September 28, 2008

happy birthday mom

Hope you are enjoying your day and the sunshine!

September 26, 2008

and then i have a date

It's done. I have a date scheduled for surgery. October 27th. I'm excited and relieved. Finally I am facing a solution. But I would be lying if I didn't say I'm nervous. Scared about the procedure. Worried about the kids and J living life without me. However, I can't explain the elation I am feeling of never having to buy humongous feminine products (aka mommy diapers) ever again!!!

September 24, 2008

journey

Yesterday afternoon was fantastic!! The light at the end of a very long journey if you will. I found a doctor. A really terrific ob/gyn to be exact. I am over the moon. I had to travel 70 miles to meet with her, but it is so worth it.

Some might ask so what. The "so what" is at about the age of 13 I stepped in womanhood BIG TIME. *If you are male and/or squeamish about such topic...look away and run very fast, I'm about to get graphic.*

I once saw an old episode of the Bill Cosby show; the one when Rudy started her period. Mrs. Huxtable took the day off work and Rudy was excused from school. They spent the entire day shopping, dining and enjoying togetherness and celebrating as Rudy embarked on this new journey. Awe, it was a beautiful moment and most likely written by a man. After that show, it was never mentioned again. Me on the other hand, if only my step in womanhood was as wonderful and lovely and full of daisies and togetherness. I have always experienced extremely heavy bleeding and knock-down cramps. Cramps so bad when I was younger they would shoot down my legs leaving me doubled over in bed and the bleeding. Oh the bleeding! I'm not over exaggerating when I say I was just shy of mass hemorrhaging. The result? Many days absent from school and many trips to see doctors. The first, easiest and usually the only option ever offered was oral birth control. Back in 1987 I was given a prescription (heavy on the hormone) that basically turned me from a 98 pound tomboy into a 120 creature overnight. I hated myself! I hated my symptoms. I was miserable and every month it was hell for eight to ten days. Horror stories became a regular occurrence for me.

I once went on vacation with an aunt and her family when I was about 14 or 15. I started my period half way through the trip. I woke up in the middle of the night and realized I had soiled the sheets. So embarrassing!

When I was about 17, I was at a family member's house babysitting. I was sitting on my cousin's bed as I felt a blood clot pass. It wasn't until I got up I realized I had leaked through my clothes and her blankets and sheets just narrowly missing her mattress. All of this happened within seconds for as soon as I felt what was going on, I knew I needed to get to the bathroom. I felt horrible!!

When I was around 15 or so, I was babysitting for my step-dad's brother and his wife's daughter. Because they had to get up so early for work, I slept over. They put me up on an air mattress in a spare room. Early morning I woke knowing something was not right. It was a huge mess and the stress of the situation was more then I could bare.

Oral birth control was to control the bleeding. Ibuprofen was to control the pain. Rolaids was to control the stomach aches the ibuprofen would induce. Vomiting would happen because of too many ibuprofen and Rolaids. Dry heaves would occur when there wasn't much else to vomit. A trip to the ER was the result and a phone call from a nasty doctor announcing she and her colleagues had a "little professional laugh" over the situation.

These are just a few stories and I realize so many women have experienced similar horrors and humiliation. The difference for me was this was a monthly happening: different month, similar situation. To avoid humiliation from my peers, I would stay home from school. I also knew I wouldn't be able to make it through three hours of classes before getting to use the bathroom trying to manage the pain and bleeding. Being able to make my way through a P.E. class would be near impossible.

Over the last 21 years I have learned how to handle my situation discreetly. Heavy bleeding is a sign of fertility so I've heard. And luckily getting pregnant has never been an issue. However, for 45 months of my adult life I have experienced pure bliss not having a menstrual cycle because of pregnancy and nursing babies.

Three babies, many medical doctors and gynaecologists, 15 years (10 married) and a little medical procedure the J-man bravely succumbed to, we find ourselves no longer in need of birth control. Having spent most of my life taking some form of the birth controlling drug to control births and menstrual cycles, at the ripe age of 34, I have decided I no longer wanted to endure.

After the birth of Baby Love, I approached the topic with my then ob/gyn. The same ob/gyn that delivered both girls told me she doesn't perform hysterectomies for birth control. She totally missed the point, I lost all respect for her and her practice and my search continued. Which led me to Dr. D 70 miles away down in Olympia. She specializes in abnormal and painful periods. And at a last stitch effort, I made an appointment with her about two months ago. I figured it would be a meet and greet and she would give me a few options to mull over. One of those options hopefully being an hysterectomy leaving my assumable healthy ovaries but most likely she would steer me towards a procedure called Novasure (which every doctor in the last two years have advised for me), a procedure I had read up on and knew I really didn't want to go that route. This is not about taking steps for me. I don't want to "try" anything else. After many different kinds of oral birth control pills, IUDs, and depo shots all of which left me reeling with horrible side effects from depression, weight gain, mood swings and uncontrollable PMS. I want my situation resolved once and for all. I want to be able to plan family vacations and camping trips without always worrying I might be on my period. I want to get my symptoms under control and mostly eliminated. I want quality of life!

My meeting/appointment with Dr. D was more then just a meet and greet. After filling out all the online paperwork, she came into room with her lap top computer knowing where I stood. I didn't have to convince of her of how I had been living for 21 years. She just knew and she wanted to help. There was no steering to other, less helpful procedures. She listened and understood. She told me I could have surgery as soon as two weeks. There was no messing about. No belittling. No pats on the back telling me to hang in there, sending me off on my way losing all respect for the medical profession as a whole. In fact, at the exact moment when she said "Your thinking is not unreasonable." was when I wanted to get down on bended knee in my paper gown and ask her to be my doctor forever and always because my dreams had just been answered. My relief and gratitude was evident. She examined. I breathed relief. And I have an ultrasound appointment in two weeks to check my ovaries, kidneys and bladder. Ingesting mass amounts of ibuprofen over the many years could have left a lasting effect. As of now, the hopes is to perform a hysterectomy vaginally leaving my ovaries, no scaring on the outside and less recovery time. This would alleviate having to take hormones for the rest of my life but relieving me of the menstrual cycles and painful periods as well. I can't wait!!!

The scheduling nurse called this afternoon to set up a date. The fast pace has me elated but nervous. The kids and J have very busy work, school and activity schedules. Having me laid up for two weeks would take it's toll. In the midst of shuttling kids, work deadlines and preparing a house for sale, we have to figure out a good time for me to go under the knife. I'll keep you posted. But I leave with you this. If you suffer from painful, abnormal periods there is help and there are doctors who will help you. Don't give up. My wish for you is that it doesn't take 21 years.

reasons

Reason why we want to buy a bigger house:

5 people and only

one,

two,

three bedrooms.

Reason why we most likely won't be able to buy a new house any time soon:

September 22, 2008

perplexing

It has always been odd to me that people store their tissues in the very back seat/window of their sedans. Say you are driving along, in the car alone, and you sneeze. How the heck is the tissue in your back window going to help you?

I can never figure out why it's so hard for some people to get into turn lanes. I find complete aggravation in following someone who forces me to come to stop as they let their rear end bits hang out in my lane while they try to figure out if they can turn. Get in the lane and then figure it out!!

Sisters! One minute they are fighting, the next they are playing ponies together.

Did you know I pass eight schools on my 15 minute drive to Miss O's school? I do! 3 high schools (1 private), 1 jr high, 3 elementaries (1 private) and 1 preschool. I know, crazy huh?

Dust!! Where does it come from? I dust today and it's back tomorrow. It's a conspiracy I tell ya, along with dirty dishes and clutter.

Boys and boogers. What is it about picking noses and boogers that boys think are so funny?

September 21, 2008

green belt test

video

Wonder Boy tested for his green belt in tae kwon do Friday night. Belts aren't rewarded the night of the test. They have a little, mini ceremony in classes. Hopefully next week we will find out if he passed.

do again?

video

September 19, 2008

packages from grandma

For some reason Wonder Boy got it stuck in that brain of his that Grandma would send a package. He kept telling me that he "had placed an order" and it would arrive soon. We had no idea what he was talking about. Grandma decided to put together a few care packages and send them. And what a surprise it was. It didn't seem to matter to Wonder Boy what was inside, he was just happy for the thrill of getting a box sent in the mail and discovering what was inside. True bliss! However, if Grandma sends another box full of those peanuts I'll be forced to dumped ants in her underwear drawer.








video

September 13, 2008

facelift

We've been trying to make the house look as pretty as possible for our upcoming adventures in "selling a house" very soon. J and Wonder Boy painted the very last wall to be painted this morning. It's a small wall behind J's big computer amoire. When we had the hardwoods refinished a couple weekends ago, they had to pull the armoire away from the wall. So we finally got around to getting it painted.


It's been my long-time idea to have the house painted a brownish color with white trim, black door and add black shutters. Today was the big day!!! J said it was the easiest upgrade he has done so far. We had the house painted and deck stained this summer so the shutters where the 'piece de resistance'!
Ta-Da!

September 12, 2008

exhale

Many of you close to me know I tend to over-analyze and worry about things excessively. Mostly I'm pretty easy going and things like un-brushed hair on a seven year old boy, or a dirty car, or dishes in the sink, or messy bedrooms are no big deal to me. I try not to dwell on the mundane. I stress mostly over social situations, more specific, the social situation of my children. Will they fit in? Will they get in trouble a lot? Will they be able to be heard and understood? Will they make friends? Will they be bullied? Will they be THE bully?

This past week has shown me all will be okay if I'm patient. My three offspring are incredible little people and I am so proud of their abilities to be kind-hearted, smart, funny and well balanced human beings.

Let me fill you in on my oldest. My gregarious, precocious son got himself in a wee bit of trouble through out his kindergarten year. All in all, he was just too much for a younger, less experienced teacher (in her second year, also going to school herself) to deal with. Her patience with him was short on most days. In her defense, I completely understand how easy it is to become exhausted from Wonder Boy's constant quest for information and entertainment. Our (her and my)exchanges with each other were often uncomfortable and seemed to never accomplish anything. I was upset how she dealt with WB and felt if she could, if she would, take a different approach with him, they would be able to communicate better and form a successful relationship. This of course would put her on a fast route to defense land and she would say things like "Well, in MY classroom . . . . . " Which would return make me angry and frustrated because although, yes she is the teacher, it is not just HER classroom, but rather it is a room full of twenty some little people. If she created a community pooling the children's strengths instead of the of the "You! Students! Me! Teacher!" approach, she would quickly see how easy it would be for everyone to be happy and successful. She'll have many, many Wonder Boys walk through her doors and the sooner she figures out how to change her approach the better off she'll be and happier not only her, but all the other little Wonder Boys will be too.

Anyway, I digress. Short story: kindergarten teacher assigned Wonder Boy to first grade teacher with an unflattering reputation. So of course I worried. And worried. And WORRIED! And waited for that first email or phone call about something "bad" happening.

This week we have had little notes and comments come through but to my GIANT relief they have been positive. And not just the little "oh he's so cute" but really specific great things like "Did you know Wonder Boy is my Technology Assistant and Comedy Side-Kick?" SIGH!!! She gets him. Ms. 11 years of experience teaching first grade, really, truly gets him. And I have instantly fallen in love with her. I know his year will be 100% better and I am so grateful. I can't help but think about the movie scene in Fried Green Tomatoes when Kathy Bates is driving around a very crowded parking lot and waits patiently for a very old lady to pull out of spot. And just as she is about to pull in, a young gal steals the spot. As she gets out of her car she calls out to Kathy Bates something like "I'm younger and faster". Kathy Bates then takes her car and rams into the young gals little, cute car repeatedly. To the young girls horrified look, Kathy Bates replies "I'm older and have more insurance!" Ms. First Grade is wiser and has more experience. And that reputation? Couldn't be further from the truth.

On to my second. The Divine Miss O takes speech once a week and she struggles a little with being understood and communicating her needs and desires. This sometimes keeps her very quiet and shy with new people and new kids. Her preschool was very loving, and very messy, and very easy for her to be included without worrying about her speech. Sadly after two years, she has become old enough to move on and she is now in a program that although is called pre-kindergarten, the curriculum standards are set very high and in class they work at a kindergarten and first grade level. Knowing the above, why did I decide to enroll Miss O in this school you might ask? Well, because I love this school! I can't say enough great things about it. When I first walked into it looking for Wonder Boy three years ago, I knew my children HAD to go there and I would make it so however I could. Wonder Boy attended for two years and now Miss O is there and Baby Love will most likely take her turn too. But naturally I worried Miss O might have difficulty making friends and communicating with her teachers. However, O has a light about her that is just too bright to deny and many little girls have taken to basking in the warmth of her glow. Just this week, several moms have approached me all saying the same thing "My daughter LOVES Miss O!" or "My daughter talks about Miss O ALL the time!" Which makes me feel wonderful about how O is doing in class. She is able to raise up above her difficulties and shine regardless. She inspires me so. Although when I talk to her about the friends she is making and she unable to tell me who they are or what their names are, I know she is doing great and will be just fine. She is simply divine!

Now my third. Having the big kids in school has proven to be a really special time for Baby Love and me. Spending alone time together has been a way for me to really get to know my two and half year old as a little person separately from her brother and sister. She is spunky and talkative and smart and independent and really funny. She is a mix of her older siblings but with a twist. A dynamo! She brightens my day and makes me laugh. In moments of despair and exhaustion, my mom teasing me about having to have three kids. But in the end, I couldn't imagine my life without anyone of them. Sure, life would be simpler for sure but not as fulfilling I suspect. Plus Baby Love is somewhat of a miracle baby because of the circumstances with J. If we hadn't have decided to bring her into our lives, it is very likely we would have discovered J's diagnoses too late.

So you see, for the past two weeks I have been holding my breath waiting for bad news from first grade and worrying about pre-k but today I realized it's all okay and it will be all okay. My kids are fantastic people. I'm able to exhale.

September 9, 2008

new floors and cute haircuts

In preparation to put the house for sale, we got the wood floors refinished. Man what a guy with a sander and weekend can do. They literally look brand new. J and I are sort of kicking ourselves for not doing it sooner. They look great and I hope the new owners enjoy them immensely . . . sniff, sniff!
Oh and we can't forget Angus modeling his new haircut. He kept sitting in front of me waiting for a treat (like I had one to give him, because I usually do when I'm trying to take pictures of him) as I was trying to snap a picture of the floor.

September 8, 2008

just another manic monday

Monday, Monday, Monday!!! Today was one of those days! Everyone overslept and the big kids had to be woke up to get ready for school. That right there is always a bad sign. (Why is it they NEVER oversleep during the weekend is beyond me!) Anyway, I forgoed the shower per usual and got the kidlets dressed, lunches packed and had everyone ready to go. J and Wonder Boy took off before the girls and I to find a parking spot in the parking lot of hell. *insert scary, echoing voice* Seriously, trying to find a spot at that place is painfully frustrating! The Divine Miss O, Baby Love and I were out of the house shortly after.

Girls loaded in . . . check
Seat belts on . . . . check
Car started . . . .check
Emergency Brake release . . . . . um . . . .handle in my hand, e-brake light still on

That was my second clue this day was destined for bad cosmic mojo. As I pulled the handle to release my e-brake, it broke and I was left with the brake still partially on, the handle in my hand and me having no clue how to release it all the way. It was just enough released, I was able to drive so I drove Miss O to school with my van dinging at me over and over and over again. Chinese water torture. With every ding my van was taunting me. DING *turn off your emergency break dumb-ass* . . . . DING *oh that's right, I'm the piece of crap that just broke off in your hand* . . . . DING *but I find complete joy in reminding you to turn off the e-brake* . . . . DING *over* . . . . DING *and over* . . . . DING *and over* . . .DING *and over again!!* . . DING *Muwaaahaaahahahahahaha!!!!!* . . . DING! You see, I have a love/hate relationship with my little blue mini van. I love that it's paid off and room for everyone. I love that it has sliding doors so when retards park super close to me, I can still get the kids inside. I hate that it's not four wheel drive so that when it snows I'm completely stuck on the top of this hill. And I HATE that it is consistently falling apart piece by friggin piece.

I had resolved in driving around all day with my mode of transportation dinging at me. Before I could go home after dropping Miss O off, I had to stop for gas. About a mile before entering the driveway to the gas station, I began reminding myself not to push the stupid e-brake down repeatedly. "Don't step on the e-brake! Don't step on the e-brake! Don't step on the e-brake!" And what do you know, out of habit and before I could stop myself, I lifted up my foot and pushed down on the pedal. "CRAP!!!!!"

After filling up and calling J to come rescue me, I managed to give my hunk of junk enough gas to get it pulled over to the side. And rescue me, Mr J-man did. . . . . he showed me how to release the brake underneath the dash therefor proving that I didn't just screw up my day, but also his.

Now upon realizing that I was about to embark on a rocky day right at 7:10am when the alarm had been blasting for the last half hour and the kids were still sound asleep, I should have called it quits right then and there. I should have called everyone in sick at school, crawled back into bed and started fresh tomorrow. For it was a phone call at 11:40 am from the principal at Miss O's school that threw me right into the "worst mom of the day" category. For some reason I had it in my head that I needed to leave at noon to pick up O from school . . . . . right after I enjoyed the first show of the new season of "Ellen". *cough* By the time I got to her, I was a half hour late picking her up and I still feel like a complete jack-ass for slipping up.

And at this time, I must take a moment to apologize to the driver in front of me as I was frantically trying to get to her.


Dear woman driver in red Honda SUV type of car,

I'm sorry I tailgated and eventually passed you on that side street by the park with the double line. I was in a hurry and it was a slight bit of an emergency for me to get past you. I know that you were trying to teach me lesson in good driving etiquette by pointing your finger at me and waving it like I was a four years old. And I apologize for yelling at you through my window after
you did so. I realize you had no idea I was a bit frantic trying to get to my daughter but in all honestly, you were being a little bitchy driving super slow and making it impossible for me to get around you. I didn't need to be scolded; I just needed for you to get out my way. I wasn't mad at you or trying to be rude to you. So maybe next time when a women driving a minivan is behind you too close and has a look of panic and horror on her face, maybe just pull over and let her by. You'll save yourself some trouble and you will have helped her get to her destination with ease.

Thank you and many apologies!
Little Irish


Phew - I feel better already. Picking Miss O up late from school resulted in us arriving a tad late to speech class. And maybe that's where my brain went all screwy. Today was Miss O's first day of her new fall speech schedule. It is possible I had the afternoon hour lodge in my frontal lobe and the wires got mixed with all the emergency brake nonsense. During speech, I bought the new Little Mermaid movie for the girls so that when we got home, they could occupy themselves with a new movie to watch and I could recuperate.

I'm here to report, I survived and the rest of the day carried on without much trouble. Dinner, bedtime, a new day tomorrow and a visit to the dealer is in my horizon.

September 4, 2008

a,b,c

video

34!!

Yesterday was my 34th birthday.
It was a day filled with school and extra curricular shuffle, but also filled with some extra sweet rewards as well.
This lovely lady treated me to coffee and pedicures.

And in return, this little girl treated this lovely lady with a leg massage. These three incredibly cute kids showered me with surprises with help from their thoughtful daddy.
And Mr. J-man had a special, yummy cake made.

After dinner out, I was serenaded . . . .enjoy!


video

September 2, 2008

first day :: back to school

Three cheers for First Grade!! My little man started school today. We were a little late getting to the line this morning between the traffic and the shear amount of parents and chaos that swallowed the little elementary school. So we missed a "standing in line" picture.

There are a few familiar faces and some new friends too. Wonder Boy is most excited about having a desk of his very own this year.

And what's really cool . . . . my big boy, my mr. responsibility, my mr. self sufficient can walk from his classroom and meet me in the pick up line all by himself. I was super nervous sitting in my car waiting for him this afternoon. I had about a million "what ifs" run through my head. Seeing most of the first grade parents standing around the doors made me feel like I should change my mind and meet him there. About three minutes after the bell rang, my beautiful feugo haired boy came into view with the sunlight bouncing off his strands, causing his reflection to glow. And with my heart swelling, I couldn't be more proud.

However, he forgot his lunch box and sweatshirt at school.

The Divine Miss O had her first day of pre-kindergarten today too, but it wasn't an official first day. It was more of a meet and greet plus an ice cream social. She has lots of preschool friends in her class and Mrs. L was also Wonder Boy's pre-k teacher two years ago. So we are very excited for the year.


We spent a good part of the morning frantically running around the house looking for Miss O's new school shoes. The are pink and shiny and sparkle-y and she just had to have to them!! She was upset we couldn't find them and doubly upset she had to wear her play shoes to school instead. Not to worry, as she was playing with play-doh this afternoon, she spied a bag she had stuffed away and low and behold, her new shoes were tucked inside. Silly girl!

the curls have it