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Today is a day off from my weekday "days off". Evelyn's school is really big on having days off from school. Today it's a planning day, but every single month has something, and most of them have multiple somethings. Next month, there's a week off for fall break and an extra one day off for another teacher planning day. These teachers, they must like to plan. :) It's just very different from when I was in school. We hardly ever had days off, much less a week off in the fall. Of course, we didn't start at the beginning of August either. Unfortunately, we're all sick. Or maybe Evie isn't sick. I'm not really sure. M went to the doctor this morning. In a completely unlikely turn of events, we both got sick and HE is the one with the unexplainable skin condition. He has these pink red dots all over. She thought it was a virus, but also thought he should not go on to work like he was planning, so he had an unexpected long weekend. It's the weirdest illness I've experienced in a while. The absolute worst part for me was being awakened in the middle of the night Friday night with the worst headache I've ever had. I was awake for an hour or so with it, and then when I got out of bed int he morning, it came back and there may have been tears, but it gradually went away again. Thank goodness!

(FYI: Google says having a headache severe enough to wake you up, or having a different sort of headache than usual, or one that you would classify as the worst headache of your life are all reasons to see a doctor right away. Unfortunately, my head hurt too damned bad to get out of bed at two in the morning and start googling, so I didn't find that out until later. Oops.)

Guys, having a child in school is not like I thought it would be. I have a ton of things that I think I have time for now, and it turns out that I don't have much more time than I did before, somehow. I feel like by the time I really get a handle on it, the year will be over. Time is flying. And then there's all the STUFF that she brings home. Homework and notices about community events and school events like a literacy night, math night, an event hosted by the school counselor, pta meetings. I thought about sending in a little note to the teacher to explain that it's not that I'm not involved in my child's education, but as long as these things were all hosted on Tuesday evenings, I was going to continue to not be able to attend, since that's when Evelyn has violin lessons. Then I realized that the event I was thinking about was actually on Wednesdays... and I also can't make it then, either, unless I take Evie with me and she does not want to go to this stuff. She is overwhelmed at the amount of time she spends away from home already. We've never been big on going places all the time, as I've mentioned before--not just because of me. She's never liked leaving the house.

I am really proud of her self-awareness, though. If you're a Facebook friend, you've probably seen this, but she actually decided to quit ballet and tap this year. She has been really excited about it all summer, and she was really excited about the first class. The day of her second class, we told her it was ballet day, and she started whining about not wanting to go that day, she was too tired. She was saying that she still wanted to do it, etc etc, just not right then.. but that's what happened at the end of the year last year, too, and M and I were united on not wanting to fight about it for a whole year. So, I sat her down and told her that we wouldn't be mad at her if she chose not to do ballet this year, but we wouldn't be quitting now and restarting in a few months. I went through the pros and cons of the whole thing, and also told her that if she did choose to quit ballet, she could OCCASIONALLY take gymnastics again. Occasionally. Did you hear me say occasionally? *lol* There's only a four-week commitment with that one. ;) She loves to dance but having extracurricular activities two evenings a week was just too much for her when she's still adjusting to being gone seven hours a day. To be honest, it was quite a lot for me, too, especially since there was no possibility of M taking her to either of them this year. Last year, he could have taken her to ballet every week. He usually didn't, but having the option was nice. She started out saying of course she still wanted to do it, but when she really thought about it, she decided against it, which I thought was pretty mature. And, the dance studio actually refunded the first month's tuition. I still need to sell the shoes (which will hurt, considering there are two pairs and they were both worn only once) but we didn't end up losing as much money on this as I thought--and it'll still be cheaper than continuing with dance all year. ;) Anyway, I really think dropping one of her classes was the right choice, and dropping violin wasn't an option.

Hmm.. just so I don't come across as one of those scary parents forcing their child to be musical against their will--she eventually will have the option to quit violin if she wants to. Right now, though, I think she has to learn that she can't quit things right away just because it's hard. We've fought over practice since May, and something has finally clicked. Twice this week, she has done her practice before I even reminded her to do it, and she has admitted that it's getting fun now. She really still wanted to go to the classes, but she didn't want it to require WORK. Dare I hope that the message has been received?

I finally got around to signing up for Goodreads this weekend and have been having a lot of fun adding in books that I have read and enjoyed and adding books to my to-read list. I feel a little self-conscious about how trashy some of my reading is but not enough to care too much. I enjoy it. I don't watch much television. It evens out. I have been in dire need of new reading material. My book reader was desperately low on entertainment and I had no clue what I wanted to read next. Fun fun fun.

A long time ago, I posted about the process of becoming members at our church and how it involved walking up to the front and being introduced to everyone at the end of the service. We are all about the procrastination so we finally got around to officially joining last week. Why, certainly, I finally got up the nerve because I was having a good hair day. We are relieved to have that over with, though truly, nothing much has changed. One of the things we are working on, though, is becoming more involved in the church because it's a nice place and they are nice people and it is SO. GOOD. for the kidlet. She went to her first youth group meeting yesterday and she loved it, can't wait to go back. They did all sorts of enriching activities, and they feed them before it starts. So, an hour and a half of child-free time on a Sunday evening, when M is home? I think, my friends, that we have just established Date Night. And... it's right across the low-traffic street. I could be there in thirty seconds if I needed to. So very excellent.
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Yesterday was M's birthday and we had a fun little birthday party, just the three of us, last night. There were gifts and a hearty Pioneer Woman man-sandwich and a blueberry pie type of thing , from a recipe by a Swedish food blogger. I try to get dessert recipes from Swedish sources if I want M to enjoy them because he generally thinks that American desserts are cloyingly sweet. And, they are, actually. The blueberry thing turned out better than I was expecting from how it first looked when I put it in the oven, and he said it was even better cold this morning. I made him take the leftovers to work with him for his morning snack because otherwise, I'd have ended up eating a piece myself and they're 8 WW points+ per slice, which is kind of a lot for a snack, especially if you don't even really like blueberries that much. We had a nice time, I think. Or at least I did. I guess the birthday boy is the one whose opinion matters, truly, but I think he was satisfied.

As you may have guessed from above, Weight Watchers is still on, and I am down almost five pounds--just half a pound from last week but I'm not tremendously concerned about it yet. Stupid WW subtracted one of my daily points today, though, which is good and bad. Nice to see that I'm making progress but hey, I wanted that point! ;) I'm getting better about not throwing in extras when I cook--using less oil and butter and such, and using less cheese, etc. One thing that I really like about WW is that you get your daily points but also 49 extra weekly points, so you can have a real splurge every week. The first week, I went to my parents house and surprised my mom one morning. I knew that we were going to eat lunch somewhere, but she had just agreed to have Mexican with my aunt, so I went there instead of say, any other restaurant in town that would have been easier for me. So, I threw my weekly points at it, estimated how many was in it as best as I could, and didn't feel too guilty. Last week I used my weekly points on potato chips. Because, let's face it.... it's not exactly like someone will stay on an eating plan that doesn't allow for some wiggle room. Basically, it's not too horrible so far, which means a lot.

We had a little excitement around here on Sunday night. It was all excitement that we could do without, though. We had a perfectly ordinary day, unusual only in that we decided not to go to church. I even got to sleep in, and then we all had a nice, lazy day. Right after we sent Evie off to bed, though, it all went haywire in a very short period of time.

  1. First, the storm started. The power flickered but only went off for a second--just enough for the computers to go off and for all the clocks to need reset. There was an inordinate amount of lightning with this storm and we have a lot of freaky trees and M was a bit worried about Evie's location in her room, in the bed by the window, so we decided to go get her and let her get out of bed for a few minutes. Girl thought it was her birthday and Christmas all at once. While she sat on the couch with M and talked her little head off, I decided to be proactive and fetch the flashlight and light the candles on our mantle, just to make sure we'd have a bit of orientation from the candles and light from the flashlight to easily round up the rest of our power outage supplies if necessary. This proved unnecessary, and the storm died down a bit and we sent E back to bed.

  2. But see, as she was heading to bed, M picked up a toy from the ground by the couch and uncovered a piece of ART. My child, the one that I would never have imagined doing something like this? She wrote her name on the carpet. In marker. !! I mean, it's bad enough that she did it, and hid it for at least a day, but she was dopey enough to write her name?? She tried to pretend that she knew nothing about it but it's hard to make that one believable since you know. It definitely wasn't me and I would also feel confident in saying that my husband is, you know. Not the type to write on the carpet.. especially not in Evie's handwriting. Seriously, wtf?

  3. Since there was still some lightning and since I was in the middle of a good book that I've been waiting on for a while, I continued to sit at my desk, reading. I kept seeing the candles flickering in the corner of my eye but I knew what that was so I didn't really look up at first, until.... OMG THE CANDLEHOLDER HAS LARGE FLAMES SHOOTING OUT OF IT.It's a set of three wooden candleholders that M made for me for Christmas one year. They're tall and square with varying heights and they all have a bottom about halfway up for a tea candle, and holes cut in the sides.. It's hard to explain but I don't seem to have any easily located photos. Anyway, fire. In a wooden item. Next to television and wall and mantle and in my HOUSE. But I saw it before it became a serious matter, and M was able to grab it and get it to the kitchen, where he sprayed water in it, which initially made matters much worse but then finally put out the fire without even catching the kitchen curtains on fire...which I so totally saw happening for a second.

  4. We returned to our desks and tried to calm down. I decided I needed a comfort snack and went to pour myself some lemonade. (Minute Maid's Just15 lemonade is pretty good, by the way, and 0 points per serving.) I grabbed the unopened container and checked the cap (just in case, even though it was a sealed container) and shook it. The cap was on, alright, but there was a defect in the packaging near the top. Lemonade sprayed all over the counters, the cabinet, the floor and me. It was cold and sticky and wet and incredibly unpleasant. Cleanup taken care of, I returned to the computer room and informed M that I hoped household calamities come in threes because I had just had the third one. He reminded me that the storm itself was the first one, so we would be on our second set of three if that was the case.

  5. There were no further incidents until bedtime. I was falling asleep at my desk, so I headed off to bed. As I was getting ready to crawl in, I kept thinking I saw something moving but couldn't find anything. Finally, i moved the pillow just to check, and a huge nasty spider went darting across the bed. It was one of the largest we've ever had in the house and it was FAST. I called for M, who is the resident spider killer. He failed on the first attempt and it ran behind the bed, so we had to move the bed out and go in search of power tools. He finally caught it in a dustbuster and took it off to the laundry room for purposes of murder. And, you can call me a wuss if you'd like, but there was no way I was sleeping on spidery sheets, so I went in search of the spare set of sheets. At least I was feeling relatively confident by then that nothing else would go wrong before bedtime. HA!

  6. [ profile] courtesy, please avert your eyes from this last item, because you do not want to read this. And that is when I was attacked by a suicidal moth. Twice. It was dive-bombing towards me. I don't think that I've ever seen a bug behave quite like that before. I fetched the bug killer back to the bedroom, who eventually managed to chase it into the closet (you know. With our clothes.) and as far as I know, there it still is, munching away at all our best stuff. We couldn't get it to come out, so we finally had to close the doors and hope for the best.

So there it was, our evening of WTF. There was nothing truly horrible or anything--well, the fire could have been, but thankfully it led to nothing more inconvenient than me needing to scrape wax off my sink the next day. But all of this happened out of the blue in a two hour time frame and it made us a little freaked out. ;)

Anyway, it's 1:30 so I'm thinking I should probably wrap this up and head to bed. We've been awful about going to bed lately. Umm.. did I mention our new mattress? And how the salesman was saying that we would actually require less sleep if we bought it because we'd get more quality sleep and wake up less, etc etc? And it was clearly a sales pitch, except it's kind of not. We've both been sleeping less since we got this bed, and waking up feeling better than we should. It's quite wonderful, actually.
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From what we could understand of the story we heard today, Evie had an issue with another kid at dance camp. I'll call her Madison, because all little girls betwen the age of 0 and 10 are named Madison. Apparently. It's sort of a cute name but do we actually need SO MANY of them?

Anyway, today, two days after the camp was over, she brought thie incident up. She says that she accidentally hit Madison (I think she means she ran into her when she says "hit") while dancing, and so Madison got mad and called Evie a liar. This greatly vexed Evie, because she hadn't lied about anything; she had just hit her. (Because that is so much better.) So obviously, her response was to stop the argument and define the word "liar".

And so, Madison apologized. The end.


WTF, child? You hit someone and then you made HER apologize to YOU? I can't decide whether to be impressed or horrified.


At violin on Wednesday, her teacher told her that her fingers should be hovering near the strings and then asked if she knew what "hover" means. I try to keep quiet during her lessons but I couldn't resist. "You know, Evie. It's what Mommy does." Evie just looked at me like I was a dork (I am) but her teacher, who has three children himself, laughed a lot. I try not to, but it's very difficult when strangers do not understand just what a super special snowflake she is. :)
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Summer! It's so busy!

Especially this week. Evelyn is in dance camp in Lexington this week from 1-4. It takes an hour to get there from here, so we've spent a lot of time on the roads. It's really just about 40-45 minutes to most of Lexington so when I saw this deal pop up on Groupon, it didn't feel like too much of a stretch to be heading there for four days in a row. Naturally, the studio is in the worst possible location for me to drive to from my house, though, which just figures. Still! Since I have three hours of time alone in Lexington--super rare--I am not going to complain about the hassle of getting there. I will add, though, that I was a little sad when I found out later that her real dance studio in town has a dance camp the same week, same price. Oh well. Three hours! In a city with lots of fun shopping opportunities! If it were actually here in town, I would drop her off and go home. Since that's not really an option (Well, I guess it is. I guess I could be in the car for an hour, drop her off, drive another hour to come home, spend an hour playing Zynga games and pretending to get stuff done, and then spend another two hours in the car going to fetch her and back home. Chances of this happening are somewhere in the vicinity of 0.) I have to go places and do things. I've had two days of it so far and it's lovely. I've been to Kohl's both days using some lovely coupons and have hit a couple of drugstores and grocery stores and Walmart and returned a bra to Dillard's at the mall. I wanted to do some real grocery shopping one day but the deals are nowhere to be found now that I am actually trying to shop*. I had M fetch the cooler from the basement and then I sat down to make a Kroger shopping list and realized that I am not going to waste my free time tomorrow on a shopping trip for the sole purpose of trashy cereal, hot dogs and potato chips. Because I would never eat those things. Really.

This seems to be a good time to transition into my next topic, which is about how it's a good thing that I didn't have any close drug addict friends in high school because I am apparently susceptible to peer pressure. I joined Weight Watchers because [ profile] grain_damaged just made it sound so darned appealing. I signed up mid-week with the intention of starting the following week, which was last Monday, so I've now been on it for a little over a week. I am down four or six pounds, depending on how you count it. (Do I count the day I signed up? Or four days later, when I had been at my mom's house for the weekend, knowing I was about to start a diet as soon as I got home and therefore ate everything that sat still long enough for me to attack it with a fork?) But, eh, I'm not getting attached to those numbers. The first week is one thing--it's whether it continues to drop that concerns me. So far it's been pretty livable, most days. The hardest part is trying to figure out how many points something is. Well, that and lunch. I am really bad at lunch on a regular day because of my weird queasy issues, so trying to figure out a low-point lunch is challenging.

If I had any more time I would go from here into a discussion of why children behave like hooligans when you are attempting to do something nice for them, such as drive two hours a day to dance camp for example, not that I am talking about my own precious angel at all, but it's past my bedtime and let's face it, I have no freaking clue why they do it anyway. I think that they might secretly be aliens or something.

*Coupon shopping has been on hiatus. The deals are not there in the same way and what deals there are... usually out of stock by the time I get there. I got fed up with spending ten hours a week on the stupid thing just to come home empty-handed. I am considering picking it back up after Evie starts school. In a month and a half. School starts here on August 8. People on the internets are still talking about their school's last day. It's freaky. Schools here have been out for well over a month.Anyway! Stupid Extreme Couponing show. Those bitches ruined everything.
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Shoulder still hurts but not worse than yesterday. Knee is sore but not terrible. I feel like I was lightly beaten on my right side, but all in all--today is going better than I expected after yesterday's fall.

I thought that it would be a good time, while I am kind of out of commission, to reinstall Windows today and so I did that, after trying hard to talk myself out of it. It was boring but went well, except now I am using Office 2010 (ie, Outlook) instead of 2007 and it is so ugly that my eyes are bleeding. Why, Microsoft, why? I think the tiny nerdling was feeling a bit tired, too. She mainly wanted to hang around and watch TV today, which is not her usual thing. I had absolutely no problem with it today, since enriching activities usually encourage the usage of arms and I have been trying to avoid that.

So, on to the next installment of "my kid is overscheduled". Ballet recital was awesome. It really was. The other stuff that she has done has been... repetitive. There's no conclusion. With the recital, you get something at the end and she loved it more than ice cream. It was fun to watch the rest of the kids dance, too, actually, though I didn't get to stay for the second act. Evie wanted to and I sort of did, but M was definitely in favor of leaving, as were our two Swedish friends who were over to visit. They wanted to come watch--well, they said that they did. Mainly I think they were just being polite, but they paid ten bucks each to come, which I thought was really sweet. The music was way too loud and the Swedish ear is apparently very sensitive because all three of them were freaking out. So I bribed E into leaving at intermission for pity's sake. I told her we would go get her flowers right then instead of the next day if we left, but otherwise we wouldn't have time. Yes, we are the crappy parents who forgot to have flowers at recital. I warned her on the way there by way of making it out to be something I had done on purpose. "Mommy is going to take you to pick out your own flower that you can plant in the yard and keep for even longer!" Yeah. That worked well. She thought it was a great idea except what she really wanted was cut flowers. I don't like having cut flowers in the house because they generally make my allergies unhappy after awhile. These aren't kill me so far, though.

[recital picture really should go here but I don't have the energy.]

Anyway, remember how I've been saying that we won't do ballet again? I said it'd take a miracle for her to talk me into it again. I guess that miracle was recital, because she is doing ballet again next year after all. She's high on recital love. However, I made her choose between ballet and gymnastics, so we're off the gymnastics thing now at least. I just do not have it in me to do all of this stuff any more, especially not with violin. More on that in a minute. I think it probably makes sense that she stop gymnastics. She's been doing it for a long time now, and I think she's getting less out of it (although I did put her in the Basic level for older kids and it has worked out much better for her... especially since she was the only one signed up for the class and therefore, it was a private lesson...) Ballet doesn't start again until the fall (last year it was the end of August) so I got two months of freedom there with the gymnastics being canceled. I'm not even sure what to do with myself.

We may not be doing violin much longer either...we'll see how it goes. I don't know if she's just not old/mature enough or if she doesn't really like it or what, but it's not going well so far. She's not doing the insane shyness thing now, but she's resistant to practicing. This weekend, we came up with a sticker chart plan that is helping immensely. She gets a sticker to put on a calendar if she practices for five minutes a day. Five minutes! We are not asking much! So far, she's gotten a sticker every day although I'm not sure she deserved it today even though she went for eight minutes. (Timer malfunction.) Can you call it violin practice if you lay back on the couch, resting your violin on your stomach while screeching the bow back and forth with no discernible purpose? She's supposed to be practicing three little rhythms. She thinks that she shouldn't have to practice except in class. Umm... no. I can see where she would think that--she doesn't have to practice ballet/gymnastics when she's not in class. It's just not the same with this. I don't want to force her to give it up before she has learned that she has to stick with things even when they're hard, but at the same time, if it's going to be a fight, I'd prefer to opt out. The teacher said that it will come together much faster once she starts learning melodies. I hope so. I know that this is going to be her particular learning struggle as she gets older, too--she is just one of those kids that thinks that she should be able to do something perfectly the first time, and if she can't, she doesn't want to keep trying. In theory, she knows she needs to practice. In practice, she hates it.

Can't imagine where she'd have gotten that from.


Jun. 10th, 2012 11:11 pm
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In my living room, there's a section of hardwood flooring that stretches from the door to the kitchen. At the kitchen doorway, you can turn and go down the hallway. As we were getting ready to leave for church this morning, I headed from the kitchen, intending to go down the hallway. Instead, I went DOWN in the hallway. I had on thin black socks, which are really slippery, and I stepped just wrong and my feet flew out from under me and I took a pretty hard fall. It's the same ankle that I sprained in December--it's never gotten back to 100% but I'm not sure it contributed to the fall or not--the socks were really slick. (I'm going to choose to believe this is because my floors are so clean.) Anyway, I landed on my shoulder, hip and knee. There's a large metal return air grate in the hallway that helpfully caught my knee. Beyond feeling banged up, i didn't even realize that it had cut a nasty gash into my knee until I actually took my pants off to check it. The knee is a bit of a pain but the worst part by far is my shoulder. I can barely move the stupid thing. I'm sure it will be worse tomorrow.

So, that pretty much killed the rest of the day. I took not one but two naps today. Neither one of them was any good but I'm not accustomed to having even one nap--two is nearly unheard of. Evie spent the day trying to attach herself to her father's side by means of playing a game on his computer. She doesn't really love this game as much as she likes playing it with him. Then he went to do the grocery shopping since I wasn't feeling up to a trip myself and she decided to stay home, which was fine, until suddenly she remembered (at around the time he could be on his way home, of course) that she DID want to go with him because she wanted a cookie. Did you know that some grocery stores give away free cookies to kids? Even our Walmart (but not all Walmarts around) does it, and you know that Walmart is usually not very customer friendly. Anyway, she gets a cookie when we're done with the shopping, if she's been reasonably well-behaved. You would have thought that I had killed Santa Claus or something. She was irrationally mad at the world, but especially at me, for not providing her wiith a free Walmart cookie. She seemed to think that I would want to bake her a batch of cookies, or perhaps drive her to Walmart. Yeah. Right. No.

And now I have taken THREE naps today so I suppose it's time to go on to bed instead of writing more.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
I've been doing that thing where I open up Semagic and stare at it a while, or possibly start typing something that I don't end up rolling with.I am determined to post something tonight. Of course, if I don't, all this determination will be lost and no one but me will ever know how I don't follow through. Well, me, and M. He's pretty familiar with my lack of ability to finish anythi

So anyway, last year, we had a rainbow birthday party for Evie. She loved it so much that she said she wanted her next party to have the same theme. As the birthday drew nearer, though, she's been talking for months about how she wants a FIDDLE birthday party. The child was giving detailed instructions on what kind of fiddle cake she wanted. (It might be too hard for Mommy to make a cake shaped like a fiddle, so that's okay! She can just make a regular cake and DRAW a fiddle on top!" Yes. Because I can totally pipe a realistic violin onto a sheet cake with pink frosting. Totally. I had a thought of trying to cut out a fiddle shape in sheet cake and then maybe construct a neck out of rice kristpie treats or something, covered in chocolate, and... people, this would in no way have worked. I do not possess the talents to construct a cake in the shape of a fiddle, and I can't even draw a fiddle with a pencil, much less with icing.) I was putting that particular question off while trying to come up with other fiddle-themed party ideas. Decorations? Well.. maybe I could find a fiddle shape to cut with my Silhouette (digital cutting machine). And I could... uh.. make a ... ummm.. I DON'T KNOW WHAT ELSE. It doesn't really matter because birthday parties are not the big deal here that they are for some of you, and for E especially--her guests will be family, and none of the kids have themed parties. Heck, one of them was asking me why there were rainbows all over the place at the last one. Not a big deal, you know?

Imagine my relief when day before yesterday, E confessed that she would actually like another rainbow party instead. I didn't say much in response, but waited until today to bring it up again and she says she is absolutely sure that she wants a rainbow party again. So--yay! No fiddle theme! And I have experience with this particular party and the parts of it that she liked the most. This should make my next few weeks easier.

Also, I am ticked off at Evie's gymnastics class because after I finally got her moved up to the next level (she's been spending too much time being bored and waiting for her turn for my tastes) I found out that it's a mixed class, with levels one and two in the same class. It's a complete waste of time--the only thing it accomplished was making her switch teachers (to ones that so far aren't as good) and making me go at a less convenient time. The head of the division is supposed to be there tomorrow teaching because the new teacher is going to be out of town, so I'm trying to figure out how to discuss my problems with her. I hate confrontation but they're making me really want to give it up entirely. The YMCA is the only place in town that does gymnastics so I'm stuck with them unless we quit, or drive out of town. I wouldn't mind quitting myself but Evie is really into it right now, and I think it would be a disservice to her to stop at this stage of her interest if I don't have to. It's irritating though.

Today, we were sitting around and I decided it was time to get some housework done, so I told Evie it was time to help me. I WANT to be one of those parents who make their children do their chores. In reality, she gets by with doing less than I would prefer, so I've been working on this for the last couple of weeks by coming up with projects for her to do. (It's just so much easier to do it myself!) As long as I keep a steady stream of manageable tasks ready for her, she does pretty well. I must have been feeling lucky, because I then went and asked M if he would like to come help me pick up the house. Although admitting that it was not really his preference, he agreed nicely and even said himself that it would be good for Evelyn to see that everyone in the family helps out. Yay boyo! I was just thinking of picking up some clutter and putting it all where it goes, but somehow we got really into it and really cleaned. It was fantastic! This would have taken me two days to do on my own. I am a better person when my house is not full of clutter.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
Spring! It is such a lovely time of year! Our dogwoods are blooming and the Easter lillies have come and gone and the tulips are going now. Tulips are my favorite flower (as my child likes to remind me) and so I particularly enjoy seeing them pop up. The weather has been amazing lately. And, I would tell you all about how I have been too busy to post because I've been outside soaking up all the sunshiney goodness but you have known me too long to believe me. We've been out and about some, though it seems like it's always raining on the days we are going places. I'm not sure how we manage that.

So the mud* is back up and I am kind of remembering why I haven't spent the last six or eight years hanging out there. It is so fun and nostalgic and I'm enjoying the old routine of doing texty communications, but the players, alas, they are gone. I mean, now all of them, but most of them and those who are left are idle most of the day. There is a Facebook group devoted to old players and as everyone started reminiscing, at least two muds have come back online or are planning to do so, including "mine". I just wish my people were all back online too, though. You can't go home again, etc etc. I suppose I am just too sentimental for my own good. :)

*I've explained this before but for the benefit of those who weren't around then or who don't remember: Mud = a text-based game. It is the equivalent of World of Warcraft without fancy graphics, developed long before it was possible to do those fancy graphics and the direct ancestor of those games. It is also more fun than WoW, or it was in its day anyway. There are still active muds out there, but the kind that we played (aber) are relatively slow these days. M and I met there, almost fourteen years ago.

Navel-gazing treatise on Evie's extracurricular activities:

First of all, can you call it an extracurricular activity when she doesn't yet have curricular activities? I mean...really.

Anyway, I wrote about how ballet was a drag now. Promptly thereafter, she started liking it again and we had a nice heart-to-heart discussion in the car one day where I realized..she never did hate it. What she hates is that they're not doing enough BALLET at ballet. It's a class for little kids, you know, so they do stuff to make it more fun and less work. She expected to learn how to dance like Angelina Ballerina but they just do a few minutes of practice at a time and then move on to fun dances or tumbling time or whatever. Another mom told me before i signed her up that her daughter was frustrated at this very thing because she expected to be able to dance right away and didn't really see the way that all the little exercises and dance moves came together to be a full dance at the recital. Having said that, I guess anything is possible but I still don't want to do ballet next year. It's a matter of money, if nothing else. I think she is getting more benefit and enjoyment out of gymnastics and the cost of all these things is becoming prohibitive, especially since she will be starting violin lessons this year. We hope, assuming that we can find a good teacher. We have a really good lead on one, but we haven't contacted him yet. When Evie was about two, we went into a museum downtown because they had a luthier exhibit and..well, M is a luthier. It had to be done. They had an area set up with a guy there letting kids handle the instruments. She didn't care much for the guitar or the mandolin or the cello or the dulcimer but she picked up a bow and made one stroke across the fiddle and it made this perfect clear note and she has been set ever since. SHE WILL PLAY THE FIDDLE. M told her that she couldn't start lessons until she was at least five. Turns out that she will be five in a month and a half. Oi.

Anyway, fiddle and gymnastics and ballet and maybe swimming this summer and that is just TOO MUCH, both in time and money. I especially will not enjoy it after she starts kindergarten, I am sure. She is moving to the next class at gymnastics now. I think she should have done this a long time ago, but in the fall, she was the only kid in the class so it didn't matter much. In January, they restructured and eliminated certain class times and so the class is full again, but they're all littler kids and it's moving much too slowly for where she is. Not their fault, not the instructors fault, but not a good situation for her, either. Unfortunately, they don't offer the preschool II class on Thursday mornings, so I'm going to lose my weekly Thursday gymnastics routine. The class will be on Monday evenings instead, which I do not enjoy nearly as much. I do understand, of course, that kids in school can't do school hour classes so it makes sense but it's personally not convenient to me. AND, she won't have the same teachers because they're no longer there on Mondays. I took her to a make-up session yesterday afternoon and met the other teachers and... I don't want to judge them yet because she was again not really in the correct class for her skill level and they didn't know her yet either, but I am pretty sure I do not like them nearly as much. Evie is okay with it, which is both surprising and relieving. She honestly still loves gymnastics. She tends to want to give up when things do not come easily to her but she really throws herself into practicing her cartwheels and stuff. She's had a terrible time learning to do a cartwheel but she is finally GETTING it. She's just working on form now.

I am back on a healthy eating kick, and I tried stating back on the wii fit exercise last week and it made my ankle start hurting again. :( I guess it's not quite ready for that. Next time I'll have to be more careful of exercises that stretch the ankle. I think I know which one caused it. I'm thinking of trying to get into sparkpeople.. I know it's helped some people. I've signed up for it in the past but have never managed to do anything with it. I am sure I should be logging my food intake and all that for accountability but I really hate doing that. I wouldn't mind it if not for trying to figure out how many calories something has. Boooring. I have been considering going to the gym again but... eh. Maybe later on.

I guess it's time to go set today's craft project out. I took an empty bleach bottle and cut a door and windows out with an x-acto knife and now Evie needs to decorate it--it'll be a house for the polly pocket turned fairies that we made last week. (she colored three sets, front and back, of butterfly wings and then I laminated them and used elastic string to make arm holes to turn her dolls into fairies. They turned out really really well. No, I didn't come up with this myself and yes, it was from pinterest...sorta. I did see it on pinterest but it's from a blogger that I follow for her kids ideas. She has really really great ideas. link. Evie loved the wings last week so much that she insisted on bringing one to the library with her and she's not one of those kids that has to have random toys with her all the time. It was cute. :)
same_sky: (under the same sky)
The weather this winter has been so strangely warm. Not complaining! But Evie has been looking forward to a good snow so she could play in it, of course, and the weather has not been cooperating. Until today. Perfectly gorgeous snowfall last night and we have a few inches of unusually pretty, well-behaved snow. By well-behaved, I am not referring to its ability to stick together, because it's sort of a dry powdery type of snow. It was melted from the roads only by the time M went to work this morning, though. Pretty snow but not unsafe driving conditions--excellent! Except... poor Miss E was not allowed to go out and play in it.

Remember last week, how I was all whiny about taking my kid to the doctor and she did nothing? I swear, I really am that person who is against the overuse of antibiotics but I *KNEW* she needed something this time. Friday afternoon, in the midst of our tornado warning* panic, E starts talking about her ears hurting. I called the nurse, who said the doctors wouldn't call in an antibiotic without her being seen by the doctor. (You can imagine how pleased I was, since I had taken her in once already for it.) By nine, she is crying non-stop, saying "My ear! It really really hurts! OWWWWWW!" and variations on that theme. The Tylenol finally kicked in and she fell asleep after a couple of hours of crying. At midnight, she woke up again screaming for two more hours, and then at 5:30. She only wanted Daddy, which was sort of nice for me in that I didn't have to lay there with someone screaming in my ear but that is not really how mommies work, you know? I wanted to be able to DO something for her and none of the usual remedies were working for her. The last time, she came to our bed and wanted to stay there with Daddy, so I went to the couch and set the alarm on my phone for eight so I could get up and call the pediatrician. Turns out that it's hard to fall asleep if there is a small person screaming in your house even if it is not sitting right next to you. Anyway, in the morning, off to the doctor we went, and blessedly, all ear pain was gone. !! Prescriptions picked up (with a modicum of trouble related to dosage that almost meant we wouldn't have been able to pick it up until Monday...) and dispensed and we were ready to move on with the weekend when.... on Sunday, child wakes up with a ruptured ear drum. I had personally never experienced this and I hope you don't have to, either, because the stuff that drains out of an ear? It's gross. And freaky because you know, nothing is supposed to come out of an ear. Google assured me that this is usually okay, though, so I waited until today, when the office was open, to call and ask the nurse about it. She said she would need to be seen, so we headed out in the snow to the doctor this morning. He added some drops to her meds and, when asked, said absolutely no way to the question of her being allowed to play in the snow. That was my feeling, too, but my arctic love thought she'd be fine. L)

(Except I am worrying now because the ear drops contain a fluoroquinolone antibiotic and I am allergic to those. I wonder if it's hereditary? I am pretty sure allergies of that type are, to some extent, but what chance then that she will have a reaction to it? That's what prompted my major rash a few years back, in 2005, if you remember it. I'd link to it but am too lazy to go searching. Full-body rash that caused the allergist to take pictures and invite all his colleagues in because it was so unusual. In way of a small update on this issue? I have since learned that that antibiotic is not prescribed on an outpatient basis anymore, and I got the impression that it probably shouldn't have been prescribed to me in the first place. No one actually told me that straight-out, though. It worked well, though--it did cure me. Of course, then it nearly killed me but whatever. DRAMA, YES. I am so allowed drama on this one, as I think anyone who actually saw me would attest. Also, I will never in my entire life think of the word "fluoroquinolone" without thinking of the anesthesiologist when E was born. He was pissed that the nurses had given me IV drugs that turned me loopy and unable to consent to his epidural spiel, but when he asked if I had any allergies (after I apologized to him for being stoned) I told him I was allergic to fluoroquinolone antibiotics. He was impressed that I managed to remember such a word while stoned out of my mind. Then everyone turned into giant foam fingers, like at ball games, and I don't remember much after that for a while.)

On the bright side, she is clearly not feeling too bad currently, and hopefully we're on the mend now. And, I think I earned bonus mom points because I brought in a tub full of snow so she could still play in the snow while inside. She made miniature snowmen with julienned baby carrots and raisins, and then she made an igloo, and her Polly Pockets made snow angels. After about half an hour, I carried the tub to the sink and gave her a spray bottle full of water with food coloring and let her spray it all over the snow, which she enjoyed greatly, and when she was done with that, I gave her the sprayer from the sink, turned it to hot water and let her melt all the snow. I think she enjoyed that more than anything else. :)

*Tornado. I'm sure you heard about the big storm thing last week? It sort of took over the entire day. School was dismissed early in most places and businesses were encouraged to send their people home early. It was actually bad enough that even M got to come home early, and he never does. Luckily, it passed us by but a town next door to my hometown was destroyed. Since it's so close to home, I'm seeing nothing but pictures of the devastation on Facebook this week. It's pretty awful. It's wonderful how much warning there was, though--I'm sure otherwise the fatalities would have been much worse. I'm so relieved that none of my family/friends was greatly affected by it. And then, to add insult to injury, three days later, six inches of snow falls on them. At least it's melting fast.


Mar. 1st, 2012 04:00 pm
same_sky: (under the same sky)
My week has been hectic so far! Not bad, mostly, but we've been on the go quite a lot more than usual. I had to go pick up my girl on Tuesday. Instead of going all the way to my mom's house to get her, we met halfway. Well, if halfway is what you would call one hour for me, half an hour for her. ;) We had lunch and talked and then did a tiny bit of shopping before Evie and I headed home. We were only here an hour before we had to leave for ballet, though. As we were driving there, my car started making strange scraping noises upon application of the brakes, which struck me as a problem. Brake pads, I was informed when I got home.

Normally if a car breaks down, we take it to the shop after M gets home from work and then pick it up after work the next day (or when it's ready, anyway.) For a number of logistical reasons, that wasn't the optimal solution this time--I wanted to take Evelyn to the doctor, for one thing, and then gymnastics this morning. So... I got to take it to a different shop by myself and wait for it to be done. With a four-year-old. FUN! But actually, that wasn't too bad in the end. I called one of my friends from my old job, and she spread the word a bit, and a group of girls met me for lunch at a Mexican restaurant (almost) next door. The fly in the ointment was the severe thunderstorm and tornado watch going on at the time, but I actually managed to time it really well, and it wasn't raining while we were talking over there or back. Plus, by the time I got back from having a fun lunch, the car was just about done. I had just enough time to call the pediatrician and make an appointment for later in the afternoon and then they came back with my keys. It really couldn't have worked out much better, except that when I got home, I had a text message from M telling me that I should only let them do half of what they were doing--I hadn't had a chance to see it before it was all done with. Oops. Apparently the back brakes did not need replacement as urgently as they said. How was I supposed to know? He sent me to get them fixed and I did. I mean, ya gotta have brakes, right? ;) Oh, well.

Evie is not exactly sick right now, but she's not really NOT sick, either. Back in January, she started acting all weird and then she got sick and then she got better and then she got sick and then she got better and then she got sick and.. etc. Through it all, she's kept a runny nose and a really nasty cough and a fussy attitude and she's tired all the time. Finally, I decided that I had had enough when it occurred to me that another symptom was probably related--she can't HEAR stuff anymore. I will be talking to her and she will keep asking me, "What did you say?" or just not responding. My mom was really concerned about her hearing and I started noticing it more. So, I made the appointment yesterday, which was a total waste of time and effort and money. I am really, really not one of those people who require antibiotics for things they won't help, but the child has been sick for six weeks. She has something that is not going away on its own. However, I think the woman saw a mostly healthy child (after waiting 45 minutes, E's patience was wearing thin so I had her standing on one foot, etc, when the doctor walked in.) Her opinion is that Evie has allergies. My opinion is that we won't be seeing this doctor (think she's not an actual doctor, actually) again if I can help it. Her hearing test was fine, when they inserted the thingie in her ear and played beeps at her, so she completely dismissed the hearing thing. She does have fluid in one ear, though, and that can cause temporary hearing loss--not that SHE said that, but Google did. I don't know. I really could have been okay with a "this is not an antibiotic issue" if presented in the right way, but the kiddo really doesn't seem like she has allergies. She seems like she's been sick since January. She seems, in fact, like she's had a raging sinus infection since January, based on my extensive experience with raging sinus infections. But..whatever. Bring on the Zyrtec, I suppose, once we actually make it to the store to acquire said Zyrtec (her official recommendation.) I had asked M to buy some last week, but he couldn't find the kids versions. I've had some success with keeping sinus infections at bay with allergy meds in the past so I had been planning on trying it already.

Have I mentioned that I am very disenchanted with ballet by now? It's not exactly that the child for whom I am dragging myself out into the cold for every week doesn't even enjoy it, but it's... sort of like the child for whom I am dragging myself out into the cold for every week doesn't even enjoy it. She doesn't particularly want to leave the house. Ever. Even when it's one of her fun activity things. She drags her feet and there's a fight to get her ready to leave. (Yeah. Kindergarten. I KNOW.) She seems to have fun after she's there. After we're in the CAR she seems to be cool. But, she's very meh about it mostly. It's not fun and exciting and the culmination of her life's dream anymore. It's more like "oh. Ballet again. Whatevs." This is not worth sixty bucks a month to me. I'm glad she got to do it, but I will be so relieved when it's over, and I think she will too. I think it's occurred to her that it's WORK, and they want her to dance the way THEY say, not the way she wants. She actually has a pretty good sense of rhythm for a little kid, when it comes to dancing. She dances better than I do (although, this is not saying much.) They do ballet in sort of a school-year arrangement, September through May, with a recital at the beginning of June. We are going to make her see the year through in a honoring-your-commitments sort of way, but she won't be doing dance again in the fall unless something major happens to change my mind, and I really can't imagine what that would be at this point. Gymnastics, however, is still something she enjoys. She told me recently that she wants to be a gymnastics teacher when she grows up. Unlikely to be what she settles on, but cute nonetheless. :) I can sort of see her being a teacher, actually. She's bossy enough for it, certainly. Of course, she kind of doesn't like other kids but maybe they'll grow on her.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
I just found out that Evie's soon-to-be elementary school starts at 7:25ish. I noticed this because I have a few different pre-k tasks to do today involving scheduling an appointment for her physical, etc. I was looking at the school's website and noticed that the bus route by our house picks up students at 6:32. And I was thinking, geez, I am not putting my child on a bus an hour and a half before school starts, guess I'll be driving her. (Which.. I most likely would be anyway.) I don't know why I assumed that schools always start at eight but mine pretty much always did. It was pretty cool because as I was looking at this chart, I noticed that the bus should go past here at 2:56 in the afternoons and it was 2:55, by coincidence. So I turned my head toward the front windows and waited. Sure enough, the bus drove by a minute later. I am dork but I thought that was pretty cool timing.

Miss E is with my parents today. She hasn't been as wild about staying with them lately, but she pitched a royal fit last night to stay for some reason. Actually, I found out today that we had some misunderstandings about this decision to let her stay. What *I* heard was heartbroken sobbing to M about not wanting to leave, and therefore, when she came into the kitchen and my mom asked her if she wanted to spend the night, I let her stay. What I didn't hear was apparently a royal-brat meltdown before the tears began about how she was NOT going home, which is exactly the sort of thing that always makes us deny her request. So, kind of a parenting mistake there because that is one rule that we are pretty firm on, that she can't just start crying and demanding to get her way, as she is a drama queen girl child and I fear the results of bending on that. However, having said that... I am pretty darn happy with how that worked out because I have been in dire need of a day to myself to get things done in peace. I have a backlog of things to do, plus a need for a little quiet time. We've had a rought time the last few weeks and it's good to have a little time at home without someone prone to break out in a fit of moodiness. :)

So, today I have done our taxes and scheduled a physical and eye exam for Evie, and vacuumed the house and put away a ton of toys and other things out of place, and ebay auctions and laundry and sheets and dishwasher, and I had a healthy chocolate breakfast. (Two Hershey's kisses. See, it was even low-cal.) It feels so great to get things crossed off the list, and to know that the rest of the week will not be spent catching up on things like this. I even put lotion on my feet. It's a banner sort of day. ;)

M has just spent the last ten minutes doing a monologue about how (in summary) it is okay that my eyesight is horrendous because neither time travel nor banjos are something I will need to worry about. I'm reading Outlander currently, or rather, the seventh in that series. [ profile] helloheather mentioned it favorably at some point and I finally got around to reading them. I am really liking them except I am pretty sure that she creates plot lines and characters solely because she wants to do weird accents in her dialogue. Also, I have been using the word "wee" a lot. ;) I was trying to say that I would be totally screwed if I accidentally went back in time because I am blind as a bat without my glasses. That explains the time travel part but the banjos...ahh, well. That's a manolin guy for ya, always ready with a slur on banjos. Anyone else read them?


Feb. 19th, 2012 12:37 am
same_sky: (under the same sky)
I think that the mommy spidey sense is an amazing thing. You know how you diagnose your kid as being sick long before they actually display tangible symptoms? I have been waiting for it for days and there it is. I am beginning to think she's been sick for weeks with one thing, actually. It's not that she seems sicker currently than your average cold or similar (except her cough is beginning to worry me) but I think she will find herself in the doctor's office on Monday unless there's marked improvement tomorrow. She never got completely well from the last thing before she got it again.

I have sort of given the couponing up, most of the way. It's not that it's not still a valid and fun hobby, it's that that stupid freaking show has turned it into a three-ring circus. It's one thing to spend ten hours a week on your hobby/part-time job (since I do the sales, I have in the past considered it such.) It's another to spend five hours making a shopping list, printing coupons, organizing inserts and clipping things and then spend three or four hours doing the shopping and coming home with a lot of fun loot and another thing entirely to spend that same amount of time doing something only to go out shopping and find nearly nothing in stock because of all the newbies. Part of it is that I had shifted my shopping times--I used to go out on Sunday mornings, but we go to church now. Still, even going on Sunday afternoon finds things out of stock for the week and it's just too much of a hassle. I let it go sometime before Christmas--which is also my traditional time of year to tone it down anyway because I do a lot of other shopping things then. I just haven't picked it back up much yet. I am still DOING it, but in a more normal-person sort of way. I just have a lot of other things going on these days and it's a lot of work.

In any case, I ran out of shampoo finally, a couple of weeks ago, and I went out to my storage room and found... nothing. Eek! I hadn't bought shampoo in ages and it's been literally years since I bought shampoo without it being close to free. I kept thinking I'd make a list and see if I could find any deals or freebies and do a little shopping this week, but I never got around to it. I've been using Evie's shampoo a little, but mostly those samples and trial sized bottles that I normally never actually use. (Am I the only one with a big pile of those things that I never think about using?) It's been driving me crazy but at the same time, I thought it was a great opportunity to get rid of those things so I was trying to force myself to go with it. Anyway, I went out running errands today, one of which was the grocery shopping, and while I was there... I decided to bite the bullet and just BUY SOME SHAMPOO, just like a normal person, coupon or no. I know that this story of hair care purchasing is not particularly compelling, except... I realized that just before I put it into my cart, I actually darted glances up and down the aisle in shame, checking to see if anyone had noticed what I was purchasing. It was exactly the same as those self-conscious kids you see standing around in Walmart, trying to work up the nerve to go peruse the condoms. I bought hair care products at retail price! The SHAME.

(You know what the absolute worst part was? In my furtive shampoo selection process, I grabbed the wrong bottle and came home with conditioner. I STILL have no shampoo. Duh.)

I am beginning to think that I am not entirely comfortable with a truly clean house. I had a really clean house, last weekend. It looked great. It made me feel somewhat antsy, though, like I'm afraid to do anything for fear of messing it up, or like it's someone else's house. It just feels strange to me. It stayed pretty clean through the first half of the week, but has been slowly degrading day by day since. I'm sure that says something about my psyche.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
I am not sure where time goes. I remember being young, and thinking that the days went by so slowly, but now, it's just... wasn't it only last week that we were doing the Christmas thing? Mid-February. Crazy. And speaking of time, next week will mark a decade of LJ for me, which is also crazy.

Being a serial hobbyist, I am back into sewing at the moment and specifically, quilting. I made a table runner for M's parents for Christmas, and then M fell in love with it so that he wanted a wall hanging for the end of the hallway. I didn't get started on it before Christmas, like I had planned, but I had it done for Valentine's Day. I've also started a quilt for Evie, which is.. hmm. The top is somewhere shy of half done, but not dreadfully so. I have been dreading the actual quilting of a twin-sized quilt, though, and Evie and I discussed the possibility of just making it as a snuggle-sized quilt. She thought that was a better idea than for her bed, without me even directing her into it. I don't know. I would prefer it to bed bed-sized but I would also prefer it to be done sooner and require less work.

Here's the first one, the table runner for M's parents for Christmas.

They are big on the whole handmade thing, so I knew they would be happy and they were. :)

Then there's M's Valentine's Day thing, which he picked out most of the fabrics for. I added the yellow, which I am pretty happy about. I even remembered to add little folded triangles to two of the back corners for a dowel rod to slide into and hang it with. I have now ended three sentences in one paragraph with a preposition, which is bad even for me. Anyway, it's hanging up at the end of the hallway just as planned and, if I do say so myself, it looks great there. I have tried to hang nearly every piece of artwork in this house down there and M has always been against it for one reason or another. Now I'm glad that spot was open because it looks like it was made for it...which....actually....well... it was. ;)

Here it is, hanging at the end of the hallway. This may surprise you but there is zero natural light down there, so this wasn't the best photo session we've ever had. Sending Evie to do it may not have contributed, though.

M was helping her, though, and he turned it over to get the back in a picture, too, hence the wonky hanging thing at the top. I wish the lint had gotten brushed off, though! There's a bookcase (made for my by my grandfather <3) below it that used to be my "books to read next" bookcase. Now it is my "books I will probably never read" bookcase, since I fell in love with my book reader, and most of what's left there are rejects from various used book sales that never looked appealing enough to choose next. I think I shall make it one of my next organizational projects. ANYWAY. On top of the bookcase, there's a large picture of Zinkensdamm in Stockholm, and a picture of us taken there (it's where he proposed) just after we got engaged. :)

And speaking of quilting, I don't have a picture of it, but I have about thirty blocks done on the quilt-as-you-go quilt that I started. Of course, I had twenty when I posted that in April of last year so that is actually some truly terrible progress. Oh, well. The problem is that every time I lay them out and start working on them, I decide to make it bigger. ;) The truly horrible thing is that I still haven't tested the process of joining them together, though I do have the fabric for it, at least. I also think that my new sewing machine seems to have a harder time with a bunch of layers than my old cheapo did. We'll have to see how it goes, but I am just hoping that if my new machine won't sew it, my old one will, at least. It is actually not an abandoned project, though. I cut out strips for it just this week and intend to start making blocks again. I was planning on making it 5x7, which would mean I was almost done, but I think I decided on 6x7. Still, that wouldn't take too long if I would just focus. I seem to have gotten derailed on a great many things last year. Not sure why. It truly feels like that post from April was no more than three or four months ago.

I don't have the pictures transferred from Evie's quilt yet, and this post is long enough anyway so we'll have to save that for later. :) I have to field the "I want candy" complaints department for a while, and maybe make a little dinner. :)
same_sky: (under the same sky)
I just looked up the tentative first day of school for 2012-2013, in which my BABY will be starting kindergarten. August 8, with registration in April. That is six months from now. Let the freaking out begin. ;) Oh, I don't know. Part of me is worried but part of me knows that she'll be fine. I have been assuming that she will be going to a particular elementary school in town, but it occurred to me today that I need to double-check that before we show up at their registration event. I couldn't see a zoning map or anything sensible like that on the website--maybe I'm just weird to expect things like that, I don't know--but I did see a bus schedule, with what bus number goes to what streets. Now I am still confused, but about something different. How do I know if I am on the "short end" of my street? I am thinking that your average residential street pretty much has two ends of equal size. ;) One end goes to the school I was expecting it to and the other end goes to a different school. I am still pretty sure which end we fall on, but short end? Really? That's as descriptive as you can get? I'll call and ask to be positive, but I'm pretty sure. All of my neighbors are retired, by the way, of the ones close enough for me to know.. no young kids.

I have always resisted playing Facebook games because I have played real computer games in the past. The Facebook games are gateway games, appealing to a different person--the ones who have never been into gaming, you know? And I have heckled many a Farmville player. Alas, how the high and mighty fall--I have fallen into addiction with CastleVille. I only clicked on it the first time for promotional reasons (Swagbucks told me to.) Now I have a complex series of fake Facebook accounts for gifting purposes, and I have a dozen FB friends now that I don't even know, and I have always STRONGLY been against that. It's a really fun game.. but I still feel like a dork for being so into it after all of these years of resisting the FB game thing.

Kiddo was feeling better today--still not totally back on her feet, but much improved and still pretty sweet. If loud. Anyone ever find the volume button on these younguns?

I highly recommend Walmart's generic Equate brand kids chewable Tylenol/acetemeniphen, bubble gum flavor. Evie hates liquid medicines but thinks these are delicious, and they're pretty cheap. She sort of thinks it's a special treat when she's sick and she gets to take the pink medicines. Is it evil that I let her believe they're for her stuffy nose, too? Also, is it possible for someone to take two or three weeks to get sick? Remember how I was complaining about how bored and out of sorts and fussy she was? She's a completely different child again now that she's officially sick and getting regular doses of Tylenol. Or maybe she just doesn't have enough energy to be grumpy right now, who knows?

Am I the only one that writes paragraphs that then get deleted? I have done that three times now so I think that means I'm done rambling.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
Not all of my bargain shopping works out. I pulled three shirts out of the closet that M has worn either once or not at all. The problem with them? They were so unflattering in design and color and fit that when he came home from work wearing one, I nearly burst into tears at the thought that we have SO FEW GOOD YEARS LEFT. So, I think I'll be getting rid of those. They were cheap at less than two bucks each, but one should not wear clothes that make them look that much older than reality no matter how cheap they were.

And speaking of sales, I am just so excited today because eBay is allowing its sellers to list UP TO 50,000 auctions with no listing fees today! And with twelve hours left in the day, I'll need to get cracking in order to put up 4166 auctions per hour. That works out to 69 per minute. I mean, I think they were really going for "as many as you want" with a ridiculously high cap, but still. I am amused by silly things.

My child is bored. I'm not entirely sure what to do with her. See, a few months ago, she Discovered computer games in a big way. I mean, she would sit at her computer all day if I would let her. We didn't let her play all the time, of course, but we did let her play more than she probably should have been allowed. She almost completely replaced television with it--she'd only watch TV for a few minutes at a time when she was doing something else. This allowed me to say that she didn't watch much TV, which feels good in a parenting sort of way, but the truth was that she was only watching so little TV because she had moved on to another sort of screen. And, on one hand, I was sort of okay with it as long as she did get some non-computer time in during the day, because she was sincerely interested, she was learning stuff like crazy (including how to work with computers) and because I've been there. She comes from a family of computer people. Also, I could get a lot of stuff done, I'm not too ashamed to admit it.

Two or three weeks ago, though, she started complaining about her games. She wanted a different one all the time, and yet wouldn't play the new ones we'd find for very long. There are not a limitless supply of new games suitable for children of that age, you know, and I had pretty much exhausted my supply. She didn't realize it, but I could tell she was getting a little bored with computer games as a concept. Which.. is fine! Great! Because I knew she was playing too many of them, but I also felt like it was a phase and not something I wanted to do battle over on a daily basis. She's just like we are. We both get really into something, and we are really into it until we are... well, not. But, she is now done with that phase. There have been several days now that she hasn't even turned it on. The problem is that she is now bored all the time. To my great sadness, she is not hugely interested in crafting with me lately--or rather, she is excited about crafting, but it ends badly enough of the time that I am not interested in doing it too often. I can't stand getting everything out for her, only for her to.. I don't know. Put six foam stickers on another piece of foam and then wander off. Half an hour of prep and clean-up for three minutes of not-much-fun? No thanks. She rediscovered TV, but I don't want her to replace computers with TV again, plus, she's not interested in spending all day with that even if I was interested in letting her.

We have ballet on Tuesday evenings--and even that, which she previously loved, is met with resistance when I try to get her up and out the door, and last week, her teacher told me that she wasn't listening to her in class and making angry faces about everything she was told to do--VERY unlike her at ballet. We also started back at gymnastics after a couple of months off, on Thursday mornings, and she is still interested in that--she even said she liked it better than ballet (before she got grumpy about going to ballet). However, there is a full class at gymnastics right now, and all of the other kids are much smaller than she is. I think one of them *might* be her age, but I only think that because she has what I assume is a younger sister in the class as well. Remember that Evelyn is really tall for her age anyway, but she is head and shoulders taller than the next biggest kid in the class, and none of them have been to gymnastics before. Well, one of them has been, but he is a little boy who JUST turned three, so he's all over the place at the best of times. So, the last few sessions of gymnastics was just her, or her and the boy, and there are two teachers, so she was getting a lot of special attention. I had been planning on dropping out of gymnastics, actually, but then she suddenly started being much much better than she was, and taking it very seriously, and I want to encourage her to stay with things if she takes it that seriously. Anyway, these kids have changed the dynamics of gymnastics. They've had to go backwards to teach them things that Evelyn has been doing for a long time. That's FINE, as far as the class goes. It's just less fine for E, because I don't want her to get bored with something ELSE that she enjoys. Currently, she's liking it a lot that they're using her as the example of how to do things right, but I'm not sure I really want to pay $30 per month for them to have a role model for the other kids?

That was a complete tangent, except that it's sort of part of my current dilemma. I realized recently that I only have a matter of a few short months left at home with her before she goes off to kindergarten. (Ack.) We desperately need a new routine and I'm not even sure what to put in it. I'm sure she would love it if the new routine was thusly:

9:00-11:00: play with Mommy.
11:00-11:30: eat lunch. watch television.
11:30-5:30: play with Mommy.

But honestly, I just do not have that much play in me. M is great at playing with her. That's part of the evening routine, playtime with Daddy. He'll come up with weirdo voices and make her Barbies do outlandish, rude things. (This got him into trouble recently, as she started begging to only play Barbies with Mommy..haha.) I can handle a few minutes of Barbies at a time, or a board game, or something but then I go nutso, or I accidentally end up starting some weird organizational project. ("I know! I'll dress all these Barbies, fix their hair and separate all of these accessories in this huge box by size, function and color!" I won't even realize what I'm doing until I'm half done because in my head I am still just playing Barbies. etc. This is a true story except perhaps for the size function and color thing. I do spend unreasonable amounts of time putting clothes in the right box and furniture in the right place and brushes and hats and other accessories into the right place. She totally spends all her time making sure to maintain that system when I'm not there, of course.) I'm better at activities than free play. Sometimes she'll help cook, or we will do housework in a fun way, or crafts or a science project or something like that. But, there are only so many activities that I can think of to do.

And I just realized that today was storytime at the library and I forgot about it. She has missed every single storytime this month, which is unfortunate because it's a FREE activity that gets us out of the house, and also, I'm in book crisis. M has said since I got my book reader that he'd like to borrow it to read a book sometime so he could see if he would enjoy having one himself. I am all for that except if he is using it, that means I can't. He's at work during the day, so sure, I could read it while he's gone, except it doesn't really work out that way very well, as we have now found. He is reading Wheel of Time, having given up on it back in the day at around book 10ish. I only have the last two books in electronic format, so now he is reading a WoT book, ten minutes at a time in the bathroom. So, I SEE the thing all day long, and yet, I can't read it. I was in the middle of reading Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series when I had to relinquish the book reader. I tried to NOT relinquish it, and just share it? But that inevitably led to the book reader not being where he needed it to be and therefore having nothing to read while he hibernated in the bathroom. (Why do men do this?) So finally, I finished up the book I was reading and then set it down and walked away. I'm rereading Harry Potter now, in PAPER FORM. It's bizarre. Anyway, I have been meaning to pick up the WoT book, or the next Outlander in paper for me, for weeks now and I keep missing storytime and then thinking, "oh, I'll get it next week." Or not. Last week we were out of town, the week before, it was snowing and I felt no desire to trudge down there in the snow, and this week I was just completely spacey.

On top of that--or maybe because of it--she's been tired and kind of fussy and demanding, more than usual. She's sleeping later but not complaining as much about going to bed. I think she's going through a growth spurt but sometimes I'm almost worried about her because she's just not acting like herself all the time. BUT, did I mention that she's reading? She's sounding out words and we're reading Dick and Jane (which--ROFL! that is some comedic gold, right there. Very hard to listen to a child reading, "Come, Dick, Come!" without snickering out loud.) and she's putting a lot of things together in her brain right now, I think, and I know that is big work for little kids, and it's likely to leave them tired and out of sorts. So I think that may be the root of it (or maybe I just read Ask Moxie for too long and buy into the "everything is caused by a developmental stage" thing.) Friends who read parenting books? Something going on with them at 4.5 or 5? I don't know if it's this underlying issue causing the boredom and whining, or if it's just a convergence of a bunch of different things, but I think she's bored with life right now and I would rather see her more happy and engaged. I was happy that she didn't start preschool this year, but now I am thinking maybe that's the sort of structure she is searching for right now.. not that I could or would start that now, anyway.

I guess this post is a really long, typical-me, roundabout way to ask: what the heck do your kids do all the day? Or, what did they do before they started school? And oh, don't forget that she is completely in a scaredy-cat phase (started at the same time) where she does not want to be in a room other than the one that I am in. So, I can't just leave her playing in her room. If she's going to play Barbies on her own, I have to be sitting there, too, and I really like to get things done upon occasion myself. Blah.

Oh, and she has also gotten tired of every single food that she previously loved at the same time. WTF. It's like she's a teenager reinventing herself all of a sudden.

Honestly, I had no idea I had so many words about this subject. I didn't even mean to write about it when I sat down here. It's not like it's a huge deal, but apparently I have been thinking about it more than I thought.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
Every year, my family does a New Years dinner in which we serve cabbage rolls. The tradition has been going on since it was picked up by friends of my grandparents (all of the people of which are now gone.) My mom and aunt are the ones who are currently doing the meal. On New Years Eve, they are at my parents house every year, making enough cabbage rolls for an army. This year, I helped because we went up for the weekend yesterday--sometimes I'm there to help but lately, it hasn't worked out, which honestly is fine by me. It's kind of a sucky job.:) Another yearly tradition is to complain about the fine members of the family who believe that New Years is an optional holiday. :)

FYI, New Years is not an optional holiday.

So it was a pretty good day, although quieter than usual in terms of the number of people there. There was plenty of chaos regardless. :) Now it's past midnight and we're still up, trying to force a little more awake time into an already long day. Or maybe it's just a long day for those of us who didn't sleep until 10:30 like SOME people I know. Ahem. Boyo. M has tomorrow off so we still have one day left of our holiday.

Random Evie witticism: She announced to me on Friday, completely out of the blue, that Daddy--who was at work at the time, and therefore totally innocent of any recent wrong-doings--is a "fart genius". This is because he is an expert on farts, since we does them so often. There has perhaps been some commentary made to him by myself and.. oh, all the estimated one hundred forty-two people to whom I have told this story. ;) Good thing he loves me.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
It feels like such a relief that Christmas is over, this year. It was great! I have a four-year-old. It's hard for Christmas to not be great when there's a kiddo that's so excited about everything. But, for us, Christmas has been going on since September and that is just way too long. By the time it was actually time to get excited about real Christmas, it was just sort of hard to maintain the enthusiasm. :) Santa brought a Lite Sprites doll (which Mommy thought was pretty goofy but it was one thing that she had seemed really interested in at the store) and a Wii game and a Squinkies wedding castle. I also think that Squinkies are overpriced, annoying toys, but E so rarely asks my opnions on which toys she would like. ;) Imagine.

As for me, I got a new sewing machine, which is a Brother CS6000i. I picked it out based on a recommendation from... actually, I think it was linked to on pinterest. My sewing machine was a cheap Singer from Walmart, It's been just fine... most of the time. We bought it before I was interested in sewing. My dear husband was exploring the life of a SAHH, just after we moved here for my job and before he found a new one, and decided to get into quilting. This plan might have worked if he had not tackled an appliqued wall hanging as his first project. He got it assembled but then he came to the part that was all "applique!" and "embroider" and "embellish" and he was all "screw this!" And it's been in a box ever since. However, we didn't regret the purchase of the sewing machine anyway because it's something that I think a household needs. Three years later, I pulled it out and learned to sew when I was about seven months pregnant, and then ended up making -- would it be an awful pun to say this? -- a crapload of cloth diapers and whatever else has come to mind. I go in phases with sewing, as with all of my crafts, but I have actually come BACK to it several times after a few months of not sewing, which is way better than my normal patterns. (Anyone remember when I used to tat? Or knit? For example.) Anyway, my old sewing machine works and all, but it's not very exciting, and it has had a few issues lately that make me think that it won't be around forever. I haven't yet gotten to do much sewing yet on the new one but so far there are some definite improvements over the other one. I can see the bobbin while sewing so I don't have to guess how much thread I have left! Cute decorative stitches! Neat, precise-looking stitches. Aaaaand, there are a few things that I am just not used to and maybe a few that I don't like as well--we'll see, after I've broken it in. It seems to have a harder time handling curves, and I am not used to the way the reverse stitching works. Once, it basically wouldn't let me backstitch and I've no clue why. I guess I'd never really considered that a new machine would be a new learning curve. :) So, I'm working on a stack of cloth wipes. I can sew them in my sleep and they're not exactly something that needs to be fussy, so hopefully I'll get used to it quickly and then I can sew something more fun.

After Evie stopped wearing diapers, by the way, I kept the wipes around because they're so handy. At some point when there was illness in the house, I got them out to use to dry our hands in the bathroom and I have had them out since. We have a towel on the wall but I only use it when there are no wipes left (or when I put them away because we have company. They're pretty ugly by now.) I've been idly working on this wipes project for a while now, partially because we need to to supplement our stash in the bathroom--we're always out before the laundry is ready, even though I know we have six dozen of them, at least, but in large part because I am determined to use up some of my fabric stash. I bought lots of flannel in my baby-sewing/cloth-diapering stage, and I almost never use it for anything now. They're somewhat boring to sew--no serger here, so they're individually cut, sewn, turned and topstitched--so it's sort of my default sewing project, when I don't have anything else to do. Whatever burns through the stash, right?

My sprained ankle is still in kind of poor shape. It was improving, but then I did a lot of Christmas shopping on it, and it got pretty bad again. I didn't do a whole lot in the days following Christmas, but yesterday I got up and cleaned my house because I couldn't live in a pig sty anymore, and last night, I was regretting that plan. To my surprise, though, it feels better today than it has in some time, so... I should be working through the pain, maybe? I was expecting it to pain me through about Christmas, but now I'm ready for it to be done with.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
We canceled Netflix a while back. We hadn't been using it that much, and then they did their price hike, and we decided it was time to cancel. I'm only adding in this part of the story because there were some people, at the time, who were all, "what's the big deal? So they raised their prices! It's still such a value!" And sure, it is. The problem with what Netflix did? Is that they came out and said, "Hi, today we're going to charge you TWICE what we charged you yesterday for the same service." and then they expected that no one would be UPSET by this. THEN, when so many people were angry and cancel-y, there was this email apology but you could tell that they were actually rather baffled as to why people were actually upset with them. It was just so badly handled, in my opinion. Still, that wasn't really the reason that we canceled, though it was at the same time. A couple of weeks ago, we turned it back on because... well, because they have Phineas & Ferb, all episodes, and that's an integral part of the bedtime ritual between M and E, and we thought it'd be fun to watch them all in order and the DVR has this wonky way of listing them. Anyway. M and I actually don't watch much television, most of the time, and Evie doesn't either. She used to watch way too much television, but she's replaced that with computer games, which is a whole separate issue. Anyway, we have Netflix on the TV now and out of the blue one day last week, we decided to cancel the satellite service because we realized that we were paying $75 per month and hardly watching it.

After we got home, I did a little research and realized that we have seven months left on our contract, and if we cancel, we'd pay $17.50 per month. $122 would still pay for itself within two months, though. Anyway, I called tonight and talked to the lady, and asked about a tiny "welcome package" that I saw as a footnote on their website for $14.99, and... now we have 40 channels for the next seven months (or longer..) and it costs less than we'd have paid for breaking our contract. But by far the best part is that I have that warm glow that comes from actually doing something kind of big* from my to-do list, and doing it well. The concept of paying $122 for nothing is much worse than paying $105 for television. Though, actually, I kept DVR so it's really a little more than the cancellation fee would have been, but not much. :) NickJR is the only thing I think we'll miss, but the DVR is full of E's favorite stuff from that channel already.

*Calling in itself does not qualify as big, but deciding doing the supporting research, made it a big project in my head and therefore, one of those things that I customarily procrastinate on.

It seems rather unbelievable that Christmas is just a week away. Maybe it's because my tree has been up since September, but it sort of feels like Christmas should still be years away. Speaking of the tree, though, we are the most awesome parents ever. We did the whole red-and-green thing for our October Christmas with M's parents. After it was over, I decided that I'd be taking all of the decorations off the tree because I didn't want to look at it for three more months, or ruin the excitement of actual Christmas. I considered a fall-themed tree, but it turned out that I didn't have enough fall decorations to make it work. So... I turned it into a pink princess tree. If I'd finished it, I think it'd have been pinterest cute. I just didn't really have enough pink or purple decorations, even with the big box that we got to supplement. I had been planning for Evie to help me make ornaments for it, but she's not really much of a crafting buddy like she used to be. Lately, we end up mad at each other when we try. I'm hoping she grows out of this particular phase soon because we used to have a lot of fun with it. Anyway, when it came time to put the red-and-green back on the tree, we decided to just keep the pink instead. It's cute, and how many four-year-olds get two Christmases in one year PLUS a pretty pink princess tree for the real one? With luck, it'll be a good memory for her.

I also caved to peer pressure--or really, peer inspiration--and bought an Elf on the Shelf. I turned her into a girl by sewing her a little felt skirt, adding stick-on foam glittery red earrings and painting her lips a bit pinker. E is pretty anti-boy. much as we have tried to convince her that boys are people too, she just doesn't buy it. Evie named her Lily, and I waited eagerly to see her blossoming excitement each morning. Yeah. Not... really. She likes the elf, and she does smile and look pleased when she sees where it's hiding every day. But, it also annoys her because, as she says, it's not a REAL elf. It's made of PLASTIC, Mom. Not REAL. She was getting upset enough that I finally had to sit down with her and explain the whole thing about the magic of Christmas and pretending that something is real, and that's dangerous territory for someone who wants to keep Santa alive for at least ten more years. Okay, maybe not ten but she's too young to be questioning how REAL something Christmas-related is. I kind of wish I hadn't bought it because she doesn't enjoy it as much as I thought she would. I was picturing that whole eyes-alight-with-the-magic-and-wonder-of-the-Christmas-season thing. Instead, I am getting that teenager look, and believe me, I am more than willing to leave that look in the future where it belongs.

This post was supposed to have a picture of Lily but I accidentally did other things, like watching Desperate Housewives and playing Castleville, and forgot about returning to this post, and now it is way past my bedtime. Again. Attempt two at a shopping trip tomorrow, which may be interesting with my bum ankle, but such is life. Poor M has nearly nothing under the tree so I must go procure some gifts at some point. :)


Dec. 12th, 2011 12:11 pm
same_sky: (under the same sky)
Every year, I go Christmas shopping with my parents. It's a tradition that we all love. Sometimes my niece can go with us, but usually not because for some reason, teenagers have to go to school and their moms won't always let them skip. :) Around Thanksgiving, we start talking about what day we can go. My mom is sort of freaking out about not having her shopping done yet, and so we decided last week to meet on Friday in Lexington... Lexington being an actual city, compared to either of our small towns, and conveniently located between us. My dear sweet child hates to shop, but was appeased by the offer to go spend the night with Granny, in theory. In actuality, I think she was less over her cold/ear infection than I thought she was, because I finally gave her Tylenol when she couldn't stop crying and she was much happier just before we left. I had previously thought she was well. Hmm. Anyway, we finally are ready to walk out the door on Friday morning and I am really, really looking forward to the day. We rarely get much in the way of shopping done, but we always have fun! And I had been stuck at home almost all week with a sick kiddo. And I had even made a special trip to get gas while Evie was at ballet the night before, and I even remembered to bring the stroller so Evie could ride at the mall. (We're not stroller people, much, so when the occasion comes that she should have it, we usually don't have it with us.) I was SET. And then I stepped outside to take the first load of stuff I needed to bring with us to the car, while Evie was getting her shoes on, and.... I don't know what exactly happened, but I stepped down on my right foot and it twisted and went POP in a loud, sickening fashion, and instant searing pain shot up my leg. And that was pretty much the end of my Christmas shopping day.

I didn't go to the doctor but it's pretty clearly sprained. I think I overdid it on Saturday and put the healing several steps back because when I got out of bed on Saturday morning, it was almost fine.. but then walking on it all morning didn't seem to help it. My whole foot swelled up like... well, like nothing more than that said foot was about nine months pregnant. Some of the swelling has gone down today, but it's still stiff and sore. I'm guessing that it's going to give me trouble throughout the remainder of time left before Christmas. Excellent!

I should add that my parents did a couple of errands in Lexington and came on down to my house after I couldn't come. After a couple of hours, we headed out for a little bit of shopping in town, where I found myself wheelchairs. You know, riding one of those electric carts at Walmart when one looks like a perfectly healthy, relatively young, woman? Kind of embarrassing.

Then, Evie went home with them and has been there ever since. We had some stuff to do on Saturday and they volunteered to come get her for that reason, and also so she could go to one of her cousin's birthday parties. The original plan was for me to come up to pick her up today and spend the day helping Mom clean or wrap presents or whatever she wanted me to do. (My idea, because I am nice that way.) Alas, not feeling so helpful with a bum ankle and sort of afraid to drive three hours with it. (There and back.) So.. I called yesterday afternoon and said that we would come get either then, or Mom could bring her down here on Tuesday, since she's planning on coming then anyway. (Parent night at ballet! Finally get to see her at ballet lessons! Looking forward to it so much.) She said she'd just bring her as long as it was okay with Evie, who probably thought she won the lottery when asked if she wanted to stay an extra day.

So.... I have another day to do whatever I want and I am not even sure what to do with it. It's really weird because it had been months since she stayed the night with my mom before our anniversary weekend last month. Then two weeks later she ended up there on a Thursday night and M and I went to pick her up on Saturday. The next week she's there for three more days. And it's great to be able to get some stuff done, and some time alone, but on Saturday evening I started really missing her and kind of wanted to go pick her up. I was SURE when I called on Sunday that Mom would want us to come on up and get her because the answer to any question of the variety "Should we come up?" is always YES. :) But.. no. hehe. The distance adds an interesting dimension to going to Granny's. It's close enough that I could go up any time. It's far enough that you really strive to avoid making the drive as much as possible.

Spraining an ankle, of course, did nothing to keep me home on Saturday, for that was Sam's day! ($500 shopping spree sponsored by M's boss. I have described this many times. I'm sure you're all sick of it.) I really and truly wish everyone could do this at least once. It's so much fun, much more than just the actual shopping with free money aspect. One of the things that's fun is that they set up a table with breakfast (ham sandwich croissants, fruit, coffee, juice, water, etc) and close down two checkout lanes with a couple of employees dedicated to this. He spends $14,000 there that morning so I'd imagine that they do rather bend over backwards to make him happy. *laugh* Anyway, one of the things that makes it fun is that the employees who are working those lines? They're almost as excited as we are. This year, we bought a massage seat, a blu-ray player--hello, it's 2011 and we didn't have blu-ray...and the only reason we have it now is because of the netflix feature--and a bunch of assorted household stuff. Dishwashing detergent, toilet paper, some groceries, etc. I wish we would bring everything in and take pictures of it because I'd like to look back at them and see what we bought other years. Anyway, our total ended up at $500.17. We paid $.17 for everything. I think we WON, cause it's not likely that anyone else would get closer than that. I am, however, horrified that we got that close. We might have lost money! We thought we were several dollars over so apparently our math skills are as bad as everyone else. I know I was making fun of the people who end up giving money on the gift cards back to the boss. :) Another common mistake is to forget the consider that 6% tax on $500 is $30 in itself. I think we did that the first year. ;)

And now... it's time to get started on the day. I slept late and have been lazing around all morning. Time for a shower! And after that, my biggest goal for the day is to cut something out of the vinyl I bought for my digital cutter. I don't even care what it is that I cut. ;) Should be a nice relaxing day.
same_sky: (under the same sky)
How can it possibly be almost December? Didn't this year just start? I am pretty sure that Evelyn's rainbow birthday party in May was just a few weeks ago, and M's parents--well, I'm pretty sure that we're still waiting for THAT to happen. How time flies when you get old.

I regret to inform you that my beautiful anniversary weekend alone with the boy was somewhat lessened by illness-mine. I came down with a sinus infection, self-diagnosed, and I actually managed to get through it without copious antibiotics, which was swell. It was touch and go there for a while--I was headed to the doctor on Saturday morning, but finally decided against it. We still had fun, if a little less actively than planned. I was feeling good on Friday and got a ton done while M was at work. We had a nice dinner at a steakhouse (Longhorn) but I was feeling pretty tired by the time it was over. Saturday and Sunday were fairly low-key, but it's still fairly fantastic to have the house to the adults only upon occasion. By Monday, I was feeling well enough to actually enjoy myself while shopping. When we were done, we headed up to pick up Evie-Kadevie and have dinner with my parents. As for her, she had a great time. I think she missed us some but she was just fine with my mom. Sometimes I think she'd move in with them if I would let her.

(This is not actually true. She wanted to come home--she just wants to spend more time at Granny's than she gets to now. It probably sounds like she is always gone, but her overnight visits are pretty rare now.)

When we came back home, we only had two days of normal before we headed back up for Thanksgiving, which was nice. I had a pretty serious headache, which wasn't great. The best part of Thanksgiving day at my house is after it's over and the dishes are done, we all hang out around the kitchen table and we pore over the Black Friday ads. We make lists and talk about gift ideas for all the kids. It's... I don't know. It sounds lame, but it's a lot of fun. It was a little less fun this year than in previous years. Not sure why. In any case, we headed out to Walmart at around nine. I really didn't have a single thing on my list, but I was going for the sake of the family bonding. It was CRAZY.

I know some people feel strongly about Black Friday being absurd, but it's something that I participate in mainly because it's a fun thing that the family does together. I usually don't buy much. It's a lot of fun to actually grab a coveted item, even if you're not grabbing it for yourself. Last year, while my mom waited in a line that stretched back to eternity for a DS (for Evie, though she ended up getting one for herself, too), I amused myself with running all over the store to fetch items. I was bringing stuff back for the people next to my mom in line by the end. (Which sounds funnier than it actually was. It happened to be someone that we knew--the ex-step-mother of my best friend in kindergarten. Small towns are fun that way!) Anyway, in previous years, there was a certain camaraderie in the whole thing. We were a bunch of people out shopping at the ass-crack of dawn and it was wild and crazy but we were all in it together. I was never really worried about those trampling stories because... I was going Black Friday shopping in a small town. In the south. As a general rule, we're friendly here. I have never loved the idea of having my kiddo with me at the big five a.m. rush, but I usually have her by about seven and it's been fine. (M has to work on that day, which we all accuse him of doing on purpose--bribing his boss, etc, because he does NOT want to join in with us on this. Anyway, he would get E ready and bring her out to us before he left town.. since it started the night before this time, he didn't have to do that this year.)

black friday

Anyway, this year, it wasn't like it was in previous years. I think that having it be an evening shopping trip instead of an early morning shopping trip brought out a different sort of person. It was CREEPY when 10 p.m. came and people started clawing at the pallets to get their items. Pushing and shoving and the works. Maybe I sound naive, but I've never seen it like that before. We started doing this years ago, but it's become such a big thing now that really, too many people are going and the retailers are putting out worse deals every year. I don't know. I look forward to parts of Black Friday every year, but I am not sure I will want to go next year... although whether or not I can get out of it is another story. Creepy moment at ten aside, we had a good time. I didn't buy much, but I did find a $3 pink t-shirt with Candace from Phineas & Ferb on the front. Evie loves Candace, because she's bossy like her. Yes, well, at least she's aware of her shortcomings? I don't know. Anyway, I'd have paid more for that. Evie will love it. (I also bought her a Perry shirt from the boy's section that's almost like the one M has. She'll loooove having a matching shirt with Daddy.) And, we had fun, especially the next day. As much as I disliked the mood at Walmart that night, I loved what it did for Friday shopping. We went home and slept for a while, and then got up and were ready to leave town by about 7:00. We made it to Lexington before the early bird stuff wore off, and I finally got to go to a store that Iwanted to go to. Kohl's, of course. The stores were kind of busy but not much more so than on any other Saturday in December, and the stock levels were pretty good to boot. I wonder what the outcome of this year's experiment will be.

M has decided that he no longer needs to sleep, apparently, and it is now after midnight and we're both awake. I hear that when you get old, you need less sleep. As I am still a spring chicken (never mind what i wrote earlier in this very post) I need my beauty sleep. :)

June 2015

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