Friday, August 31, 2007

Free Shoes? Count me in!

Beth at I Should Be Folding Laundry has the greatest giveaway going on at her place! She's giving away a pair of Ryka shoes, and I really want to win them.

Go check it out, because if I can't win them, of course I want you to win. Because I'm unselfish like that.

Advice Forum Friday - It's Back!

Guys, I totally spaced and forgot to post Advice Forum Friday last week. And I know that only two people have ever linked up, but I didn't want to give up this soon. And I'm not.

But I just have been crazy with Back To School and all that that implies, because I am the biggest procrastinator that you'll ever find. But I think we're over the hump now, and I want to keep going with this thing and see if it can gain any momentum.

My PLEA this week is for someone to please tell me how to download a Podcast. Specifically, the Big Boo Cast. I imagine every other person in this corner of the blogosphere has heard this brilliant communique, but this Queen of Dirty Laundry down here in Texas can't figger it out.

Please Help Me.

Also, if you have something you need help with, please go ahead and post about it at your blog, being sure to link back to this post and sign Mr. Linky down there.

Peace out.

Thursday, August 30, 2007


Last year, sitting in the First Grade line every day to pick up Pooh, I wondered which First Grade teacher would be the best fit for Tinkerbell. There are 5 or 6 teachers in 1st, and out of those, I knew that there were 2 that we didn't want. The first was Pooh's teacher. She was great for Pooh, but I didn't think she would be a good match for Tink. The second teacher on my No List was an older lady who just seemed cranky. My girls already have a cranky Mommy; they don't need a cranky teacher, too.

So when we showed up for Meet The Teacher last week, guess whose class Tinker was assigned to. That's right, Mrs. Cranky Older Teacher. I was disappointed, but hoped I was wrong about her.

We Met The Teacher, and Mrs. COT was very friendly. I immediately volunteered to help out with anything she needed, because I've been told and firmly agree that sucking up gets you in good with the teachers.

As I mentioned, Tink didn't do so well on the first day of school. She was scared, and she cried when it was time for me to leave. Mrs. COT swooped right in and comforted my baby, taking her under her wing. I was encouraged.

The second day of school, at pick-up time, Mrs. COT came over to my car and said, "Yeah, she's a talker."

Tell me about it, sister.

Then she leaned in really close and whispered in my ear, "I don't really care. As long as they don't all get loud, she doesn't bother me at all." I told her that however she wanted to handle it in the classroom, we'd reinforce at home. Her exact words were, "Yeah, nothing's gonna work. Eventually, when she gets older, she'll figure out when to shut up."

I think I'm in love.

See, sometimes my Tink can rub people the wrong way. She can be clingy, she can be needy, or she can also be a diva sometimes. And did I mention SHE LIKES TO TALK? In Pre-K there was a teacher's aide who HATED her because of this. The woman once gave Tink a frowny face in her folder because Tink HAD THE AUDACITY TO ASK IF SHE WAS GONNA GET A SMILEY. Changed that smiley to a frown. And ya'll, that Aide bowed up on me because I asked her to clarify what it was that Tink did wrong. Yeah, I called the principal on that crap.

Oops, did I go off there for a minute? Sorry, where was I? Oh, so I was concerned that Mrs. COT would have a problem with Tink and her needy/diva/yappy self. And guess what? I don't think she does! I think she may be our next favorite teacher! Of course, it's the fourth day of school and things could turn around tomorrow, but I DON'T THINK SO! I THINK WE'VE GOT A WINNER! Can you tell I'm happy? Cause I am.

And in case you're not convinced, let me tell you what Tink said about Mrs. COT yesterday.

"Weeelllll, she does yell sometimes, but if we weren't being so noisy, she wouldn't have to yell. And sometime when we're being loud, she says that we're driving her crazy." Giggle, giggle. "And sometimes if we're not lining up right, or not listening, she says we're getting on her last nerve." Giggle, giggle.

She is now officially Mrs. Funny, Sarcastic Older Teacher. Mrs. FSOT for short.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

HP Photosmart Printer Giveaway

Well, those girls at 5 Minutes For Mom have gone and done it again! They just bring us the BEST giveaways, don't they?

This time, it's the HP Photosmart A626 Compact Photo Printer. This little baby sounds like something I could definitely find room for. Just like lots of you, I have all of my photos organized wonderfully - on my computer! I just never take the time to have them professionally printed out, but if I had this little guy, I would surely print them myself. Right?

Go on over to 5 Minutes For Mom and take a look at what they have to say about this bad boy. And enter the contest...or don't, which will give me a better chance of winning. Whichever works for you. :>)

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Works For Me Wednesday - Frugal Shopping

Today I'm talking about my new favorite store in the world - Dollar Tree. That's right, boys and girls, Dollar Tree.

I know that many of you have probably been shopping DT for years, but alas, I have not. Until six months ago, I'd probably been in Dollar Tree maybe two times, long ago. I don't recall it being that great back then, and in my mind, I'd lumped it in with all those 99 cent stores, which are crammed full of imported knick knacks and off-brand shampoo. I'll pass, thanks.

Recently, though, I decided to stop in at a Dollar Tree in our area, and HOLY SMOKES, is that a great store. It's not just knick-knacks any more, that's for sure. Oh, and in case you haven't shopped there, let me be clear - Everything There is $1.00. Here are some of the things I've bought or seen at DT in the past few months:

  • Earbuds for Pooh's CD player
  • Plug-in speakers for Pooh's CD player
  • Jay Jay computer game
  • Kid's clothes hangers
  • Name-brand cereal
  • Flip Flops
  • Containers
  • Containers
  • Containers
  • Kids' craft kits
  • Toys
  • Workbooks
  • Scrapbook stuff
  • Photo paper

I know you don't need me to list everything in the entire store, but I just wanted to give an idea of the variety of GREAT crap they have there.

It's a great place to buy kids' birthday gifts, too. For less than $10, you can get a gift bag and fill it with several junky toys, which we all know are what the kids love best.

There you have it, internets. Shopping at Dollar Tree, Works For Me. Now be sure to go on over to Shannon's and see what else works!

Second Day of School - Traffic Edition

Tink's already in trouble for talking. No big surprise there. Scooter's not listening. Wow. You don't say. Pooh keeps on waiting for the fun at Dirty Laundry Academy to start. OOPS.

All in all, though, I'm so pleased with the beginning of our new school year.

Except for the traffic. Did I mention there was traffic?

Y'all, it is beyond compare. You know how when you go to a concert or a baseball game, and 10,000 people are leaving the venue all at the same time? And you just sit there forever and ever in line? And the jerk in the jacked-up truck cuts you off, and the primer'd, rusty hoopty slides up right at your front right fender and plays chicken with you cause who cares about another dent? Oh, that's right, YOU DO, cause you're driving a decent car, so you let the hoopty cut you off, too.

Okay, so it's like that, except with a bunch of Moms, and the hoopty is a 20-year-old rusted out pickup, and it's broke down, blocking traffic. And everyone acts like they haven't ever picked up a kid at school before. EVER.

Y'all, I am a conformist in situations like this. Tell me how to do the pick-up, and I'm gonna do it that way every time, yes ma'am. And I can feel the anxiety rippling through my body when I see all the people just driving around and pulling through all willy nilly. Cause I'm where I'm supposed to be, dadgum it, and how come all the rule-breakers get to cut in front of me?

Uhm. Can you tell I feel strongly about this? Fortunately, I know from experience that it's only like this for about a week, and then everyone chills out. Including me.

*Is that how you spell hoopty?

Monday, August 27, 2007

First Day of School - Bullet Edition

I've been trying all day long to compose a coherent post about the First Day of School, and so far my brain hasn't settled down enough for that to happen. And since I want very strongly to post about the First Day of School before it's over, I present to you my thoughts, in no particular order.

  • Our morning went well, and Big Daddy's work schedule allowed him to go to both schools to drop off the girls.
  • Scooter trotted right into Pre-K like she hadn't a care in the world. Later, Mom. Get lost.
  • Traffic at Tink's school was an absolute terror.
  • Because of the traffic, Tinkerbell was late to class and Daddy had to wait in the van since there wasn't a parking place to be found.
  • Tink cried when I left her, and it broke my heart. By the time I got to the van, I was crying too. BD wanted to get out and go in right then, but I thought it would make things worse.
  • Pooh's first day at Dirty Laundry Homeschool Academy went well. Even though I'm not as organized as I wanted to be, we are off to a good start.
  • Tinkerbell still talks too much in class. Her Mommy's daughter all the way.
  • Did I mention that the traffic at Tink's school is murder? Cause I had to circle the school for 20 minutes this afternoon, since there was absolutely nowhere to park and wait for the bell. I can't wait till next week when people calm down.

My angels are in bed now and all is peaceful. All in all, the First Day of School was great.

Menu Plan Monday - Back to School Edition

It's the first week of school, and we really, REALLY need to get back into our school routine, QUICK. That means after I pick up Tinkerbell from school, it's home for homework, baths, dinner, and bed. It goes by so quickly that I have to be organized. So here's an easy menu to help us get back in the swing.



Fantasy Football Draft - Pizza at the church
Bring fruit for the kids to snack on, cause it's gonna be a long evening!

Beans and Rice

Quesadillas with homemade tortillas

Garlic Toast

Who knows. Seriously. Maybe Grammy and Grandaddy will take us out to dinner.

Now go check out some really serious Menu Planners at Organizing Junkie. And have a great week, y'all!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

We love a giveaway!

There's a lovely giveaway up over at Musings of a Housewife. She's giving away an Eliza Grace totebag to promote her friend's new online store.

You can see all the details here. Isn't it a scrumptious bag?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

“When I said,
"My foot is slipping,"
Your love, O LORD, supported me.
When anxiety was great within me,
Your consolation brought joy to my soul.”

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Personal Policies - Sick Kid Edition

I was tagged for this Personal Policies meme by Katherine @ Raising Five, like forever ago, and I have had the roughest time deciding how to proceed. Cause every time I think of a "personal policy," I think, "But is that a personal policy, or just another weird thing about me?"

She wants to know my personal policies - not moral rules, like "Do Not Kill," I'm talking about the silly policies we impose on ourselves, like "Never eat anything you can't identify," or "Don't step on sidewalk cracks."

But I've procrastinated for too long. And since I've got a feverish kid this week, I present you with My Personal Policies - The Sick Kid Edition.

  1. Anything over 99.0 is a fever, I don't care what Big Daddy heard at the Quack in the Box. My digital thermometer says Above Normal, dang it. Above Normal is a Fever, in my book.
  2. I do not give Tylenol for a low fever, unless someone's crying, or something hurts. I say, let the fever do its job. The body heats up to fight infection or other biological bad guys, so how can they do their job if you keep throwing Tylenol on 'em?
  3. Once a fever hits 102.5, I give Tylenol. Even I have my limits.
  4. If you've got a fever, you get to lay in my bed and drink Sprite and watch TV.
  5. I don't call the doctor's office unless someone has either a) had a fever over 102 for more than 2 days, or b) had any fever for more than 3 days. They're just gonna tell me to give Tylenol and call back if the fever doesn't go away. Trust me, I know this from experience.
  6. We try not to go anywhere when one of the darlings has a fever. I figure if the school won't let 'em in, they shouldn't be anywhere else, either.
  7. I feel very strongly about not spreading our {unspecified, yet feverish} illnesses on an unsuspecting public.
  8. When someone is scheduled to visit our house, I advise them of said fever and let them make their own decision. Then their blood is on their own hands, not mine.
  9. We stay away from Grammy and Grandaddy when we have a fever. Cause the old folks, they be getting sick easier, you know.

Looking back over this, I guess I should have named it Personal Policies - Fever Edition.


I'd love to hear about your Personal Policies, sickness or otherwise. Let me know if you decide to write your own post, and please, oh please, give me whatever feedback you may have about my policies.


I'm currently obsessed with this.

The best I can do is about 13.4 seconds. How about you?

A little linky love...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Random randomness - Tuesday edition

Y'all, my kids are watching Popeye right now. Gotta love Boomerang.


Tinkerbell has a fever of 102 and a headache and stomach ache.

Last time I took her to the doctor for her headaches and stomach aches, the pediatrician told me that it was either migraines, or she just wanted to lay in my bed. Yeah, we're probably gonna switch doctors.

I'm currently logging her symptoms. I wish I could be that OCD about housekeeping.


I found a piece of property not far from us that's over 5 acres with two houses on it. I would really love to live on property like that, with my parents in the other house. Not because we want them up our hoo-has, though. I just think it would be so convenient. Especially a few years from now when they start needing more help. You know?

However, the houses on this piece of property are REAL fixer-uppers, and although I think we could handle it, my parents do not. And I don't blame them. But I am going to force them to watch lots of house flipping shows so that maybe they'll get inspired.


School starts next Monday and I haven't enrolled Scooter in Pre-K yet, cause I can't find her shot records. I put them someplace really safe, and now I can't remember where. Sucks to be me.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Mornin', y'all.

Y'all. I want to take the chainsaw that my husband is sawing logs with and lightly smack him in the head with it. More than once. But lightly. Just enough to induce a light coma until the alarm goes off. I've heard that people in comas don't snore. Anyone know if that's accurate? Cause I would hate to induce a coma and still have to endure the snoring.

In Big Daddy's defense...I'm not sure there is a defense, actually. I DO LOVE MY BIG DADDY! But the snoring, y'all? Sometimes it just makes me insane.

Take tonight for example. I didn't fall asleep until after 2:00 a.m. Snoring occurring but not an issue at that point.

However. Some time after 2:00 a.m., very tall 7-year-old child comes into my room, scared that the freaking Monster House is coming to get her. My dang fault for letting the kids watch dadgum Monster House. Last Week. I knew it was a mistake and I did it anyway. Stupidest freaking movie marketed to kids ever. What the heck was I thinking?

How can this kid be describing this dream to me in the dead of night, can't she see my eyes don't want to stay open, "Just lay down at the foot of my bed, then." AND LET ME SLEEP.

And don't you know that I woke up again at 4:40 in the morning drenched in sweat, because I can't wait until my 50's to start this crap, oh no, that wouldn't work, would it? Let's give Lori hot flashes in her early 40's, shall we?

Get up, go potty, sit at the computer where the air conditioner blows straight on me and usually cools me down in a few minutes. Return to bed where...oh my goodness, there seems to be a 7-year-old in my spot. Shove over, sister, I'm comin' in.

Unfortunately, when I wake up during the night, I usually need the TV to go back to sleep, but turn on a TV, day or night, and my darling girls will watch it. And I'm not sure there's anything on the television at 5:00 a.m. that's suitable for a minor to watch. So I flip channels while she just flips. I finally turn on a music channel and attempt to sleep.


No Go. I began composing this post in my head.

And at 5:30, I gave up, came to my computer, wrote this post and will now go take my shower.

Good morning, y'all. Thank goodness it's Sunday so I can go to church and get edified and sanctified and good moodified. And then come home and take a heck of a nap.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Interested in Big Brother 8?

Here's my opinion on last night's show.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Advice Forum Friday ~ Three-Column Template

Happy Friday, y'all! It's time again for Advice Forum Friday.

So how about it, do you need advice about something? It can be anything at all - just post about it at your site, and be sure to link to today's Advice Forum Friday in your post. And finally, don't forget to sign the Mr. Linky down below if you post a question at your blog.

Here's what I need help with today, my friends. I'm trying to find a blog template with three columns. I'm currently using Blogger's Minima template, with custom colors and header (Thanks, Revka!). I really like it, but I would love to have three columns instead of two. Well, if I'm completely honest, I'd love to have an entire redesign, but since I'm on a tight budget, a three-column version of Minima will do just fine, thank you very much!

I've seen free three-column templates out there, but I am fairly clueless about HTML and all that stuff, and I was not successful in installing one here. And I love Blogger Beta's widgets, and would still like to be able to use them.

I know that there has got to be someone out there who can tell me how to accomplish my goal, so please leave me a comment and give me some advice, okay?

Thanks, guys! Have a great Friday!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

My new favorite Food Network show

Y'all, I just found Quick Fix Meals on Food Network. Read my quickie review here.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

WFMW - Fajita Grill

What's working for me this week is that my mom just took me school supply shopping. What a blessing! With Big Daddy changing jobs this month, we're missing a paycheck or two, so things are a little tight until we get over the hump.

But that's not my official WFMW. Today, I'm talking about how I've figured out how to make do with what I have and save energy, all at the same time.

For Christmas last year, my in-laws gave me a giant, red El Paso Fajita Grill. Not something I would have bought for myself, that's for sure. We have a small kitchen - heck, the whole house is little - and although I love kitchen gadgets, I'm finally learning to use common sense when they call to me from the end caps at Target.

But. I got one for Christmas. And I love my in-laws, so I felt guilty about taking it back. So I kept it. And it got stuck in the built-in cabinet in the living room for six months. Then a couple months ago, we were cooking breakfast for friends, and we just did not have enough burners. So I got that Big Boy out and started cooking bacon on it. Perfect. Then I cooked an omelet in the tortilla warmer section, and I thought I was rockin'. Cause I was.

And because we're lazy butts, the Fajita Grillstayed on the counter for the next few days, and so I went ahead and used it again. And again. We cooked hot dogs on it, we grilled smoked sausage on it, and I even toasted buns for Sloppy Joes on it.

We have a George Foreman grill, but the coating is flaking off so we stopped using it. And I've wanted an electric skillet or electric griddle, but this Fajita Grill works just as well for many uses!

So, while I'm not necessarily advocating going out and buying a Fajita Grill, what I am saying is this: If you have one of these guys gathering dust somewhere in your house, USE IT! And if you see one at a garage sale, go ahead and snap it up for a few dollars, cause you will use that bad boy!

Using What I Have - in this case a Fajita Grill - Works For Me! Now go on over to Shannon's and check out all the great tips!

Oh, and no, I haven't made fajitas on it. I've never actually cooked fajitas myself. Funny, huh?

And finally, don't forget to come back and check out Advice Forum Friday. Got a question? Want some advice? Link it here and see what happens!

Monday, August 13, 2007


Y'all, I have been checking the Lotto Texas and Mega Millions website for two hours, trying to get the results of the drawing for Tuesday, August 14. I checked my tickets twice, checked my calendar twice, yep, it's Tuesday, August 14.

"Oh my goodness," I thought, "that's so strange. I bet we're gonna win something tonight! I wish they'd hurry up and post the numbers!"

I told Big Daddy that I couldn't find the winning numbers, and his answer? "Huh."

Finally, I got my calendar out again, looked and confirmed that it was, in fact, Tuesday, August 14. "Right, Honey?"


"No, it's the 13th."

"No, honey, it's the 14th. Look at this calendar. Tuesday, the 14th."



"Baby, today's Monday."


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Menu Plan Monday - Give me structure!

We've got a pretty busy week coming up, so I knew I'd better get back on the Menu Plan wagon, so I've got control over at least ONE area of my household. The theme this week is quick and easy.


PB&J for the kids and Italian Subs for BD and I


Bacon Grilled Cheese with carrot sticks and apples


Hot Dogs and Pasta Salad


Sticky Chicken with Rice Pilaf (This time I'll use leg quarters and use the crockpot.)


Life Group - we'll graze on snacks there. The girls will probably eat a sandwich before we go.

That's it for us, folks. No nonsense, fill the bellies and get through the week meal planning. Have a great week!

8 Ways Big Daddy's new job rocks + 2 more

Big Daddy started his new job last week, and it rocks. Here are some ways that it is oh, so much better than his last job.

  1. New company treats everyone the same, even if they don't suck up.
  2. New company pays employees for every hour that they work!
  3. Secretaries are not calling BD at home and all hours of the day, "just to talk." Therefore, BD does not get discriminated against when he asks them to stop.
  4. No one screams at and demeans the employees.
  5. Secretaries do not withhold final paychecks out of spite.
  6. In fact, secretaries are actually secretaries, and don't think they're in charge of every dadgum thing.
  7. Big Daddy gets off work at the same time every day, no matter who's mad at him.
  8. BD does not have to take a shower the minute he walks in the door, because he is no longer STANK from sweating his guts out all day long. He can shower WHEN HE WANTS TO!
  9. BD gets to come home to his girls for lunch any time he wants to!
  10. In fact, he just came home for a quick lunch and made his girls oh, so happy. Especially me!

Can you tell we're oh, so happy over here? Yeah, we are.

Serene Sunday

Not much going on here today. AT ALL. We came home from church and I napped until 2:00. SWEET.

Thanks to all of you who participated in Advice Forum Friday this week. I got some great suggestions for music sources, many of which I plan to pursue, SOON.


Here's a great article at Faith Lifts about Living in the Moment with our children, and more importantly, with our God.

Please, oh please, oh please take a look at this post at Kisses of Sunshine, especially if you have a Blogger account. Following these simple steps will help ME respond to YOU when you comment. Thanks! Really, Thanks!

Comma rules. I can always use a refresher!

Here's a list of the Top 50 Frugality Bloggers. Something else I can definitely use!

Y'all have a great Sunday evening! See ya back here tomorrow, right?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Advice Forum Friday - Help me find my music!

Do you know the song "Strength of my Life," by Leslie Phillips? It was probably released in the 80's, and features Russ Taff on harmonies. I dadgum love this song, and I can't find it anywhere but on Music Choice on my TV sometimes.

Y'all, I love the Christian music of the 80's, even 70's, and it is almost impossible for me to find, either on CD or as downloads.

I really miss the old, original Napster, because if someone else on Napster had the song, you could download it. The fact that it was free was bonus, of course, but I just loved that you could find almost anything you wanted there. Keith Green, Petra, Larry Norman, DeGarmo and Key, Steve Taylor...the gamut of "contemporary" Christian music from the past. I don't have that kind of luck with the current music download sites.

I hope someone has some advice for me on where to find a better selection of not-so-mainstream music. If so, please leave a comment and let me know! And if it's cheap, that's even better!

Now, do you need advice about something today? It can be anything at all - just write a post about it at your site, and be sure to mention Advice Forum Friday in your post. Link back to this post, and finally, don't forget to sign the Mr. Linky down below.

Now, help me find my music! Oh, and just for fun, even if you don't have a suggestion for me, just tell me what your favorite Christian song is from the far, far past.

Thanks, y'all! Have a great Friday!

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Works For Me Wednesday - Shower Curtains

I am a bargain shopper, even a cheapskate. I hate paying full price for anything, especially home furnishings. But I love to have pretty things. So I shop at garage sales and clearance racks and thrift stores.

Here are some of my favorite tricks for shower curtains.

First of all, I have almost never bought a new shower curtain. I have about 5 in my closet, all hand-me-downs or garage sale finds, and they are all gorgeous and match my master bath towels and wall color. I just switch those babies out when the mood strikes, and it's like getting a new shower curtain every few months.

Second. My friend and I were shopping at Ross a few months ago, and I found the most gorgeous twin flat sheet, but had no use for it. She suggested using it for a shower curtain, and WOWZA! It is fabulous in our hall bath. We just snipped the seams at the ends of the large top hem, so the sheet would slide on a second tension rod. The plastic curtain liner is still inside, on a lower tension rod. Did I mention that it's Gorgeous?

And Finally. I was shopping at Dollar General a few weeks ago and saw a Disney Princess plastic shower curtain for $3. What a fun $3 to spend on my girls, right? But we only have two baths, and who wants a Disney Princess shower curtain in a main bathroom? So here's what I did - I used that bad boy as the inside liner in my master bath. So from the outside of the bath, you see pretty Ralph Lauren or cute seersucker, but from the inside of the bathtub, it's Disney Princess Land!

So there are my tips for this week - be imaginative and inventive with your shower curtains, and you won't be stuck with one expensive look for the next three years. Works For Me!

Don't forget to come back and check out Advice Forum Friday. Got a question? Want some advice? Link it here and see what happens!

Now go on over to Shannon's and check out all the great Wednesday tips!

Super Sunday - Injury Report

Injury report from Sunday's Life Games:

1. One six-year-old Cheerleader with at best an ankle strain, and possibly a fracture. Cause of injury? Big old men falling on top of her while she innocently watched the Tug Of War.

2. Full-grown man with 3-inch gash on his heel. Cause of injury? Playing kickball barefoot in the dark.

3. A bunch of sore folks who thought they were in better shape, and some who knew they weren't. Cause? We're obviously not active enough!

I wish I could show you the photo that J. sent me of her poor injured daughter in the ER. Just tragic.

Y'all, it was still tons of fun, though. Even though I didn't win the Ice Cream Making Contest. But really, I'm over it.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Ancient History

I was pregnant once. For 7 weeks and 4 days. But I didn't know the pregnancy had ended until 11 weeks. It was 2001.

I happened upon another blogger's pregnancy story this afternoon, and as she recounted showing her ultrasound to the grandparents, I felt a punch in my stomach. My miscarriage is a part of our history, but it doesn't usually hit me like this. Today, I vividly remembered every detail, and it hurt.

I may ramble a bit here, but I really want to share this today. Big Daddy and I were married in 1996, and I didn't want children. He respected my wishes. My wishes changed around 1999, but we had trouble getting pregnant. To borrow what I've heard others say before, I tried to NOT get pregnant for 10 years, and then when I wanted to get pregnant, I couldn't.

We discussed how far we were willing to go with infertility treatments, and decided that we would stop short of injectible medications or IVF. We drew that line mainly because of finances and my fear of needles. So, I became a regular at my OB/GYN's office in the early morning hours before work. Ultrasounds, blood work (so much for my fear of needles), etc. Our final attempt at that point was IUI, for which Big Daddy was present. I'm a big crybaby, and when BD saw how hard it was for me to go through a procedure that's easy for others, he said, "Enough, no matter the outcome." The outcome was negative.

I agreed with BD's decision, and thank God that I never felt the crushing loss or incompleteness that so many people feel at being unable to conceive. Big Daddy and I were disappointed, but happy with our life, and resigned to the fact that that's how it would stay.

Fast forward a few months, and I was scheduled to have weight loss surgery. My surgery date was Tuesday, March 27th, 2001. On the Sunday prior to my surgery, I realized that my period was about two weeks late, but attributed it to anxiety about the surgery. Nevertheless, I dug through the drawer and found a leftover pregnancy test, and HOLY CRAP, it came up positive.

I am being completely honest here when I tell you I was devastated. It had taken a while to come to terms with the fact that we wouldn't have children, but I got there. I was excited about getting healthy and moving on. P.S., I was at my all-time high weight, and I was miserable.

BD and I went to Tom Thumb and bought 3 more pregnancy tests, which all came back glaringly positive. I remember crying, telling him, "I can't live in this body for nine more months!"

I went first thing that Monday for a blood test, which obviously came back positive. I was still in shock, but no longer hysterical. I sure didn't understand God's timing, but I couldn't argue with it. In fact, we went straight from the OB's office to Babies R Us. Yeah, I shifted gears pretty quick. We called my parents, "Yeah, don't come see me in the hospital tomorrow, cause uhm...I'M PREGNANT!" It was really an exciting time.

Four weeks later, I had an ultrasound which showed that tiny little 6-week-old heartbeat just flashing and flashing and flashing. We were sure it was a girl! I don't remember much about the next few weeks, just that the weekend before my 11 week check-up, I felt a little strange, nothing more.

We went in for our 11-week check-up, and because I was high-risk (weight and age), I was scheduled for a glucose tolerance test and another ultrasound. I drank that gross crap for glucose tolerance and then went back for my ultrasound. I was looking at the screen as the tech was looking around in there (Argh) and I knew that I wasn't seeing what I should see. When the tech did the clicky measuring thing, 7w4d is what it said on the bottom of the screen. I knew that wasn't right. The tech then excused herself and went to get the doctor. I knew then. Big Daddy wouldn't accept it, but I knew.

My very sweet doctor came into the ultrasound room and looked at the screen, and said what we didn't want to hear, "I'm sorry..." He scheduled me for a D&C, and the rest is...well, it was awful. Because not only did I lose my baby, but anesthesia makes me sick, so BONUS! It sucked.

I never did have weight-loss surgery, because I was back in baby mode. We went through all of the minimally invasive measures again, with no results. And resigned ourselves again. It wasn't for a few more years that we seriously considered adoption.

About a year ago, I realized something ironic. My Tinkerbell was born the day after my D & C, in another part of the state, to a woman who wasn't willing to stop doing drugs in order to keep her children. And three+ years later, we found her and her sisters.

And I'll tell y'all more about that another time.

Super Sunday

Y'all, we had the best day yesterday at our church's "Life Games."

Our Life Group placed in Pie Eating, Horseshoes, Kickball, Tug of War, Ice Cream Making, Ping Pong, and maybe a few "Spirit Points."

We didn't do so well in Dodgeball, Water Volleyball, or Tricycle Race.

A wonderful member of our Life Group designed and hand-printed our shirts. All our kids (mostly girls) were in matching shirts and pom-poms to cheer for the adults.

I don't think I've sweat so much in my entire life, and had a blast nonetheless. The sweating part was gross, but the rest - oh, so much fun!

I had an entry in the Ice Cream Making contest - Cherry Dr. Pepper Ice Cream (recommended by Grace at lola makes three). I thought it was the rockingest ice cream ever, and Big Daddy agreed. It had maraschino cherries in it, and did I mention it rocked? Guys, there were only 12 entries in the ice cream contest, and my Cherry Dr. Pepper Ice Cream did not place. I'm almost certain I had a jealous spirit, and was a poor sport. But I repented. I'll post the recipe later.

The good news is, my friend J placed third with her also rocking Cherry Pineapple ice cream, so we did score points in that event.

Our Life Group came in 4th out of over 15 groups, and we're one of the smallest groups. In some events, we were competing with half as many players as our opponents.

We drove home at 9:30, salty from sweat and exhausted, and oh, so happy.

We can't wait to do it again - but maybe not in August next time.

Why is that?

Why is that Big Daddy and I can sit in pleasant silence in the car, him driving and me staring at the passing scenery, and then the minute I open up my book to read, he thinks of something to talk about?

Why is that my pretty girls don't want to talk to me until they hear these computer keys start clicking? It's as if this sound brings to mind all the questions of the universe.

ah, my life! Thank goodness I love it so much!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Advice Forum Friday - Edition First

Okay, y'all, it's time for the first ever Advice Forum Friday! I'm just so excited and nervous at the same time! So excited, in fact, that I'm posting it a whole day in advance. Just didn't wanna be late.

Here's how this works: Write a post about a question or problem that you have, be sure to link back to this post, and then list your own post in the Mr. Linky below. Then, visit some of the other blogs listed, and comment away!

Please remember that the purpose of this Forum is helping and uplifting one another. Therefore, when dispensing with the advice and recommendations, please be sweet. If you can't say something nice, PLEASE say nothing!

So, without further ado, here's an issue that I'd like some advice about. You know I love my girls. I'd kick your butt if you hurt them or their feelings.

But I have a talker. A Loud Talker. A Constant Loud Talker. Sometimes you can tell that she has no idea what she's talking about, but she just has this need to hear her own voice. I want to teach her, number one, that she doesn't have to verbalize every thought that pops into her head. And second, I want her to learn restraint. I want her to stop talking when she's told to, and I want her to lower her voice when she's told to.

Now before you get the idea that I'm a mean old mom, let me explain that the main reason I'm bringing this issue to Advice Forum is that I want to be able to deal with it delicately and without hurting my Tink's feelings. Because I feel guilty every time that I ask her to stop talking, but oh my goodness with The Loud Talking!

So, my peeps, bring on the advice. (I've still got "peeps" stuck in my head and I'm trying to use it up!)

Now don't forget to LINK BACK TO THIS POST, list your post below, and visit the other participants. Let's help each other out!

Oh, and if you want to help out with a button, let me know. There was a sweet lady who offered some examples, but I think I may have offended her when I asked for a different font. So, be advised. I might ask you to change something. Hope that's okay.