Wednesday, March 29, 2006

For the love of all that is good and holy...

... DO NOT ask a woman if she is pregnant!!!! I mean it! There is no good reason to. (Has anyone seen the shattered remains of my self-esteem anywhere?)

Monday, March 27, 2006

I am a glutton for punishment.

Well, we had an almost perfectly enjoyable weekend. Richard and I didn't manage to sneak away for the night, but we were given tickets to a jazz concert and a brave 15 - year - old came by to babysit. As a belated birthday gift Richard's stepmom took me shopping to not one, but two yarn stores!!! At one, which was going out of business, I stocked up on chunky yarn to make the kids new sweaters for fall. At the other one, I picked up some luscious Cezanne to make a lacey sweater in lime. I felt like a kid in a candystore. I wandered the aisles, touching everything!! I am being very careful with my wrists so I haven't been knitting as much as I would like, but I am too stubborn to give it up. Who could say no to the cotton/silk blend I picked up? I just like looking at it and petting it!!

On Sunday I went into a bridal shop to try on a bridesmaid's dress for a friend's wedding. Oh the horror! I looked like a big brown triangle. I was quite disappointed with the shop in general. I started trying on other dresses to see if something else would be more suitable to my frame and most of the sample dresses had broken zippers. Is that any way to sell clothing? Two (of six) bridesmaid's are coming to visit me to see if we can find something that won't make us cry. I officially hit rock bottom with my weight that day. I am going to be starting Weight Watchers as soon as I can. I need some structure and rules to get myself back on track and drop about 25 pounds of baby weight. Unfortunately, only a tummy tuck will really get rid of my belly--I will get stick arms and a flat chest and still have a pooch, but at least it will be smaller. (I have lost these 25 lbs before--I know the road)

I picked up another shift for tomorrow--wish me luck!! I have learned from my previous mistake, so I will have to find a new one to make.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Have you ever had one of those days...

...Where you just feel like you are pretending to be whomever you are? That was me on Wednesday. I put on my little nurse outfit, threw my hospital ID and stethoscope around my neck, and I was playing dress-up at the hospital. I forgot how many kinds of tired there are and how many you can have at the same time until yesterday. Being a stay-at-home mom is hard, don't' get me wrong, but I never feel the crushing sense of defeat and failure at the end of the day that I do when I work at the hospital. Kids are pretty straightforward: first and foremost you just love them. Next comes food and warmth, then you can stimulate their little brains by playing with them or putting on a Dora video while you throw a load of laundry in the washing machine. Yep, I am bone tired by the end of a day with my kids, but I answer to no one. If I want to load up the v-v-v-van and go on little day trip, I can. If I want to sit in my PJs and serve ice cream for lunch, I can do that too. I forgot what a bureaucratic hell the hospital is (my Sunday shift was just a warm-up--there were no bosses or even doctors around on Sunday) Yesterday I was responsible for five patients and two student nurses while answering to my floor supervisor, charge nurse, the student's instructor and a bunch of doctors and surgeons (one or two for each patient). Truly dizzying after a year off and one shift to learn where things are. I don't wanna go back.

On a happier note, Emm and Char had a blast at the babysitter. The next morning Emmett grabbed my backpack and got ready to follow Richard out the door, just like the day before. He was really mad when he found out he had to stay home with me. I am glad things will work out with her.

We are going into the Big City to visit the Father-in-law and his family tomorrow. How bad would we look if we just dropped the kids off and checked into a hotel? Richard and I are wayyyy overdue for some alone time. Between the kids and our various other responsibilities, there has not been enough time to be a couple. I am tired of being too tired for him. I am tired of being in a rush and always keeping one ear open for a cry or the pitter patter of little feet that should be in bed. I want to run around naked and not care about how much noise we make. I have a two-hour drive to convince Richard we should do it. I don't think it will be too difficult. I know he feels the same way I do.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Going back to work.

Well, I survived my first shift back at work. It turns out I chose a good day to get back into the swing of things. There were no ortho surgeons on call the Sunday I went back, so the ward was pretty quiet. The charge nurse had me float the ward, helping out, so I had the whole shift to get to know where things are and not worry about patients as much. Thankfully the medication machine remembered my ID. I forgot my computer password and there is no IT support on Sundays, but it was really no big deal. I had such a great time that I agreed to work a shift tomorrow. The ortho surgeons were back on call yesterday so tomorrow I will be running my little legs off. When I got home from work on Sunday, Richard was exhausted from chasing the kids all day but he didn't complain a bit. He just passed out on the couch as soon as my scrubs hit the laundry chute. Speaking of scrubs...someone please tell me I do not need to go shopping for new uniforms for one shift a week. Do I? I do, don't I? Just one new set in a bright Springy colour. To cheer up the patients. That's it, right?

Emm and Char will be going to a babysitter for the first time tomorrow. Anyone going to place bets on how many calls I will make home? I am not too worried. The kids know this person and she knows Emmett and understands his method of communication, which is the biggest thing to me. I just have no idea what I should be sending to her house. I will either pack far too much or not enough. I am a little worried about her cat. We have never had Emmett formally tested for allergies, but his asthma symptoms magically disappeared when we sent my cat away do to my allergy. I will be sending his inhaler just in case.

I went into the doctor today since I can no longer ignore the persistent pain and pins and needles feelings I get in my wrists and hands almost daily. I now get to look forward to a trip to the neurologist for nerve conduction studies and other scary tests for things like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, DeQuervains, repetitive Strain Injury or just plain old Tendonitis. The tests scare the heck out of me. They involve things like needles and electrodes and whether or not I feel pain when current is turned on. It sounds like a form of medieval torture. I like being at the giving end of the needles--not the receiving. That is why I am a nurse!!

My doc was also nice enough to write another letter to the speech pathologist for Emmett. He is the father of young children so I find him very understanding when I ask him about mine. It is really hard to find a good doctor in my city. It took me several years to wiggle my way into his practice. (I know a few tricks.)

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Are you a dork?

Dork Spectrum: Where Do You Fall

Inconspicuous Dork- (Moderate Abnormality)-

This rank of Dorkiness is a combination of a playful spirit with an ignorant social perspective. The Inconspicuous Dork is awkward in all or some of the following; posture, physical movement, gestures, facial expression. They also may display some deficit in the area of appropriate humor and social communication interactions. Their humor is seldom appropriate or understandable to anyone other than themselves. The main distinction between an Inconspicuous Dork and a Full-on Dork lies primarily in the awareness and effort of the alleged Dork. If awareness and effort are low but result in the same awkward actions and comments this is endearing and often considered “Quirky”. On the other hand, if there is a considerable amount of effort put forth to formulate related humor or obviously rehearsed actions that are not well received, this increased effort and somewhat evident awareness of awkward actions can be classified as “Annoying”. Anyone who is annoying has reached the gateway to Full-o

Click Here to Take This Quiz
Brought to you by quizzes and personality tests.

Hmmm, Richard is not at all surprised by my test results.
Wish me luck at work tomorrow.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

A few random thoughts.

I picked up a shift this weekend. I have not been to work in a year. In that year, my ward changed floors, underwent a major change in staff and restructured in layout and routine. I may as well be starting a new job. I am as nervous as I was on the first day of school. I don't even know where the supplies are (or the break room--the most important thing!) Thanks to this, my sleep has been crappy this week--I even had two kids who slept 12 hours (12 hours!) straight last night and I was up at 4:30, eyes wide open, listening to everyone sleeping but me.

We are saying goodbye to my beloved Cadillac. She passed her safety inspection today, so there will be a For Sale sign in the window soon. I am now driving this:

We call it The Dustbuster. Once I forget how luxurious and fun the Caddy was to drive, I am sure it will be great. I already like the fact that twenty bucks bought me half a tank of fuel (that would barely cover the bottom of the Caddy's tank). Surprisingly, it is shorter and narrower than the Caddy so it is a dream to park and fits well in our tiny garage. I have learn to be neater since there is not as much room in the back for cargo, so there is no throwing stuff back there to forget about. For the record, that is not my house and there is certainly no green grass outside my window right now--that pic is from the classified ad to sell it.

I feel a shift in my brain happening. I used to be so very insecure and worried about saying things to make waves. I never wanted anyone mad at me, so I was not good at speaking my mind and standing up for myself. Since the big 3-oh happened I have started to feel more confidant and sure of myself. I am caring less and less what people think and am much more concerned with cultivating quality, meaningful relationships than just making sure everyone likes me. I guess getting older isn't so bad after all.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

I thought I was too young for this.

Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been. by Mark Twain.

The most shocking thing greeted me in the mirror yesterday morning. It was my mother's face with my glasses and my (latest) hair colour staring back at me. Where did she come from? Why did she leave a smile line on my face?? Is this Mother Nature's belated birthday gift to me? Where can I return it?

I have very dry skin. It is prone to ashyness and dullness in the winter. This means I had a blessedly acne-free adolescence. I guess this also means my skin is more prone to premature wrinkling.

My mind raced as I contemplated this new development. What do I do?? I mositurize. I use proper facial cleanser in the shower. (The best way to strike fear and terror in a cosmetic salesperson's heart is to say you use body wash or "shudder" plain soap on your face) Is it time to see the doc at my clinic who has the nice syringes of Restylane and Botox in her office? Ok, so the last one was panic mode setting in. I did the next best thing. I went to the drugstore and bugged the lady at the cosmetic counter. Do I drink enough water? Not usually. Do I exfoliate? Not enough. Ok, so I have some work to do. I was impressed that the salesperson asked some fairly reasonable questions before trying to sell me stuff. Don't get me wrong, I did walk away with some new foundation with "anti-aging" ingredients and some concealer that I needed anyway. I needed both of those things, really I did! I also picked up an exfoliating cleanser so I can rub that wrinkle right off. At the counter was a bottle of anti-aging serum. The price tag said $200. That is my grocery budget for two weeks. What is in the bottle? Do people actually buy this stuff? Do you get your money back if it doesn't work? I think I will just drink more water.

Richard didn't notice the new addition to my face. When I pointed it out to him he squinted to see it. Hey, he knows which side his bread is buttered on, and the best way to continue having your bread buttered is to not point out that your wife's appearance is changing. I know it is more obvious than that because the friend I went shopping with said "Hey where did THAT [the wrinkle] come from??" Girlfriends can say that. Husbands can't. It's the law.

I think I like Mark Twain's words the best. I'm just going to keep smiling. (and drink water and exfoliate--I do have some vanity)

Friday, March 10, 2006

Please don't call the fashion police.

My Grandma made these pajamas for a cousin who is now in grade nine. They have worked their way through three other cousins and ended up at our house in a box of hand-me-downs. As soon as Emmett saw them he decided they were the Best Thing Ever. As soon as they show up in his drawer they are what he wants to wear.

Yesterday I picked out a perfectly nice outfit for him to wear, but he had these in his hand. We went out for lunch and then to the mall and this is what he wore. His snowboots were the perfect accessory.
The splotches by the buttons are some address labels we got in the mail. They have flowers on them. They were lovingly applied by the model.

Charlotte has taken to giving me migraines by screaming at the top of her lungs in a high-pitched horror-movie way. At first I thought it was teething, but her new teeth have erupted. Now I know it is just to get attention. I have no idea how I can discourage her from doing this, but I am open to ideas. I am fried by the end of most days. I can't even cook dinner anymore.

Tuesday, March 7, 2006

A baby step.

Emmett wanted to watch a TV show. How do I know? He stood beside the tv and pointed, then pointed at the computer (the place the shows come from). A little while ago I could put on any show I wanted and he would be happy. Not lately. If I put the wrong one on he screams. I think I found a solution, if only for today. I took two balls and held them out in front of him and named each one for a show. He pointed to the ball he wanted and now he is sitting happily on the couch, no screaming this time. I need to run and vaccuum now--after I do a little happy dance.

Monday, March 6, 2006

Oh the pain!

I knit one of my armwarmers last week. The pattern was not working out for me. I frogged the dang thing at least 4-5 times before doing a little research and finding out the chart had errors. Even with the corrected chart I was not happy with my work, but I perservered because I was tired of frogging. Flash forward to this weekend. I get to go on a trip to the mall BY MYSELF!! I head to the bookstore with my mom's birthday gift burning a hole in my wallet. I pick up a copy of Knitting for Dummies (along with Yarn Harlot: the Secret Life of a Knitter). I leaf through my new book and skim the chapter on reading charts. I was reading the gol-durn chart backwards!!!! No wonder my work looked wonky. Do I frog again??? Do I try to block the cables into something more recognizable??? I don't know. I am feeling a lot of rage toward this little armwarmer. So much in fact, that I had to console myself by casting on a Clapotis in some slinky, silky bamboo fiber. Despite the slickness and tendency for the bamboo to split, I am in love. This fabric is so soft and drapey, I just love feeling it run through my fingers.

Emmett finally got the hang of the Big M play structure. We went there for lunch with friends and he spent two hours scampering up and down the towers. A couple of times we had to send kids in for rescue missions, and the last lap before we went home I went in to rescue him from a perch near the ceiling. This did not traumatize him in the least. As soon as we got back on terra firma he ran back in. I had to reach in and pull his screaming little body out and he did not stop crying until his carseat was buckled. He is getting more frustrated with his inability to tell me things. His vocalizations are more insistent, he points harder and glares at me now. His tantrums are more like nuclear meltdowns. I wish I knew what to do to help him. We are still waiting for therapy, after over a year on the waiting list. It is breaking my heart. The way Charlotte is going, she will be teaching him how to speak. This girl is in such a hurry to grow up. She looks deeply into my eyes and babbles at me with a seriousness and intensity that is comical. She is getting so good at crawling on her elbows and can balance for longer periods on all fours. She is trying so hard to keep up with her big brother.