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March, 2008:

Mice Will Play . . . While The Cat’s Away

Or should I say “Duma will play, while the Mom’s away.” I guess I wasn’t really “away” – just away in the other bathroom taking a shower. I came out to the hallway to find this . . .

 Toilet Paper In The Hallway

I decided it would be a good idea to turn on the light and check it out . . . wasn’t too bad . . .

Toilet Paper in Bathroom

I went to scold the kids for not watching the puppy  get a trash bag to put the paper in. When I came back, I found this innocent little thing:

Duma By Toilet paper

“What?! I have no idea who did this!”

Still Here!

Yup – I’m still here :-) I took Thursday and Friday off to play with my Mom who’s here visiting from MN. The kids were out of school for spring break and we had fun! Thursday we mostly hung out and relaxed while everyone caught up on a little sleep from playing with Grandpa (he left Wednesday), visits to the ER, and late plane flights. Friday and Saturday we had fun shopping, playing games, hiking, and playing outside. Sunday we played more games, went to the dog park and BMX track, attended a birthday party, completed out tests for the last ice skating lesson (I passed Basic 4 even though I couldn’t actually skate with my tailbone and Jason passed Hockey 4 – woo hoo!), had a yummy dinner, and read books with the kids. So we’ve had a busy week with spring break and lots of time with Grandmas and Grandpas. It was tough for the kids to get up for school today after so much time off and a tweaked schedule. But, we’ll make it. We’re actually kind of glad to be getting back to some kind of regular schedule. Unfortunately, Noisy Grandma has to go home today :-( We’ll miss her terribly and can’t wait to see her and Monster Grandpa again in May when we head to The Black Hills for a week to play and have fun!

Hope you all had a fun weekend!

Ouch!

So I showed you some pictures of the fun time we had last weekend. What I didn’t share was the PAIN that went with it! Snowboarding is great fun . . . learning to snowboard is great pain! A pain in the ass, literally. Toward the end of our totally awesome snowboarding/skiing adventure, I tried to avoid a little kid . . . now if I were a good snowboarder, or anyone who had been on one more than 3 times in her life, I coulda just turned and missed the kid. But I’m not any of those things . . . I’m new at snowboarding, and my brain tends to believe I can do things my body just can’t yet 😉 So, to avoid missing little kid, I tried to turn, fast . . . and caught my heelside edge . . . which then SLAMMED me into the ground with the force of a jackhammer . . . right. on. my. tailbone. Apparently I’ve never actually landed on my tailbone before. I certainly thought I had, but after that fall, I KNEW I hadn’t because I had never felt that kind of pain OMG in my entire friggin’ life! And I’ve had 2 C-sections. Tears started flowing without me having any clue what had just happened. I knew my day was over . . . told hubby to keep going with Jason and our friends and I’d meet them in the lodge in a couple hours when they were finished because I was done. I unstrapped and “hobbled” to the lodge. My mistake was sitting down . . . because getting up was a PAIN IN THE ASS – OMG! I hobbled out to the Jeep with my board to change into regular boots . . . apparently bending down to get snowboarding boots off and then put on your regular boots is NOT the thing to do with a bruised tailbone – OMG it HURT!  I did manage, barely, and hobbled back up to the lodge and parked myself in a seat for a couple hours, watching my daughter in her skiing lesson, which was a lot of fun. It’s now Wednesday and I STILL can’t bend down to tie my shoes, put on socks, or even put the leash on Duma! And putting on pants – have I mentioned that it’s a real PAIN IN THE ASS?! Heading to the chiro. today to see if she can adjust anything – but I’m totally expecting her to say I just have to wait it out, which I am NOT very good at. Oh, and that humonstrous bruise on the back of my right leg (really, like 8 inches across and 4 inches wide) . . . um ya . . . lesson learned . . . when skating on your board in the lift line, fold the unused binding down . . . if you don’t, when you trip on your own friggin’ board, not only do you look like a complete fool, you will end up landing on said binding and end up with said monstrous bruise on your leg.

But enough about me! On to my daughter . . . she’s been complaining about her tummy hurting for a few days. Yesterday she’d double over in pain and cry every now and then, but then she’d be fine. After gymnastics last night she said she wanted to go home and lay down instead of going out to eat with hubby, Dude, and Grandpa. So I took her home. She started bawling on the way home about her tummy, so I took her to the Urgent Care. They recommended I go to the ER. So we did . . . and on the way, she threw up all over herself and the car, multiple times. Good times! We get to the ER and they are so nice and change her in to a gown and give me a bag for her nasty clothes. Hubby brought her some new ones and then took the car home to clean it. Between 7:00 and 9:00 p.m. in the waiting room, Keira threw up a good 4 more times . . . finally ending up empty. They FINALLY took us back to see the doc. He immediately gave her something to stop the vomitting since she was empty. Then he immediately ordered an X-ray because her tummy was soooooo huge . . . she looked 6 months pregnant! Understand that immediately in the ER is relative to the speed of a snail 😉 The X-ray showed what they hoped it would . . . she was constipated (even though she’d gone icky) and had a ton ton ton ton of gas in her tummy. They thought it might be her appendix, so that was good news that it wasn’t! She was so uncomfortable with her tummy hurting so badly :-( I felt so bad for her! But, she wasn’t throwing up anymore, so that was good. Around 11:00 they gave her a suppository (poor thing – she did great though) and told us she couldn’t leave until she gave them a urine sample and did her duty. She had thrown up everything in her little tummy, so didn’t have anything to pee for them! But, around 11:30, she finally mustered up enough for them to do a urine test. And FINALLY, at the stroke of midnight, she did her duty. Her own Cinderella story :-) She was a TOTALLY different kid after that! Her tummy was still big, but since the plumbing was working again, they let us go, with instructions to see the doc today if her tummy was still distended. She drank a TON of juice on the way home, compliments of the ER. This morning, she was tired, but her tummy looked good and she was hungry. So, hubby was left with strict instructions . . . no dairy, no bread, no candy, no read meat . . . fruit, veggies, juice . . . get the plumbing flowing again!!!

So, there are the ouch stories of the girls in the house.

On a fun note . . . Noisy Grandma is coming today and staying until Monday – woo hoo! We’re all so excited. Nothing makes a little girl feel better than a Grandma to cater to her every whim and whimper 😉

Easter Weekend In Photos (and a few words)

K and J with Baskets
 The Egg Hunt

View from Wilkerson Pass
The View On The Way To Boarding

Keira Little Kid Mirror
Keira Uses The “Little Kid Mirror” In The Hotel Room

Dan Jason Keira Boarding Skiing
Dan (left) and Jason (right) Practice Connecting Their Turns
While Keira Works With Her Instructor (center)

Keira Tries Turning
Keira Practices Her Turns

Jason Boarding
Boarder Boy

Dan Board
Boarder Dad

Mom Boarding
Boarder Mom

Easter Bunny
Who Knew The Easter Bunny Was A Skiier?

Skiing Princess
My Daughter Will NEVER See This Picture
Or I’m Sure She’d Want To Do This

We all got our own gear finally (way cheaper overall instead of renting all the time!). I’d say we even kind of look like we know what we’re doing! We’re definitely ready for another lesson :-)

Lent Is Over!

I gave up sugar for Lent – not ALL sugar, just “frivelous” sugar as I like to call it. I stay away from anything that has sugar as one of the first 3 ingredients – like the obvious stuff, but also including things like Cheerios, bread, etc. This is usually my breakfast on Easter morning :-) 

Cherry Coke and Jelly Beans

However, this year, I had a much more nutritious breakfast because we went snowboarding, and I figured I needed something better than this if I was going to hurl myself down a mountain with a board strapped to my feet all day.

So, it’s Monday morning, one full day after I COULD have had this, and I still haven’t. Lookout Monday – sugar rush, sugar high, and sugar down coming to a cubicle near you!

Wal-Mart

I’m STILL not a fan of Wal-Mart, but it’s close, so we go there sometimes. On one particular outing about a month ago, my daughter spotted a “beautiful blue Easter dress! OMG!” placed conveniently right at the end of the . . . chip aisle in the grocery section. She asked if she could have it for dress up. I told her that we weren’t going to buy it today, what with me sticking to my New Year’s Resolution and all – but if they still had it after Easter and it was on sale, then I’d get her one.

She left the store a happy woman.

Fast forward one month – Grandpa stops at our house for a day on his way to Arizona. Grandma, who could not make the trip, had instructed him to take the kids to Wal-Mart and let them pick out whatever they wanted. Dude, being the 7 year old boy that he is, took about 25 minutes to choose handcuffs and the Ice Age 2 DVD – it was a tough choice between that and fake Heeleys 😉 My daughter, being the Princess that she is, took exactly 30 seconds to find and choose this . . .

Easter Dress

I just noticed the toy on the door and feel the need to explain . . . it’s got a bell in it. Duma rings the bell when she has to go out potty so we can hear her from upstairs. So no need to call DCS :-)

Convenience Fee

My son was born in the year 2000. As it turned out, the Harlem Globetrotters thought it would be a great idea to offer every kid born in the year 2000 free admission to their games for life! One free game a year for life – of course we signed him up and got the free pass card :-)

Finally, 7 1/2 years later, the Globetrotters are coming to our town on a weekend when we’re actually going to be here. So we figured we might as well go ahead and go – Dude’s ticket is free afterall.

So I call the number to get tickets. I tell them I have this wonderful pass, and they explain that I can only use the pass if I purchase tickets at the venue ticket window. What (pause for dramatic effect) EVER!

The next Saturday we all gather in the car and drive 28 miles to the venue ticket window. The lady is super nice and super helpful . . . except she has no idea what we’re talking about with this pass. And since the computer doesn’t say anything about it, well she just can’t do anything about it. But, being so nice as she was, she did call her manager, on Saturday, and explained it to her. The manager had no clue. The Globetrotters hadn’t told them anything about this special pass. She’d have to contact the Globetrotters on Monday to check it out, and then they’d call me back.

Wednesday I get a call back saying that yes indeed, the free pass we are holding in our hands is indeed valid. They have entered the information in to the computer, so we can purchase our tickets. But not over the phone . . . we still need to come to the ticket window because they need to take a photo copy of the pass. What (pause for dramatic effect) EVER!

So the next Saturday, we load everyone into the car and drive the 28 miles (up hill) to the ticket window at the venue. The computer freezes and she can’t do anything until she calls her IT guy up “from downstairs” (it’s a hockey rink . . . we’re on cement on the ground floor . . . where the hell is ‘downstairs’?!). We wait 15 minutes at the ticket window, which is just long enough for Princess to see the billboard advertising Princess on Ice or something similar and start BEGGING to go. I explain that we only do one “show” a year, and this year it’s The Globetrotters. Princess crosses her arms, softly stomps a foot, and says “Hmph! I don’t even LIKE football!” Um, honey? It’s not football . . . it’s basketball. Anyhoo, IT guy comes upstairs, gets the security guard to open the door to the ticket window office, waves his magic wand, and the computer is working. We purchase tickets for the 2 adults and the Princess – woo hoo – and get the free “Baby 2000” ticket for Dude. I sign my life away to pay for them (not really, it wasn’t even $60 for the 3 of them) and we head out to the car to drive the 28 miles back home, up hill with a strong head wind.

Hubby is checking out the tickets and lets out a snort that could challenge any one of the 4 hippos at the zoo. I give him the “What?” look and he says “They charged us a $2 convenience fee for each ticket. What the hell was so convenient about getting these friggin’ tickets?!”

Out of the Mouths of Babes

So we had the kid swap Friday night – 4 extra boys at the house overnight – it went great! The kids had so much fun playing together, and all of them got along great. It’s just so funny to sit on the sidelines and watch 6 Montessori “trained” kids interact. They are definitely wild and crazy boys (except my little Princess) and behave like boys, but they are all also very polite and well-behaved. We sit down to eat pizza, and they start talking about where they’re going to sleep.

6 Year Old #1: Oh Good LORD! I forgot my sleeping bag!

I of course informed him that he should not fret because his sleeping bag was indeed in my bedroom waiting to be taken out of it’s stuff-sack state.

They all continue the conversation, having moved on to the hockey game they went to last weekend.

6 Year Old #1: Ya – that goalie was STUPID!

I’m surprised that the other 5 at the table didn’t choke on pizza dust from the collective inhale that occured! They all got the most surprised and horrified look on their faces, and then . . .

8 Year Old: Ms. Jodie! Did you hear that? He said the S word!
7 Year Old: Ya. You shouldn’t say that awful word!
6 Year Old #1: I’m sorry guys. I won’t say that word again.

It’s so fun to watch them police themselves while not to choke on my own pizza :-)

4 Year Old was completely oblivious to the entire hockey conversation . . .

4 Year Old: Hey 6 Year Old #1! Bemember when we was out in the dak and saw a BAYor!? That was sccaarrryyyy!

6 Year Old #2 was also completely oblivious to the hockey and “bayor” conversations . . .

6 year Old #2: Hey Ms. Jodie? Where is Mr. Dan? Why isn’t he here? My mom said he’d be here.
Me: Well, he was supposed to be here, but his plane ended up being late, so he’ll get here after you guys are sleeping.
6 Year Old #2: Oh man. That’s a big darn it.

After pizza and sugaring them all up sufficiently with shakes, they played hide and seek for an hour and then got ready for bed. It took a little maneuvering to get everyone in the exact right spot so they had just the right amount of night light available to them, but they did it, ending up with our own little version of The Waltons . . .

“Goodnight Jake.”
“Goodnight Keira.”
“Goodnight Ian.”
“Goodnight Jason.”
“Goodnight Gavin.”
“Goodnight Nicholas.”
“Goodnight Duma.”
“Goodnight everybody!”
“Goodnight poopy head.”

Huh HM!

“OK. Goodnight.”

Pancakes, waffles, and fruit for breakfast and they were off to play again!

We headed to the St. Patrick’s Day Parade downtown to meet a couple of the parents who were running the 5K before the parade. The parade was fun as usual . . . I mean really, what’s funnier than humonstrous cows doing the chicken dance?

Dancing Cows

Then this car came along . . .

De Lorean 

4 Year Old: Hey Mom – look! It’s a Transformer!

HAHAHAHAHAHA! I guess if you’re 4, it IS a Transformer :-)

About a gazillion groups of these guys walked by . . .

Scottish Band 

In varying versions of the “uniform” of course.

7 Year Old: Hey Mom. Why is there so much Ireland stuff in this parade?

Um, I guess we forgot to tell him what this parade was all about 😉

Much fun was had by all, much candy was collected off the nasty dirty street, and many children are needing naps after a fun fun night.

 

Portland – Day 1

I got approval to attend a writers conference in Portland . . . woo hoo! I know you’re all beside yourselves with excitement, but it’s very exciting stuff for us writers :-) After partaking in a few too many adult beverages on Saturday evening at the neighbor’s St. Patrick’s Day Party, I dragged myself out of bed Sunday morning to finish laundry and pack. Yes, I procrastinate when it comes to packing. It’s about the only thing I DON’T plan a month or two ahead of time 😉

To Mother Nature – why can’t you just let the weather be nice and sunny on a travel day, instead of foggy, cold, rainy, snowy, and slippery?

To United Airlines – hire enough friggin’ pilots so you can have at least 50% of your planes take off on time instead of 2 hours late!

To the UAL Gate Agent – thank you for making the delay as painless as possible.

To the UAL Flight Attendant – thank you for turning me around at the plane doors so I could wait the 2 hours in the terminal instead of on the plane!

To the Captain – thank you for your pleasant attitude during our delay. You were supposed to be going home, but instead you accepted the assignment to fly us to Portland. And thank you for making the number of landings equal the number of takeoffs!

To the Mother travelling alone with her 7 and 9 year olds – I understand why you declined trading your crappy middle seat in the way back for my aisle seat next to your 7 year old daughter. But I’m a mother and I could not let your daughter sit alone on the plane. Thank you for finally taking my seat.

To the guy in the window seat – shame on you for not trading you seat with this woman’s son so they could sit together! I promise you that it wouldn’t have killed you.

To the people on either side of me in the waaaayyy back – thank you for making light of the fact that our seats did not recline and we were packed in there like sardines.

To the people in the seats in front of us – no thanks to you for reclining your seats all. The. Way. And then explaining how you’re sorry there’s no room, but if you didn’t recline your seat, you couldn’t get your laptop screen angled just right.

To the other mother travelling alone with her two young children – I understand. I’ve done it many times. But don’t wait until they turn on the final seat belt sign for landing to try to get your 2 and 4 year olds to the bathroom and then back to their seats and buckled in safely. You had 2 hours and 45 minutes to do that.

To the two hoodlums on the light rail – you make it VERY difficult for a visitor to like your city when the minute you get off the train you are arrested as we all watch!

To the really drunk guy on the train – STOP IT! Put the wine away, and don’t throw up in the seat next to me! The next time security escorts you off the train, please go get some help.

To the hostess at the restaurant in the hotel – you have a sign outside your restaurant saying the conference people are meeting there; it’s not MY fault you didn’t schedule help to serve me dinner – at 7:30 p.m.!

To the front desk lady – thank you for being so pleasant and directing me across the street to the other hotel tower restaurant. The Salmon was EXCELLENT! And I’m now full :-)

To my husband – thank you for being so willing to stay home and be the wonderful dad and husband you are. I didn’t want to leave 2 days after you got home from a long trip, but that’s how the ball rolls. And thank you for working your schedule out so you’re home for the next 2 full weeks.

Bloggy Giveaway – And The Winner Is . . .

Drum roll please . . . . .

KATY! I really hope you like this organizer as much as I did. And I promise, you won’t even know it was used 😉

Thanks to everyone who visited and participated!