Friday, November 30, 2007

Official "Thursday" Weigh-In

Man, was I ever having a bad night last night. I hate these hormonal times! I went through yesterday afternoon and last night feeling so emotional. I felt like there was something missing from my life, like there was a hole somewhere, and I couldn't even put my finger on it.

I feel a bit better today. So here is my weigh in.

I gained half a pound over the past two weeks, taking me up to an even 157 and an even 80 pounds lost. Not bad, I guess, since I was served Thanksgiving dinner a grand total of five times within the space of a week.

For a little perspective, here is a staff photo from December 2004, about eight months before I started WW. That's me on the right (in case you couldn't tell) and Amanda is in the middle, with the curly hair and the cocky expression.

I found it when I was getting out the Christmas decorations last week. My first thought was, "Wide Load!"

This picture was taken a couple of weeks ago, with a tour group. Not the most flattering pose, but you get the drift:

And now for a random thought. I was listening to my James Brown Christmas music this morning on the way to work. (If you haven't heard Santa Claus Go Straight to the Ghetto you've missed something, my friend.) And I was thinking about how he died on Christmas last year. And then I remembered his long road to interrment.

Know what? This is going to sound odd and morbid, but I think it's kind of awesome that he had two funerals, and about half a dozen clothing changes, and that he hung around first in the funeral home's back room and then his own living room for three or four months, before finally being buried in his back yard.

Because that's how the Hardest Working Man In Show Business would've wanted to go. Working hard to get to his final resting place.


Monday, November 26, 2007

Back in black

'Cause I'm wearing black pants today, get it?

Oops. I forgot. You can't see my pants. Or the lavender shirt that used to belong to Amanda, and now belongs to me, because my mom has a rule that if you leave her house for a month and you leave something there, you must not want it, and she'll put it in a yard sale. And she didn't sell it, and I saw it, and I took it for my very own.

(But I'm not bitter about the bottle of Bijan perfume that was given to me by a teacher, that I left at home when I went to college, and was gone when I came home for fall break a mere six weeks later. Not me.)

I did have some limited internet access over the weekend (Remember? Trip to GA to see the Turners?) but it was dialup, and I'm so not going there. I'd rather do without than try to go there.

I've been at work since early this morning, trying to fix a problem which wasn't mine to fix, and I'm still recovering from the trip. I'll post more later - remind me to tell you the one about the guy in the food court at the mall where we were eating on Friday, who started yelling at the crowd, and I wondered how long it would take me to grab AM and her cousin and get them to safety. Or the one where I played Scrabble with my mother-in-law, her two sisters, and my sister-in-law, and LOST.


Because I may deal in words for a living, but these folks are straight-up Scrabble fiends. Aunt Grace has a special-edition Scrabble board that rotates and everything! I've got to get a strategy before I play them again, one that includes playing Scrabble more often than once every 10 years.

For now, I'm instituting a new feature: Music Monday. No, I'm not original. I'm jumping on the train, though.

On the way back yesterday I was listening to my iPod, and took a break from my steady diet of Tobymac to switch to a little Kirk Franklin. And this song came on, and really spoke to me - if you've been reading a while, you know I've got major self-esteem issues. I've been really blessed in my life, but I've also been hurt really badly, sometimes by people I really cared about, and it has caused me to second-guess myself and most of my life decisions.

I don't know if I latched on to it because I'd spent the weekend with the world's most negative person (my MIL) or because I'd slipped back into some bad eating habits on the trip (Cheesy scalloped potatoes? Really?) and was feeling pretty down, but it did affect me. And gave me a glimmer of hope that I'm not as awful as I sometimes imagine, and that I could get up today and make better choices, and I was, with God's grace, going to be OK.

Forgiving one's self is sometimes just as hard as forgiving others, isn't it?

I have to warn you - tissues may be prudent. I could barely hold back the tears as I watched this video. And now I pass the emotionally-wringing torch on to you!

(Thanks, Linda, for the Music Monday idea!)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

You'd think after all these years he'd learn to listen to me

(Oh, man. I told myself this was NOT going to be a gloating post.)

(Too late.)

Let's rewind to last Friday night, so you can get the full impact of the story I'm about to tell.

Mom came by to get Anna Marie and take her out to dinner - and I did not object, because, remember we'd had a hard week with sickness and behavior problems and such like that.

A couple of hours later, mom called to say that they'd had dinner, they'd gone grocery shopping at Wal-Mart, and Anna Marie had bought some stuff to eat at Gramma's house. Therefore, mom would be having red headed company overnight.

Again, no argument here.

About 8:00, they stopped by our house to get AM some clothes. When they left, Jason immediately started trying to rearrange the living room.

(I know that very few of you out there in Blogland have ever been to my house, but it's small. Like, about 1,000 square feet. And there are two floor furnaces, one in the hallway, and one in the living room. He's been trying for three years now to figure out how to rearrange the furniture in the living room so that we can use that heater. At present, there is too much furniture too close to it to do so safely.)

Anyway. I informed him that I'd been working all week, and taking care of a sick kid, and trying ever-more-complicated behavior modification techniques on her. And I was not, repeat, not spending my Friday night moving furniture.

He was not, repeat, not happy with me. But he didn't move any furniture, either.

(Let me also explain that we have a large picture window, which I refuse to put anything in front of. And our living room is rectangular, with part of that rectangle serving as the dining area. So, in reality, we have only two walls on which to place furniture. The couch is across from the window, and the entertainment center is on the other wall. A chair is at a right angle to the couch, with a round table between the two seating places. There is also a rug, an ottoman, and a square coffee table in front of the two.)

Fast forward to last night.

After being at the auction all day for the two previous days, he got a bee in his bonnet to move the furniture again. I didn't think it was a good idea, but I let him go ahead.

He got the couch and the entertainment center switched, and proceeded to plug the electronics up on the new wall. That's when the fuse blew. Yes, we live in a really old house, and have a fuse box. He had extra fuses on hand, but he said the outlet looked faulty. So, since he was already in his PJs, I drove around the corner to pick up a new outlet.

He installed the outlet, changed the fuse, and hooked everything back up. Except, the satellite wouldn't receive a signal. Anna Marie came into the room, and wanted to watch TV, so I took her to my room.

Same story. Apparently, the fuse blowing also knocked out the dish's ability to get a signal.

He got on the horn to DirecTV, and they gave him a couple of options to try - in lieu of a $70 minimum service call, of course. He determined that part of the dish was out, and he would fix it today. Did he tell them about the blown fuse? No!

Except - it wasn't that part at all. He spent most of the day climbing on and off the roof (did I mention it's raining here?) and changing out parts. And now, he has to exchange the part, because it wasn't that part at all. He blew out the cable that runs to the dish.

He had a little extra cable, and ran that so we'd be able to watch at least one TV tonight - except that we weren't home tonight. We met Amanda at the Spaghetti Warehouse for a pre-Thanksgiving bowl of pasta.

Oh, and the rearranged living room? It's been ditched, because he found out what I already knew - that his design wouldn't work anyway. No room for the chair where we thought it would go. So now everything is back where it was.

Last night, as we were getting ready for bed, he said, "Go ahead and say it. Say that you didn't want that furniture moved in the first place."

Who, me, gloat?


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

A little something for the ladies

First off, who decided that November would be a good month for NaBloPoMo? For reals. Because even though lots of blog-worthy stuff goes on (Nutcracker, Jason's B-Day, Thanksgiving) lets be honest - when blog-worthy stuff is happening, in real time, you don't actually have time to blog about it.


Anyway, Anna Marie's health seems to be improving. The only medicine she's still taking is the Amoxicillin, which happens to be her favorite of the three liquids she's been chugging for the past week. She's only got one more day to take it though, so I'm sure she's not going to be happy with that.

Her behavior improved too. After getting in trouble nearly every day last week, she stayed on green yesterday! Yay!

We went to Chili's for Jason's birthday on Saturday. Black bean burgers rock! He went to Fazoli's later for some turtle cheesecake, but I played it safe - just a lemon ice for me.

Oh, and on Friday, he informed me that we're spending Thanksgiving with his mother. Yes, that mother. In Georgia. Yes, that Georgia. The one that takes all day to get to. We aren't leaving until Thursday morning, and we have to return on Sunday so I can get back to work, Anna Marie can get back to school, and Jason can get to the dentist.


The one upside is that we'll be stopping at Cracker Barrel again for lunch - not something we could convince his mom to go for if we were there for the actual Thanksgiving dinner. She's all traditional and stuff. I'm for tradition, and I have fond memories of holidays at my granparents house, with the adults in the kitchen and the kids eating around the coffee table in the living room. But I also have memories of the fights, both verbal and physical, that broke out. Hey, my grandparents didn't have a TV, and they lived on a farm, so we got bored. And everyone was in everyone else's business. Perfect storm for a fight.

I think I like my tradition better.

Anyway, I hope your Thanksgivings go better than mine (probably) will, or at least that you enjoy where you'll be traveling more. I can't really argue with Jason wanting to see his family, since we see mine almost every day. And, we'll be spending Christmas here, as always, so I guess Thanksgiving is a nice compromise.

Unfortunately, my MIL doesn't exactly have high speed internet. Or any internet for that matter. So we'll take the laptop, but we'll have to get online late at night since we'll be plugging into her phone line.

Ugh. Dial up. Insert "1994 called and they want their internet back" joke here.

I realized, however, that it'd been a while since we'd heard from our favorite Kiwis, Bret and Jermaine. A.K.A. Flight of the Conchords.

So here is a little something special for the ladies:

It's the least I can do.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Bloggers of the world unite!

I need your help, folks.

Remember my LOL cat post from last week? Well, I've been spending a little too much time over at the Cheezburger Factory.

And I made me some LOL cats.

And one of them got put on the voting page! Yay!

So, if you could, could you meander over to I Can Has Cheezburger and find the voting page (the link is at the right of the page, near the top) and find this guy:

And vote for me, dagnabbit!

I mean, please.

Just click on the burgers above the picture. I'm going to warn you - you may have to visit several pages to find him. I couldn't do a direct link because the page number is likely to change as other LOL cats get in the running.

You can thank me for introducing you to this tremendous time suck later.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Official Thursday Weigh-In

It's cold, y'all. Really cold.

And apparently that shivering helped me to lose another pound this week.

Down to 156.5, a total of 80.5 lost. (Remember, I was here two weeks ago, and undid all my hard work in one fell swoop. Back now, though.)

Now, back to the shivering.

(Oh, and there'll be no weigh-in next week, of course. Thanksgiving and all that.)

She's done it again

Despite my (and perhaps her) best efforts, Anna Marie got into trouble again today at school.

Fortunately, there was no call from the teacher. I'd been holding my breath all day.

I had told her that if she stayed on "green" all day, she could go with me to an event at one of the schools tonight. When Jason picked her up, she asked him to bring her by the office so she could talk to me.

"How was school?" I asked.

"First, I need to talk to you in the back," she said. So we went to the back part of the building, where my office used to be. And she broke the news.

"I got on yellow today."

"Then you aren't going with me tonight."

Commence the water works.

I did ask her what she got into trouble for. Apparently, even when these kids lose their recess time, they still have to go outside - they just sit on the sidelines and watch the other kids play. Talk about punishment! Well, when it was time to line up and go back inside, guess who didn't follow the directions.

Yep. You guessed it.

"I did not know I would have to move my bee for that!" she cried. "I just knew I was going to stay on green today. I just knew!"

And, since recess is like 9:30 in the morning, she'd had to think about telling me all day long.

I went outside to the Jeep to look in her backpack. Today was progress report day, and, inexplicably, she got a good report.

Guess those must've been made out last week.

I started feeling really bad about the staying home punishment. And thinking that it would really be a punishment for Jason, would would most likely have to hear her cry the whole time I was gone.

I asked her if she'd take a spanking in lieu of staying home, and she agreed. I told her to go home, get her spanking (from Jason - let HIM be the bad guy this time) and do her homework. And, if she did everything, and I mean everything her dad told her to do, then maybe she'd earn back the privilege of going with me.

(She said she'd just keep crying, so that when she got the spanking, she'd already be started.)

I am such a pushover! And, Jason is really going to owe me for saving him from her tonight. Although, she is being punished. Just not in the way I originally set forth. One day I'll get this whole punishment business down pat. I guess.

When, oh when, does this parenting thing get easier?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Just call me Gil Grissom

'Cause I'm in CSI mode.

You will all remember that Anna Marie has been coughing of late. And that we've tried several different medications to treat said cough.

And that she went to the doctor on Monday, who suggested that we continue with the Delsym because it was pretty effective. It does, after all, have six times the concentration of cough medicine that the Dimetapp did.

What you don't know is that she has been acting absolutely terribly the past two days. In fact, I got a call from the teacher today.

The teacher, y'all. This is some serious stuff.

Yesterday she got in trouble for talking to herself at naptime. That wasn't a big deal with me - I've been known to do the same thing. But when I got her from choir practice after school, she was just awful.

Her "listener" was broken.

She got in trouble at the office, and then again when she got home because she still wouldn't listen. She wouldn't sit still, and she was climbing on everything.

We had a long talk last night, and a "reminder" before school today. And then when I got back from lunch, I had a voicemail saying she was on "yellow #2" and that I needed to call the school.

Uh oh.

Seems she wouldn't sit still at lunch. She kept getting up out of her seat, even after being told to sit down. And on the way back, there was a puddle the teacher told them to avoid. You can guess what happened next - Anna Marie looked straight at the teacher and stepped in it anyway.

Her teacher even put her on the phone with me when I called back. She offered no explination for her actions. I did ask her if she needed to go to the bathroom, and she said yes. So I told the teacher that she'd been sick, and what kind of medication she was on, and that could be the problem. I also told her that AM had been drinking more since she'd been sick, and that maybe she was needing a potty break.

Oh, and also that her dad and I would deal with her when she got home, because that behavior was unacceptable.

I felt like I sounded like I was trying to excuse her bad behavior. Honest, I wasn't. The teacher called to see if I knew why she might be acting up all of a sudden, and I was trying to help. By the way, the teacher doesn't normally call the parent until the problem gets to "red" but she felt like this was unusual, even for AM.

So, after school Jason brought her to my office so I could get her ready for dance. And she was still in the same not-listening frame of mind.

We started to really think about the possibility the medication was causing the problem. I know that antihistamine/decongestants can cause either sleepiness or excitability, but she didn't get that prescription filled until yesterday. She didn't have any until bed time. And the other medication is amoxicillin, and seriously, who's ever heard of that kind of effect from an antibiotic?

Not I.

So, after some dilligent research, I've come to this conclusion: it's the cough medicine. I've left a message with the nurse to ask if she thinks this is a possibility, but really, I think I'm right. I know she's had a problem with this behavior in the past, but I don't know if it's ever been this bad.

We're quickly running out of consequences, so I think I'm going to skip that particular cough medicine tonight. Because really, I'm at my wit's end with this situation.

And besides…

Today is Jason's birthday. I was going to enumerate all the wonderful things about him, but, of course, that was all overshadowed by the recent unpleasantness. I'll have to wait for another day - I'm all exhausted now.

(Slightly off topic - did y'all know that's how many people in the South during the Civil War referred to the hostilities? "The recent unpleasantness." Also popular was "The War of Northern Agression.")

(Do I know a lot of useless information or what?)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

I think I can, I think I can

Get through this tag.

Compliments of Valerie.

Ten things I did this weekend:
Folded about a bazillion napkins for a catering job - took AM to Nutcracker - bought more medicine - walked through a scrapbook store, but bought nothing! - ate at Quizno's for the first time in a while, because the one here closed - watched High School Musical 2 (again!) - played Old Maid with the little one - stayed in my PJs all day on Sunday - convinced Jason to drive through and bring something home for lunch, so I could stay in the PJ way - played checkers with AM.

(This wasn't the best weekend to cover!)

9 things on my agenda this week:
Grocery shopping - take car through a car wash - ask the teacher why AM got in trouble for going to the bathroom yesterday (I've asked, but haven't gotten an answer yet) - go with Jason to a food service appreciation party tomorrow - get AM well, by any means necessary - send off a couple of get-well and thank you cards - upload fall pictures to get printed - drink more water - call the restaurant to reserve the room for our church Christmas party

8 shows I watched last week:
Clean House - SpongeBob Squarepants - Mission Organization - Doctor Who - NCIS - CSI NY - Best Week Ever - the news

7 things i cooked this week:
Spaghetti - grilled turkey and cheese - soup - toast - Kraft Macaroni and Cheese - green beans - pumpkin fluff

(Again - not home much, not a good week to ask!)

6 things I read this past week
The newspaper (duh!) - a Fingerhut catalogue (no, I'm not kidding!) - a Current catalogue - lots of blogs - the Bible - tons and tons of email

5 Reasons to be happy today
diet hot cocoa - I won a Barbie DVD and a Target gift card in the Fall Y'all giveaway! - I'm wearing some earrings I got last Christmas but haven't had an outfit for - hopefully, AM's other medicine will be in today and we can get on the road to recovery - I'm about to go to lunch (food always makes me happy!)

4 things I need to buy
trash bags (doesn't everyone?) - bread - fresh veggies - the stuff to make more pumpkin fluff

3 people I saw this weekend
Marcia - Luke - Amanda

2 things I am thankful right now
That Anna Marie is getting better, and that hopefully our bank crisis is coming to an end

One final thought: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure - especially at the holidays!

Man, this was hard! And now, I pass that difficulty on to you. Have fun!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Pictures from Saturday

Oh, and I guess y'all want to know how AM is feeling today, huh?

Well, she only woke up once last night, and then slept until the alarm went off without coughing, so I thought she was improved. And then the coughing started again and I told her that Jason was taking her to the doctor before she went to school.

"Can't I go next Saturday?" she said.

"No. For one, your doctor isn't open on Saturday. And two, I'm not going through another week of this."

(In hindsight, I guess I should've said that she didn't need to go through another week of coughing.)

So, he got up and took her, and came out with a prescription for a stronger medicine for congestion and drainage, and an antibiotic to help ward off an infection.

For the record, I'm not crazy about willy-nilly antibiotic use, but she's only taken them about three times her whole life, so I'm not feeling too badly about this.

Anyway - we went to the Big Box Retailer at lunch to get them filled. Half an hour later, we went back to the pharmacy to pick them up. Of course they had the Amoxicillin - of course they did. What they did not have, however, was the other medicine - the one she probably needed worse. I have to go back tomorrow at lunch to pick it up.


The doctor did say to keep giving her the last kind of cough medicine we'd bought, Delsym, because it worked pretty well.

Of course, she didn't have a coughing fit the entire time she was at the doctor's office, Jason said, but started as soon as they left.


Sunday, November 11, 2007

This has been

One of the most trying weekends of my life.

(And I have to get this complaining over with, because someone gave me one of those no-complaining bracelets, and I'm starting tomorrow.)


It really kinda started on Thursday. When Jason asked me to pick AM up from school because he was at the bank. And, since he is in charge of four different checking accounts, I checked to see which one he was having problems with.

Turns out it was ours.

Turns out that the bank had merged with another one last month, and none of the things that we rely on to keep us informed - email alerts if the account balance drops below a certain amount, and a quickly-updated website - were not working.

Turns out, we had about $500 in overdraft charges.

That's five hundred dollars.

And we only found out because Jason was trying to buy a website template, and his credit card was denied. Apparently the company had detected some fraudulent activity and shut down the account. So, he checked our checking account to see if he had enough to buy the template (he'll recoup the cost from the folks he's building the site for) and, um, no.

He went to the bank, and they forgave almost all of the charges. (By the way, know when we got the notice about the checks that started bouncing on Monday? Yesterday!)

We've been running a bit lean this weekend, to say the least.

And did I mention that the cough that Anna Marie had developed earlier in the week has been progressively getting worse? And that we've changed medications about, oh, three times in a week, and nothing is helping?

And she woke up about 3 a.m. Saturday morning, and no matter what I did, we couldn't calm it down. It took over an hour, and a cup of hot chocolate, to get her back to sleep. She slept propped up on the couch, and I slept in the chair next to her, until a bird woke me up about 6 a.m. and I got back into my bed. I slept another hour, and she slept about an hour past that.

We got her through the Nutcracker. I know, I sound like a bad mom, but she wasn't running a fever, and she'd have been devistated if she'd stayed home. And she didn't cough at all while she was on stage being the cutest mouse you've ever seen.

(My BFF Marcia and her fiance Luke came, and he decided that someone needed to invest in some pest control because there were so many mice running around.)

Jason and Mom left the ballet early to get started on the catering job. I took AM home, and we ate chicken noodle soup and watched High School Musical 2. She fell asleep watching The Wizard of Oz, after I (quite possibly) gave her a bit too much medicine.

She was up three times last night. I thought she was an infant again.

I kept her home from church today. I was going to take her to a minor medical clinic, but it didn't open until 9 a.m. By that time, she wasn't coughing! So, we decided to stay in and have a rest day.

I'm still in my PJs.

She's done pretty well today, but tonight it's kicked back up again. We're trying a new medicine, Delsym, but it isn't helping much. About the only thing that does help is a cough drop, and getting her to keep the thing in her mouth is fighting a losing battle.

If she has another night of coughing, I'm having Jason take her to the doctor in the morning. I know she won't like missing school, and I don't know what the doctor can do for her, but I'm at my wit's end.

I realize that, in the grand scheme of things, a cough you can't fix in your kid isn't the worst thing in the world. But, if it's your kid, it doesn't really matter if it's a cough or something worse - you still want to fix it.

And I'm exhausted, because I've been taking care of her by myself for the past two days. Jason didn't get home until late last night, and today he went to church and then praise team practice, and then to the auction kitchen to clean the pans they'd used last night.

And I promise - I'll be doing less complaining starting tomorrow!

Friday, November 09, 2007

I'm tired. Anna Marie is coughing. Again.

So all you get is a little LOL cats action.

funny pictures
moar funny pictures

Because I'm an English major, of course.

(This is, by the way, among Anna Marie's favorite sites. Good thing she doesn't read the incorrect grammar very well, because I have to censor some of these.)


Thursday, November 08, 2007

Official Thursday Weigh-in

On Thursday and everything! Aren't y'all proud?

Let's just cut to the chase. I lost a half pound this week, after having gained a pound and a half last week.

So, I'm back down to 157.5.

While I would've liked to have lost all the gain from last week, I'll take what I can get!

I'm ready for my closeup, Mr. DeMille

Ok, so maybe this was a little too close, but you get the general idea.

She is, for the record, against mascara, but for foundation.

And I am for her not wearing makeup and looking this grown up for anything except a stage performance.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

So good to be home

By the way, it's only my dedication to NaBloPoMo - and, of course, you - that's got me posting right now.

Exhausted is not the word.

The election did go the way I hoped last night - right down to getting the results at 10 p.m., not midnight. I had a hard time getting to sleep, though, because I was so wound up. Guess we had a little bit too much fun on the front row - Shirley from work, LaJuan formerly of work, and the former police chief.

At one point the resolution committee "chastised" us for being too loud - jokingly, of course.

At any rate, we all survived. And then I took AM to her first Nutcracker performance today. And left to walk around the mall for two hours, because apparently, they didn't need my help backstage.

Fine. Their loss.

We're home now, and I was in my jammies ready to watch Pushing Daisies in real time - as opposed to on my screen at work the next day - when, lo and behold, it isn't there.

Pre-empted! And in the midst of a strike which could pre-empt it indefinitely!

So not fair!

I agree with Valerie, by the way - we are all fabulous writers, we blog-folks. We could be SCABS! We could write episodes of our favorite shows! I'd love to see The Office feature that girl from Valerie's job who asked to peel her sunburned skin off.

I'm not making this up!

In the absence of my "stories," I guess I'll put AM to bed and crawl under the covers myself.

With a good Oriental Trading Company catalogue.

Home again, home again, jiggity jig . . .

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Between a rock and a hard place


Between the Devil and the deep blue sea, or

How long do you halt between two opinions? or

I'm just checking in between gigs.

Anna Marie had practice for The Nutcracker tonight. Or, should I say, A Very Brady Nutcracker.

Yes, those Bradys.

The choreographers at her dance studio have put a funky 70's twist on the classic holiday ballet.

The Rat King is Darth Vader. The Nutcracker is Luke Skywalker.

There are light sabers!

And Anna Marie is a mouse. Who gets to help Darth Vader up after the battle. How cool is that?

And, in a few minutes, I'll be headed down to our county courthouse to await the results of today's election.

I'm as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs, as the saying goes. We have a pretty hotly contested Sheriff's race, and dealing law enforcement is a pretty important part of my job.

There's really not much use in me getting down there before about 9 p.m. We'll probably be there until midnight anyway.

And then tomorrow, I get to finish a special section, before lunch, and then after lunch Anna Marie has her first real live performance. With makeup. And a costume. And fake cheese.

And an Elvis impersonator.

Sounds pretty groovy, huh?

Monday, November 05, 2007

My desperate attempt

To convince you to watch this show.

(Not you, Linda!)

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Your life is pretty sad

When you know the perfect place for your car to break down.

In my 16 years as a driver, I have been broken down many times along the way. Let me tell you, some places are better candidates for breakdowns than others.

For example: I-20, between Atlanta and Commerce, GA. The Sunday after Thanksgiving, when everybody and their mama are headed back home. After dark, during a storm.

Not a pretty place to break down. Luckily, a friend of mine from college (where I was headed at the time) recognized my tail lights and pulled over to wait in the car with me until the wrecker came.

Then, there are the good places to break down.

Like, for instance, in the middle of a shopping center. Which is where I found myself yesterday.

Oh, let me back up a bit.

We went to Southaven (we being Jason, Anna Marie, my mom, and myself.) AM had Nutcracker practice at 3 p.m., and we had a church get-together at 5 p.m. Mom and Jason have a catering gig next weekend, so we brought two cars so the two of them could shop and leave and I could take the little one to practice.

Well. I was a little miffed at Jason's suggestion that we take two cars (after all, gas is nearly $3 a gallon again!) But later, I was very, very glad.

We drove to Fazoli's for lunch, and left Jason's Jeep there while we took my mom to her sister's house and then to Target. As we were leaving Target, sitting at a red light waiting to turn left onto the main street, my battery light came on. And my anti-lock brake light. And my airbag light.

And then, I nearly had to floor it to get my car to move across the intersection.

Thankfully, the Jeep was only about a quarter mile away, and I thought that maybe there was a short in the electrical system, and I could shut the car off and everything would reset.


Jason and mom decided to follow me to the dance studio to make sure I got there OK. And we called my dad, who was working nearby, to get his brain working on a solution.

When I started through the parking lots to get out onto the road, the temperature light came on and the gauge shot up to red.

I knew for a fact this car was not running hot, but that something was terribly wrong. So I pulled into a parking space, and Jason and mom took us to dance practice.

Except . . .

I didn't know the address to the main studio, and we'd never been there. I just knew it was at or near the intersection of these two main roads. The only building there is a huge gym, so I went inside to see if anyone knew where the studio was.

The girl at the front desk said, "Oh, they practice here. Go down the hallway to the room with all the windows."

There was a crop of cheerleaders practicing in there, so I figured we must have the 3 p.m. practice time. I changed Anna Marie into her leotard and we waited.

Except . . .

3 p.m. came and went, and no sign of anyone related to the dance studio!

I went back to the front desk, where a new girl was this time. She, of course, had no idea what I was talking about. I asked for a phone book, and realized I had the wrong building.

And no car.

And I was going to be late.

Meltdown time!

I called Jason, and he came to pick us up. But, we soon figured out that the studio was in the next block, so the little blue leotard clad girl and I walked down the side of the 5-lane road to the studio.

Don't worry. I walked between her and the road, and we were on the grass.

We were 15 minutes late, but the mice were just lining up in their positions.

After practice, mom and Jason were still around so they came to pick us up. My dad finally got a chance to look at the car, and deemed the problem to be the alternator.

Now, for the part where a shopping center is a good place to break down, especially if you have a small child!

After church today we headed back up to where my car was. While Jason was taking off the alternator and getting it tested, Anna Marie and I went to Petco. And Old Navy. And Sally Beauty Supply. And the Hallmark store, where they were giving away Milano cookies! Yum!

By the time we got back down to Petco, we were only there a few minutes before Jason called to say it was fixed.

So, let me give you a word of advice - one I hope you never have to use.

If you have a choice, try to get your car to a shopping center if it breaks down. Or anyway, just in case. You can justify all the shopping to your husbands that it's a safety measure.

We don't want to take any chances, do we?

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Well, at least I was relaxing

Well, that "arrival" I've been anticipating all week finally showed up yesterday.

And it brought loads of, well, just plain feeling yucky.

So last night after dinner, when Anna Marie asked to go to Gramma's, I didn't argue. I dialed the number and handed her the phone.

Ahh - a night all to myself.

After I got back home from mom's, I straightway got into my PJs, dished up some pumpkin fluff, and set about my night of vegging out. Jason was working on some computer-stuff, so I didn't feel so bad about getting some alone time.

Besides, as poorly as I felt, I wouldn't have been very good company.

I eventually just climbed into bed, grabbed the clicker, and started channel surfing.

About an hour later, the phone rang. The caller ID said it was from one of the Memphis TV stations.

I answered it, and the girl on the other end asked for me. Don't ask me how she'd found me at home - the house phone is in Jason's name. She asked if I'd heard anything about a shooting at our local college campus. She said she'd talked to the PR person there, who'd told her there were no students involved and pointed her to the Sheriff. This reporter had called the Sheriff at home, and gotten his answering machine. She'd called the Sheriff's Department, and they'd recently had a shift change and no one knew much about it. She was asking me if I could give her any pointers as to finding more information.

Really, I didn't, but if I did, and I helped her, I could possibly have lost my job. Her employer is considered competition, after all.

I called our GM, who has a police scanner at home. She'd just gotten home herself, but she called her sister-in-law who is a dorm mother at the college. She said no one was hurt, the shots were fired into someone's tires behind the cafeteria.

It took me some time to get back into my relaxed mode, but somehow, I perservered.

And managed to spend a nice, productive night just laying in bed flipping channels.

We all need one of those once in a while, don't we?

Friday, November 02, 2007

Offiical "Thursday" weigh-in

It's still Thursday somewhere, right?

(Actually, this might just be my lame attempt to participate in NaBloPoMo.)

On to the mayhem!

Can you believe I gained back the pound-and-a-half I lost last week? Maybe you can, after my hormonal ranting of the past few days.

My weigh-in person asked me if I'd "done something different, or is it just that time?"

She's a firm believer in the "legal gain" once a month.

(For the record, so am I.)

Back up to 158.

And while we're on that subject, someone out in Telemarketer Land has caught on to the fact that I don't have health insurance. I've been getting these calls at work, trying to get me a quote. They don't ask anything very personal, like my SSN. But this week, one lady did ask me my height and weight.

Me: "5'2", 156.5 pounds" (said rather proudly.)

Her: "Oh honey, you and I are fighting the same battle! I got on the scale the other day, and it still said 155. It's never going to budge."

Me: "Well, just be glad we weren't talking when I weighed 237."

Maybe it was the hormones, maybe it was her tone, but I got a little offended. Or, maybe it's because I know that the more you weigh, the more you pay in health insurance.

At any rate, I guess I'll keep plugging along.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Guess who lost a tooth last night?

Her very first one!

I know, you don't see a big gap. That's because there's been a tooth behind the baby tooth since, uh, August.

We've waited and waited. And another sprouted beside it, but still, the little tooth held on for dear life.

Last night, it met its comeuppance. Or, should I say, comeoutance?

We knew the time was drawing near. It was getting looser with each passing day, and starting to cause a bit of pain when she ate. Jason told her that it would probably be out by the end of this week.

And then last night, she came home from the fall festival with a popcorn ball. And she was in her room trying to eat it, and said that a piece of popcorn was stuck in her teeth. When I looked, I could see the blood around the tooth as it sat in the gum, and I knew.

It was time.

I called Jason in and asked him to get the "popcorn" out. He knew just what I was thinking - especially since there was no popcorn in there to begin with, she was just feeling the shifting tooth.

We three sat on her bed, Jason on one side and me on the other. (No, I didn't take pictures! We were leading her to believe that we were removing POPCORN, and what's the big deal in that?) I held her, stroked her head, and prayed quietly that she'd be calm.

After a bit of difficulty getting a grip, the tiny tooth was in her mouth no longer.

She was scared at the bleeding, and relieved that it was out, and excited about the prospect of cash from the Tooth Fairy all at the same time.

(Don't ask me why I care less about my child believing in the Tooth Fairy than I do Santa Claus.)

I got her some water to rinse out with, and Jason put the tooth in a ziploc bag. Man, is he ever smart - I'd have never found that thing under her pillow otherwise!

After some debate amongst the parents as to the TF's going rate these days, one dollar was settled upon. I snuck into her room, and retrieved the bag (I'd asked her to show it to me, and then slid it to the edge of the pillow as she lay it back down.) I slid the dollar bill into its place.

(Jason's not the only one with a brain around here, you know.)

I felt such a sense of completeness as I lay in bed - I was there when that tooth appeared, and I was there when it left.

I was there when she took her first steps, and I was there when she stepped away from me and into the school building.

And one day, whether she knows it or not, I'll be there when she steps into adulthood, and a life of her own.