Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I'm still here

I promise, I have lots to share with you.  I'm just a little overwhelmed right now trying to get everything done, and spend some quality time with everyone in my family.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Ten (10)

I can't believe it.  My little girl is TEN. Double Digits. 

Princess Bear's birthday was yesterday, and I was trying to make it a really good day for her.  DDS and I went shopping last weekend and bought her some nice presents, and wrapped them in pink with purple polka dots, and green with teal and yellow polka dots.  She got some really cute PJ's with owls, craft and art supplies, movies, shoes, clothes, a few books, and some other little things.  She loved everything she got, but the shoes and clothes were a BIG hit...so funny.  She asked for ice cream cake for her family share time, and all the grands and her aunt came over to share.  It was a very nice time.

Daddy started a tradition many years ago of taking cupcakes into school for the kids birthdays.  This is a big deal.  He colors the cupcakes and icing whatever combination they want.  This year he created mini cupcakes that were green with pink icing.  He took them in yesterday and had lunch with her at school.  They were a big hit!

This weekend, we're having a spa sleepover.  We're going to set up the stations just like before, and then they're going to lounge around and watch some movies, maybe play her new American Girls game, and make mini-pizzas.  I'm trying to figure out how to make a nail polish bottle out of cupcakes. 

PB is my free-spirit, yet extremely cautious child.  Both her and the Monster are very demonstrative with their love, but his is a little more exuberant.  She needs cuddles.  And right now, she's needing them a lot, but not when her friends are around.  This is the year that she gets a little more freedom in a lot of areas, and more responsibilities as well.  Her group at the Youth Center doesn't require direct supervision anymore, but a lot of the daily "chores" in her class are led by the students.  I'm starting to see some maturing...it's a bittersweet thing.  As a fifth grader, she gets to begin band and safety patrol, and continue chorus.  She's unhappy with the lunchroom seating situation, so she created a petition, obtained signatures, and is presenting it to the Principal.  But every night, she still needs her cuddles.

She's going through a rough time with the Lyme disease, counselling, and daddy leaving.  Tomorrow she finds out her sister is going to her mothers for the length of the deployment.  The next month is going to be very difficult, but I know that we will persevere and things will fall into the new "normal" soon enough.

I hope you had a happy birthday baby girl.  Daddy and I love you very much, and we are both very proud of you.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Sorry for the busy signal

There is a lot going on here right now, and it's sucking my time in a big way.  Hubby leaves in 2 weeks, Bug is creating a commotion, PB turns 10 tomorrow, work is crazy (as it seems to have been for the last 10 months...WTH?) and normal life still has to go on.  I'm not overly stressed, as I've decided not to allow the stress to get me so much.  But I'm annoyed a lot.

I want to touch on the no stress thing.  Don't get me wrong, when I'm leaving work in a hurry to get the kids picked up and dinner on the table and all of us to where we need to be, I'm feeling some stress.  But I've remembered something I used to know.  It's okay if things aren't perfect.  Good enough is just fine.  And it's okay to say no.  It's hard, but it's okay.  These are my mantras over the next year.

There's a lot I need to vent about, but I just don't feel I can here at this time.

Tomorrow will be a post for PB...I can't believe she's hitting the double digits already.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The deployment, it is coming.

This weekend marked three weeks until my hubby begins his deployment to Iraq. Of course, he doesn't get to head straight there. He will spend some time State-side going through the necessary training, then several weeks away from the US, then finally they will actually begin their mission. We've known about this deployment since last summer. He will be gone for close to a year. He will miss all but one birthday (lucky PB!), our anniversary, Christmas, Easter, summer...and during that time he'll miss a lot of other smaller milestones. It sucks. I don't want anyone to ever think that I want my husband to be deployed, that I'm looking forward to this year.

But that said, this year represents an opportunity for us all. DDS will finally have an opportunity to really do what he has trained so many years to do. He may have a chance to teach courses, he will have the chance to contribute in a way that is meaningful for him. The children will have an opportunity to have their father involved in their life in a way he wouldn't be at home. And I have the opportunity to remind myself that I am a competent and capable woman.

I volunteered to be the FRG Leader for my husband's unit earlier this year. I think I shocked a lot of people, including my husband and myself, when I said yes. But in almost 11 years of being married to a soldier, I've learned a few things. And I want to help those spouses that don't already have that knowledge. Of course, there's also the benefits to myself. I've made friends I might not have made otherwise, I've learned more than I already knew, and I've made it so that I will have information early on. It's been frustrating at times, but overall, it's already been very rewarding.

We all know that the year will seem like forever, bu we are working out ways to make it go quickly. DDS has plans to read books that the girls will be reading, so that they can discuss them over email. Teachers are sending emails to him regarding classwork for them. Videocams have been purchased, set up, etc. and emails are being established.

It sucks, but we can't let that be the main focus for this year. We will remain positive (most of the time) and we will all be stronger from this experience.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

A lovely weekend

So hubby and I got to go away for a marriage enrichment weekend with the Guard.  I think it's safe to say we both had a very good time.  We ended up sitting with 4 other couples and that became our "group" for the weekend.  If you had asked me who I would end up spending time with before that night, those people probably wouldn't have been high on my list.  Not because of them, just because there are other people that I've known longer and thought I would be more comfortable spending our time with.  Friday night we arrived and headed down to the bar area to meet.  The group we ended up sitting with in the class was the group there.  During the short session Friday night, we laughed and had a good time.  We were dubbed the fun table by one of the leaders.  Class ended around 9:00, and we all retired to our rooms and were asleep in very short order.  It had been a long week.  Saturday morning we had breakfast and sessions until lunch.  We were, again, the fun table.  The agenda was pretty much thrown out the window, and some spouses were dragged out of denial of this deployment.  At one point, my hubby and another guy were playing "football" with a wad of paper.  One of the speakers snapped their fingers, and they both jumped and slapped their hands down on the table.  They looked like little boys caught misbehaving at school.

After class, we all headed to lunch together, and we all enjoyed ourselves.  Conversation flowed and there was a lot of laughter.  We headed back and most of us took naps.  That evening, we ended up going to dinner together, and again we all had a good time. 

I'm glad that I had time with my hubby without the stress and pressure of work.  I'm also thankful that I had the opportunity to create relationships with some of the spouses I may not have previously done so with. 

And that fact that it was entirely free for us?  Even more awesome.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Hubby and I are getting away this weekend for our last getaway before he deploys.  We'll be back Sunday.  See you!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Local Love

My swap buddy, LR Monkeytoes, sent me these awesome, gorgeous items from her home state of Michigan. I love everything, actually wearing the bracelet and carrying the tote bag today.  The tote is made out of some really soft material.  I want to rub it all the time...lol.  This was from the Color Me Happy Swaparooni group over on Flickr.  I always love the swaps...great themes and awesome gifts.

I'm a proud mama tonight.  The new Youth Center had it's ribbon cutting ceremony today, and my baby boy was on TV helping to cut that ribbon.  The new facility is awesome...I wish I was a school age child so I could stay and play.  Computers, craft/sewing rooms, new games, a huge gym, boom boxes in every room, comfortable furniture, a locker room.  It's all so gorgeous, and so exciting.  I can't wait until they all start actually going there Monday. It was already a great program, with great people, and now they have the facility and room to do all the things they've envisioned for years. 

Happy Love Thursday everyone.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Yummy fall goodness...Pumpkin Praline Muffins

I baked these yummy good muffins last night.  They are the best I've ever had, and not too terribly bad for you.  Recipe came from Family Fun magazine last year, and you can find it here.  Not only did PB choose to use these as her "birthday cake" for her friend birthday last year, but people who hate Pumpkin still love these.  They taste like fall...and one tastes like another.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Totally Tuesday

Ms. PB had another one of her bedtime episodes last night.  I finally just had her crawl into bed with me, that way when she woke up, I could comfort her and we would both be back to sleep in minutes.  It helped, but dang I'm tired today. 

Last night was Bug's Parent Info Night.  Her teachers all seemed like good people.  Her science teachers were both a bit off (it's a team teaching class.  Two teachers, some kids that are very good academically, and some kids that aren't.  Bug is very good academically, without having to work too hard at it.  That will bite her in the butt in a few years.  I digress).  The team teaching is good for her, as her best friend gets to be in her class, when she otherwise wouldn't be.  But the teachers....one blinks.  A lot.  And they're those long blinks.  Bug and her friends counted today, and he blinked 34 times in less than an hour.  That's more than once every 2 minutes.  And he keeps his eyes closed for 30 seconds or so.  I know, I shouldn't pick, but wow it was sooooo annoying last night.  The other is a big flirt.  Flip the hair, smooth the pants.  She looked really uncomfortable, but flirty at the same time.  It was a sight.  Her Math, Spanish and Band teachers are the same, which is okay for her.  Her poor math teacher...she needs to be in a higher level class, but the school won't give her that option for another year.  So she finishes everything really quickly, and then she pesters him.  It's good natured, and he doesn't really mind, but still.  And of course, in that class, it was us and one other family.  That blows my mind.  25-30 students and 2 families show up.  Wow!

I'm really enjoying Bug's high school experience.  I re-read "To Kill A Mockingbird" with her last year and I'm looking forward to reading some of the things with her this year.  Her father is going to read the books while he's in the sandbox so that they can email discuss them.  I think this will be a good way for them to keep connected, and I'm glad he thought of it. 

Now tomorrow night is PB's night.  I have a plethora of things to post about, and not a lot of time, energy or creativity to do it.  Got to write these things down!

Monday, September 08, 2008

I'm not going to write you...

A love song, just a bit of a love story.

Woodland Mama is our host today. She says:
I am hosting this week, and the assignment was to write the 1st paragraph of an unusual love story. I admit it was hard, but I am look forward to seeing the results.
He had been watching her from afar. They had come so close to being together, but never quite managed to get there. His pining and yearning was causing him such heartbreak, his hard drive was starting to malfunction. Every day his user brought him to this cafe, and every day her user brought her to this cafe. And yet, they were never any closer than a couple of tables away. What he wouldn't give to chat with her, syntax with her.

Anyone want to write more?

Make sure to visit all the Fun Monday participants!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Finally a diagnosis

PB has Lyme Disease. Her sleep disturbances and headaches were key symptoms, and the simple blood tests confirmed. She has begun the first three week treatment of antibiotics, and will have to be retested at the end of the treatment. She will also need blood work to re-test for the abnormal readings.

It's a lot easier to deal with the mood swings, sleep disturbances and such now that we know why it's happening. I'm praying she'll be healed after the first round of treatments.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

What a good day

Monster went to spend some one on one time with Nana last night, so I took the girls to Olive Garden for dinner. It was a very nice time, but I was soooooo tired. I came home, laid down to read and fell asleep. I woke up a few minutes before 10 and went to tell them to go to bed, and they were already in PJ's and climbing into bed. DDS had drill, so he came home around 10:30, gave them hugs and kisses and off to dream land they went.

This morning, the girls and I joined my mom and took a short little roadtrip to the larger city near us. We went to Interior Alternatives...this is the Waverly material outlet. I LOVE this place. Great prices on nice material. We also went to the much larger Jo-Ann's and to a quilt shop up there. Lunch at Red Robin (we had never been before. Not bad.) and then home in the afternoon, it was all very nice. The girls were pleasant and didn't fight until we were almost home. We picked up some great deals on material, and now I'm itching to sew.

I want to start an Etsy store. I have an account, but don't know that I want my shop to just be mamalang. I know it's my user name on a lot of sites, but I think I need something different over there. I'll have to think about it. Any ideas?

Friday, September 05, 2008

Sooo tired

It's been a rough week. I'm going to spend a bit of time with my girls and then head off to bed. More tomorrow!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Love is

PB is not having a good health month.  She's not overly sick in general, but it seems like it's all hitting her this month.  I have visited doctors with her more in the last 2 weeks than in the last year.  I'm hoping it's about done.  But that's what love does.  It sits in those waiting rooms, praying the germs don't spread, praying the fever goes, wishing and hoping for good health again.  It endures those sleepless nights, those soul sucking crying/whining gigs, the worry and fear.  It intensifies those feelings, but it make it all worthwhile too.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

all over

I have several things I want to blog about today, but can't wrap my mind around anyof them.

The lab screwed something up and sent two sets of results to the doctor's office.  One said she might have pancreatis, and the other said she was fine. So we have to do labwork again in two weeks to see what's what.  Argh.

We have a busy couple of weeks, and that's causing the mind melt.  Maybe tomorrow?

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

where have I been?

It's been a long week.

Last Sunday (the 24th) the Monster was complaining that his head and neck hurt.  After internally calming myself, I checked his forehead and realized he was running a fever.  I asked him to show us where it hurt and he pointed to his forehead, cheeks, nose, chin, neck...etc.  We gave him some zyrtec and tylenol, figuring he had somehow developed a sinus infection.  I hadn't been feeling good for a few days, and figured I had a UTI.  So, Monday morning, I went to work for a bit, called my doctor when they opened, went in and was confirmed with the first UTI I've had in over 11 years.  After leaving there, I called Monster's pediatrician, swung by and picked him up from daddy, and headed to his doctors.  A quick look in his mouth confirmed that he had at least tonsilitis, possibly strep.  The throat culture in the office came back negative for the strep, but antibiotics where started anyway.  I came home and rested for a bit, then went and got our prescriptions filled.  From the pharmacy on the base to the school to pick up PB and take her to the podiatrist.  She has a wart on her toe, and it needed to be removed.  Considering how much she freaks out for these types of things, I wasn't excited.  But she was a trooper and they put the treatment on and wrapped it.  So scorecard...3 doctor visits in one day, in less than 8 hours.  Fun. 

I went to my stamp club, and as I walked in the door, DDS was putting PB's wrap back on her toe.  Monster had accidently pulled it off.  Argh.  Tuck them in bed.  Go to bed ourselves a bit later.  Not long after crawling into bed, here comes PB, telling us she can't sleep, doesn't feel good, her head hurts.  We give her some tylenol and cuddles and send her back to bed.

Tuesday comes and goes.  My mom came and stayed with Monster, as he was taken out of school until Wednesday.  Yep, 5th day of school and he's already missed 2.  Yay!  Tuesday night, bedtime, PB starts the crying about her stomach and head again.  We give her some OTC's and give each other that helpless look.  She's up and down for a bit, then passes out mumbling about school.

Wednesday, more work. Really tired from not getting much sleep.  Monster goes back to school, and when I pick him and PB up, they are both complaining of headaches.  We bring them home and PB and I talk about what's bothering her about school.  I give them OTC's, feed and put them to bed.  11:00, PB is crying, telling us her head is killing her.  I give her some more meds and let her cuddle with me.  We talk about daddy leaving, school, etc.  She giggles, then cries, then giggles, then cries.  Argh, I just need sleep.  12:15, the Monster comes in crying that his head is killing him.  I can't take it, I call the Pediatrician.  We go through the checklist and she tells me there is a virus going around that causes these very painful headaches.  We figure out the correct dosage of OTC's, and she tells me if they aren't better in the morning to bring them in.  I have to run out to Wal-mart to get some more meds.  Yay...Wal-mart at 12:30 at night.  I come home, and they are passed out in our bed.  I cuddle in with the two of them and DDS and get to sleep off and on for an hour.  Monster wakes back up, cries, then runs to his own room.  I follow, redose (since he fell asleep before receiving the earlier dose) and cuddle with him until he finally passes out at 3:00...and me with him in his bed, finally getting to pass out as well. 

6 am Thursday morning, and I have to get up for work and to take the Bug to school.  PB and Monster get up and claim they feel better but not good.  They go to school, I go to work, DDS goes to work.  We're all exhausted.  We come home, and DDS and I take naps.  PB and Monster still don't feel good.  We eat dinner, dose them, and send them to bed.  DDS and head up, and here comes PB.  She is up and down, crying and sleepwalking until close to 5 am.  I am ready to cry. 

The kids didn't have school Friday, so DDS and I took the day off to spend with them.  It dawned overcast and icky, and none of us felt great, so we did some errands and chores that had to be done.  We put PB to bed for a nap.  Much later, she wakes up with 103 degree fever.  Of course it's after the doctor's office closes.  We call, and they tell us to bring her in Sat morning.  She sleeps with Bug tonight, and mumbles, cries, moans and groans until the wee hours.  In her sleep. 

Now let me tell you, we talked about taking them in, but after being told that this was probably a viral thing, and just headaches that only hit at night, and looking at all the upheaval the children have had and will have int he next month, we figured it was more a mental/emotional thing.  So what was the doctor really going to do?

But now, with the fever and all, I take her in.  4 hours later, we've visited the lab and she's had blood drawn and peed in a cup, then we headed to the hospital and had chest and head xrays.  They don't have any idea what's wrong. Probably something viral, but let's test to rule out.  She spends the rest of the day attached to me, whining, crying, and just generally clinging.  I'm slowly losing my mind.  We put them all to bed and head to bed ourselves.  I lay in bed praying with all my heart that she be given some peace...that she sleeps all night...that she feels better in the morning.  It's the mantra I fall asleep to, almost in tears. 

Sunday morning dawns, and she's healed.  Nothing wrong whatsoever, no headache, no fatigue, nothing.  We say our thanks to God and head to the beach. 

Monday she seems fine as well.  I breathe a sigh of relief that she is better and it was apparently "just viral."

If course, she was supposed to go back for a check up today, but since she seemed fine, I cancelled the appointment.  Why expose her to other illnesses?  They agree and say the doctor will call if they need to see her.  I get home to two messages...argh.  Call my cell or my office.  Anyway, now I have to try and get her in tomorrow, because apparently there was something in her bloodwork.  But she's sleeping.  And now so am I.

I have so much to post about fo other things, but first, I need sleep.