Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Half empty

Whenever I used to mope around or complain, or sob, babbling about how much life sucked (when I was younger) my dad used to always tell me to read the book of Job. He thought that'd do the trick to give me some perspective. It usually worked, too.

So this week I was in the ER with symptoms of TIA, which is similar to stroke but without lasting damage. And I went to the doctor the next day and asked the PA what her differential diagnosis would be. Here is what she said, but I had to goad her because she didn't want to freak me out. I don't freak out too easily (believe it or not) so I waited expectantly until she told me:

1) Transient Ischemic Attack possibly related to heart issues
2) some sort of seizures
3) Multiple Sclerosis

Then I talked to my doctor today when I was in the process of several tests to rule out all of the above (very serious) diagnoses and she thought maybe some sort of clotting disorder.

In other words they have no freaking idea. But I do think the tests should provide some illumination on the situation.

So my theory that damn it things have to get better, they cannot get much worse is not necessarily panning out as I had hoped it would. But I'm still working on the cup-half-full thing, I really am.

It's been too long since I read the book of Job anyway, I better get started.
I have stayed at some seedy motels in my day. I once stayed at a motel 6 for a week in San Diego right after Tony and I got engaged that was a little scary. I once stayed at a motel somewhere in rural Illinois that I was actually afraid to get in the shower...very much Psycho style, although at the time I hadn't even seen Psycho or heard of Alfred Hitchcock.

And last weekend I had a third interesting stay at a motel in Iowa. To reach the motel I had to drive by a dilapidated building sprayed with graffiti. Thankfully my room was on the second floor because I was alone for the night. I was fairly concerned when the front desk guy made me pre-pay for my room (when usually it's at checkout), and when I got in the room I made sure to look for evidence of bedbugs.

Despite the interesting motel, the weekend was awesome. I was out with the girls so we shopped, ate, and just enjoyed our free time. It was much needed and I'm so glad six of us were able to go. We were across from a casino and went to Sunday buffet brunch at the casino.

As I was getting some cornbread with my sparsely filled plate, a guy walked by and said I shit you not,

"Uh oh, better be careful or you're gonna get fat!"

I think he was joking because I had barely anything on my plate and it was a huge buffet. I hope so, because I went on to eat two mini chocolate eclairs and a dollop of chocolate mousse.

But really? So not funny.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mom's night out

I spent the last half hour writing a post that my kid just somehow walked up and deleted with one hit. Forgive me for not rewriting, I will give you the full story later...but I had a girls weekend this weekend and found these ($15!!) shoes.

This is Holden "reading" The Art of War by Sun Tzu, and mapping out his quest for world domination.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Coming soon

You may notice my posting frequency gets pretty low in the early part of the week.
It's because I am in nursing school and I have clinicals Tuesdays & Wednesdays. And I'm there for 12 hours or more usually. Not counting the hours and pages of paperwork we are required to do beforehand.

And I try not to post right after clinicals because I'm terrified that I might have a really bad day one day and somehow, some way violate HIPAA. So always better to err on the side of you barely knowing I do anything in healthcare. Ever.
I like to pretend I have no life beyond my family, friends, and the day to day craziness that sometimes ensues.

On my hour drive home from clinicals I had mustered up the enthusiasm to do a long post about at what point granny panties become acceptable. Probably not ever...but I'm fairly certain that every old lady I've ever known wears them.

So I know that realistically at some point, it's gonna happen to me. To paraphrase and take totally out of context the words of one of the more famous American film characters of all time Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart):

Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon...and for the rest of my life.

So what I'm saying is I am too tired to write the post I was going to write about undergarment choice. But you should know, in my head it was really funny.

Maybe next time, my friends.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

I had my wisdom teeth out on Thursday. It is Sunday and I still can't feel part of my face.
I am growing concerned that perhaps my slightly psychologically traumatic wisdom tooth surgery (moderate sedation...but I could still feel everything! They wouldn't stop!) actually injured or damaged one of my nerves. I eventually started crying and maybe fighting against the doctor before they believed that I wasn't fully anesthetized.
But my concern now is that perhaps during all this the nerve on my bottom jaw was injured or damaged, because I can't feel part of my bottom left jaw/lip. I'm calling that doctor's office tomorrow morning and getting more pain meds/some answers about what actually happened.
I've felt like crap all weekend and look like a chipmunk. Watching a lot of TV these days. Avoiding doing homework because I've been on narcotics. I just ran out, which is a shame because I'm still in a lot of pain. And now I have no excuse not to do homework.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


I've been watching hoarding shows on A&E and the new one on TLC. For the first time maybe ever, TV has propelled me into action. I'm not a hoarder, not even close. The problem with my cluttered areas is more laziness/busyness and lack of access to a truck/dump.

But this week is spring break, and here is the answer, my friends:

I post,
"Hey I have some crap to get rid of, will leave it on the porch." (or something similar, usually slightly more descriptive), and someone comes to pick it up.

I'm well aware I could probably make some money off these things. But I hate garage sales. Don't get me wrong, I love going to them and buying other people's crap. But I don't like sitting in my driveway and selling things. I'm more of a rip the band-aid off sort of person, and if I sit and look at the items too long before I part with them, I tend to rationalize...

It goes something like this:

I think I can use that coffee maker that is missing a carafe/fabric to make throw pillows/half a tower of a computer/two dog bowls that belonged to my childhood dog who died when I was seventeen/giant box of cardboard packing material/two old TVs/slightly ripped loveseat someday. I'd hate to get rid of it/them and then need them later.

I know I said I'm not a hoarder, but you can see where these sort of tendencies might lead. I do actually have all these things in my house or garage. And I promise I will get rid of them, except maybe the fabric.

I think I might actually use that.

Uh oh.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Guide to Successful Homemaking

I was at my DH's grandma's birthday party at a farm waaay out in the country about an hour and a half from where we live. His Grandma is old school. She is a very tough farm lady who has pretty much done nothing but work her whole life, and do crafty things and cook for fun.

I can't imagine what it must be like to have her as a mother-in-law, because even as a grandmother-in-law she is formidable. She is the sweetest lady you'll ever meet, but her standards are (and this is an understatement) very high for food, and homemaking in general.

While I was at her house today a stack of books caught my eye as I was sitting the La-z-boy and feigning interest in basketball. One of the books said,
How to arrange flowers which is the book I meant to look at.


Directly underneath it was a book that said something like
Good Houskeeping's Guide to Good Homemaking
I can't remember exactly what the title was, but you get the point.

I picked it up because I thought it would be charmingly antiquated. Some of it was startingly out of date: Like the part where it had pictures of each bug you might find in your house and suggested that you spray down your house with DDT at the first sign of them. Or, that perhaps if you see bugs in stored clothing, you should spray the clothing with DDT and then store them again.

And by the way a big thank you to the U.S. government for limiting the use of DDT in the early 1970's because the other day I was driving across the Platte River and saw a bald eagle fly over my car barely above the street lamp pole.

It was cool.

The only other time I have seen a bald eagle is the one I see at the Children's Zoo with half a wing missing. I try to avoid that exhibit because I find it so profoundly sad that the eagle is unable to do what it was made to do.
Now I put my head down and point the stroller toward the exit, pretending like I don't see it. Isn't that a healthy way to cope with my discomfort about the maimed bird?
I'm not sure what I'm going to do when Holden starts asking more questions.

Anyway I picked up this homemaking book thinking it would be fun to look through it and (in my head, and possibly on the car ride home) make fun of the terribly old and sexist advice it would give to young homemakers from about 1937-1961 (those were the run dates of all the editions).

But I found myself very interested in every section of the book. It described everything you might want to know about setting up a house. From decorating (including a color wheel), to styles of furniture (with pictures), to planning a kitchen, pantry staples, necessary cooking equipment and how many of each, number of linens needed and how to care for them, tips for cleaning, baking, doing laundry, and an extensive list of butcher cuts of meat and how to cook went on and on. It even had some really neat pictures of midcentury homes (which is exactly my decorating style. But the book is actually from that time period so it's even cooler).

Oh how I wish someone would have given me this book at 18. The time I would have saved, the ease at which I would have been able to plan my household, storage solutions, bridal registry, etc. Of course I know some of it already, and some of it was outdated.

But I'm borrowing that book anyway and reading it cover to cover.

I've got a lot to learn.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


I consider myself a patient person. Not really glass half full type of person, but I can make lemonade from lemons if you know what I mean.

If forced to.

But I don't really like lemonade.

In the last month I have spent $600 on my car(s). Then this week the windshield in one car got hit with a huge rock, then the next day DH went in the ditch on his way to work, had a friend tow him out and on the way home his tire blew on the interstate (with my dear child inside). So yesterday 2 new tires--which isn't really a big deal, but my immediate family being in two minor accidents in one day is.

It's in the shop now to see if the thing is salvageable, at least driveable for a little while longer. It's not even the money being flushed that is bothering me so much as the time and effort we are spending on little problems that keep cropping up.

So then last night after 12 hours at clinicals and at 12:30 a.m. after staying up for a half hour to talk to my husband whom I haven't seen in three days, my dog pees all. over. the. house.

Including (and this is the doozy) in the middle of my bed and on the carpet all over my bedroom (the rest of the house is laminate and easy to clean up).
So now I need a new mattress.

And carpet/flooring.

And then I woke up this morning (from a different bed--a mattress we dragged into Holden's room on the floor) and there was pee everywhere in the living room. And poop.

I took him to the vet today and he doesn't have a physiological ailment. So our dear dog Max is probably headed to the farm. Either a real farm or the big farm in the sky.

I can't deal with him anymore.

I just want to have a good week one week. Where nothing goes wrong and I'm not shelling out big money to just get by.
I know what you're thinking...sounds like life.
And why don't I just get rid of my dog and car and get a new car.

Why don't I?

Sunday, March 7, 2010

March Madness

My wonderful sister-in-law watched my son this weekend.

So you know what that means...

Hours of sweaty, chest heaving, melt in a pile of quivering muscles fun.

Yes, my dear husband and I played one-on-one basketball. He took it really easy on me on account of my bum knee and lack of real aerobic exercise in quite some time. It made me feel young again.

Did I tell you my husband was my next door neighbor growing up? So we grew up playing basketball together in my driveway (along with my brother, brother's friends, and my best friend).

I am very competitive and love basketball. And my husband loves me probably only slightly more than he loves sports. So us playing sports together is (one of) the most fun things we can do together.

Then we spent the rest of the evening eating orange chicken, crab rangoon, & fried rice and lying on the couch together watching TV. I love spending time with my husband, and it's even clearer why we are so good for each other when we get a little time alone together.

He was so sweet he even went to pick up our son so that I can do nothing today (no homework, no cleaning, no nothing I don't feel like doing).

After almost 7 years together I still feel like the luckiest girl in the world.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

I know I take a lot of pictures of food. But I had to share with you my two current favorite products (besides Diet Dr. Pepper, which almost always fills the top slot). I clearly have an unhealthy relationship with food if you look at my prior posts. I post about food a lot.
But I have been trying to hold it to 1500 calories a day, which should theoretically help me lose the last 20 or so pounds I need to before our trip to San Diego in June.
I am insanely excited about this trip. Sometimes I miss having no responsibilities, and that place holds my most cherished memories of carefree young love. I don't know if it's the beach, or the motels, or the salty air and beach hair. Could be the way the roads wind around instead of in mile sections like they do here, the breakfasts at the Longboarder Cafe 4 blocks from the beach, the 70 degree days and the cool nights by the ocean. Probably all of them.
But I found these little Ritz cracker things and had to tell you about them because they are only 130 calories but taste like they are many more calories than that. I had to double check the nutrition facts because I couldn't believe my good fortune.
I usually don't eat such processed foods, but crackers and cheese are my Achilles heel.
So I get to stay on my diet and eat these little delicious crackers too!

Monday, March 1, 2010

I won the battle of the couches. But the win wasn't as triumphant as I thought it would be.

Let me explain.

As you may remember, my stepmom let us take and use the cream colored leather couches from the house she shared with my dad. She bought a different house and moved last weekend, and we (and by we I mean Tony) moved the couches to her new house.
I felt fine about it, glad even that she found a house and could move out of my grandparents basement where I'm sure she didn't feel all that comfortable without her own space. Living with the in-laws isn't exactly optimal.
She was walking me through her new empty house and talking about what her plans were for improvements when I just started to feel this hollow, echoing emptiness thinking about how my dad wasn't here to help her. I was worrying about her struggling, and feeling vaguely helpless and out of control as I so often have in the past year.
When Tony and I left I made it about six blocks before I started sobbing.