I had to listen to Jax lament that he had no one to play with and why can't his best buddies come over to play. *sigh*

Nanny will be here tomorrow morning so she can listen to Jax wish to play with his school buddies for 4 hours while I go to Costco and to the grocery store. Love this time to myself thing.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005


Summer O'Fun 2005 - Day 1
We tie-dyed shirts today. Actually, I did it. The kids were all keen on dyeing their shirts until they realized that they might actually get dye on them so we compromised and they picked the colours and I dyed (and tied) them. They are still dyeing but I need to rinse them out in a couple more hours. My hands are a lovely shade of dark blue and green.

Day 2 has nothing scheduled except maybe a trip to the library. Hopefully the sun will come out and warm things up too!

Cars has had a fever for days. Dex had one too (104.5! with a temporal scan thermometer which did register normal temps for the rest of us) but his broke finally. The doctor says it is just a virus going around. They both have bad coughs too. Anyway, I have been giving them Robitussin DM but I have to hold Cars down to give it to him. He hates it.

I am taking Katie's advice and I am not going to have a garage sale. At least not at this time. Maybe in September. That gives me all summer to sort through things.

Stephen and I have been watching Season 5 of "The Sopranos" on dvd this past week. Besides the violence, I love the show. We had ordered HBO to watch season 5 ON Demand but we missed it when it was on. We should probably cancel HBO until season 6 comes on next spring.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

One hour of my life that I will never get back. Why did I think it would be revealing or interesting?

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Happy Father's Day. We did not do much at all today. Stephen slept in and I skipped church. It was a nice day and the kids played outside much of the day. I did a little gardening and fell off the retaining wall while I was trying to climb out of the back garden onto a ladder. Doh! I have a lovely bruise/scrape on my upper thigh.

Stephen was happy with his Father's Day Gifts: a pair of shorts, a Mad Magazine subscription, renewal of his Skeptic Magazine subscription, two basil plants and some stuff the kids made for him at school (a paper weight and an emergency kit). Now he is making dinner for all of us. He decided to forgo the steaks and is having chicken wings. I am having a steak kabob.

I did not talk to my mom today. I usually call her on Father's day to let her know I am thinking about Dad. I'll call her tomorrow since that is the actual anniversary of his passing. I wonder if June 20th will ever fall on Father's Day again.

Terry called today and she wanted to know if I wanted to have a garage sale. Sure! But of course she wants to have it here because we get more traffic than she does. I will have to think about it. We'll have it in 3 weeks if I decide to go ahead with it. Although I am remembering my promise last year to never again have a garage sale in July! What to do, what to do...

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Stephen took Jax and Dex to the local drugstore today because "Vicky the Lego Lady" was there giving out free little Lego kits and they had a display of the new Star Wars Lego. I specifically asked Stephen not to buy them Lego because 1) they were getting a free one and 2) we have too much of the damn stuff all over the house. What does he do? He lets them buy it with their own money. Duh - it wasn't a money issue. They both just had birthdays. They both have too much stuff. Plus Cars breaks up the Lego sets whenever he gets the chance and leaves trails of Lego blocks all over the house.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

I am mommy watch me roar

Had a little run in with another mom at Dex's preschool today. Tonight was the end-of-year carnival and I volunteered to help set up. While putting out the baked goods and other goodies that were donated by parents for the cake walk, I noticed a lot of chocolate bars and chocolates that contain peanuts or nuts (this is a peanut-free/nut-free school). I told the mom who was in charge of the cake walk that some of the stuff should not be there. She got all snippy with me and as I pointed out things here and there she would snatch them off the shelves and roll her eyes at me. Then in a very sarcastic tone she said "All candy is labeled that way. I guess your children do not eat ANY candy". And I said "No, only candy that may contain or does contain peanuts is labeled that way". We were done so I walked out of the room and over to the preschool owner and told her that lots of the treats had peanuts or tree nuts in them and they need to let people know.

Then Snotty mom comes out and starts going on how the candy that *may* have nuts have been removed and another mom said "Actually, there are a lot of M&M's there and they are still on the shelf". I said that this school is supposed to be peanut and nut free and the notice sent home asking for goodies stated no nuts". Snotty mom interrupted me, stating that a responsible parent would not let their child pick something from that room then. Geez I was mad. I said "Please do not interrupt me" and I turned back to the owner and said that even if parents had their child choose something that they knew was safe, another child who might eat something with nuts or peanuts could make it dangerous for the allergic children. Snotty mom started rolling her eyes and sighing. Whatever, bitch.

To top it all off, I had to have this talk in front of my children. I kept my cool but I was assertive. No way I will let someone make me feel badly for protecting my child.

So the owner agreed to put up signs all over the room where the cake walk was to be held that the food may contain nuts and peanuts (while the stuff that definitely does was taken away).

And in the end we chose not to go into the room at all even though I knew the rice crispie treats and chocolate chip cookies I sent in where safe.

Stephen told me I should have asked her point blank if she were really saying that she was unwilling to protect the lives of children - then I should have called her an asshole.

I frigging hate that Jax has this peanut allergy. I hate that we have to watch out for a little protein, that is in so many foods, that could kill him. I hate we have to check and double check ingredients of food that we buy every week. Grocery shopping can take a long time because everything (and I mean everything) gets checked even if I had just bought the same thing the week before. I hate that I have read that peanuts are undeclared in medicine. I read just today that there might be peanut oils in baseball glove conditioner (this could explain Jax's hives after every frigging baseball game and practice).

Protect a Life. Be a PAL. Help find a cure.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Dex's last day of preschool today. I had to run out and get teachers' gifts this morning (got a late start though because I was sick through the night and so I had Stephen stay home until 9:30 so I could get some sleep). Anyway, I was so worried about getting the gifts that I completely forgot that Dex was special helper today and we were supposed to take in a snack. Not until we sat down to dinner did Dex say "I was special helper today and we forgot to take in the snack!" YIKES! What a way to end the year. Not only that but I was supposed to deliver some baked goods for the carnival tomorrow but since I slept in I did not have time to make the cookies I had planned. Good thing we are not going back there next year!

When Dex came home today he brought home a little binder filled with some work that he did throughout the year and some photos of him and some of his friends in class. It was a really nice thing for the teachers to do.

Our next door neighbours are hiring a landscaper to fix the drainage in their backyard. They have a bog like us but now I am worried that their yard will drain into ours making it soggier than it already is. Hmmm...

Stephen announced yesterday that we WERE going to Toronto this summer. I am still not so sure. heh

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Migraines kicking my ass these past couple of days. Excedrin Migraine is my constant companion.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

28 Seconds of Fame

On the theme of my 15 minutes of fame, yes, I was on Oprah a few years ago. They wanted me to fly to Chicago to be on the show but I had thyroid surgery scheduled. That I did not want to reschedule my surgery to be on the show seemed a little unbelievable to them (sorry Oprah but finding out if I had cancer was more important than meeting you in person).

Since I could not go to Chicago, they had me read my letter over the telephone and flashed pictures of me while the audio played. BTW, ever want to know why all of the letters on Oprah sound the same? It is because they re-write them!

Anyway, I was happy to be on the show for 28 seconds. I was finally able to upload the file. Click HERE. The file is large so it might take a moment to load.

Friday, June 10, 2005

5 Seconds of Fame

Yesterday I went out and enjoyed the sunshine. Dex, Cars and I walked to the park to meet Jax after school and I let the kids play for ages. We did not get home until 4:30 (I left the house at 2!).

While at the park, I was speaking to a friend who is a doula (we met because Stephen and her dh are on the same management team at MS). Anyway, we got on the subject of breastfeeding and she told me that one of the commentators, Ken Schram, on KOMO4 had made some stupid comments about breast-feeding in public and at the end of his commentary, the anchorwoman at the station called him an "Idiot" (click here to hear it or here to read his transcript. If you watch the video, wait until the very end to hear her comment.

Anyway, after bookclub last night, and two glasses of red wine, thank you very much, (for the record, I did not drive), I went out to view the video. I was so outraged that I decided to email Ken Schram and tell him just what I thought of him.

Here's my letter (not my finest moment):

You compared breastfeeding a baby with urinating in a cup in the mall? My God! You are a moron! Here's news for you - no one cares that *you* find it "impossible to switch from breasts as something sexual to breasts as take-out-food". Most women who breastfeed their children do it discretely. If you don't want to see it don't look! Didn't your mother teach you not to stare?

My City, WA

I really did not expect to hear from the jerk but I felt good writing it. Then I emailed the anchorwoman to let her know she was alright! :)

This afternoon, one of my bookclub friends emailed me that she had heard what had happened on KOMO4 so she had gone to the website to see what the fallout was and lo and behold - Ken Schram had compiled some comments from "thousands" of emails he had received and he had taken a sentence out of mine and used it in his latest commentary. Ken Schram Commentary: Modesty Is A Moot Point. Then the 5 o'clock news he read his commentary (and he pronounced my name wrong!). You can hear the audio by clicking on "Hear Audio Report" under his lovely mug.

So, that was my few minutes of fame today. Not even a full 15 minutes. :)

Thursday, June 09, 2005

What's that I see??? The SUN! First time it has shone in what seems like weeks but really it is about 10 days. No rain in the forecast today either. Maybe it will finally warm up and I can stop wearing slippers and a sweater around the house.

I had such a migraine yesterday and of course Stephen was worked late. After dinner, the boys were wrestling after I told them to stop. I ended up shouting at them and sending them to bed at 7pm. I feel horrible for shouting and I did apologize to them as I put them to bed.

My hair is falling out again. I guess this is part of the regular cycle that started back after my two operations in one year. It makes me feel unattractive with this HUGE forehead. I cannot properly have bangs during times like this to even hide it. I hope it stops falling out soon and I wish I could shed hair evenly like normal people.

Oh and I feel off the roof yesterday and my face is covered in pimples. And I am still fat.

What a joy I am.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Happy 40th Birthday, Ramona!

June 8th. It is my very best friend's 40th Birthday. So in honour of this milestone, I would like to share a few photos with you.

Thirty-one years ago, we met in Grade 3 at our local public school. We became friends the next year (which was actually Grade 5 because we both skipped Grade 4). Here we are, 30 years ago, in Mr. L's class.

(Edited here because I said here we are 25 years ago but it is *gasp* 30 years ago! I cannot do math apparently!)

We were best friends all through school. The teenage years were not kind to us so I will not post any photos.

Ramona was the maid of honour at my wedding. Here we are in 1993. Ramona flew 6600 miles to be there for me (she was working in Saudi Arabia at the time).

Since the early 1990's, we have not lived in the same city, or even country yet we have maintained our great friendship across the miles. Ramona has visited me here in WA State and back in MN several times and of course I see her everytime I go "home".

Here we are in Las Vegas just a few short weeks ago. It was the first vacation we took together since 1991 (or was it 1992?).

Happy *40th* Birthday to Ramona. Cheers to the next 40!

Monday, June 06, 2005

For the birds

I don't know what it is about this year but there are birds everywhere this spring and it is exciting to see. I mean besides the damn crows that live around here and poke through everyone's garbage, we have some really cool birds. In my backyard I have seen Stellar's Jays, American Goldfinches, Robins and chickadees.

From my backyard I have seen a group of five bald eagles circling over the trees in the green belt across the street. One-quarter mile down the street, where I saw a coyote a couple of years ago, there are always some California quails strutting around the road. At the park last week I saw a Pileated Woodpecker (I thought it was called a red-headed woodpecker).

It has been so amazing seeing these beautiful birds so close to home.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Survivor DEX

Cross-posted at SAHP Forum.

Dex's party was today and he had a blast. The rain held off until the end of the party so we were able to have the party outside (yeah!). The kids started off making "immunity" necklaces then they tied their buffs either on their head, around their neck or around their arm.

Survivor Birthday boy and his cake which has a "Survivor - OurCityName" flag on it

Survivor Dex with his buff and Immunity Necklace

The first challenge was an obstacle course which consided of kicking a soccer ball into the net, climbing over a wagon, going across the monkey bars, up the rock ramp/wall, down the slide, in and out of tiki torches that were stuck in the ground, through a tunnel then touching the "Survivor - OurCityName" Flag.

The next challenge was to throw water balloon at signs with their names that were nailed to the retaining wall. The kids had the most fun with that and it is amazing how quickly you can go through 200 balloons! Next I told them the challenge was to pick up as many broken balloons as possible but Stephen got mad at me (heh) and told the kids to stop. Dex later said it was the worst challenge EVER!

Team Survivor

Next was cake and ice cream. Then presents and back outside for the pinata. The the kids just played in the yard for 30 minutes or so until it was time to go. Two of the kids were dropped off and two of them had their parents stay. Dex had a great time so it was a successful party.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

A few dull days. Today, Jax had a baseball game (Dex has a "bye" this week). Tomorrow is Dex's b-day party and hopefully it will not rain. I bought these water balloon launchers for the kids and they have to hit their own name but if it is raining I am not sure what we will do.

I forgot to give the kids their allergy meds today and then in the late afternoon they were playing outside while Stephen cut the grass. Jax broke out in hives and Dex's cough returned. I hope that cough is gone tomorrow! He had it for 4 weeks and it had only just cleared up with antibiotics (sinus infection). :(

This coming week will mark 6 years since we moved to the Pacific Northwest. Let's see, we moved on Wednesday, June 9th. Spend Thursday and Friday (10th & 11th) looking at houses - 20 houses in 2 days. This is the last house we looked at on Friday at about 5pm. Then we went back to the real estate agent's office and put in an offer. Saturday and Sunday we waited word from the homeowners. They took the house off the market because of problems they were having with the sellers of the house they were buying. They said they would hold onto our offer. Monday the 14th, Stephen started his new job at the Evil Empire. Wednesday the 16th, my aunt called me and told me that my dad was hospitalized and I should think about coming home. I booked a flight for the 30th and she called me back and said to come right away. I called Air Canada back straight away and they were "kind" enough not to charge me for that flight and gave me the "compassion" fares of $1000 each for Jax and I to fly to Toronto on the 18th.

I arrived in T.O. on the 18th in the late afternoon and spent the next day and a half at the hospital. My dad got such a kick out of Jax who spent a lot of the time running in and out of the privacy curtain. Dad looked pretty ill but I remember thinking "Shit, I am going to have to go back to Seattle then come back again in a few weeks when it is really time for him to go". But, the next day I knew he knew it was time. He had such a final look on his face when he shook my cousin's hand as my cousin was leaving. I will never forget the knowing look on both of their faces.

Then on the 20th, Father's Day, my aunt came by my parents' place at 5am (Mom was spending all of her time at the hospital) to tell Wally and I (Wally was staying there too because it was too far to drive to his house) that we needed to get to the hospital. Mrs. Read came down from her house four doors up to watch Jax. Dad had died shortly before we arrived.

Wow, I still tear up thinking about my dad dying.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Dex had a great day yesterday and is really looking forward to his party this weekend.

Today is Leah Ann's *40th* birthday. I have only spoken to her once since Vegas (she wasn't home today). Just 7 more days until Ramona's 40th!

My mother is completely pissing me off these days. Grrr!