Saturday, July 31, 2004

Mixed Emotions

Blue Moon I have always loved the moon.  My name means moon....Cynthia.  My once in a blue moon is this having an extended period of time when I don't have to work.  One major surgery and two babies have given me these breaks 3 time in the past 9 years or so.  This is different from being's a REST! 

Miss Wonderful Baby does not want to drink her milk from a bottle.  This is all my fault. Well I guess it's some Jeff's fault.  We should have forced OURSELVES to get her started on the bottle earlier.  I thought she'd be fine for when I go back to work because Jackson was great about it.  He didn't miss a beat.  She's had a couple of bottles before and did well with the bottle when we were in NC.  Today though all bets are off and she's mad as hell that I'm even trying.  I've attempted with 3 different nipples and no dice.  Hopefully, Jeff will have more luck when he tries tonight.  She's cooing now because I relented and nursed her. 

My eye is twitching again.  I never thought this would happen to me but I think I might be on the path of those women who return to work for a very short time after the maternity leave and then quit.  I can't just not go back and I can't quit without some study of our finances and a backup plan in place but I can feel it starting to tremor in me like an earthquake.  Just like I never thought I'd leave headhunting and go corporate and then found myself part of an internal HR dept., I may be headed for the part time stay at home routine.  I think it's a challenge I'm ready how to swing it???

To Katherine

I'm sitting here looking at you my daughter and you are so beautiful it makes my breath catch in my throat. Our 14 special weeks together have come to and end but I remember like it was yesterday, how it felt to hold you in my arms those first few hours when we were in the hospital. I have said that your brother completes me but you, my love, are the cherry on top. You are the most wonderful and pleasant baby.  Your smile just catches me by the heart and I would like nothing more than to stay at home with you a while longer.  I cannot look at you without saying a little prayer of thanks to God for sending you, my little angel, into my care.  I love you darling baby Kate.


Friday, July 30, 2004

The Party's Over

The sun is shining!  The tank is clean!  er, wait a minute.  The sun is shining!  Our friends are coming over for lunch!  Today is the last day of my perfect maternity leave.  Do I wish I could stay home another month and call it a summer off?  Absolutely!  But it's time for me to go back.  Do I hate the thought of leaving my little angel all day?  Absolutely!  But I can keep her home with me when I work from's only a matter of time before she outgrows this little kitten stage and is to active to stay home while I work.  I still think daycare should be paying me to have her all day...

So today we're having a pizza party on the patio at lunchtime.  Two other babies and one toddler will be here.  I'm looking at it as a celebration of my time off and I'm glad to have the company to keep my mind off the fact that it's come to an end.  I did most of the things I wanted to around the house and got the rest I so needed. 

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Reality Sets In

So yesterday afternoon I spoke to one of my work colleagues and by the time I hung up with him my right eye was twitching.  It was still twitching this morning!  I kid you not!

Jackson decided he was not going to start the day whining and crying about nothing today and wanted to stay home from "school".  Fine by me.  We had a lovely morning.  Piggers napped in the swing, I cleaned out the little pool and Jax played in the water while it was filling.  I pruned the dead blooms from the butterfly bush and all was right with the world.   A friend called and long story short I watched her 5 month old baby for a few hours this I had three kids under 3 home with me for part of the day.  Piece of cake.  Then Stephen called.  Last night he stopped at the store to get things for our lunch, made everything, and woke to find that his refrigerator had gone on the fritz we had Chik Fil A....but it was a great visit and Stephen looks just wonderful after having had a heart attack and heart surgery a few months ago.  His gift to Kate is a gorgeous off white velvety soft snowsuit.  It's perfect for my snow princess!  Jackson picked yesterday to be on best behavior all day and we had fun, fun, fun.  I even managed to give baby Andrew his bottle while I nursed Kate (before Stephen got here, thankfully).  At one point he and I each had a baby in our arms.  It was so good to see him! 

My eye even stopped twitching!                                  baby bassinetbaby bassinet



Long May They Wave--Virginia Here

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Is it really the end of July?

  Seriously, this was me yesterday when they told me how much the tuition per week will be for both kids in daycare full time.  Don't get me wrong, I knew what it would be but I've never even had one in full time and now two of them full time starting Monday.  Not to mention that I've been in touch with the office and so now have to fight off the anxiety that comes with the b.s. that goes on in any office environment.  All it takes is one weak link at the top and the chain of command is compromised.  I've got to focus on going in (or logging in), doing what I need to do, and then taking care of my kids and my home!  I think I'm really at the point where I'm ready to commit to playing "the game" in total.  It's a matter of survival and I will survive!

Ok, so today started with Jeff leaving for work early and leaving Jackson home with me to take to daycare, or not.  He had not yet let the dogs out and by the time I got downstairs we were in the middle of a torrential downpour.  I let them out, they took a couple of leaps off the patio steps and then turned around and looked at me like "you're kidding right?"  I had to yell at them to "go pee!"  Luckily we keep a towel right by the back door for drying them off.  So Jackson is in his everything I say or do is wrong mode and he's whining to beat the band....about everything and anything.  So after eating a quarter of his waffle and one spoonful of his oatmeal he found himself on his way to "school".  The rain had stopped and today is splash day for his class so he'll get some water play in while I'm here at home searching the web for the bus schedule I need to get into DC next Thursday, calling Verizon about adding a phone jack, calling the health insurance provider about an unpaid bill, yada, yada, yada.  I dropped of Kate's diapers, wipes, and cereal for next week so I don't have to drag everything in with me on her first day Monday. 

I'll be jumping right in to things as my boss scheduled a 9:00 meeting with one of my "clients" for me.  Isn't that special?  That would be right before my call with the boss to find out what's happening.  Does that make sense to anyone out there because it sure doesn't make sense to me.  Luckily, recruiting is still very busy where we are so I'm sort of needed right now. 

paddling clipartI think I'll stop procrastinating and put the instructional video for the rowingmachine into the VCR since it's not sitting right by the TV - and get myself on the rower for the first time.  And I put 15 mins. in on the rowing machine today and on Friday my friend Kathy, who rowed in college, will be here to make sure my form is proper. 

"Chef Clipart"But tomorrow my friend Stephen is coming over and bringing lunch.  Stephen loves to whip things up in his kitchen and believe "presentation is everything." so I'm sure it will be a treat!  I hope he brings dessert!


Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Timing is Everything

It's a muggy hot day here in the nation's capital area.  Bad news for my roses again but the butterflies are practically swarming around the butterfly bush.  They are Eastern Tiger Swallowtails and I'm thinking they must be mating or something because they fly away from the flowers and do this sort of mid-air dance thing.  I'm wondering if the males are trying to establish dominance, etc.  Last year I found out that the pretty brown butterflies with the blue are actually the ETS females and not a different butterfly.  These yellow things are the males.

When I returned to work after Jackson was born I walked back into a huge project that involved a few days of work off site and longer hours.  Next week I go back to work after Kate and Jeff informs me that he will be going out of town but he doesn't know which day or for how long.  Hmmmm.  I have a Tuesday afternoon meeting and have to go to the downtown office for training on Thursday.  Anyone want to guess which day or days he'll be going?  And I still need to figure out what's going on with Metro because I'm seeing snippets on the news about some SmartCard that you have to purchase in order to use the parking garages/lots and ride the trains.  I'm thinking it will be less stressful if I take the train so I don't have to deal with timing my trip around the HOV restrictions.  Or maybe not.  I guess that will depend on whether Jeff is home or not.  HOV starts at 6:30 a.m. and so does daycare.  Not that there's any chance in hell that I would have myself and the kids (and the dogs encaged) ready by 6:30 anyway.  But for right now I am going to focus on what has to be done THIS week. 

Whew, what a day.  First of all it was the muggiest day of the least it felt that way to me!


Monday, July 26, 2004


Although I tried to keep the house tidy all weekend I came downstairs this morning to rooms that look like a cyclone had been through them.  That would be Cyclone Jackson.  There is "stuff" everywhere and I do so like to have the stuff put away before the cleaning lady comes on Monday so here we go. 

I'm sitting here feeling guilty that I ate through almost a whole package of Oreos since Thursday.  The biggest favor I could do myself is to leave them at the store.  This is one of those days that were it not the last week of my maternity leave I would go back to bed just to hide out from what's bringing me down.  Not only am I not doing that today but I know that once I spend 30 mins whipping the kitchen and family room back into shape I'll feel much better.  Then on to the upstairs.  Today I will get Kate's daycare registration paperwork done and pick up her health form at the pediatrician's office.  The sun is trying to come out after a rainy weekend.  More later.

Tomorrow we will stop at the dr.'s office to get the health form.  The paperwork is done except for a piece of info that's in a file I can't locate.  The search will be on for that later tonight.  Yet again I'm thinking that after dinner and kid bedtime I will work a little on Jackson's scrapbook.  It looks like rain again.  The beetles seem to have moved on from my roses and butterfly bush but the black spot as reared its ugly head even with all of my vigilant spraying.  It's a wonder that I get the gorgeous roses that I do to cut and bring inside where we enjoy them immensely.  I would never win any garden club prizes for perfect roses on a perfect rosebush outdoors!

Those nasty Oreos are also gone.  I thought really hard about throwing the rest of them away but I did the right thing...I ate them!  I will not be buying them again.  They could be giving them away at Giant and they will not be crossing my threshold.....

Sunday, July 25, 2004

What You Think About You Bring About Cont'd

How long have I been using a computer?  You'd think it was since yesterday because having not saved as I worked for the past hour or so I lost today's blog and I'm not starting over.  It will be totally different from what I'd originally written.  I hate that!

Well on Fri night I finished 3 scrapbook pages and most of a 4th and had a lot of fun with some new friends.  Sat. a.m. Jackson was antsy so I pulled out some new Play Doh and made this frog for him.  I may quit recruiting job and hire myself out to do these things at children's parties.  Or not....I think I'll hit the shower and see what I can accomplish today but first I have to say that as I look out on the patio with the kids' blow up pool, Playskook basketball hoop, sandbox, mini picnic table, and pile of seashells or the toy strewn family room with some baby gear (swing, bouncy seat) thrown in for good measure, I am happier today than I had been for most of my life!  I may not be at Mass today but I'm thanking God for every blessing in my life!My big accomplishment before I napped the afternoon away with the kids  yesterdaywas to finally sort through all of the baby clothes I'd been given for Kate from 3 different sources.  She now has clothes labeled and ready for this Fall/Winter, Summer '05 and Fall/Winter '05.  The too small already things are sorted out, as are the items to donate, and the things to give to S now that we know she's having a boy.  I am on the verge of having all of the residual maternity clothes and no needed baby clothes out the door!

Next weekend's project is to move Kate into her own room and set up the desk in our room.  Not the ideal place for the desk and computer but until we re-establish the office in the basement that is the best route for me to be doing things from home I think.  The plan is to put myself in the best possible position to do a little work after the kids go to bed.  Dragging everything back out onto the kitchen table after dinner is not an option and taking over the dining room?  I don't think so.  If only our neighborhood wasn't the land Verizon forgot when enabling access to DSL.  I could get high speed via cable with Comcast but we recently switched to DISH from cable.  ....feels like one step forward two steps back to me. 

Friday, July 23, 2004

What You Think About You Bring About

I'm frustrated because Jackson is all over the place today and I shouldn't be because a) he was excellent when I took him to the rectory for the Mass card and then to Target for diapers and b) we didn't have any outside playtime because it's been looking like the verge of rain all day.  All he wants is a little more Mommy attention.  I've been trying to include him in everything I do.  This precious little boy loves to help unpack the groceries when I bring them home!

So today we go the Mass card and also talked to the church lady about Kate's baptism.  Unbeknownst to be because I haven't been going to Mass we have a new pastor as of July 1.  The new pastor is simplifying a few things including the baptisms and so we may have some flexibility on the date vs. 3rd Sunday of each month.  Other good news is that we probably don't have to do the prep class again because it's only been 2 years or so since Jackson was christened. 

The pediatrician's office called and Kate's state health form for entry into daycare is ready for me to pick up.  I bought diapers, wipes, and cereal to get her started and will drop them off next week so I don't have to remember and carry a bunch of stuff on her first day.  I have myself on a breastmilk pumping schedule so I can have some in storage for when she needs it.  I need to fill out the rest of her paperwork and submit that. 

Tonight I'm off to a scrapbook/cropping session with one of my friends.  It's right nearby and I'm looking forward to a 4 hour chunk of time to work on the books away from the house --especially after feeling cooped up in here all day. 

I guess I shouldn't feel frustrated but for some reason I do when I'm with Jackson all day and it gets to be dinner time and the dogs are starting to whine for dinner although it's a few hours too early for them; the cat is meowing; I'm trying to figure out when to start dinner, etc.  This is why I'm so hot to telecommute as much as possible and work out of the nearby satellite office more often - so I can manage this dinner hour after work thing much better and not feel so stressed.  I'm thinking we really need to re-establish our home office because it adds to the stress when I have to pull out my computer - have power cords and phone lines all over the kitchen - have the printer on the kitchen table, etc.  Problem is when I ask Jeff to help me with these things he immediately bristles and tells me my priorities are not his priorities and I have to ask over and over before it gets done.  I'm anticipating frustration so I'm feeling it already.

Ok, off to feed the baby again, fold a basket of laundry, and gather my cropping materials together because in an hour and a half off I go!

Thursday, July 22, 2004


As I put down the book I just started and turned out the light things just came together and suddenly thoughts were swirling in my head and I had to get up and distract myself from thinking about....

Talking to my mother and hearing about why she wasn't up to coming down to see the baby - she'd been to Cape May for a couple of days prior; having her pretty much confirm what an ass my uncle is for not letting my aunt come here alone but more importantly for not bringing her here or coming with her on the train.  That conversation is an entry unto itself but I'm not up to it right now.  Oh, and mention of my sister, my only sibling, the one who hates my guts...that sent me into a tailspin ...and that was just the beginning.

I moved on to the death of my friend's husband and remembering him from the old days when we were still in college, going to their wedding, parties at their house, etc.  I can't even put the awful feeling I'm feeling into words right now or think about how awful she must be feeling.  I need to get a Mass card and a sympathy card tomorrow.

Then I dwelled briefly on being at work in 10 days and not being with Piggers all day.  My sweet sweet baby girl.  That thought got me right out of bed to go to her crib and look at her in the glow of the nightlight.  Piggers, Katherine, Miss Kate, my baby!

So after catching up on some world news, reading the recap of today's episodes of AMC and OLTL, researching and finding out that the Japanese beetles are here to stay thanks to those stupid traps (I feel like I'm the last to find out that the best thing is for your NEIGHBOR to have the traps because by putting them out I drew more over here, UGH!) - anyway, after all that excitement I'm going to try going back to bed. 

Before all the negativity crept in today I did have a message from one of my "clients" telling me that things were not the same without me and that she looked forward to my return to work.  Let's just focus on that and my beautiful children lest I get tempted to pull in the welcome mat, draw all the blinds, and crawl under the covers for the duration!

Oh, I almost forgot - my great aunt who is the youngest sister of my granny, after whom Katherine is named, had her second leg amputated today as a result of complications from diabetes.  That will scare me away from the Lucky Charms and Oreos in a big fat hurry!  Poor Aunt Josie has endured 5 major surgeries in the past twelve months involving trying to save the legs and heart trouble added on. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Pictures from Corolla


Piggers Tries Cereal Today

Katherine took the cereal in stride after the initial "what the hell just went into my mouth" look.  She was 3 mos. old on Monday. 

About the other photos:

The pool is lonely today without Jacksoni but I didn't want him out of the school routine for too long lest there be a problem when I'm back to work and he has to be there.  Today is splash day for him and he says he doesn't like it but we'll see.  Last time he eventually got wet.  He took lighthouse refrigerator magnets from the Outer Banks to the teachers today.  What a little brown nose he is, huh?  Oh right, that would be me the brown nose.

Photo #3 would be what my "eggplant" you think it's time to admit they mislabeled this plant?  Although it looked a whole lot like a pepper to me I was willing to believe it was an eggplant until I got back from vacation and found these....Salsa anyone?

Received some sad news just a few minutes ago.  The husband of one of my close friends from college passed away three weeks ago.  He was 10 years older than us but still a young man of 53.  She told one of our other friends "don't ask me how I'm doing."  Kind of stops you in your tracks.


Tuesday, July 20, 2004

WWJD (What Would Julie Do?)

My bestest friend in the whole world, the one who taught me to take my icecream to bed in a mug instead of a bowl because it's easier to hang onto that way, suggested that I am insane if I take Kate & Jackson up to Philly to see my aunt this Friday and instead should stay home and take the kids to the pool with a tall glass of iced tea in hand.  Well I'm taking Julie's advice and sticking close to home.  This will enable me to a) give this whole situation more time to settle in before I see my mom, b)spend more calm quality time with the kids, and c) go to the scrapbooking crop session with my friend Maureen on Friday night.  Julie also told me where to find her housekey if I did come up and that I should spend the day with her on the beach in Cape May before returning home.....did I mention she's the bestest friend in the whole world? 

Some Vacation Highlights

Some highlights from the vacation -             

We all fit into the minivan quite comfortably.  Two car seats in the 3rd row, MIL and SD in the middle 2 captains chairs, me and hubby up front.  One dog (Big Brown) in the aisle in back; Jack Russell Terror at my feet.  Thank goodness we had the foresight and good sense to get the cargo box for the top though.  It made all the difference in the world.

My MIL being on the trip also made all the difference in the world.  What a terrific help she was looking after the baby while I went to the beach, folding our laundry,  and walking the dogs for starters.  We ate out some, ate in some, she compliments my cooking, she looks forward to happy hour as much as I do, and she just loved being with her grandchildren.  It was so very obvious just watching her with them.

Jackson was afraid of the water - both the pool and the ocean - but we got him jumping into Daddy's arms into the pool by mid-week and jumping waves by the last day.  The last day was picture perfect and made for a really nice take-home memory of our vacation. 

Let's see for some of the funnier moments Jackson learned how to boss Alex around the way she tries to boss him around.  She told him to be quiet because Kate was sleeping and a short time later she was being loud in the car and HE told HER to be quiet because Kate was sleeping.  Before he discovered the ocean would not swallow him alive he had Jeff and Alex running to fill buckets of water for him to play in the sand.  At one point I heard him say "more ocean" as he handed the bucket to Jeff.  Very cute.  Not so cute was that he dumped out the dogs' water bowl every chance he got whether it was inside or out....I read two books - Silent Partner by Stephen Frey and Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult - drank quite a bit of wine and several margaritas, ate seafood every day but one, overcame my aversion to seeing myself in a bathing suit, caught snippets of my soap operas a few times, and bought us all a Corolla sweatshirt.  (ok, I'm pathetic, I watch soaps - why do you think I'm so hell bent on working from home?)  Pictures to follow.

Back to Work

I bit the bullet and talked to my boss about going back to work.  I have resisted thinking about work while I'm on leave.  It makes me feel panicked to even go by where my office is located on the highway.  Yesterday morning I had this thought that I might announce/request (I wasn't sure which) that I work primarily from home (aka telecommute) for the first month I'm back.  So the conversation has been had and it's all good.  I feel so much better about the thought of going back and feel that I'm actually ready for the inevitable.  I mean there was never any question that I'd be going back.  So now I can enjoy the last two weeks without anxiety.  Hey, it's not like I can't take a vacation day whenever I want to, right?  This is MAJOR because I had a heavy heart all the way to North Carolina because I knew the week of vacation would fly by and I'd be home before I knew it and facing the Monday morning question of "what the hell am I going to wear".  I'll be going shopping later this week.

A Day at Home

Jackson stayed home with me today and we had a lovely day.  Just before we all napped we were out on the patio, Jackson in his swim trunks splashing in his wading pool, Kate in a pink sundress under the umbrella, Mom in shorts hanging out with the two of them.  Loads of butterflies fluttering around the butterfly bush - I will add a picture later.  I actually saw a green hummingbird as well!  So that's my picture of a perfect day as I'd imagined it before having the baby and getting to take this wonderful time to recharge my batteries, rest, and do a few things that I want to do. 

My aunt called me first thing this morning to tell me that she wouldn't be coming to visit this week, or next, to see the baby.  Sidebar:  Kate is named for my maternal grandmother and this aunt is her sister.  My aunt doesn't drive, never has.  She would have been taking the train.  We'd thought my mom, who hasn't seen the baby, would be coming with her.  Well she's not up for it and my uncle told my aunt that it's too dangerous for her to take the train by herself and so he is not letting her come.  I felt like I'd been kicked in the gut.  We didn't go into a discussion about it.  I could tell she was really upset and she told me she hadn't been sleeping well over the prospect of telling me.  I asked why my uncle couldn't drive her or take the train with her - these are people who drive from Philly to Florida and back once a year - that's right - they go right past where I live but detour to the east in Maryland vs. going around the Washington DC Beltway.  No, they can't not do the detour.  Scratch that, my uncle just won't.  Ok, so while I was out with my beautiful kids on the patio I had the revelation that my uncle is probably just really worried about my aunt traveling alone.  Do I agree that it's dangerous?  Hell, it's dangerous for her to take a shower every day.  Am I tempted to yell at him and tell him that my 73 yr. old motherinlaw just flew here from Calgary and drove to NC with us to spend time with her grandkids and my best friend's mom who is the same age as my mom (64) drives from the Jersey Shore to Long Island, to Philly, to Fort freaking Lauderdale to see her daughters and her grandkids...of course I had the strong urge to do that but I'm not doing that.  I am not going to risk alienating him when my relationship with my aunt is so important to me and this is her husband and he's worried about her traveling alone.  I get that.  I do not get why he won't drive down with her.  I would love for him to see my house and spend some time with us.  I do not get why he won't take the train with her when she's obviously so upset to be letting me down and not getting to visit.  The man has traveled via public transportation to Ireland three times in the past three years!  I'm not even going into the mother part at this time.  I am too angry that she would knowingly not come to meet her new grandaughter, named after her mother, after saying "why wouldn't I come with Aunt Dee" to me.  I was honestly at the point where I didn't care whether mom came or not because I'd had it with her and her phobias and inertia.  I'm in a different place about it today - and here's where that place is...I regret that my children will not have the wonderful experience of growing up with grandparents as a central part of their lives, as I did.  I feel strongly that my mother is missing out but that is her loss not mine.  I had been feeling that I was missing out on having her here and enjoying her company but I am over that now.  Finally, I was so frustrated that my children were missing out on their grandmother but after this moring I've decided to get real and admit that they're not missing much.  Ditto that where my uncle is concerned.  Dammit I've got so many friends whose families do everything in their power to be with them when it counts and be with them just because. I've got friends who would do the same for me and so I am letting go of this family thing.  I'm finally letting go.  I think God has finally sent me that little bit of insight I needed to come to terms with this in my mind and stop fighting for what I cannot have.  I'm grateful for that.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Watch this site for vacation pics and blog...

Thursday, July 8, 2004

161 this morning. Picked up the bathing suits and did a little "extra" shopping for myself since Kate was napping in her stroller ;) What bargains I got!

Wednesday, July 7, 2004

On the Road to the Outer Banks

163.5 this a.m. and we're into the home stretch for the vacation. Jeff's mom arrives tomorrow afternoon. Today I'll start pulling together all of our gear. There's nothing to panic about right? Must go get ready for the big bathing suit buying excursion now! More later.  I found 2 suits that fit and didn't look unflattering, they were on sale but if I have to go back tomorrow to buy them in order to get the extra 20% off.  Don't get me started but the less I pay for these jumbo suits the better I'll like it!

This may sound counterintuitive but I'm really looking forward to hanging out with my MIL.  She's really cool and she hasn't visited in a couple of years and she will sit by the pool with me and have cocktails and chat.  Jeff isn't into that but she will hang with me and I'm looking forward to it!This is the house we rented in Corolla.

It has four bedrooms on 2 levels; 2 being master suites with full bath, one upstairs and one downstairs.  There is plenty of room to spread out which will not be the case when we're all crammed like sardines into the minivan, dogs included.  I already know I have a screw loose, let's not be redundant!  So this a.m. hubby says "you don't seem excited about the vacation!"  "Well,:"  I said, "I have to pull together all of our clothes (me, him, 3 kids), decide what food to bring on the trip and what to buy there & plan car snacks, talk to the person watching the house & the cat, pick up dogfood, make sure we take the sand toys & beach towels, what about a first aid kit of some kind, um, I think I'm in the mood for apple martinis again better hit the liquor store for a bottle of sour apple stuff, oh, and I need to shop for those darned bathings suits, spray my roses once more, brush the dogs, clean out refrigerator, worry how it will all fit into the car, etc."  The mind reels and yet here I am blogging away.  I perform best under pressure and I know it'll all work out.  It always does with us.  At least sd is already here for the duration & no further dealing withher mother required.  We don't have to make the trip out to Club Pet with the dogs (aka the pe(s)ts).  Jeff is off tomorrow and Friday and that crafty thing changed his voicemail TODAY although he's there, to say he's out until the 20th - giving himself today AND the day he gets back to have a little peace to get things done.  We don't call him a rocket scientist for nothing!  Oh, that's right, he's a rocket scientist.


Tuesday, July 6, 2004

The Lighter Side of Court

Our lawyer was thinking of calling me as a witness so assumed I had to wait outside the courtroom until called (I presume to not merely corroborate what other witness said?).  Well I had Kate with me as I didn't know how long I'd be gone and she's not into taking a bottle yet, etc.

Well she gets hungry and I figure it'll be a while until I'm called so I go into the bathroom to nurse the baby thinking if I take the edge off she'll go to sleep but she didn't.  So I don't feel like
going into the bathroom again and it's like a ghost town where I am because nothing's going on in the courtroom next door and we're the only case being heard in the one Jeff's in yada I go down to the far corner on a bench that recessed into the wall and proceed to take care of our business.  It's only afterward when I was up and walking around again that I noticed the security camera perched way up high.  So now I'm a porn star but then to make me even happier Kate projectile vomits all over.  But I got her cleaned up again and disposed of the mess and rocked her some and wound up feeding her again in the bathroom and holding her and walking with her until she feel asleep.  At this time court is over and it's time to go home so maybe it's a good thing the tw*t made me out to be the wicked witch of the west in there and Rich decided not to call me as a witness after all.  I was very busy.

So we're home and I post my blog to get that off my chest and my friends rally with their support and now I am off to buy Japanese beetle traps and pick up the Little Prince and turn this damn day around, right?  Wrong!  The rocket scientist went off with my keys.  So I send a page to ask if he has them but in the meantime remember that I have a valet key for the new minivan.  Off we go to Home Depot to arm motherfor the fight against garden invaders.  (Sidebar:  HD has the beetle traps but not the metal stands you hang them on so am I to stand outside with a trap in each hand waiting for the little buggers to come over?  Can I not catch a break today?)  Yes and now we have the traps and we pick up the sweet son whose excitement to see me wipes away the cares of the day.  On the way home we find rocket scientist's pager in the glove box so he is blissfully unaware that he's made off with my keys.  Probably better that way.  Meanwhile again he sends a blog of his own to the lawyer to say he doesn't feel we were adequately prepared and so on and so forth and today was a waste and stuff like that.  It's 5:32 p.m. here in Virginia so definitely past 6 somewhere in the world.  Let happy hour begin!  I think I'll have a slurp before I tackle #1 precious son's dirty diaper.....and I'll end on a serious note with a rewording of the very nice thing one of my bestest friends said to me this afternoon-as long as SD feels she is loved by us WE WIN!  Thanks for that Ivan!  Let the beetles beware!



Our Day in Family Court

re:  Visitation with Jeff's daughter.  Ok, trying really hard here to view this as a win.  We wanted clarification on the Wednesday visitation.  Ok, so we got the clarification but it wasn't necessarily the answer Jeff wanted.  The visit is 3-8 p.m. and will stay that way.  If Jeff is more than an hour late to pick up the visit can be denied.  This is what had been happening  - visits denied because Jeff picked up after 3 - to promt us to go to court in the first place.  I'm not going to get into the part about there should have been an understanding between Jeff and OUR lawyer about what had been happening up to this point, or not, and there wasn't and they tried to figure it all out between 9:15 and 10:00 when the session was to begin.  Long story short on this part, we'd asked for visits to start at 3 but meant "as early as 3" and this was very important when the visits ended at 8.  However, for the past 5 years the Wednesday visits were overnights and Jeff picked sd up between 5 and 6 on Wed.  This was fine until a couple of months ago.  Don't know why it suddenly became an issue; can only suspect it had something to do with the impending birth of our 2nd child and possible sd's excitement over same.  Net:  Jeff has to pick up between 3 and 4 or lose the visit unless some agreement to make the pick up later is reached with the mom.  Yeah, right.  Ok, so we wanted to have the Wed. nite and every other weekend visits end in an overnight vs. return to mother's house.  Ok, so now our Sunday nights are overnights but not the Wednesdays.  We win there.  As for all of the not making sd available for the twice weekly telephone calls stipulated in the visitation agreement; the anxiety caused sd when she forgets to bring her socks back home to her mother's; the telling her she can't wear the necklace her brother gave her for Christmas; etc.  That wasn't addressed at all by the judge and our lawyer felt the reason is that ex had a file full of notations on instances where I had said or done bad things to her.   Net:  we were bad & she was bad so we got sent home with nothing on that.  Ok, so those were the issues and that was the outcome.  What's really making me sad is that sd's mother can work full time, take classes 3 nights a week, leave sd home alone for a few hours (age 9) if she doesn't have a babysitter, and sit there in a courtroom and say she's concerned about Jeff's parenting because sd broke arm at daycare (Jeff wound up taking her to the hospital but that didn't come out) and I said bad things about her and we lived together before we were married and blah blah blah.  None of that matters.  I treat sd as if she were my own.  She's been telling me every weekend that she's here that she wishes I were her mom and that ignorant woman can spew nonsense and I have no forum for rebuttal.  I guess I just had to get this all out and then remind myself of what I've been telling myself for the past 8 years....LOVE WINS IN THE END.  So I will take a deep breath, draw my own 2 children close and look in their smiling angelic faces and continue to love and care for sd to the best of my ability as if she were my own daughter and know that I am doing what I do for her and for myself and for Jeff and our family and I don't need validation from anyone else.  I try so hard not to think hateful thoughts but I fail.  This is my big test and I systematically fail at it.  Ok, I've not done anything ever to engender love from this woman and in fact have pretty much let her know how I feel about her but it's been 8 years and she's still trotting out her file and talking about perceived wrongs from 1996.  And so it leaves me feeling even though we gained something we lost....

So tomorrow should be tons more fun that today.  I'm off to find a bathing suit for my 30 lbs. overweight post partum (think Reubenesque) physique.  I should be flying high by this time tomorrow, huh?  I did weigh in 1.5 lbs. lighter today though.

Monday, July 5, 2004


 (and may I say that Dick Van Dyke's attempt at a cockney accent is atrocious.  He'd have been better off sounding American!) 

The baby princess (Princessina) slept through the night!  She fell asleep at about 11:00 and woke up shortly before 6:00 a.m.  Mommy got a terrific rest, fed her, let the dogs out and then went back to sleep.  Daddy made omelets for breakfast and now at 10:15 all of the kids are either sleeping or watching MP.  The pe(s)ts are even reclining peacefully outside in the sunshine.  Should we prepare to go to the pool later?  Right now I'm going to consult my to do list to see what I can get done today but then pull out my scrapbooks and crop for a bit.  I would love to get Jackson's 1st year and a half book done so I can get started on The Jackson Chronicles, Vol. II. 

Speaking of the pool, my to do list is chock full of things to get ready for the family vacation.  We're loading the new minivan (now complete with rooftop carrier) with kids, buckets & shovels, MIL, and pe(s)ts to head to Corolla, NC for the week.  Are we nuts?  Probably.  Will it be great once we get there?  Definitely!  Note to self:  bathe and brush the hell out of the dogs before Saturday a.m.! 

Also, cancel their reservation at Club Pet!! 


Sunday, July 4, 2004

Five Foot Two Eyes of Blue

165 lbs. this a.m.  Yes, a bold move to note weight but I am not happy that I have not lost in proportion to the amount I lost after my last pregnancy.  Specifically, I gained 20 lbs. less this time so I should be 20 lbs. ahead of the game but alas I am right where I was 3 mos. after the first one! To what do I attribute this?  The Oreo cookie and Lucky Charm binges that characterized the first month and a half after giving birth and now, my return to daily wine consumption.  First step is that I've eliminated the middle of the night bowl(s) of cereal after feeding the baby.  Second, we're limiting portions around here starting a few days ago.  Third, happy hour now starts at 6:00 instead of 4:00 if there is a happy hour at all.  I'll get into the exercise part later on. 

Happy Birthday USA!  Dad and the 2 older kids just went down the street to watch some fireworks.  I'm home with baby because I think the noises would be too much for her little ears at close range AND it is humid as the dickens around here and I abhor humidity when I'm uncomfortable to begin with and I'm uncomfortable to begin with today.  I'm also thinking those vile mosquitos will be out there doing their bloodsucking thing and I do not want to expose the little princess to that either.  So I get to stay home and watch the dogs quake with fear at the loud & sudden popping sounds.

I don't know why I feel frustrated.  I finally coaxed Jeff into putting up the brackets for my window treatments in the master bedroom.  After viewing the finished product he proclaimed it to look exceptionally nice in there.  Hmmmmpf!  Why does he think I was after him since March to help me get it done?  I am quite pleased with the result and also that I hung up some pictures in Jackson's room.  Slowly but surely things are being ticked off my list!  I feel better already!


Saturday, July 3, 2004

This 'n That

"Until you value yourself,you won't value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it."  M. Scott Peck

Ok, so the Founding Father I would most like to party with this Independece Day is Thomas Jefferson because I share his love of gardening.  I would love to open a bottle of chardonnay and talk to him about my tomato plants, roses, peonies, clematis, etc.  And speaking of produce I have a question - when buying corn - who out there just bags the ears and who pulls back the husk to reveal....what are you looking for?  I have it on good authority that the grocery stores love when customers do that because they take that corn, husk it, package it, and sell it for like a jillion times the per ear price of corn in the husk...just curious!

I wish I could afford to buy a computer for my mom so she could get with the internet and start reading about how other people are living their lives in retirement.  Is it wrong to wish she'd get out and experience more and allows others to experience HER more?  Will she really finally make it down here (yes, the whole 3 hour trip) to see her new grandaughter?  We're just going to ignore the fact that she blew off our invitation to go on our Outer Banks vacation with us by dragging out her pat excuses and saying she'd think about it.  Did she think I'd ask her again?  Another missed opportunity for her and for me and for her grandkids.  Trying not to sound bitter.  Will have to research the computer thing even though I'm not crazy enough to think having it will make her use it or using it will be a motivator. 

Posting the following at the request of my new buddy Lisa...

Picture from HometownKeep the torch burning to celebrate AOL Journal's 1 Year Anniversary

Friday, July 2, 2004

Chunky Monkey

At Kate's 2 mo. check up her dr. procaimed her "chunky" but added "isn't she a baby doll!?"  Hmmmm, yeah!  Jackson's cardiologist added today that she's a "big girl".  Have they not seen Hudson or Andrew?  Just woke from Jackson's nap.  I took the nap for him since I was tired.  He sat next to me and played.  The house is messy and the evening's plans are still up in the air.  I need to have a glass of iced tea and take charge of the remainder of this afternoon!  Da Da Da Da Da Daaaaa....CHARGE!

P.S.  I swear to God that this video watching is going to stop and we're going to listen some decent music in the afternoons!  That will be more of me taking charge just as soon as Barney finishes his trip to the zoo.  I thought I hated Barney but geez I hate BJ and Baby Bop even more! 


"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming WOW! WHAT A RIDE."

- Unknown

The problem with this is that after 40 it takes more and more Advil to get your day rolling...My goal will be to strike a balance between eating steaks and cakes and drinking my wine AND losing all the weight I gained having babies after 40, etc.

I want to FEEL good in 10 years. I want to get my groove back on. I do not want to wait to do these things until the kids are all grown up. I want it NOW! I'm going to start with moderation and that includes the wine, the snacks and the exercise. I know that if I try to go cold turkey I will feel deprived and tortured and fail miserably...

Thursday, July 1, 2004

Today's Update

Can't shake the anxious feeling about my remaining time off work being on the wane.  Maybe this is just a bad week?  Kate has her 2 mo. check up today and will be getting shots.  I'm not looking forward to this.