Thursday, January 29, 2009

Inconsiderate People

I stop at McDonalds every morning to get my coffee. Because to me, paying that $1 is so worth it because I don't have to take the time to make it, and it tastes a lot better. Let's face it, I am NOT a morning person and every second is needed for other things in the morning. If I were to say, get up earlier than necessary instead of hitting snooze a couple of times, I might possibly enjoy a nice cup of coffee while I'm waking up. But instead, I enjoy those extra two 9 minutes of sleep. And I stop and get my coffee at McDonalds because the coffee at work? I'd have to be EXTREMELY desperate to drink that sorry excuse for coffee.

Anyway, back to the irritating person of the day. The guy who, right after he placed his order, drove forward one car length and got out of his car and started scraping his windows. And took his sweet time about it. When I pulled up, there was not one car in front of him and he was still scraping away. Like he couldn't have done that in a parking space before placing his order? There was no hurry to his scraping. There was no "I'm sorry" guilty look to the people behind him who had already ordered but couldn't move forward because he was sitting there.

What. A. JERK.

I wonder if there are enough irritating, inconsiderate people to have a weekly post about them. lol Sadly, I think it could be a daily post. =\ But I'm not turning my blog into that. So maybe I will go for weekly.

Hula Hoop

Our Wii has a Hula Hoop game. It's really fun! And funny to watch. Here is Conor trying to do it.

video

video

Please ignore the various toys laying on the ground. And the annoying sound of my voice - it sounds so loud! I should not talk on these things.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Snow Day!!!

We all got a snow day today - Conor got one Monday since there was a 2 hour delay and he's in morning kindergarten. Allie and Conor were both off yesterday, and Jeff, Allie, Conor and I are ALL off today. We are currently under a Level 3 snow advisory and cannot go anywhere. Not that we want to, we are all snug and warm in the house. It's not just snow though. We got... ummmm I think 3 or 4 inches of snow yesterday. When I came home from work yesterday, it was an ice storm. The ice continued to fall until I went to sleep, and was still falling this morning when I got up. Now it has changed back to snow and they are predicting another 4 inches or so.

Here is the view out my front door. There is a street there, but you can barely see where people have traveled on it.

Here is the bush right outside my door - you can see the ice on some of the branches:

Here is the view from my back door:

And a picture of my shed:

It doesn't really look so bad in the pictures, but it's the ice that is causing the most problems I think.
We are all just laying around in our PJ's today. I made a big breakfast - sausage, scrambled eggs, biscuits, gravy, hash browns - and we are all enjoying our day off.
And I have a book to read. :) The one I have been waiting for finally came out yesterday! John Grisham's new one - The Associate. I also have some cleaning out of toys I could do... but that just doesn't sound appealing right now. ;)
Hope you are all safe and warm!!

Friday, January 23, 2009

A Saturday Afternoon with the Kids

So, Barb had this crazy wonderful idea to give us a family gift this year for Christmas to force us to spend some quality time together as a family. She must have been out of her mind known that with two teenage girls and a 6 year old, there isn’t a whole lot that they all LIKE to do together, so she came up with something for us all!

For Christmas, she gave us all gift certificates to a book store – as well as some money to use to go out to eat before or after the shopping. Perfect because 4 of the 5 of us love to read, and the one who doesn’t can still get a CD or game – they have a lot more than books at book stores now!

So, we decided to go last Saturday because Jeff was starting a new job that would have him working on Saturdays for at least the next 9 weeks. So, two Saturdays ago, we all piled in the truck and headed south to the book store. We decided on Applebee’s for lunch, and then onto the bookstore that was just down the road.

Once at Applebee’s, we became THAT family. The one that goes in and doesn’t like the place that the hostess seats us at. (Not me, I was fine with where she took us!) So, Jeff asked, “Can we sit in a booth?” Well, you know… booths aren’t really made for 5 people, but since the 5th person is little, we can kinda make it work. Unless that 5th person insists on sitting with Mom and Dad and not with his sisters. So, it was a little snug, but we managed.

Conor and Jeff spent a lot of time looking around the restaurant at the paraphernalia hanging on the walls and pointing out different things of interest. Then I heard a song and it was one I liked, but it was from a few years back and I couldn’t remember who sang it. So I asked Jeff.

“I don’t know, ask the waitress.”

So, I did. She didn’t remember either, so she went to ask someone else and returned with an answer.

After she left Jeff said, “We should tell her that her tip depends on her knowledge of the music being played – for every one we ask that she gets right, it is a dollar. If she misses, it goes down a dollar.” “Uhhhh, no.”

So, she comes back and he tells her that! She was fun though, and she tried to play along. Conor assured her that his dad was, “Just joking.”

At one point she didn’t know one and I mouthed the answer to her so she would get it right – Jeff totally didn’t see me do it, but now he will know.

Then Jeff would quiz Allie and Ceara about them as well. There were a lot of old songs played, nothing really recent, but when one song came on, I was sure that Allie would know it.

“Allie, you know who sings this song, right?”

“Ummm, let me listen.” *pause* “No.”

“WHAT?! Seriously? I am SO telling Poppy on you. I can’t believe you haven’t been exposed to them. Starts with the letter at the end of the alphabet…”

I forget what she guessed, but it started with an X.

“Ummm, hello? You don’t know what letter is at the end of the alphabet?”

Then she guessed something else that started with a Z, but it wasn’t correct.

“Poppy looks like them a bit with his beard…”

Nothing. Blank stare.

“ZZ Top, duh!”
“I don’t know who they are…”

“OMG! I really am telling Poppy on you. I can’t believe you don’t know who ZZ Top is.”

I know she is young, and they are old… but I have gone to great lengths to torture expose her older music and make sure she has a little bit of taste in music. Like Lynyrd Skynyrd. And the Eagles. And Bob Seger. Stuff I make her listen to all the time in my car. And I KNOW that Jack (Poppy) also subjects her to older music. And she has done fairly well in picking up on it, and actually liking it.

And then it started. “What time are we going to be home?”

"Ummm, I don’t know, we are just relaxing and enjoying ourselves. We aren’t really on a time schedule.”

“Well, I’m supposed to go to the movies tonight.” (This was Ceara.)

“Yeah, we should be home in plenty of time for the 7 o’clock movie.”

“But I wanted to go to the 5 o’clock.”

“And I want to go to Chrissy’s” (Allie)

Sheesh! Guess it is too much to ask that two teenagers spend a whole afternoon with their parents!

“Well, we can’t help you. You didn’t tell us your plans, and we made plans, and we’re not rushing. This is supposed to be fun.”

Conor wanted dessert and so he got some chocolate thing (surprise) and the girls were squirming in their seats with impatience.

We finally left the restaurant, much to our server’s delight, and went onto the book store. As soon as we went in, everyone went a different way. Jeff went to look at DVDs initially, Allie went straight for the books, Ceara went to the games, and I chased after Conor, who went off on his own and gave his mom an anxiety attack while she was searching for him.

I found him within a couple of min and he announced, “I’ve already been to the kids section and there isn’t anything in there I want.”

Then he saw a display of stuffed animals and immediately wanted one of those. As if he doesn’t already have 100 stuffed animals taking up space in his room. However, it was his gift card to spend as he wanted, so I told him he could carry it around with him while we looked at other things. Hoping that I would be able to convince him to get something else.

We looked at books, games, movies, and he did not decide on anything else. Then we met up with Jeff, who had gotten a book on CD (Bill Bryson’s Shakespeare: The World as Stage), so I left Conor with Jeff while I went off to search for something for myself.

While looking, I ran into Ceara who had decided to get a Rubix Cube game, and said that she was just going to hang out with me while I looked. Then we ran into Allie who had found 3 books to buy. They both went to pay for their purchases, while I continued to look. Then Jeff and Conor walked up and Conor was done as well. Conor had found a magic kit that he wanted, in addition to getting the dog.

The girls wanted to go wait in the car for us, so Jeff handed them the keys and they took Conor with them to go sit in the truck. Jeff and I walked around together for a little while, and then he went off on his own. I looked all over the store and I was feeling a bit rushed and decided that I didn’t want to get anything that day. Sorry, Barb! I participated, I just figured I would be better off waiting until the book I want comes out, or having the time and no pressure to look around for myself.

So, I started looking for Jeff. I walked the whole store a few times looking for him. I even hovered outside the men’s room to see if he came out. I finally decided to just go outside and see if he was in the truck. Sure enough, he was. They were all sitting there waiting on me, so I just climbed in the truck and we were off.

Jeff opened his new book and put a CD in, while the girls sat in the back listening to their iPods. Conor took a little nap on the ride home, so he was a bit groggy when we got there. Jeff was volunteered to take the girls to their social events, and Conor and I went into the house to practice his magic tricks.

He was seriously disappointed that it wasn’t really “magic” and that he was unable to make things really disappear by buying this little box. However, he did enjoy finding out how to trick people into thinking it was magic. We went through the books and he practiced a few to try out on his dad.

He was never really a good secret keeper. He always tells on himself whenever he does something he isn’t supposed to do (like eat a piece of candy before dinner or whatever), so after each trick and his dad being amazed, he had to show him how it was done.

He said he was just going to tell his mom and dad because he didn’t want to keep secrets from us! I wonder how long that will last? I’m betting not very long.

We had a fun day, though! I would like, just once, to take a tape recorder or something with us when we do these outings. We always laugh a lot. Usually at Jeff because we all gang up on him, but still… it is fun. Although I didn’t get a book, I am getting one next week. When John Grisham’s new book comes out. That will give me something to read for a day. Or maybe two since it is a work day.

Thank you Barb! We did have a lot of fun despite my teasing at the beginning! :) I have just figured out how to do the strikeout through words. After all these years of blogging... lol Everyone enjoyed the food, and the afternoon together.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Phone Call

"Will you do me a favor?"

"Sure."

"Look up Nautica White Sail and see if it is a man or woman's cologne."

"OKaaayyyy, why?"

"Because I took Conor shopping to spend some of his birthday money and he bought this cologne. I've sprayed it on both of us and it smells a little... flowery to me. Kinda like a woman's perfume."

LOL!

"Sooooo, you smell like a woman now?"

"It's NOT funny! You're going to blog about this aren't you?"

"Wellllll... maybe."

I looked it up, and it does say that it is a man's cologne, so they are in the clear - no perfume wearing men around here! But the doubt that was there was funny and I HAD to tell you about it.

I don't think Jeff wears it anymore though. And he's going to probably yell at me when he reads this. But... I need some funny material! Or actually, I just need to remember the stuff to write it down.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Morning Madness

This morning started out fairly well, as in I got up earlier than I needed to, but it turned out that I needed that extra time. And a little bit more than that. I had to take Conor to his daycare this morning because Jeff had to be at work at 7am.

So, I thought I was doing well because I had all our cloths set out and ready, had Conor's lunch packed and ready, and all was looking good. Then Allie called from her bus to tell me that she was rushing to get to the bus stop on time and she fell in a neighbor's back yard and she thinks she lost her iPod. She wanted me to go look for it, so I told her if I had time I would. She said it was across the street, behind the first house to the left.

So, I went out to start my car while Conor finished getting dressed and I walked across the street and tried to see her footprints in the snow to find where she had fallen. It was dark, and I was freezing - tears running down my face from the cold - so I looked for a few minutes and then gave up. I couldn't imagine what the neighbors would have thought had they woken up and looked out the window to find me walking around in their yard. I also thought with the shoes I had on, I was likely to fall in the snow as well and I just didn't want that to happen.

While I was walking home it occurred to me that the "first house on the left" could have been the one at the end of the street. So I figured I would stop there as I left.

I went back inside and finished getting Conor ready and got our things together and walked out the door. I stopped at the last house and got out, with Conor (because he said he has GREAT eyesight and could find it even though it was dark) to look for the place she fell. I finally saw it almost at the top of his yard, where the small hill began. We went up to look and didn't see anything at first - but then I saw it finally. Hard to see a small silver square in the white snow when it was dark outside. Again I felt weird being in someone else's yard.

I brushed the snow off as we walked back to the car and started on the way to the daycare. It's only about 10 minutes away, but it is 10 minutes in the opposite direction of my work, so about 30 min extra is what I needed and I was already running a bit close.

Half way there I realized I forgot the security card that I needed to get in. They frowned upon always knocking on the door to get let in when they gave us all cards. But I figured I would just explain. Then I noticed that I forgot to bring his lunch box. Gah. I had to turn around and go back to the house.

So, it was a busy, rushed morning, but I was only 5 minutes late to work so it wasn't too bad.

And today is THE day - the making of history. The day our new President gets sworn into office. This is a day that most people will remember where they were when this happened. I wish I could say I was somewhere other than at work. Trying to watch the inauguration on the live video stream from MSN on my work computer is proving difficult. It keeps freezing up. Less than an hour away now. :)

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Freezing!!!

I knew we were going to pay for that summer-like weather in fall. This week has been very cold. Like below zero cold. So, this morning, when Jeff got up to get ready for his job (!! *yay*) and found that we had no water, it was certainly a DOH! moment.

Like we didn't learn our lesson 2 years ago when it happened. We were going to get heating tape for the pipe, or some sort of insulation for the part that is in the closet in our garage - the only part that is exposed - but, I guess we got side tracked. So, this morning? Frozen water pipes. Because it is Friday and Fridays just can't. be. easy.

So, he woke me up by saying, "Our pipes are frozen." That was way more effective at getting me out of bed than if my alarm had gone off. I got out of bed and immediately grabbed my space heater and headed to the garage with an extension cord. But not before tripping over 1,000 things on my way. Hey, I said I was out of bed, not awake. Jeff followed behind me, as I went into our UNINSULATED garage with no more than a T-shirt (sleeveless at that) and my underwear. Now THAT woke me up. I don't know the exact temperature, but outside it "felt like" (according to some random weatherman or person, or w/e) -25 F. While in the garage I proceeded to trip over a few more things before finally making it to the closet and putting the heater in there. I could have been muttering some words under my breath as well. As I was coming back in the house, I don't know if Jeff was laughing at me or not, but he said, "You are getting on my nerves already today - I could have done that, you can't even walk straight."

"Well, then quit following me around and don't talk to me!" No, I'm not Miss Sunshine in the mornings.

So, I was disoriented, didn't know what to do. I brushed my teeth with water from the tea kettle (haha we don't even drink tea! at least... I don't.), and set about finding clothes to wear. Then we discussed what we were going to do with the kids - they were all off school today and the girls are watching Conor since we don't have any sitters lined up. So, we couldn't just leave them at the house with no water.

Jeff said, "You want me to call my mom?"

"Well, no, she won't be awake at this time. She works late, and she's not a morning person." (You can thank me later, Barb.)

"I'll call my dad, then."

"Who is going to drive them to Mason? I'll call my mom, she's a morning person (used to be anyway)."

So, I called my mom... who was in bed. Sorry, Mom! Jeff was going to drop them off on his way to work. I went out to start my car and when I came back in, the water was running. About an hour after the space heater was turned on it. So, I called my mom and told her they wouldn't be coming after all.

This is the very first time the girls have kept Conor. I've only called once so far. Conor answered the phone and sounded a bit irritated that I was interrupting him playing a game with Ceara. So, I guess they are fine. ;)

It has been a very strange day today. Customers today so far... have been interesting. I'll write more about that later. Maybe. ;)

TGIF!!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Read at your own risk. Not a fluffy, cheery post.

Empathy or sympathy - while they are similar, they are not really the same. Empathy is more like actually trying to put yourself in someone's shoes. Sympathy is like acknowledging someone's feelings - but not really trying to know what they are feeling. At least that is how I interpret the definitions.

I empathize with a lot of people. I try to put myself into their situation to experience what they are experiencing. Of course, I could never really know exactly what it is like, but that is why I have so much compassion for other people.

I see someone walking down the street with a back pack when it is very cold outside, and I want to know their story. I want to pick them up, feed them a hot meal, and talk to them. I don't do it of course. And I always feel sad that I didn't. The reasons for not doing it vary, but I still feel they are all "excuses" and I don't like them.

It saddens me that there is such a fear in helping people. I see people sitting at the end of the highway with signs. I give them money. I've heard the arguments that you shouldn't, and that just doesn't sit well with me. I don't care what they spend that money on, that is their decision to make. I did the right thing. No one will ever convince me otherwise. You never know how close we are all to being in their shoes.

This is also a big reason that when I read the newspaper I walk away with tears in my eyes over people I had never heard of until that day.

I don't really know if it is a good trait or a bad trait, I have been told by a lot of people that I am "too nice."

A boy who goes to Allie's school decided at the age of 17 that he didn't want to continue with his life last night. When Allie told me, all I could think about was what could have possibly been going through this boys mind that he would want to do such a thing? And then the thoughts of his parents, and what living hell they are going through. It makes me wish I could have done something - which is irrational of course, I had never met the boy, and it's not like I can possibly meet every person on earth and convince them that life is worth it.

I laid down to go to sleep last night and I couldn't do it. My chest ached for this boy and his family. Tears welled up in my eyes, and I got up to go talk to Jeff. He was on the couch watching a movie and I sat down in front of him. I laid my head on his shoulder and talked to him about it. Why people, especially kids, think that nothing is ever going to be better. Life is all about trial and error, there will always be good times and bad times.

I wondered if there were any missed signs. I wondered if it is possible for me to miss signs. For something this horrific to happen in my family.

I know high school is hard. There are kids picking on each other, making fun of each other, trying to knock people down a notch. And yes, I know that the kids who do that are the ones who are really insecure themselves. They need to make people feel bad to make themselves feel better... whatever. Teenagers can be SO. MEAN. (So can adults I know, so it is not just an age thing!) And every time I hear any of my kids, or any of their friends say anything bad about other kids in their school, I tell them to stop. I've lectured so much over it that it now only takes a look from me. Then they are jumping all over themselves to defend their snarky remarks. But I think they are getting better about it.

So, today, my heart is heavy and my thoughts are with this boys family. I just want to pull my kids close and hope they know how much I love them.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Please Read

In lieu of me trying to come up with something funny to write, you really need to go read this post over at Derfwad Manor because it is EXACTLY how I feel! I love her blog, she is hilarious, and I have spent the past week or so trying to get through the archives. I laugh out loud at almost all of her posts, and I need to add her to my links.

See if you don't crack a smile or two, or 100 while over there reading her posts. Or leave your coworkers/family/dogs/cats/whoever might be around wondering if they need to send for the men in the little white coats because you are laughing at your computer screen.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Competition amongst the kids

video

We got a Wii for Christmas and the kids love it. Ceara has set out to get every 1st place standing she can - she is obsessed! And then everyone else wants to beat her score. Which we do when she goes to her mom's, and then she has to try harder when she comes back!

Once she got all the 1st places, Jeff said she was grounded from the Wii. He's just mad that he can't beat her at boxing. No one can yet. The above video is of Conor trying. I wish the video wasn't so dark - his movements were cracking me up!

And yes, I know it is bad that he got mad at the end of the video and tried to kick her. I talked to him about that after I turned the video off. I promise!

Oh, and to update my prior post about asking Allie what she remembers about Christmas - she does not remember NOT getting something that she wanted, nor does she remember wanting something all that bad. And I think the Wii distracted Conor from the dinosaur. He still noticed he didn't get it - but he was good natured about it and said, "Maybe Santa will bring it next year." :)

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

My Poor Boy

Poor Conor. Just 2 days into his Christmas break from school and he gets the stomach flu. Has, uhh... problems coming out of both ends. His bottom end being the worst of it. Eeeek. Sorry, but I'm trying to be honest without the graphics...

While other people around me got it (Allie, Ceara, my nephews), theirs only lasted 24 hours. But Conor held onto the bug for about... 4 or so days.

He finally got better from that, and on Monday, December 29th, he started not feeling so well in the evening. Had a bit of a temperature and his throat was sore. I gave him some medicine and he went to bed. During the night, he woke up several times crying. In the morning his temperature was high again and he was miserable. I went to work and called to get him a Dr. appointment. Strep throat.

So, he got that pink stuff - the Amoxicillin liquid they give to kids. The pharmacy we went to only had enough for a 5 day supply, and we would have to come back to get the other 5 days. He started feeling better within 24 hours, but we kept giving it to him, as we were told to do. So, as of yesterday, he had been taking it for 8 days.

So, last night he took his shirt off and his back was covered in raised bumps - that itched. It was also spreading down his arms a bit. Chicken pox? That was the only thing I could think of at the time, but they didn't look the way I remembered them to look. But, hey... it has been over 10 years since Allie had them, so I couldn't be sure.

So, this morning, his legs were covered and there were red splotches from where he had scratched during the night. I called and got him another appointment to see the doctor, and Jeff just called to let me know that it is NOT chicken pox as we thought. It is an allergic reaction to the Amoxicillin he was given.

Why it didn't show up until after 8 days of use, I have no idea. I just feel bad for Conor because this is the third week in a row he has had problems. Poor little guy. Maybe now the rest of the year will be free of any sickness! That's what I'm hoping for at least. That he got it all over with for a while! :)

In other news... I have some pictures and videos that I will try to post soon. I love the holiday season, but I feel a lot better now that things have gone back normal. At least a little bit normal. :)

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year!!!!!

I hope everyone has a happy and healthy 2009!!!