Nov 30, 2006

Taking a day off

With little sleep last night, and much excitement today, I am taking a personal day from working. After watching Superman, we did head up north to the mall, and we visited the fountain and made wishes. We then went to Build a Bear (Austin had no idea we had planned this) and when he had his bear made and was dressing it, he said "My wish already came true! I wished I would get a build a bear". So he made himself a cute brown bear he named Henry and dressed it in Harley Davidson garb; jeans, tshirt, and a biker jacket. Grandpa would be so proud!

Of course, while we were there, Matthew saw a Big Bird that he had to get and we gave in. Chris was cool with not getting one, since he just got Hunter, his taekwondo snow leopard he got for his birthday (Halloween).

We did not have time for Red Lobster, so we will take him on Sunday.

Taking a day off

With little sleep last night, and much excitement today, I am taking a personal day from working. After watching Superman, we did head up north to the mall, and we visited the fountain and made wishes. We then went to Build a Bear (Austin had no idea we had planned this) and when he had his bear made and was dressing it, he said "My wish already came true! I wished I would get a build a bear". So he made himself a cute brown bear he named Henry and dressed it in Harley Davidson garb; jeans, tshirt, and a biker jacket. Grandpa would be so proud!

Of course, while we were there, Matthew saw a Big Bird that he had to get and we gave in. Chris was cool with not getting one, since he just got Hunter, his taekwondo snow leopard he got for his birthday (Halloween).

We did not have time for Red Lobster, so we will take him on Sunday.

I am a mom again!!

This morning started out like any normal day, 6 am, get up the kids, shower get dressed. But instead of a jeans and t-shirt, I put on a suit and makeup and fixed my hair, because today was our court date! At 8:30 we dropped off the baby at the sitter's house and was at the attorney's office by 8:50. At 9:20 we had an appointment with the attorney to go over the final details and then we walked over to the court house to be there 15 minutes early. We got called in by the court clerk and she locked the court room. The attorney then talked with the judge saying that BM has failed to contact and visit, has not supported him in 6 months. They then talked back and forth to make sure procedure was followed.

The attorney then called Bobby to the stand and asked him questions about the adoption "do you consent to the adoption?", "do you feel this is in the best interests of Austin?". Next I was called to the stand and asked pretty much the same questions and then made sure I knew that I was his mom and from this day forward was responsible for him, and that I cannot just decide later that I don't want to take care of him. Well, of course I was OK with this. I cannot imagine walking away from any of my children no matter what happens down the road.

Finally the judge asked to talk to Austin, and made sure he was OK with the adoption and name change. He then asked him if he heard what my roles as a parent were (to make sure he has an education, a roof over his head, food and clothing) and told him that as my son he also has responsibilities that include obeying, listening and being respectful to me. The judge said he was satisfied that the termination was in Austin's best interests and then seconds later said because Austin was free to be adopted that he was granting my motion to adopt and that was that! At 10:15 am MST I legally became the mother of my son who I have known in my heart was my own for 7 years now.

After a quick run to the county clerks office, and then back to the attorneys office, we were all done with the legal part of today. We had a nice brunch and the boys are now watching the new Superman movie with daddy. In about an hour we are going to head up north to Build a Bear to make Austin something to help him remember this day. We are then going to Red Lobster (his choice) for dinner.

Thank you everyone for your kind words and support through this. I really appreciate all of you!!

I am a mom again!!

This morning started out like any normal day, 6 am, get up the kids, shower get dressed. But instead of a jeans and t-shirt, I put on a suit and makeup and fixed my hair, because today was our court date! At 8:30 we dropped off the baby at the sitter's house and was at the attorney's office by 8:50. At 9:20 we had an appointment with the attorney to go over the final details and then we walked over to the court house to be there 15 minutes early. We got called in by the court clerk and she locked the court room. The attorney then talked with the judge saying that BM has failed to contact and visit, has not supported him in 6 months. They then talked back and forth to make sure procedure was followed.

The attorney then called Bobby to the stand and asked him questions about the adoption "do you consent to the adoption?", "do you feel this is in the best interests of Austin?". Next I was called to the stand and asked pretty much the same questions and then made sure I knew that I was his mom and from this day forward was responsible for him, and that I cannot just decide later that I don't want to take care of him. Well, of course I was OK with this. I cannot imagine walking away from any of my children no matter what happens down the road.

Finally the judge asked to talk to Austin, and made sure he was OK with the adoption and name change. He then asked him if he heard what my roles as a parent were (to make sure he has an education, a roof over his head, food and clothing) and told him that as my son he also has responsibilities that include obeying, listening and being respectful to me. The judge said he was satisfied that the termination was in Austin's best interests and then seconds later said because Austin was free to be adopted that he was granting my motion to adopt and that was that! At 10:15 am MST I legally became the mother of my son who I have known in my heart was my own for 7 years now.

After a quick run to the county clerks office, and then back to the attorneys office, we were all done with the legal part of today. We had a nice brunch and the boys are now watching the new Superman movie with daddy. In about an hour we are going to head up north to Build a Bear to make Austin something to help him remember this day. We are then going to Red Lobster (his choice) for dinner.

Thank you everyone for your kind words and support through this. I really appreciate all of you!!

The adoption is complete!!!

Today at 10:15 am I adopted my son Austin, who was my step-son.  I love that I finally have the legal recognition that my heart has felt all along!  Read all about it here on my other blog.

Nov 29, 2006

Tomorrow Morning…

...I will legally be the mom to my oldest son. We are all so excited! Austin is counting the hours (13h 40m by the way) until the hearing, though I think he may be a little more nervous than I am. It is just incredible to me that I am able to love him so much. My biggest worry when I agreed to raise Austin, is that I would get tired of babysitting someone else's kid, but I have never once felt that way about him. Sure, there were times I wanted just to give up, but I have felt that same way about my own children once in a while.

Austin is such a amazing child though, he is so easy to love. Even though he is 10, he is still not too big to ask for a hug or give us a kiss each night before bed. I am not naive though, I know that will change soon, I am not under the impression that he is going to be an easy teen; one could hope though.

I know I have mentioned my favorite poem in here before, but I really think it is appropriate to repeat myself.

Not flesh of my flesh
Nor bone of my bone,
But still miraculously
My own.
Never forget
For a single minute:
You didn't grow under my heart,
But in it.

--Fleur Conkling Heyliger

I am so ready to get beyond this milestone and live life the way I have felt for over 7 years now. The adoption is great, I have wanted nothing more.... but like Austin and I were discussing, it will not change our relationship. I have always told him that he was my son, and he has always known he is just as loved as his brothers. We have never used labels, so he has never been a step-son or a half-brother. It will be so nice to have the legal rights I felt I earned long before. I often feel it is not the act of pregnancy and childbirth that makes you a mother, but every moment in between the time they are born until they are on their own (and beyond).

The biggest change I think that will come of this is a lack of fear. I no longer worry that if anything were to happen to Bobby, I would lose my husband and son. I no longer fear that if my marriage fails I will not have legal rights to see my son. I no longer worry that if something happens to me, Austin will not receive social security or life insurance benefits. I no longer will need to carry a special piece of paper around to do the simplest of things, like register my son for school or take him to the doctor.

A little side note: Tonight BM called my husband and my heart sank into my chest, I was freaked out that maybe she changed her mind or something. I seriously almost had a panic attack when she called. It was innocent, she broke her cell phone and wanted us to have her husband's cell phone number in case the judge needs to talk to her tomorrow. But I was just so worried that we came so far for it to be taken away from us. I think I am ready for this, don't you think?

Tomorrow Morning...

...I will legally be the mom to my oldest son. We are all so excited! Austin is counting the hours (13h 40m by the way) until the hearing, though I think he may be a little more nervous than I am. It is just incredible to me that I am able to love him so much. My biggest worry when I agreed to raise Austin, is that I would get tired of babysitting someone else's kid, but I have never once felt that way about him. Sure, there were times I wanted just to give up, but I have felt that same way about my own children once in a while.

Austin is such a amazing child though, he is so easy to love. Even though he is 10, he is still not too big to ask for a hug or give us a kiss each night before bed. I am not naive though, I know that will change soon, I am not under the impression that he is going to be an easy teen; one could hope though.

I know I have mentioned my favorite poem in here before, but I really think it is appropriate to repeat myself.

Not flesh of my flesh
Nor bone of my bone,
But still miraculously
My own.
Never forget
For a single minute:
You didn't grow under my heart,
But in it.

--Fleur Conkling Heyliger

I am so ready to get beyond this milestone and live life the way I have felt for over 7 years now. The adoption is great, I have wanted nothing more.... but like Austin and I were discussing, it will not change our relationship. I have always told him that he was my son, and he has always known he is just as loved as his brothers. We have never used labels, so he has never been a step-son or a half-brother. It will be so nice to have the legal rights I felt I earned long before. I often feel it is not the act of pregnancy and childbirth that makes you a mother, but every moment in between the time they are born until they are on their own (and beyond).

The biggest change I think that will come of this is a lack of fear. I no longer worry that if anything were to happen to Bobby, I would lose my husband and son. I no longer fear that if my marriage fails I will not have legal rights to see my son. I no longer worry that if something happens to me, Austin will not receive social security or life insurance benefits. I no longer will need to carry a special piece of paper around to do the simplest of things, like register my son for school or take him to the doctor.

A little side note: Tonight BM called my husband and my heart sank into my chest, I was freaked out that maybe she changed her mind or something. I seriously almost had a panic attack when she called. It was innocent, she broke her cell phone and wanted us to have her husband's cell phone number in case the judge needs to talk to her tomorrow. But I was just so worried that we came so far for it to be taken away from us. I think I am ready for this, don't you think?

New Car!!

Not for me, for Matthew! He has gone from my bed, to his car, to his highchair for breakfast, back to his car. He has not even once asked for 'Eh-mo' since he came downstairs and noticed the car.
Matthew was given this car by our friends, who's little girl is almost 3 and does not play with it anymore. Matthew has wanted one of these cars since he played with one at another friend's house about 6 months ago. We had been planning on getting him one for his 2nd birthday in March, but when Jeanie saw how much Matthew loved it, she told us to take it home. Bobby snuck it our to the front porch, so Jeanie's little girl would not see it go, and Matthew was just hysterical, sobbing so hard because we took his car away in his mind.
Bobby brought the car in the house last night when Matthew was in bed, so this morning it was like Christmas morning when he came downstairs.

New Car!!

Not for me, for Matthew! He has gone from my bed, to his car, to his highchair for breakfast, back to his car. He has not even once asked for 'Eh-mo' since he came downstairs and noticed the car.
Matthew was given this car by our friends, who's little girl is almost 3 and does not play with it anymore. Matthew has wanted one of these cars since he played with one at another friend's house about 6 months ago. We had been planning on getting him one for his 2nd birthday in March, but when Jeanie saw how much Matthew loved it, she told us to take it home. Bobby snuck it our to the front porch, so Jeanie's little girl would not see it go, and Matthew was just hysterical, sobbing so hard because we took his car away in his mind.
Bobby brought the car in the house last night when Matthew was in bed, so this morning it was like Christmas morning when he came downstairs.

Nov 28, 2006

Unique decorating idea

Imagine a room without limits, pictures without frames, and a room made over in such an extreme way, it looks like it could be made by the professionals. With Wallhogs you can make a room to reflect any personality, any taste and any love by turning any imagine into an easy to apply wall decal.

Imagine your son was really into sailboats, and for his 7th birthday you took him out on a real clipper. Instead of blowing his favorite picture up to an 8x10 and framing it on his wall, you could get a custom wallhog up to over 4 feet wide and 7 feet tall to use as a custom mural, or you could go smaller and turn the same picture into a headboard.


You can also select a finish, add thought bubbles, or have the background removed for you from your favorite picture.

Wallhogs is also working on obtaining licensing rights to release their own images. Ready made pictures of Gwen Steffani are coming soon (my husband loved that idea). Mmmmm, how about a life sized picture of Johnny Depp guys?

Unique decorating idea

Imagine a room without limits, pictures without frames, and a room made over in such an extreme way, it looks like it could be made by the professionals. With Wallhogs you can make a room to reflect any personality, any taste and any love by turning any imagine into an easy to apply wall decal.

Imagine your son was really into sailboats, and for his 7th birthday you took him out on a real clipper. Instead of blowing his favorite picture up to an 8x10 and framing it on his wall, you could get a custom wallhog up to over 4 feet wide and 7 feet tall to use as a custom mural, or you could go smaller and turn the same picture into a headboard.


You can also select a finish, add thought bubbles, or have the background removed for you from your favorite picture.

Wallhogs is also working on obtaining licensing rights to release their own images. Ready made pictures of Gwen Steffani are coming soon (my husband loved that idea). Mmmmm, how about a life sized picture of Johnny Depp guys?

Picky, Picky, Picky!!

Matthew now wants everything in its origional, but opened package. With string cheese he just wants you to open one side just a little bit. With crackers and raisins he want's to graze straight from the container. With graham crackers he wants to eat them straight from the bag, which was a no-go, since there were still 6 in the bag and he wanted to just nibble a little on each one and then put it away. This is so frustrating because we know what he wants by what he signs (fish crackers, cheese, water, cookie, etc) but it is always a mystery on how he wants it, and if you get it wrong, he screams.

I do have to say, his indipendence can be nice. He is a cleaner eater than before because 9 out of 10 times he can use his utensils all by himself, and he will use the rag to clean his face and tray (with limited success and effectiveness).

Cute story, this morning he was making himself some 'aquarium soup' and drinking it. He was dropping about 5 or 6 goldfish crackers into his cup of water and then drinking them. I asked him what he called his new meal and he signed 'fish-water' and then said "yum"!

Picky, Picky, Picky!!

Matthew now wants everything in its origional, but opened package. With string cheese he just wants you to open one side just a little bit. With crackers and raisins he want's to graze straight from the container. With graham crackers he wants to eat them straight from the bag, which was a no-go, since there were still 6 in the bag and he wanted to just nibble a little on each one and then put it away. This is so frustrating because we know what he wants by what he signs (fish crackers, cheese, water, cookie, etc) but it is always a mystery on how he wants it, and if you get it wrong, he screams.

I do have to say, his indipendence can be nice. He is a cleaner eater than before because 9 out of 10 times he can use his utensils all by himself, and he will use the rag to clean his face and tray (with limited success and effectiveness).

Cute story, this morning he was making himself some 'aquarium soup' and drinking it. He was dropping about 5 or 6 goldfish crackers into his cup of water and then drinking them. I asked him what he called his new meal and he signed 'fish-water' and then said "yum"!

I am cheating…

...on my house. There, I admitted it, I feel so much better!

Since we went to our friends' new house up north, we have fallen in love with the houses, the neighborhood, the schools, the area, etc. This is the house I want (or one like it). We are looking for something with 5+ bedrooms, 3+ bath, and 3,000+ square feet. To see more pictures of the house I like, you will have to register, but it is here.

Of course, I am not ready to drop everything and move now; I would like to have the Honda paid off and at least 75% of our unsecured debt paid off. We are looking at a time frame of 18-30 months before we move. I would also would like to put at least 10% down.

So this is our 2 year plan. This is why I do PayPerPost, and other blogging/writing work. I will also hopefully be watching a baby for 3 hours a day starting in January. This is also the reason I am in a flurry of trying to reduce my monthly bills and save money. It is also the reason we are taking steps to make small improvements to this house.

I am cheating...

...on my house. There, I admitted it, I feel so much better!

Since we went to our friends' new house up north, we have fallen in love with the houses, the neighborhood, the schools, the area, etc. This is the house I want (or one like it). We are looking for something with 5+ bedrooms, 3+ bath, and 3,000+ square feet. To see more pictures of the house I like, you will have to register, but it is here.

Of course, I am not ready to drop everything and move now; I would like to have the Honda paid off and at least 75% of our unsecured debt paid off. We are looking at a time frame of 18-30 months before we move. I would also would like to put at least 10% down.

So this is our 2 year plan. This is why I do PayPerPost, and other blogging/writing work. I will also hopefully be watching a baby for 3 hours a day starting in January. This is also the reason I am in a flurry of trying to reduce my monthly bills and save money. It is also the reason we are taking steps to make small improvements to this house.

Nov 27, 2006

I can do it myself!

Mr. Independent is getting even more self-sufficient; tonight he was thirsty and I guess I was not jumping fast enough when he called, so he moved the chair to the fridge, filled his cup with ice, and then water. He then brought it over to me and together we drank his ice water. He then decided ice makes better blocks, and proceeded to decorate the living-room with ice. I asked him to help me put them in the sink, and he did.

I can do it myself!

Mr. Independent is getting even more self-sufficient; tonight he was thirsty and I guess I was not jumping fast enough when he called, so he moved the chair to the fridge, filled his cup with ice, and then water. He then brought it over to me and together we drank his ice water. He then decided ice makes better blocks, and proceeded to decorate the living-room with ice. I asked him to help me put them in the sink, and he did.

Back to the Mechanic’s we go…

So, tomorrow I take the van back in AGAIN to see if they can find the oil leak. Before I go I need to gas up since I am on E and I know they will have to test drive it. Bobby said I should take it on E and let them fill it up, (ha ha! We both know better) I said maybe we can have the warranty company cover the gas.

I just hope this is it, I would like to keep this van at least 2 1/2 more years; until it is paid off. Each time I take it in, I hate it even more.

Back to the Mechanic's we go...

So, tomorrow I take the van back in AGAIN to see if they can find the oil leak. Before I go I need to gas up since I am on E and I know they will have to test drive it. Bobby said I should take it on E and let them fill it up, (ha ha! We both know better) I said maybe we can have the warranty company cover the gas.

I just hope this is it, I would like to keep this van at least 2 1/2 more years; until it is paid off. Each time I take it in, I hate it even more.

Viva Las Vegas!

My friend Julia is in Las Vegas until the middle of this week, she has been there a little over a week visiting her mom who moved to Vegas a few months back. Apparently Las Vegas real estate is booming with 5,000 people moving there each month. It is no wonder it is so difficult to find homes for rent in Las Vegas. There are also new homes being built every day to keep up with the growth, some of the Las Vegas New homes I saw were absolutely beautiful. I hope that if Julia does decide to move to Vegas, where all her family lives, that she finds a great place to live.

Viva Las Vegas!

My friend Julia is in Las Vegas until the middle of this week, she has been there a little over a week visiting her mom who moved to Vegas a few months back. Apparently Las Vegas real estate is booming with 5,000 people moving there each month. It is no wonder it is so difficult to find homes for rent in Las Vegas. There are also new homes being built every day to keep up with the growth, some of the Las Vegas New homes I saw were absolutely beautiful. I hope that if Julia does decide to move to Vegas, where all her family lives, that she finds a great place to live.

I am going to hell

Well, I am not exactly sure I should be admitting this, but names have been changed to protect the innocent, and I use that term loosely. A few years back, an adult relative told one of my children that she had cancer, just days after we lost my aunt Joanne to cancer. My son at the time was only about 5 or 6, and this is a family member who he loved dearly. With further prodding I learned that her 'cancer' was really pre-cancerous cells that were found during a pap-smear. She did not get cancer, the cells were frozen and she went on to lead a normal healthy life. My son however lived in fear for years that he would loose another loved one to cancer. I am not sure I will ever forgive her for using so little tact with my innocent baby. Well, a few months ago, I ordered this bracelet from MakeTheConnection.org, an educational website that teaches how a virus, HPV, can lead to cervical cancer. I got my free bracelet today. If I was not afraid of Karma biting me in the rear end, I would order an information kit for this person so they can know the truths about abnormal paps and how common HPV is, how it is spread and how one abnormal pap does NOT mean you have cancer and have the right to tell an innocent child that you do.... ok, the last part would not be in the information packet, but one could hope that one would draw that conclusion. Anyways, I am NOT having the information packet sent to her... but don't tempt me! Lord please forgive me, for I am sure I have sinned!

Nov 26, 2006

"OH NO!"

So last night we went over to a potluck at our friend's house. It was us, them, and another couple; we all have our kids at the same taekwondo center. Well we were having a great time hanging out and playing dominoes and Chris came up to our friend, the owner of the house, and asked how old their cat was.

Chris: "How old is the cat?"

Owner: "He is 13".

Chris: "OH NO!" He gets a horrified look on his face.

Chris: "That means he only has about 2 more years until he dies!"

We all started laughing hysterically, all 6 of us, even the owner of the cat. Chris totally did not understand what was so funny, but we reassured him that some cats live to be much older.

Anyways, we had a blast and plan on having them over next weekend...

"OH NO!"

So last night we went over to a potluck at our friend's house. It was us, them, and another couple; we all have our kids at the same taekwondo center. Well we were having a great time hanging out and playing dominoes and Chris came up to our friend, the owner of the house, and asked how old their cat was.

Chris: "How old is the cat?"

Owner: "He is 13".

Chris: "OH NO!" He gets a horrified look on his face.

Chris: "That means he only has about 2 more years until he dies!"

We all started laughing hysterically, all 6 of us, even the owner of the cat. Chris totally did not understand what was so funny, but we reassured him that some cats live to be much older.

Anyways, we had a blast and plan on having them over next weekend...

Sleep Issues

Last night I spoke with a friend who had sleep apnea, until her tonsils were removed. She was was being tested later that night to see if her tonsilectomy and sudden cease in snoring had caused her sleep apnea to disapear. This got me thinking about sleep disorders, my mom has always wondered if my dad suffered from sleep apnea. Well, in my search I found an article on Drooling In Sleep. It was interesting to see that drooling bothers some people enough to seek medical treatment. Drooling in your sleep is not a serious condition and is usally caused by sleeping position, illness, or dental conditions.

Sleep Issues

Last night I spoke with a friend who had sleep apnea, until her tonsils were removed. She was was being tested later that night to see if her tonsilectomy and sudden cease in snoring had caused her sleep apnea to disapear. This got me thinking about sleep disorders, my mom has always wondered if my dad suffered from sleep apnea. Well, in my search I found an article on Drooling In Sleep. It was interesting to see that drooling bothers some people enough to seek medical treatment. Drooling in your sleep is not a serious condition and is usally caused by sleeping position, illness, or dental conditions.

Hair Care

I am almost out of shampoo. Usually this is no big deal, except I have been using a new brand that is only available in a hair salon. See, about 9 months ago in a moment of weakness I went to Toni & Guy to get my hair cut. They did a great job, and I loved it, but I HATE the idea of spending $100 for a friggin hair cut!

I also hate the idea of spending $37 for shampoo and conditioner. The brand I use is Bed Head (not to be confused with Kevin's bed head gallery which you need to check out), and even though I love it, I am not sure it is worth it.

Here is where I am torn... I need more shampoo and I love this brand, but I am nor sure I have enough self control to keep from letting them cut my hair. I went to Overstock.com where they had some really good deals; but their quantities were unclear, so I was not sure if I was really getting a good deal. Maybe I will try Amazon.com... where of course the conditioner qualifies for free shipping if I add another $6, but I will have to pay for shipping on the shampoo. So I added some other things which ALSO do not qualify for super saver shipping.

Hair Care

I am almost out of shampoo. Usually this is no big deal, except I have been using a new brand that is only available in a hair salon. See, about 9 months ago in a moment of weakness I went to Toni & Guy to get my hair cut. They did a great job, and I loved it, but I HATE the idea of spending $100 for a friggin hair cut!

I also hate the idea of spending $37 for shampoo and conditioner. The brand I use is Bed Head (not to be confused with Kevin's bed head gallery which you need to check out), and even though I love it, I am not sure it is worth it.

Here is where I am torn... I need more shampoo and I love this brand, but I am nor sure I have enough self control to keep from letting them cut my hair. I went to Overstock.com where they had some really good deals; but their quantities were unclear, so I was not sure if I was really getting a good deal. Maybe I will try Amazon.com... where of course the conditioner qualifies for free shipping if I add another $6, but I will have to pay for shipping on the shampoo. So I added some other things which ALSO do not qualify for super saver shipping.

Nov 24, 2006

Pondering themes

I noticed on other websites they have themes... things like Thankful Thursday and Photo Friday, etc.  I have pondered doing something like that, but I am not sure I am ready to commit.  I would like to get some kind of style down before the unveiling so this blog does not turn into a PSA, or bitchy blog.  Maybe I will work out a theme and try to work on committing.

Thanksgiving Hangover

Thanksgiving is over and I think we are all feeling a sort of 'hung-over' and tired from all the turkey. We all worked very hard to make this all come together without a hitch. Bobby helped a lot with the final cooking... the part where everything is coming together at the same time and everything needs your full attention and you only have two arms. Austin and Christopher helped a ton with the clean up, and I really appreciate all they did.
So today we are all having a lazy day. I refuse to leave the house on Black Friday, I am not one of those crazy shoppers who is willing to get up at 4am to get a sale at 5am. In fact I imagine 75% of my shopping will be done online. We need to get some stocking stuffers still at Barnes & Noble, and probably the rest will be done at Target and Best Buy.
So in celebration of "Black Friday" we are all doing our own thing today; Austin and Chris are playing their Nintendo DS's, Bobby and I are watching TV and Matthew is now napping.
When this picture was taken, he was watching Sesame Street. Between Sesame Street, the Dog Whisperer and Signing Time, this boy gets engrossed. Other than those three shows, he could really care less about the television. Sometimes I can get him to lay in bed with me and watch Veggietales in the morning.

Thanksgiving Hangover

Thanksgiving is over and I think we are all feeling a sort of 'hung-over' and tired from all the turkey. We all worked very hard to make this all come together without a hitch. Bobby helped a lot with the final cooking... the part where everything is coming together at the same time and everything needs your full attention and you only have two arms. Austin and Christopher helped a ton with the clean up, and I really appreciate all they did.
So today we are all having a lazy day. I refuse to leave the house on Black Friday, I am not one of those crazy shoppers who is willing to get up at 4am to get a sale at 5am. In fact I imagine 75% of my shopping will be done online. We need to get some stocking stuffers still at Barnes & Noble, and probably the rest will be done at Target and Best Buy.
So in celebration of "Black Friday" we are all doing our own thing today; Austin and Chris are playing their Nintendo DS's, Bobby and I are watching TV and Matthew is now napping.
When this picture was taken, he was watching Sesame Street. Between Sesame Street, the Dog Whisperer and Signing Time, this boy gets engrossed. Other than those three shows, he could really care less about the television. Sometimes I can get him to lay in bed with me and watch Veggietales in the morning.

Strange Dream

Last night I had a very strange dream. I was at church and someone was telling me that I needed to watch the Catholic Show. They went on to tell me how they were personally responsible for all prayers to St. Anthony, and people all over the world would write them letters of what to pray to St. Anthony for for them. This was kind of funny for me in a few ways... first of all, I had never heard of Saint Anthony. Second because Bobby and I were just talking about the Saints about a week ago (St Jude, St Joseph, and St Gerard) and how I believe that even non-Catholics can pray to the saints. Where Bobby believes more so that ALL prayers need to go to G-d. This was kind of a funny conversation just because neither one of us practices a religion, but we have been debating trying to chose a place of worship.

So, who is Saint Anthony? Apparently he is the patron saint of lost things. Hmmm, as often as I lose my keys, wallet, sanity, important papers, maybe I need to keep that thing in mind.

Strange Dream

Last night I had a very strange dream. I was at church and someone was telling me that I needed to watch the Catholic Show. They went on to tell me how they were personally responsible for all prayers to St. Anthony, and people all over the world would write them letters of what to pray to St. Anthony for for them. This was kind of funny for me in a few ways... first of all, I had never heard of Saint Anthony. Second because Bobby and I were just talking about the Saints about a week ago (St Jude, St Joseph, and St Gerard) and how I believe that even non-Catholics can pray to the saints. Where Bobby believes more so that ALL prayers need to go to G-d. This was kind of a funny conversation just because neither one of us practices a religion, but we have been debating trying to chose a place of worship.

So, who is Saint Anthony? Apparently he is the patron saint of lost things. Hmmm, as often as I lose my keys, wallet, sanity, important papers, maybe I need to keep that thing in mind.

Nov 23, 2006

Laid Back

Ask me again in 30 minutes when I am making mashed potatoes, putting in the green bean casserole, pulling out all the food, making the gravy and baking the bread and carving the turkey. However, of all the Thanksgivings ever, this one has been the most relaxed ever.

I think a lot of it had to do with preparing beforehand and being able just to pop it in and move on. I think the other part of it has to do with it just being the 5 of us. Last year we adopted 3 single soldiers, and a young married soldier and his wife. Cooking for that many people and making dishes I don't eat, but they liked (sweet potatoes) for the first time, it was pretty damn stressful. I opted to have family only this year before I made a new tradition of ordering takeout.

Also, the kids are older so they are out of my hair and can entertain the baby. Nothing worse than trying to cook a huge dinner with kids underfoot.

Laid Back

Ask me again in 30 minutes when I am making mashed potatoes, putting in the green bean casserole, pulling out all the food, making the gravy and baking the bread and carving the turkey. However, of all the Thanksgivings ever, this one has been the most relaxed ever.

I think a lot of it had to do with preparing beforehand and being able just to pop it in and move on. I think the other part of it has to do with it just being the 5 of us. Last year we adopted 3 single soldiers, and a young married soldier and his wife. Cooking for that many people and making dishes I don't eat, but they liked (sweet potatoes) for the first time, it was pretty damn stressful. I opted to have family only this year before I made a new tradition of ordering takeout.

Also, the kids are older so they are out of my hair and can entertain the baby. Nothing worse than trying to cook a huge dinner with kids underfoot.

A little down time

Well, the Turkey is stuffed and in the oven, the stuffing is chilling in the fridge and my pies are both done... I made the pecan pie last night (the damn thing spilled in my over, I KNEW it would be the first thing to christen my oven). I bought frozen rolls, but last night Bobby brought home some butter flake rolls, like these ones, in the bakery for my roast last night and he got two dozen, so we have tons of rolls already... I am trying to decide if I just want to use them another time, or thaw them now and let them rise, shape and cook them. I am not exactly chomping at the bit to bake bread, but what is Thanksgiving without fresh bread, so I just got up to go thaw them.

Now I need to decide how I want to shape them...

A little down time

Well, the Turkey is stuffed and in the oven, the stuffing is chilling in the fridge and my pies are both done... I made the pecan pie last night (the damn thing spilled in my over, I KNEW it would be the first thing to christen my oven). I bought frozen rolls, but last night Bobby brought home some butter flake rolls, like these ones, in the bakery for my roast last night and he got two dozen, so we have tons of rolls already... I am trying to decide if I just want to use them another time, or thaw them now and let them rise, shape and cook them. I am not exactly chomping at the bit to bake bread, but what is Thanksgiving without fresh bread, so I just got up to go thaw them.

Now I need to decide how I want to shape them...

Never Shake a Baby

Today I read a very moving article in Parenting magazine called “ The 5-Second Tragedy” about Shaken Baby Syndrome. Even as a mom of three, there were some facts that I did not know, such as how quickly a baby can suffer permanent damage, or even death; the average time is 5 to 15 seconds. I also did not know how often a baby or child is diagnosed, about 12,000 to 14,000 cases each year, with 25-30% of those children dying as a result of the trauma. Experts also believe that many more cases exist, but are not diagnosed because of the lack of external trauma to alert the parents or doctors.

The signs or shaken baby syndrome vary, which sometimes makes it hard for a parent, caregiver, or physician to find out the culprit and range from mild symptoms like irritability, tremors, vomiting, and lethargy (sounds like the flu, right?) to major symptoms like seizures, coma, stupor, or death. Please take your baby to the doctor even if there is a possibility they were shaken if they exhibit flu-like symptoms. SBS can cause long term disabilities, handicaps, learning disorders, behavioral problems, to severe problems like profound developmental and mental retardation, paralysis, blindness, the inability to eat or permanently being in a vegetative state.

If you suspect your baby has been shaken, a CT Scan or MRI can be ordered to rule out or confirm SBS; early diagnosis is important because it is proven children who suffer from SBS can make significant leaps and bounds with early intervention and physical therapy. It is also important to know that playing rough or short falls cannot cause enough damage to mimic the violent shaking motion that causes brain damage (http://www.dontshake.org/).

Anyone is capable of shaking a baby under pressure, even people who are well educated and well trained. However it is important to know the warning signs that may trigger someone to shake a baby. I found it interesting how often it is a man who is the culprit; one study found that the baby’s biological father was the shaker in 37 percent of the cases, and the mother’s boyfriend being the shaker in 21 percent of the cases.

Here are some guidelines from this website with valuable information about:

People who are at highest risk for shaking a baby are those who may have been abused as a child, may have problems with drugs, alcohol, depression, mental illness, or a poor support system.

And this website has some great coping skills, which include:

Coping skills that may help prevent child abuse include getting information about child development, health, which may help a parent or caregiver understand how to deal with crying and meet the baby or child’s needs. Parenting classes can be accessed through local hospitals, or Child and Family Services.

A support team is also important, friends, family, neighbors, all can offer advice or even a break when you are feeling overwhelmed is important.

Nap with your baby, or use that time to gather your bearings or relaxing so you feel refreshed when you baby wakes.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help; contact your support team, or if you are lacking a support team, call your local Child and Family Services, or Hospital to find resources, or counseling. Some towns even have a crisis nursery where you can take your child temporarily so you don’t become overwhelmed.

Babies use crying as their primary means of communication to tell you that they are hungry, tired, wet/soiled, lonely, scared, etc. Sometimes babies will cry for 15 minutes to an hour for no apparent reason at all. An average babies cried 1-5 hours each day for the first we months of life. At 6 weeks of age, crying may peak, and gradually lessen over time. Understand that colic, teething, stress, or illness can aggravate a baby and make the crying increase.

If you are feeling overwhelmed, call a friend or family member and ask them if they can come relieve you for a little while. Or put your baby in a safe place, like his/her crib and go to another room and take some steps to calm yourself. There are also hotlines you can call, like the ChildHelp hotline, 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453) that you can call and discuss your feelings; sometimes just venting or having someone to listen can give you a new perspective.

If you shake your child, call 911 immediately. Sometimes the difference between a child living or suffering permanent injury, or death, is early assistance.

Please make sure you have a plan on how to cope with a crying baby, don’t be afraid to walk away if it means saving the life of a child. Also, never leave your baby with a caregiver when your caregiver is stressed or showing the warning signs above, or if your baby is under a lot of stress from colic, teething, or illness. And NEVER shake your child!!

Nov 22, 2006

This shit is bananas


Isn't she beautiful?? This is my new oven, I was browsing consumer reports last night and I found her, she compared in ratings to the $1,200 ovens, but for more than half the price. She is a Kenmore 96112 30" self-cleaning range with a ceramic flat cooking surface from Sears. Last night I noticed that it was on sale until Today and when we got to Sears she was the last one left, so we loaded into the van (we took the seats out before we left and I took the kids in the car) and brought her home. Otherwise, we would have had to wait until probably Monday for her to come home. I am making my famous Pecan Pie tonight, so I am thrilled to get to try her out.

While we were there, we also picked up some court clothes for Austin; a shirt & tie, slacks and dress shoes/socks.

I also found my shoes too, they are really cute and should look great with my suit. I am so ready for this court date to be over with. BM called this morning at 8am to inform us that the judge will need to call her cellphone on the court date if they need to talk to her since her home phone was shut off; so we need to remember to write it down and take it with us to the courthouse next Thursday.

I wish my table was coming before Thanksgiving, we could really use it tomorrow. But more importantly I am thankful I am getting a new table at all, so a few more days sure won't hurt.

This shit is bananas


Isn't she beautiful?? This is my new oven, I was browsing consumer reports last night and I found her, she compared in ratings to the $1,200 ovens, but for more than half the price. She is a Kenmore 96112 30" self-cleaning range with a ceramic flat cooking surface from Sears. Last night I noticed that it was on sale until Today and when we got to Sears she was the last one left, so we loaded into the van (we took the seats out before we left and I took the kids in the car) and brought her home. Otherwise, we would have had to wait until probably Monday for her to come home. I am making my famous Pecan Pie tonight, so I am thrilled to get to try her out.

While we were there, we also picked up some court clothes for Austin; a shirt & tie, slacks and dress shoes/socks.

I also found my shoes too, they are really cute and should look great with my suit. I am so ready for this court date to be over with. BM called this morning at 8am to inform us that the judge will need to call her cellphone on the court date if they need to talk to her since her home phone was shut off; so we need to remember to write it down and take it with us to the courthouse next Thursday.

I wish my table was coming before Thanksgiving, we could really use it tomorrow. But more importantly I am thankful I am getting a new table at all, so a few more days sure won't hurt.

I guess the 2% won

Well, I was not convinced I was ready for the Vonage plunge, so I called Qwest to see if I could get better prices.

I was able to save $13 for Internet by choosing a two year agreement and getting a $26.99 plan for the exact same speed and service. I stopped the long distance plan which should cut about $10 - $25 or less in charges and taxes/fees. They also allowed existing DirecTV customers to bundle their service w/ them, so I added that too for another $5 bundle savings.

So, I am not sure if I have simplified things at all since I am just trading a Satellite bill for a long distance bill, but I think in the long run I am probably saving more since Internet is more expensive without a phone plan.

At the very least I will be saving about $25, but I won't know exactly how much for a couple more months.

I guess the 2% won

Well, I was not convinced I was ready for the Vonage plunge, so I called Qwest to see if I could get better prices.

I was able to save $13 for Internet by choosing a two year agreement and getting a $26.99 plan for the exact same speed and service. I stopped the long distance plan which should cut about $10 - $25 or less in charges and taxes/fees. They also allowed existing DirecTV customers to bundle their service w/ them, so I added that too for another $5 bundle savings.

So, I am not sure if I have simplified things at all since I am just trading a Satellite bill for a long distance bill, but I think in the long run I am probably saving more since Internet is more expensive without a phone plan.

At the very least I will be saving about $25, but I won't know exactly how much for a couple more months.

Don’t Show up Empty Handed

I have been looking over DelightfulDeliveries.com, America's #1 Gift Basket Website, in preparation for a get together we have been invited to this holiday season. I don't want to show up empty handed, but I don't want to bring the same old, same old bottle of wine, or green bean casserole. Sometimes special people deserve special gifts; I would also like something unique and festive. Maybe something like a bouquet of Holiday Cookies, I mean how cute are these?

The other thing I liked about the Delightful Deliveries website is the many different search options. You can sort by occasion or holiday, or by price ranges, brand, types of items in the basket itself, recipient, or by dietary restrictions. With so many choices, you can go very simple, like a box of candies or a tin of gourmet popcorn, or you can go all out with bottles of wines, cheeses, crackers, candies, popcorn and chocolates all placed neatly into one handsome basket.

Delightful Deliveries also has Monthly clubs, for a gift that truly does keep on giving, or floral delivery. They also have corporate gifts which are a nice way to tell your customers that you appreciate their business. We have gotten several gifts when we have purchased a vehicle or our house, and it really does make us feel like they care about us.

Don't Show up Empty Handed

I have been looking over DelightfulDeliveries.com, America's #1 Gift Basket Website, in preparation for a get together we have been invited to this holiday season. I don't want to show up empty handed, but I don't want to bring the same old, same old bottle of wine, or green bean casserole. Sometimes special people deserve special gifts; I would also like something unique and festive. Maybe something like a bouquet of Holiday Cookies, I mean how cute are these?

The other thing I liked about the Delightful Deliveries website is the many different search options. You can sort by occasion or holiday, or by price ranges, brand, types of items in the basket itself, recipient, or by dietary restrictions. With so many choices, you can go very simple, like a box of candies or a tin of gourmet popcorn, or you can go all out with bottles of wines, cheeses, crackers, candies, popcorn and chocolates all placed neatly into one handsome basket.

Delightful Deliveries also has Monthly clubs, for a gift that truly does keep on giving, or floral delivery. They also have corporate gifts which are a nice way to tell your customers that you appreciate their business. We have gotten several gifts when we have purchased a vehicle or our house, and it really does make us feel like they care about us.

Telephone Woes

I am having a hard time finding positive reviews of Vonage, the reviews are really mixed and about half report service unreliable and customer service poor. I signed up for consumer reports and their reviews are saying to keep a land line which kind of defeats the purpose of saving money by closing the phone account.

Instead I decided to change my long distance carrier to ECG, the company I had for years when we lived in Tx and Wa. They were not in Colorado when we moved here, so that is why we did not switch upon moving here, or maybe it was because we were on base and had no choice of long distance carriers, I don't remember now, I am too tired. Anyways, by switching, my bill which was $10.84 for 117 minutes will be $2.96.

Telephone Woes

I am having a hard time finding positive reviews of Vonage, the reviews are really mixed and about half report service unreliable and customer service poor. I signed up for consumer reports and their reviews are saying to keep a land line which kind of defeats the purpose of saving money by closing the phone account.

Instead I decided to change my long distance carrier to ECG, the company I had for years when we lived in Tx and Wa. They were not in Colorado when we moved here, so that is why we did not switch upon moving here, or maybe it was because we were on base and had no choice of long distance carriers, I don't remember now, I am too tired. Anyways, by switching, my bill which was $10.84 for 117 minutes will be $2.96.

Nov 21, 2006

Memories of Christmas

My favorite memory of Christmas was when my sister, who was probably about 15 made all my gifts by sewing me all the furniture and bedding for a Barbie doll sized house that was left at our home when we bought it. The house was unrepairable and she used scrap carpet, linoleum, wallpaper, and paint to fix it up and then made me furniture. I loved it, she is so crafty and still gives the most thoughtful gifts.

My mom also had some neat Snow Globes that had Dreamsicle babies in them, or other various snow scenes of couples holding hands etc. I also remember laying under the Christmas three and looking up at the ornaments and lights on the tree. My mom had these two ornaments I loved to take down and play with. One was a wooden Pinocchio doll, the other was a teddy bear old an old fashioned red tricycle, the ones with the huge front wheel and the little back wheels.

Memories of Christmas

My favorite memory of Christmas was when my sister, who was probably about 15 made all my gifts by sewing me all the furniture and bedding for a Barbie doll sized house that was left at our home when we bought it. The house was unrepairable and she used scrap carpet, linoleum, wallpaper, and paint to fix it up and then made me furniture. I loved it, she is so crafty and still gives the most thoughtful gifts.

My mom also had some neat Snow Globes that had Dreamsicle babies in them, or other various snow scenes of couples holding hands etc. I also remember laying under the Christmas three and looking up at the ornaments and lights on the tree. My mom had these two ornaments I loved to take down and play with. One was a wooden Pinocchio doll, the other was a teddy bear old an old fashioned red tricycle, the ones with the huge front wheel and the little back wheels.

Almost Committed

So I am seriously thinking of switching to Vonage. I am about 98% committed and will probably call tomorrow to join up after I talk to Qwest one more time about canceling my service. I am just so tired of overpaying for my phone bill, it is just ridiculous to pay almost $100 for Internet and phone.

Almost Committed

So I am seriously thinking of switching to Vonage. I am about 98% committed and will probably call tomorrow to join up after I talk to Qwest one more time about canceling my service. I am just so tired of overpaying for my phone bill, it is just ridiculous to pay almost $100 for Internet and phone.

We went from never home, to never at work!

When Bobby was in the Army, he worked 10-12 hour days and was away from home about 50-75% of the 8 years he was in. It seemed like he was never home. I also hated how when he would take vacation time if he was going to be gone Friday-Wednesday, the Army would make him use his time off for Saturday and Sunday, even though he normally did not work on the weekends.

Since the boys are off from school all this week, he decided to take a couple days off work so he could have 5 day weekend. Today he worked a half of the day and will go back on Monday. I have a feeling Friday is going to be a telecommute day and so he won't be charged paid time off for that day.

He is also planning on taking the rest of his time off around Christmas, so he will have two weeks off because his employer has a one week shut down around Christmas-New Years. It really makes me wish it was not so expensive to fly around the holidays, I would love to fly up to Spokane for Christmas.

We went from never home, to never at work!

When Bobby was in the Army, he worked 10-12 hour days and was away from home about 50-75% of the 8 years he was in. It seemed like he was never home. I also hated how when he would take vacation time if he was going to be gone Friday-Wednesday, the Army would make him use his time off for Saturday and Sunday, even though he normally did not work on the weekends.

Since the boys are off from school all this week, he decided to take a couple days off work so he could have 5 day weekend. Today he worked a half of the day and will go back on Monday. I have a feeling Friday is going to be a telecommute day and so he won't be charged paid time off for that day.

He is also planning on taking the rest of his time off around Christmas, so he will have two weeks off because his employer has a one week shut down around Christmas-New Years. It really makes me wish it was not so expensive to fly around the holidays, I would love to fly up to Spokane for Christmas.

Doctor Ditch, Part 4

So, my doctor's office called back this morning at 9:30 and she said they did submit the referral and to go ahead and make my appointment and that I did not need a referral or referral number with my insurance.

So I called my insurance company because I had talked to them in the past about infertility coverage and they said that I was right, I DO need a referral & a referral number to even make an appointment with this specialist. They looked again and confirmed they never got my referral and told me to call back the middle of next week to see if they have receieved and approved it yet.

I also asked them about the ER bill and they told me to just photocopy Austin's insurance card and mail that to them; hopefully they will get the hint. She also said that the reason why this bill is so low is that the doctor bills separatly from the hospital, and the hospital bill was paid a long time ago.

So the new doctor hunt begins today, I am going to start calling around to get a feel for the different practices in town. I am SO GLAD the boys have such good doctors.

Doctor Ditch, Part 4

So, my doctor's office called back this morning at 9:30 and she said they did submit the referral and to go ahead and make my appointment and that I did not need a referral or referral number with my insurance.

So I called my insurance company because I had talked to them in the past about infertility coverage and they said that I was right, I DO need a referral & a referral number to even make an appointment with this specialist. They looked again and confirmed they never got my referral and told me to call back the middle of next week to see if they have receieved and approved it yet.

I also asked them about the ER bill and they told me to just photocopy Austin's insurance card and mail that to them; hopefully they will get the hint. She also said that the reason why this bill is so low is that the doctor bills separatly from the hospital, and the hospital bill was paid a long time ago.

So the new doctor hunt begins today, I am going to start calling around to get a feel for the different practices in town. I am SO GLAD the boys have such good doctors.

Nov 20, 2006

Hot Tamale Confessional 2

Hot Tamale, aka Veronique from payperpost is back from Vegas and feeling better than ever. I guess her mineral water, vacation to Vegas for the PayPerPost Wedding, and a brand spankin' new HP Digital Camera has renewed her spirits. I bet they had a blast in Vegas, I know I would!

Hot Tamale seems like such a sweet girl, and as Dr. Phil would say, "she is just as cute as a speckled pup". Her enthusiasm about her new camera is so nice, because I have felt that same way about my own Canon Digital Rebel XT. I LOVE that camera.

Anyways, check it out!

Hot Tamale Confessional 2

Hot Tamale, aka Veronique from payperpost is back from Vegas and feeling better than ever. I guess her mineral water, vacation to Vegas for the PayPerPost Wedding, and a brand spankin' new HP Digital Camera has renewed her spirits. I bet they had a blast in Vegas, I know I would!

Hot Tamale seems like such a sweet girl, and as Dr. Phil would say, "she is just as cute as a speckled pup". Her enthusiasm about her new camera is so nice, because I have felt that same way about my own Canon Digital Rebel XT. I LOVE that camera.

Anyways, check it out!

Doctor Ditch, Part 3 plus ER billing gripe

So, my doctor or nurse never called me back, surprise, surprise. Gahhh! They are running short on time (since I forgot they will be closed Thursday and they are never open on Friday).

I also got a bill in the mail that is REALLY making me mad. When Austin went to the ER for his concussion they somehow billed our old insurance, not the one I said was our insurance company, not the one they photocopied his card for, not the one I paid the copay for, or the one that they put in the computer. Where they pulled our old insurance information from a year ago from, I don't know... being we have NEVER been to that hospital.

Here is the part that pisses me off though, his fall happened over 2 months ago, closer to three, and I have been calling the billing company once a week for 2 months leaving messages for them to call me back so they can get it straightened out. Not only have I NEVER gotten them to answer the phone, but they have never called me back no matter how many messages I leave. It's also a long distance call, so I have phone bills out the ass from being on hold for up to an hour without a live person, just the message telling me to hold.

This is not the first billing problem I have had since switching insurance companies in July, I have had Matthew's pediatrician, and Christopher's neurologist send me a bill despite them photocopying my insurance card and collecting my copay... but that is not what bothers me. Both times it took a two minute phone call to clear it up and within a few weeks I get a statement from the insurance saying it is paid in full... no biggie!

I can guarantee if I blow off this ER bill, they will report me to collections and THEN I will get phone calls. Bobby thinks I should report them to the Better Business Bureau; something I would not have considered except for all this crap they are putting me through. So, I will be calling and leaving a message, and recording the time I call and if I do not hear back soon, I WILL be reporting them. I also plan on sending them a formal complaint letter.

Doctor Ditch, Part 3 plus ER billing gripe

So, my doctor or nurse never called me back, surprise, surprise. Gahhh! They are running short on time (since I forgot they will be closed Thursday and they are never open on Friday).

I also got a bill in the mail that is REALLY making me mad. When Austin went to the ER for his concussion they somehow billed our old insurance, not the one I said was our insurance company, not the one they photocopied his card for, not the one I paid the copay for, or the one that they put in the computer. Where they pulled our old insurance information from a year ago from, I don't know... being we have NEVER been to that hospital.

Here is the part that pisses me off though, his fall happened over 2 months ago, closer to three, and I have been calling the billing company once a week for 2 months leaving messages for them to call me back so they can get it straightened out. Not only have I NEVER gotten them to answer the phone, but they have never called me back no matter how many messages I leave. It's also a long distance call, so I have phone bills out the ass from being on hold for up to an hour without a live person, just the message telling me to hold.

This is not the first billing problem I have had since switching insurance companies in July, I have had Matthew's pediatrician, and Christopher's neurologist send me a bill despite them photocopying my insurance card and collecting my copay... but that is not what bothers me. Both times it took a two minute phone call to clear it up and within a few weeks I get a statement from the insurance saying it is paid in full... no biggie!

I can guarantee if I blow off this ER bill, they will report me to collections and THEN I will get phone calls. Bobby thinks I should report them to the Better Business Bureau; something I would not have considered except for all this crap they are putting me through. So, I will be calling and leaving a message, and recording the time I call and if I do not hear back soon, I WILL be reporting them. I also plan on sending them a formal complaint letter.

Updates coming in slowly

I have added the sidebar with the "Cast of Characters" so you know who I am talking about when I say 'Bobby', 'Austin', etc.

I am still trying to learn what everything from 'behind the scenes' here on WordPress means, but that will come in time.

Popcorn Ceiling

I have decided it is time for acoustic ceiling, aka popcorn ceiling removal. Only problem is, my largest room is 12 ft by 24 ft with 20 ft ceilings! What a nightmare!! I am looking now if I can find a very cheap contractor who maybe works for cookies & brownies! LOL Ok, I am not *that* cheap; but maybe if I found someone good that would make a nice little thank you gift.

Popcorn Ceiling

I have decided it is time for acoustic ceiling, aka popcorn ceiling removal. Only problem is, my largest room is 12 ft by 24 ft with 20 ft ceilings! What a nightmare!! I am looking now if I can find a very cheap contractor who maybe works for cookies & brownies! LOL Ok, I am not *that* cheap; but maybe if I found someone good that would make a nice little thank you gift.

Got Tablet?

Check out this website for Tablet PC Reviews before you buy. Not only do they have this cool bar on the side of their site that shows the most popular Tablet PCs, but they have a ton of information. On the Tablet PC Database section, they have a list of manufacturers and the number of tablet PCs they manufacture. When you click on a manufacturer the website they break down the models by price, and then links you to places to buy. The Tablet PC Reviews section is a great place to check out specifications, pictures, reviews, and so much more! The Tablet PC Forums is also another great place to go ask questions, and see what others are saying before you buy. They also have a section for great deals and coupons, so check it out!

Got Tablet?

Check out this website for Tablet PC Reviews before you buy. Not only do they have this cool bar on the side of their site that shows the most popular Tablet PCs, but they have a ton of information. On the Tablet PC Database section, they have a list of manufacturers and the number of tablet PCs they manufacture. When you click on a manufacturer the website they break down the models by price, and then links you to places to buy. The Tablet PC Reviews section is a great place to check out specifications, pictures, reviews, and so much more! The Tablet PC Forums is also another great place to go ask questions, and see what others are saying before you buy. They also have a section for great deals and coupons, so check it out!

Doctor Ditch, Part 2

So this morning I called the insurance company to see if they have gotten the referral to give my physician the benefit of the doubt before I called to b*tch.

So, the insurance company said no, they have not gotten the referral, and I asked them how easy it is to switch Dr's (pretty damn easy).

I hung up with them and called my Dr's office; the receptionist sent me to my Dr.'s nurse's voice mail. It has been over an hour now and still no call back. I will be calling daily, and if I have not heard back by Thursday, I will switch Friday and just get my new doctor to give me the referral.

I started a new cycle today, so that kind of makes me want to get this ball rolling. I am cramping, I am pmsing and I would like to get pregnant sooner than later. It's been 15 months since we started trying and I am getting sick of it already. Ideally, I wanted to be pregnant in less than 7 months from now so Matthew is not too much older than his brother/sister.

Doctor Ditch, Part 2

So this morning I called the insurance company to see if they have gotten the referral to give my physician the benefit of the doubt before I called to b*tch.

So, the insurance company said no, they have not gotten the referral, and I asked them how easy it is to switch Dr's (pretty damn easy).

I hung up with them and called my Dr's office; the receptionist sent me to my Dr.'s nurse's voice mail. It has been over an hour now and still no call back. I will be calling daily, and if I have not heard back by Thursday, I will switch Friday and just get my new doctor to give me the referral.

I started a new cycle today, so that kind of makes me want to get this ball rolling. I am cramping, I am pmsing and I would like to get pregnant sooner than later. It's been 15 months since we started trying and I am getting sick of it already. Ideally, I wanted to be pregnant in less than 7 months from now so Matthew is not too much older than his brother/sister.

GPS & Teen Drivers

How did you drive when you were a teen? Were you a cautious driver? Or were you a reckless daredevil? How does your teen drive? Now... how does your teen drive when you are not there? Many teenagers think driving is a right, not a privilege and are careless when you are not there with them. They ignore responsibility of the road and focus more on music, cell phones, or friends. Boys tend to try to show off by driving too fast, racing, or taking unnecessary risks.


Using a GPS Tracking device in the car is controversial to say the least. Teens may see it as an invasion of their privacy. Take a look at this page and click "view demo" to see how hard wired GPS tracking devices work.

When I was 17 my parents went out of town for a 3 or 4 day weekend and left me at home, alone, with my own '78 Honda Civic, and their new BMW. I was seeing a boy who lived about 40 miles away in the next town who I really liked. At night I would "borrow" the beamer and go pick him up. He would sneak out of the house and come spend the night with me, and then I would sneak him home around 4-5am after being up all night. So on just a few hours of sleep (during the day) I would take the car and drive it about 200 miles per day with only a few months experience. If my parents had the ability to see what I was doing, they would have been able to catch me the same day they left.

I did end up being caught, my karma caught up with me and on early Sunday morning when I was returning from taking my boyfriend home I gassed up the beamer and went to pull into the garage when the garage door opener would not work. So I went inside to see what was up, and I noticed the gear that pulled the chain to open the door had bent. The chain had slipped off, and I could not manually open the door. The moment my parents pulled up into the driveway I knew my life as I knew it was over... I was grounded for life.

I ended up moving out of their home long before their trust in me was ever restored. I did take it one more time after that without permission, but I felt so guilty I don't think I drove more than 20 miles.

I do think that GPS Tracking devices are a must if you have doubts about how, or when, or where your teen is taking your car.

GPS & Teen Drivers

How did you drive when you were a teen? Were you a cautious driver? Or were you a reckless daredevil? How does your teen drive? Now... how does your teen drive when you are not there? Many teenagers think driving is a right, not a privilege and are careless when you are not there with them. They ignore responsibility of the road and focus more on music, cell phones, or friends. Boys tend to try to show off by driving too fast, racing, or taking unnecessary risks.


Using a GPS Tracking device in the car is controversial to say the least. Teens may see it as an invasion of their privacy. Take a look at this page and click "view demo" to see how hard wired GPS tracking devices work.

When I was 17 my parents went out of town for a 3 or 4 day weekend and left me at home, alone, with my own '78 Honda Civic, and their new BMW. I was seeing a boy who lived about 40 miles away in the next town who I really liked. At night I would "borrow" the beamer and go pick him up. He would sneak out of the house and come spend the night with me, and then I would sneak him home around 4-5am after being up all night. So on just a few hours of sleep (during the day) I would take the car and drive it about 200 miles per day with only a few months experience. If my parents had the ability to see what I was doing, they would have been able to catch me the same day they left.

I did end up being caught, my karma caught up with me and on early Sunday morning when I was returning from taking my boyfriend home I gassed up the beamer and went to pull into the garage when the garage door opener would not work. So I went inside to see what was up, and I noticed the gear that pulled the chain to open the door had bent. The chain had slipped off, and I could not manually open the door. The moment my parents pulled up into the driveway I knew my life as I knew it was over... I was grounded for life.

I ended up moving out of their home long before their trust in me was ever restored. I did take it one more time after that without permission, but I felt so guilty I don't think I drove more than 20 miles.

I do think that GPS Tracking devices are a must if you have doubts about how, or when, or where your teen is taking your car.

Surprisingly, at 6am I do not care about waffles.

It is Thanksgiving break for the kids, meaning school does not start back up until next Monday. Last night I made 2 dozen waffles and some syrup so they could have a hot breakfast this week (we don't do ego's and maple syrup). I don't mind them home, but I do not like being woke up after 4 hours of sleep to be asked at 5:45am how one should heat the syrup up.

Of course, this is also the child I have to nag to eat his cereal at 7:20 am before he goes to school because 'he's not hungry'...

Surprisingly, at 6am I do not care about waffles.

It is Thanksgiving break for the kids, meaning school does not start back up until next Monday. Last night I made 2 dozen waffles and some syrup so they could have a hot breakfast this week (we don't do ego's and maple syrup). I don't mind them home, but I do not like being woke up after 4 hours of sleep to be asked at 5:45am how one should heat the syrup up.

Of course, this is also the child I have to nag to eat his cereal at 7:20 am before he goes to school because 'he's not hungry'...

Austin, my sunshine.

Austin N Chloe


I often call Austin my sunshine because he is such a bright ray of sunshine.  He is an eternal optimist and is always saying "at least..." 


Austin came to live with us when he was 3 1/2 years old.  He is Bobby's biological son from a previous relationship.  Instead of going into all of that, you are welcome to read about my 7 years of step-parenting here; which you will see by the timeline on the sidebar is almost done because I am adopting Austin in a week and a half!!


Austin has always been very empathetic towards others; even when he himself was ill.  He is smart, funny, and witty.  He always has a witty comment for everything, but for the most part knows the time and place for it.


He has always been artistic and expressive.  Lately he has started writing fictional stories that are so good!


Anyways, here is a movie I made for Austin last year, I need to go back and fix the typo, and I am planning on making him a new one after the adoption as sort of a chronicle of all the things we have gone through over the last 7 years and how in the end it was all worth it.


Austin is truly a blessing, and an answer to my prayers.  I love you son!!

Nov 19, 2006

Christmas came early!

We took a trip up north to American Furtniure Warehouse where I got a new diningroom table. It's nice, a tall table with 6 barstools and the same color/type material as my couch and recliners. It is a butterfly leaf table with a dark wood top and the legs are painted black. It's 60" x 60", so it is a pretty big table. The only thing is, it won't be delivered by thanksgiving because they were sold out. I am so excited, I cannot wait to get it here so I can take pictures and share.

Christmas came early!

We took a trip up north to American Furtniure Warehouse where I got a new diningroom table. It's nice, a tall table with 6 barstools and the same color/type material as my couch and recliners. It is a butterfly leaf table with a dark wood top and the legs are painted black. It's 60" x 60", so it is a pretty big table. The only thing is, it won't be delivered by thanksgiving because they were sold out. I am so excited, I cannot wait to get it here so I can take pictures and share.

Cell Phones

When I was living in Spokane, I had a Nokia cell phone, it was pretty simple, nothing fancy, but I got decent reception and it was pretty sturdy, however I had a VERY local plan at the time. My mom has a larger calling area than I did and her Nokia phone workseverywhere. After looking at this Nokia website, I see a lot of them are getting much fancier than they were before.

Cell Phones

When I was living in Spokane, I had a Nokia cell phone, it was pretty simple, nothing fancy, but I got decent reception and it was pretty sturdy, however I had a VERY local plan at the time. My mom has a larger calling area than I did and her Nokia phone workseverywhere. After looking at this Nokia website, I see a lot of them are getting much fancier than they were before.

Nov 18, 2006

My Doctor

I am seriously thinking of firing my doctor and choosing a new primary care doctor. It has been two months and I STILL do not have the referral I asked for 2 months ago, and I am starting to doubt it was ever submitted. I am calling my doctor's office on Monday, and if he has not submitted the referral by Friday, I will be seeking a new doctor. I am not paying him to ignore my concerns and question my nursing relationship with my son. Not to mention of the concerns I had, more than half of them were ignored or unanswered.

Chances are I will still end up finding a new primary, but I want to give this one the chance to do what he told me he was doing. I think it would be faster to go this route.

My Doctor

I am seriously thinking of firing my doctor and choosing a new primary care doctor. It has been two months and I STILL do not have the referral I asked for 2 months ago, and I am starting to doubt it was ever submitted. I am calling my doctor's office on Monday, and if he has not submitted the referral by Friday, I will be seeking a new doctor. I am not paying him to ignore my concerns and question my nursing relationship with my son. Not to mention of the concerns I had, more than half of them were ignored or unanswered.

Chances are I will still end up finding a new primary, but I want to give this one the chance to do what he told me he was doing. I think it would be faster to go this route.

Voice123

In a world, not so far away, there was a website that connected people seeking talent for voice overs, and those who wish to make voice overs in a union that can only be described as 'true love'.

So, Voice123.com has some incredible news, they will soon be releasing v2.0 and have created a very nice (and funny) video trailer you should check out.

Voice123

In a world, not so far away, there was a website that connected people seeking talent for voice overs, and those who wish to make voice overs in a union that can only be described as 'true love'.

So, Voice123.com has some incredible news, they will soon be releasing v2.0 and have created a very nice (and funny) video trailer you should check out.

Sesame Street

Poor Terri, I kept bugging her last night to watch some (2,000+) clips of vintage Sesame Street. I loved S.S. as a kid, I still love watching it with my own kids when they were little. Matthew and I watch Sesame Street (aka 'Ehhh-mohhh') every morning after breakfast and I think I enjoy it as much as Matthew does, especially the vintage clips from the 70's and 80's that I remember as a kid. When Bobby came in this morning to wake me up he asked what I was doing up so late (4:30am) last night and I started singing "1 2 3 4 5 - 6 7 8 9 10" and he joined in and said "11 12".







My whole purpose of looking on YouTube for these videos was to find a video called ABC'S of the Swamp, all I could find is the lyrics.

Oh, and I was also obsessing over these Rube Goldberg Machines that were really interesting.

Sesame Street

Poor Terri, I kept bugging her last night to watch some (2,000+) clips of vintage Sesame Street. I loved S.S. as a kid, I still love watching it with my own kids when they were little. Matthew and I watch Sesame Street (aka 'Ehhh-mohhh') every morning after breakfast and I think I enjoy it as much as Matthew does, especially the vintage clips from the 70's and 80's that I remember as a kid. When Bobby came in this morning to wake me up he asked what I was doing up so late (4:30am) last night and I started singing "1 2 3 4 5 - 6 7 8 9 10" and he joined in and said "11 12".



My whole purpose of looking on YouTube for these videos was to find a video called ABC'S of the Swamp, all I could find is the lyrics.

Oh, and I was also obsessing over these Rube Goldberg Machines that were really interesting.

Nov 17, 2006

How young is too young; how small is too small?

I was surfing the archives over at BloggingBaby.com and read about a controversial study stating that babies born before 22 weeks gestation should not be given any type of intensive care, or be revived.  At first glance I thought that sounded horrible, but in all honesty, shouldn't babies have the dignity to pass in peace?   When I was in Texas, my final paper for my nursing class was on the ethics of keeping a micro-preemie alive just because it was of a certain weight despite the parents’ wishes.  I think it is wrong to have a policy that says "all babies over 10oz MUST be put on life support despite the parents wishes". 

Why should hospital policy trump a parent's wishes when it is the who will be responsible for lifelong care?  At 23 weeks, the chance of survival is only about 17% with a VERY high likelihood of severe physical and mental problems according to this website taken from a study done in 1997.  

From 2003-2004 I worked with developmentally disabled adults ranging from mild to severe.  I have to say my heart goes out to the families who have to place their child in a home because they were getting ready close to the end of their life and had no one to care for their 65 year old child with severe delays.  I saw the state placing these beautiful people in abusive homes where they were neglected and not cared for (imagine 75 years in 'foster care').  I saw nieces choosing not to have families because they had to care for their aunt who is abusive to children.

I have to say I agree with the UK's decision to not take extraordinary measures for a 22 week micro-preemie.  I also think that parents should have a say what the level of care should be for a baby born before 28 weeks without legal ramification.  Nothing cruel, but I think the parent should have the right to chose a DNR or no respirator.  What are your opinions??

DISCLAIMER:  Just remember, these are just my opinions and any hateful coments will be deleted, but I welcome any contructive comments or arguments.  I have never had a child born before 40 weeks so I don't know what it is like in your shoes, and I really feel for anyone who has been through it before.

Flickr

I just added a link to my Flickr account on my sidebar, in the links section. If you have ever been to my dropshots you will see a lot of the pictures again on Flickr from the last one-two years; but on Flickr my pictures start in 2002.

Flickr

I just added a link to my Flickr account on my sidebar, in the links section. If you have ever been to my dropshots you will see a lot of the pictures again on Flickr from the last one-two years; but on Flickr my pictures start in 2002.