Showing posts from 2012


It seems a lifetime since I've written on this blog, since I could bring myself to say much of anything at all.  But here I am, trying to figure out how to work through it all so I don't let the wound heal over the infection.  So it doesn't fester and poison me from the inside out.  Though, in truth, there's a part of me that would accept that fate.  A part of me who thinks that maybe I deserve it.  A part of me, small but true, who thinks that pain might be preferable to working through any of what I'm feeling.

What I'm feeling right now is a lot of nothing.  The nothing wasn't the first thing, though.  The first thing I felt was sadness and then, like a hot pan flashing over with fire, rage.  Rage is one of the hardest emotions to cope with; I know this, I'm a therapist.  It's easy to cry or scream but true, deep seeded rage?  What can we do with that to make is constructive?  I could't figure it out, so I dissociated.  I turned it into the no…


I sat in my obstetrician's office, waiting for her to come in for my checkup.  Just a normal one, but my anxiety level was high because the chart I keep tells me my pressures are rising.  In addition to the rising pressure, there's the less than competent med tech who takes blood pressures.  Her reading: 132/85.  "Not too bad, " she tells me before bouncing out of the room.  I don't bother arguing.

This doctor is new to me.  I've seen her a few times this pregnancy and she is aware of my rather complicated history, but I don't KNOW her.  Insurance plans told me that I had to change providers, so the loving doctor who held my heart in his hands through my two previous pregnancies is left behind.  Insurance premiums have no time for relationship building.  With him, I didn't have to explain anything or ask twice.  If he saw a reading that low during a visit, he would simply take it again.  Correctly.  I long for him and the ease of our interactions as I…

I Want It All...or Maybe Just My Fair Share of It

As it turns out, living on less has made me want on even less.  I'm as surprised as anyone about this turn of events.  It's like all of the sudden I finally got it: it really is all just stuff.  I thought I got it before now, but it's clear to me that I am just now fully understanding this concept.

So now I'm trying to find ways to simplify.  We've broached the idea of selling the house to move to a smaller, older, cheaper house.  Of course, the housing market may hold us back from that for a while but I'm still holding out hope.  I'm ready to sell excess stuff and pare down and shift gears.  Most importantly, I'm ready to spend more time with my family.

To that end, I turned in my notice at my job.  I'm quitting.  I'm taking something I'm not known for - a leap of faith.  I may be leaping into mid-air without a parachute, but I'm leaping.  I can't spend the rest of my life wondering what else I might be able to do if I wer…

Just Me and My Shadow...

Which happens to be a giant jug of urine.  Yup.  If I were a really good blogger, I'd fill this spot with a montage of me and my jug of urine doing fun things together...swinging around in one another's arms, walking on the beach, etc.  Unfortunately, I'm only a mediocre blogger at best, so you'll just have to imagine these aspects of our relationship.

I don't know if they do it to all pregnant women or just those of us who have issues during pregnancy, but one of the the things I have come to specialize in over the past several years is the 24 hour urine collection.  If you've never done one of these things, I recommend giving your doctor a call and asking if you can just go ahead and do one for fun.  I'm sure they can even be fun for men, too!  Basically, in my case, you take a pregnant lady who has to pee all of the time and then make her pee in only one place and dump it into this big orange container for a 24 hour period.  Oh, and it has to be kept col…

Little Pink Line

It's funny how one tiny pink line, no bigger than a quarter of an inch, can bring news that can change your life.  I had forgotten how that line, that little, tiny line, could mean so much.  I've seen it twice before.  The first time I was startled, in awe.  The second, relieved and terrified all at once.  This third time, well, I guess it was a little bit of awe and terror all together.  It wasn't a surprise and yet, isn't it always?  It can really happen...we can make a baby.

That baby is now only the size of a blueberry.  I had forgotten, though, how that blueberry can take all of the energy you ever had.  How there is no amount of sleep that will ever be able to satisfy your tiredness.  How your super power sense of smell can sniff out every unclean scent in the entire world.  How some things taste entirely wrong and others taste better than anything has ever tasted.

The thing about this third little pink line is this: people look at me with trepidation.  I have ex…


Age 5:  Will I make any friends?

Age 7:  Mommy, can I sleep over with my friend?

Age 10:  What happened to my homework?

Age 15:  Am I cool enough?

Age 18:  I don't need to ask any questions, I know everything.

Age 19:  Do you think my mother went to heaven?

Age 22:  How will I live now that college is over?

Age 26:  Is he the one?

Age 30:  Am I over the hill?

Age 32:  Is that positive?

Age 33:  How will we live without our son?

Age 33:  Is that positive?

Age 34:  Isn't she the most beautiful girl you've ever seen?

Age 35:  Will it always be this hard?

Age 36:  Should we have just one more?

Age 38:  Is that positive?

Nugget Had a Little Lamb

And yes, its fleece IS white as snow.  And it's name, quite logically, is Mary.

Mary is terrorizing our household.

We've actually had this little stuffed lamb for a long time and The Nugget never took much interest in it.  A few weeks back, she picked it up and dubbed it Mary.  Since that time, Mary has caused no end of trouble.  First of all, she screams.  A lot.  Loudly.  In fairness to The Nugget, she seems eager to control the screaming by putting Mary into time out.  The screaming was the first behavior Mary displayed, so I just kind of chalked that up to The Nuggets need to have someone to control/boss around.  Now, however, Mary has moved into other behaviors.  She hits, she bites, she poops on things.  She tells The Nugget to do things (so far nothing too bad like killing us in our sleep, but who knows what is next).  I swear to you, The Nugget fights with Mary just like she's a sibling.  And she tattles on Mary just like she's a sibling, too.

At first, I was p…

Let's Rant (put on your red shoes and rant the blues)!

1.  A while back my company was bought out by a bigger company.  No big deal.  Until now.  Now the bigger company has taken over all of our internet access and by taken over I mean completely ceased.  I can no longer look at Blogger at work.  My job satisfaction, and frankly productivity, is plummeting!  How I am supposed to make writing a blog pay for itself if not with their dollars?

2.  Some complete idiot went screeching by me and passed me on the left inside of my neighborhood the other morning while all the kids were standing out at the school bus stops.  I couldn't see his plate well enough to write it down (because I'm sure someone besides me will care about this) but I am focused with laser-like intensity on finding him again.  If anyone sees a silver Honda Accord circa 2000, give me a call.

3.  Trash.  Why are people such litterbugs?  Taking a walk with the family the other night we came across so much garbage, some within easy walking distance of a garbage can.  Nea…

What New Tires Can Do

 Grief, like the thump of a heartbeat, is always with me.  Sometimes in the background, quietly powering the parts of me that lie beneath the surface:

he's gone, he's gone, he's gone

Sometimes, in ways that I don't expect, it feels as though I've run a marathon and the grief, like that quickened heartbeat, suddenly becomes a deafening roar, the only thing I can hear:


Four years ago, on a hot summer day, I sat in the service station and waited for my tires to be changed.  On this day when I should have been home bonding with my newborn son, I sat in the service station and got new tires.  I cried.  I cried all of the time then.  It was wrong to go about this mundane task as if new tires meant anything at all in the face of the loss of a son.  For months on end, the pounding was the only thing I could hear.


I went to the service station just…

Shhhh...It's Saturday



Driving home from a recent family gathering, I was filled with angst and uncertainty.  When I visit with my family, I am always left with these uneasy feelings.  We do not have an easy, natural relationship.  Getting together always feels like hard work.  As I said to my husband, it triggers feelings of not knowing my place in the world.

Thinking further, it's not that I don't know where I belong now.  I belong right where I am, with The Mister and The Nugget.  I have dear friends who are closer than any of my family ever have been.  I am close with The Mister's family and appreciate the love and support they have given me.  Still, once in a while I feel...rootless.

My parents divorced when I was 3.  After that, I saw my father a couple of times a year for many years.  It is my understanding that he didn't pay child support and, knowing her, my mother would have been too fiercely proud to ask for it.  Because of the fighting between my mother and step father at home, I…


Today I celebrated my 50 pound weight loss at my surgeon's office.  Fifty pounds.
I'm not going to lie, I feel like it took a long time to get here.  After my lap band surgery in January, the weight seemed to melt off much faster than I had anticipated.  However, a couple of months back my inner child and I got me into some trouble with the band.  My stoma actually closed completely due to a lot of unresolved stomach irritation.  It was not fun.  Because of that, the surgeon opened up my band for a month and I got...hungry.  So I gained a couple of pounds back.  Not much, but enough to do the following: slow me down, open my eyes and get me back on track.
And so it is, 6 months after my surgery, I am celebrating the loss of 50 pounds.  It's pretty monumental for me.  I feel so much more energy than before.  My knees no longer hurt.  My feet don't get shooting pains.  And it's no wonder!  Fifty pounds is a lot to carry around on a daily basis.  Let's contemplat…

Say What?

Language continues to be a very entertaining undertaking with our daughter.  The more she learns, the more she creates and adds to the English language.  She's a little Shakespeare, this one.  A few of her entries from the past couple of months:

1.  She can turn any noun into a verb by adding 'ing'.  She says things like, "It's nighting" when it's dark outside or "It's wintering" when it's cold.

2.  Our dogs bark.  A lot.  That could be a whole post in and of itself.  However, if there's one thing more irritating than the dogs barking, it's The Nugget screaming at them to stop.  We've talked to her repeatedly about how dogs sometimes need to bark and get it out of their system and then they'll stop.  Now she says, "The dogs just need to take a little bark."  Love.

3.  She practices what sounds her letters make when reading her books with alphabets, however she doesn't always quite get it right.  I heard her …

What Happened on the Way to Our Play Date

As we neared our exit, I turned off the children's music that filled the car so that I could concentrate on my directions.

"Mommy, why did you turn off my music?"

"So I can focus."

"Mommy, why do you need to focus?"

"I just do.  Mommy needs to think about where she is going.  Give me just a minute.  We are almost there."

Oh no.  Road construction.  GPS does not match actual road.

"Are we almost there yet, Mommy?"

"Almost, honey.  Just hang on a sec.  Mommy missed her turn."

"Why did you miss the turn, Momma?"

"Well, there was construction and my computer didn't know that.  Just let me think here, babe."


Okay, simple u-turn and we'll be back on track.  Except...the turn still isn't clear to me.  Is it this one or the next one?  There is construction everywhere.  I feel sweat starting to form on my upper lip as I turn on onto the first exit and immediately realize that it is a …

Why Game Night is Like a Cage Match

I've mentioned before that family game time is pretty popular at our house these days.  The Nugget absolutely loves playing games of all kinds and, thanks to the generosity of friends and family, we have lots of games to choose from.  She is especially keen to play a game any time mom and dad are both home at the same time.  The other night, I opened the game cabinet (which I keep locked because DEAR GOD there are only so many games I can play and I can't have her bringing me one every 37 seconds) and picked something new for our family to play.  Slap Jack.

The three of us gathered around the coffee table and divied up the cards.  We took it slow so that we could teach The Nugget how to play the game and, frankly, to remind ourselves as I can't say how many years it has been since either of us has played it.  In an unusual turn of events, however, it wasn't long before The Nugget had retreated to a chair to watch what was left of the video that was playing and The Mist…

Pool Snob

I don't know about you, but I grew up swimming in anything that was wet.  Strip mine?  Yes.  Lake?  Don't mind if I do!  Public pool, drainage ditch (no lie), river, ocean or inflatable pool?  Absolutely.  They all sounded like heaven to me.  I loved to swim.

I still love to swim, but I've noticed as I get older that I grow more and more leery of my habitat.  That childhood drainage ditch that used to flood when it rained hard now sounds as if it most likely carries hundreds (if not thousands!) of diseases that could kill me or, worse yet, maim me beyond recognition with a terrible virus.  Lakes are filled with snakes and bugs.  People drown in strip mines all the time (according to my parents when I was younger, anyway).  Oceans are filled with any manner of things that will try and eat me if given half the chance.  I'm pretty sure the only sanitary solution would be to build my own private pool where at least the germs would be confined to a few known entities, but, …

American Dream


I grew up poor.  Not dirt floors and outhouses poor, but trailers and factory jobs and layoffs and bankruptcy poor.  I know what it is to not have.  I saw my parents struggle to provide for their family.

Lucky for me, they supported me getting an education.  I got a bachelor's and then a master's degree and have worked in some form or anther since I was 15 years old.  I have always known that it was important to work hard and earn money.  I know what it is to have the wolves at the door. 

Also, I have come to know the feeling of keeping up with the notorious Joneses.  I love things.  I love the security of having a nice home and nice things in my home.  They provide (falsely) reassurance that I have moved out of reach of poverty.  However, the love of things always leaves you wanting just a little bit more.  Just one more thing and then I won't want any more things, I tell myself.  We built a new home a couple of years ago.  I love it...but.  There's always a but. …

Shhhh...It's Saturday

Not exactly silent, but I ran across this video that The Mister made when The Nugget was just starting to creep and melted into a big puddle of goo.  She was so adorable!

Shhhh...It's Saturday


Enjoy the Ride

Friend of ours recently had their first child, a beautiful baby girl (welcome to this crazy, beautiful, difficult, wonderful thing called life, little one).  I've been thinking a lot about them, about the early days of parenting.  Bringing home that little bundle and being thrust into sleepless nights, days filled with constant feedings and changings and laundry and naps.  I have wondered what advice I might give to new parents.  What is it that I would have wanted to know back then? 

There are lots of practical things, of course.  Tips that would have been useful.  Personally, I liked Luvs diapers.  They were some of the cheapest and did the best job at holding a mess.  Know, however, that your baby might reach growth periods that, whatever your favorite diaper is, she may need another brand to fit her better.  Also, despite what some people say, I put pure corn starch powder on at each diaper change; we never had diaper rash issues as long as we were doing this.  Follow your gu…

Shhh...It's Saturday


This Moment

The Nugget has been an absolute delight lately.  I can only remember once in recent history when I even had to so much as put her in time out.  I realize that by writing this that I have now cursed us and this wonderful period will come to a screeching halt, but it's worth it because I want to remember this wonderful, wonderful time.

One of her current fascinations is singing.  She has learned most of the words to "Part of That World" from "The Little Mermaid".  If given time and opportunity, she will sing it.  Loudly.  Repeatedly.  She is still at that wonderful age where there is little to no sense of embarrassment, so we might even be out to dinner when she breaks loudly into song.  She is usually a little chagrined when I suggest that she needs to use and inside voice when out in public, but she will comply.  Comically, she gets a few of the words wrong which makes it all the more delightful.  A recent interpretation:

"Wanderin' freeze, wish I coul…

Shhh...It's Saturday


Mother of the Year - NOT

As it turns out, my daughter won't be nominating me for the Mother of the Year award any time soon.  It's not just because she is only three and cannot read or write and is therefore incapable of completing her nomination.  It's also not because I'm pretty sure this award doesn't actually exist.  It's actually because yesterday was an absolute epic fail in my career as a mother.

We started out on a high.  I had an awesome play date planned with some of our best friends.  We just had to stop by home and take care of a few things after I picked her up from day care and we were on our way.  The Nugget was in a fabulous mood.  As she served one of our dogs her dinner she said, with a flourish, "Enjoy your dinner, Frolly!"

I buckled my happy baby into the car.  I shut the door and turned to load a couple of things in the back of the car when I heard what can only be described as a blood-curdling scream.  "MOMMY!!!"  I instantly willed what I knew…


We officially reached the age a while back that The Nugget needs to know why.  Why what, you ask?  Well, the answer is simple: everything.

I find myself answering a flurry of questions (often non-sensical) each day.  If I tell her that we are going home after a given activity, I might get the following conversation:

The Nugget:  "Momma, why are we going home and not to the store?"

Me:  "Because we need to get home and feed the dogs."

The Nugget:  "Why is the store closed?"

Me:  "The store isn't closed, we just aren't going there right now."

The Nugget:  "Why do the doggies need to go poopie?"

Me:  "Because everyone has to go poopie sometimes.  It's our job to make sure the dogs are taken care of because we are their owners and they are our friends."

The Nugget:  "Why did Dandy [one of the dogs] chew up my Snow White?"

Me:  "Because you left it on the floor and he thought is was his toy.  We all make…

It Goes PAST Eleven

Today marks our 11th anniversary, The Mister and I.  Eleven years ago today, we said "I do". 



That number is simultaneously unbelievably large and incredibly, incredibly small.  In some ways, those years have flown and it seems unbelievable to me that it has been so long since I married this wonderful man whom I love, and who has loved me, so very much.  In other ways, it seems impossible for me to imagine that there was a time in my life, that there were 26 years, when I didn't know him.

Our marriage has been filled with depth.  We have had wonderful blessings and unbearable losses.  We have tested its strength and found it to be solid and capable of holding many joys and sorrows.  Eleven years ago I couldn't have imagined what the next eleven years would bring.  I know now that I also can't imagine what the coming years will bring.  I only know that I am ready to spend my lifetime next to this man who knows me and loves me as well as anyone …

Raise Your Voice

Today people everywhere are working together to try and put pressure on international decision-makers to intervene in the violence taking place in Syria.  People are being murdered.  Children are losing their lives to unspeakable violence.  To read more about the crisis, you can click here to read a Huffington Post article.

You can help.  These problems may seem remote.  They may seem more than you can overcome or take on.  But you CAN help.  Together, we can raise our voices.  We can make it known to our leaders that we care and, by doing so, we can move them to action.  Please consider taking the time to click on the links below and sign petitions to encourage our government and governments everywhere to step forward and save these people, people just like you and I, people whose only mistake was to be born in an unlucky spot on the map.

You can raise your voice.

Save the Children - The World In Action

Ear Worm

I don't know about you, but I have always been highly susceptible to the ear worm phenomenon.  No, not the Wrath of Khan kind of ear worm, the musical kind.  It doesn't matter whether I initially love or hate a song, I will eventually be begging for it to PLEASE! STOP! REPEATING! because once I learn even a fraction of the words along with the tune, any given song can go into continual loop in my head.

The '80's were particularly hard on me.  It's like most of the music from that era was actually written in ear worm format.  "Oh, Micky" almost killed me (and, just for the record, I started out hating that one).  "Karma Chameleon".  Please.

The '90's weren't so bad.  First of all, I was in my twenties.  For me, this meant spending a lot of time killing off those pesky brain cells that caused this musical malady.  Secondly, during the times I was repetitively singing songs, it was considered cool and introspective.  Drinking wine and t…


After nearly 19 years, I find that all of my memories are wrapped up in the details.  Fragments, moments, glimpses stitched together to make a picture of the woman who raised me and was then gone without warnings or goodbyes.

A scar and a misshapen fingernail, the remnants of a long-ago childhood fight lost to a wringer washing machine.

The smell of perfume and cigarette smoke mingling as she sat on the edge of my bed to say goodnight before heading out with her girlfriends in her long suede coat.

The sight of the steam rising from her early morning cup of coffee as she sat in the reclining chair reading a book in the early morning quiet.

The twinkle of mischief in her eye when she laughed.

The fire in her voice, born of years of self-reliance, when she was angry.

The feel of her standing behind me at the stove, my short legs aided by a chair,  as she taught me all of the secrets she knew to cooking while my tummy grumbled happily.

The way she fell asleep in her chair after long hours…

Back Seat Driver

As I mutter under my breath at the line of traffic that stretches before me, blocking my path to our current mecca, Chik Fil A, I hear a voice from behind me say, "Why did we stop, Momma?"

"See all of those cars in front of us?  We have to stop because they stopped.  It's called traffic."

She looks out the window at the cars.  "Come on, dude.  Let's go."  I have no idea where she gets this stuff other than directly from me.

Soon we are moving again.  The Nugget doesn't miss a thing while we're driving anymore.  "Red light, Momma!  We stop at red lights."  "Yellow light, Momma.  Why didn't you slow down?"  "Oh, no!  That was a stop sign, Daddy!  You were supposed to stop!"

No more rolling stops for us.  The cops are actually in the car with us now.  Just in the form of a very bossy and rule-oriented three year old. 


Why did we teach her the colors.  And WHY, for the love of all that is holy, did we …

Rock On

Since The Nugget was a newborn, we have spent her sleepy time in the glider in her bedroom, rocking and singing.  In the beginning, her sleepy time often coincided with mine.  We would doze together in the glider, a pillow tucked below her tiny body to keep her close to me even if my grip was loosened by sleep.

This snuggling and rocking is one of my favorite rituals.  Early on I learned that I needed to embrace this time and not allow any thoughts other than this beautiful task to invade our sacred moments together.  I used to sit with my infant and make lists about other things that needed to be done once I got the baby to sleep.  It didn't take long to realize that not only did she pick up on this energy and not settle as well, but that I wasn't allowing myself to be present for one of the most precious things I did with my child.  Once I let go of the task-oriented thought process, I became the one who wanted to rock longer than necessary and enjoy our quiet time for just …

Heart Strings

Lately I've been feeling a second baby plucking at my heart strings.  I think every day about this new little life that I would like to have with me.  I must talk about it a lot, too, because yesterday The Nugget said, "No more questions about a baby!" when she thought I was asking her if she wanted a new baby.  I already know she does (because I have asked her eleventy billion times, obviously).  I just feel this new little life waiting for us to get it together already and can't help but bubbling over with excitement and talking about it.

We are scheduled to attend an adoption seminar on May 16th.  That just happens to be my birthday.  Not that I'm reading into it as being lucky or anything:)  Each day since we scheduled this, I have been anxiously awaiting May 16th and have hardly even realized that it is my birthday.  Instead, it feels like it has already been re-made into the day we took the first step toward bringing home our new child.

To be fair, we had a…

Good Fences?

I took last Friday off of work.  Pretended I was rich and that my life was filled with nothing but me-time.  Drove an hour to an outlet mall and shopped in the sunshine.  Relaxed.  Listened to grown up music of my choosing while I drove.  Made it back in time to fit in grocery shopping while The Nugget was still at daycare.

In short, I spent last Friday in complete and utter bliss.

Until I checked the mail.  We had a letter from the Homeowner's Association.  I sifted it out of the pile because I knew it wasn't time for dues yet, so I wondered what it could be.  As it turns out, it was to notify us that one of our neighbors had filed a complaint about us.  Because we have too many weeds in our yard.  And if we don't take care of this then the HOA will hire someone to do it for us and then we will have to pay that fee and if we don't then we will have a lein put on our house.


The yard is mowed weekly by The Mister.  He really enjoys yard work and takes pride i…

Top 5 Places to Eat with Kids

Hello, remember me?  I have this blog that I never write on anymore.  Sorry about that.  BUT.  I was inspired to write again.  I hope it will last but cannot promise you.  All I can promise is that I DO plan to keep it up over the course of years.  It may be in fits and starts, but there will at least be those.

Anyway, I was thinking about eating out with my kiddo.  She and I spend many evenings alone together since The Mister works evening shift.  While I love to cook, I also work full time and find it hard to get motivated to cook for just the two of us.  I often leave crock pot meals or casseroles for The Mister and The Nugget to eat at lunch time and then she and I will go out occasionally.  Of course, we also go out as a family sometimes.  And some places just do kids so much better than others.  Most everyone these days will do some crayons, but some do so much more.  So here is my list of places that are the best to eat with my kid.

5.  Red Robin
Yum! (You know you just sang th…

And then she was three

Today marks your third birthday, my beautiful girl.  Three.  A little girl.  Not a baby or a toddler but a real little girl.

I'm not going to lie, this week leading up to your birthday has been fraught with tension between you and I.  You have been having tantrums of EPIC proportions.  Sometimes you wake out of a sleep and come to wake me out of my sleep so that you can scream at the top of your lungs for the next hour.  I feel confused and helpless in the face of all of this rage.  I just wish I knew how to help you when you are feeling so very out of control.

Of course, I remind myself, just like the good phases, the bad ones pass quickly, too.  It all goes by in the blink of an eye. 

My three year old girl, you are so smart and kind.  You are almost always willing to share with friends without any prompting.  You love your dogs and cats.  You love your grandparents and your aunties.  You love all of your cousins and your dear friends. 

The time between two and three has given…

Show. Me. The Presents!

The Nugget's third birthday is rapidly approaching.  It's safe to say that she is excited about it since she has been planning the party pretty much since she turned two.  We cannot mention that it is going to be anyone's birthday without her noting that it is soon to be her birthday.

At first, she wanted a Mickey birthday.  She has since decided that she wants a Piglet birthday (which I love because Piglet is the stuffed animal that I willed her to love when I took away her pacifier at age 9 months).  I have been busily ordering custom cupcakes and making homemade invitations for this party since Piglet doesn't usually show up without his buddy Pooh.  I can't wait for it, either, frankly.

The other day we were out shopping and she was, not surprisingly, talking about her upcoming birthday.  She made reference to the fact that Santa would bring her presents for her birthday.

"No, sweetie, Santa only brings presents for Christmas.  People who know you bring you…

Flying by the Seat of Our Pants

Recently, we discovered that some of The Mister's family was going to be in Orlando and making a visit to that wonderful/hellish place: Disney.  As I was talking to my Mother in Law (MIL) about it, we decided that it might be fun if The Mister, The Nugget and I came down and surprised The Mister's sister and her family by joining their vacation (Hah!  Hope it was a happy surprise!).  Here are the simple steps that The Mister and I had to take in order to make this last minute vacation possible:

1.  Exchange multiple emails and phone calls with MIL to plan dates, times, etc.
2.  Obsessively check flight options while simultaneously searching for lowest price.  Find lowest price but a)do not realize it and b)do not purchase tickets because you are at work.  Pay twice as much later because you are an idiot with no more time to wait.
3.  Assign dates to ask off to The Mister.
4.  Ask off dates from work.
5.  Attempt to find replacement at work.  Fail.
6.  Work double time prior…

Stuff I Used to Do

Once in a while I allow myself to lament some of the things I have given up since having kids.  Before children, I was largely self-involved and had absolutely no idea now much free time I spent just wandering the world in a state of starry-eyed giddiness.  I also got really used to this being my state of being as I didn't have my first baby until I was 32 years old.  Now, every free moment counts.  Here, a short list of stuff I used to do.

1.  Get my hair professionally colored.  I cannot tell you how much I loved this.  I wasted money for years on doing it even though I had absolutely no gray hair.  Now?  Lots of gray hair and just me trying to cover it up at home with my friend Loreal #8.  And only if I have a coupon.  The color looks nice, don't get me wrong, but I miss that feeling of being spoiled at the salon.

2.  Wander high end furniture stores.  I could spend hours if not days just wandering through Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware, sitting on sofas and admiring…