Saturday, March 31, 2012

It's no longer just a lullaby

Tonight I babysat four sweet children while their parents went to an Army ball. As I was putting the youngest little girl to sleep, she looked at me and stated in no uncertain terms that her "butt was really hurting". After discussing various remedies, we decided to sing to it. I asked what song she wanted and she said Twinkle Twinkle Little Star would be best, so together we sang to her little bottom.

I can honestly say that has never before happened in Babysitterville.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

big and small, short and tall, my people all

Despite my mouth issues last week (are you tired of hearing about my achy breaky mouth yet?), I managed to see quite a few of my people. Granted, 95% of the socialization happened before the surgery, but still.

Molly McButter was over when I got home, and she immediately asked to hold my bunny, Dale Robert Stevenson. Normally I fear for Dale's life when Molly wants to hold him (what normal people mean by "hold a bunny" is more like SQUEEZE VERY ENTHUSIASTICALLY for Molly), but I let her hold him anyway. To the surprise of all, she held him for twenty minutes and they both survived. Aaron says it was because he's old and dying and too tired to protest (a statement I did not appreciate), but I think Molly finally figured out the finer points of rabbit holding. Specifically, the less tightly you squeeze, the less the rabbit scratches and the less you cry.
On Sunday we celebrated Zachary's birthday. It seems that at the ripe old age of 8 he no longer appreciates when his long-lost cousin runs over to give him a birthday hug in the middle of a basketball game. I swear he rolled his eyes at me.
Less than 12 hours before I arrived home, I had the misfortune of backing into and getting stuck in a mud pit at 12:30am. (After the car was pulled out by the father I was babysitting for, I thought the whole thing was hysterically funny.) The car was looking less than beautiful, so Elizabeth offered to wash her for me. As my car rescuer said, "Just wash it before your husband sees it and he'll never suspect a thing." 
She did it while wearing her most awesome flowery rainboots.
We are a family of classy dressers.

Monday, March 26, 2012

I depart and return quite frequently these days

Yesterday I returned to the land of beautiful sunsets,
to our furnished-by-others temporary house with a table that seats six people (and we are only two),
the couch that seats fifteen (obviously we are far from squished when we choose to relax),
the 'thank you for not smoking' sign and fire extinguisher on the wall
 (proof that I certainly did not decorate this place),
and the four can openers, none of which work.
And yet I keep buying canned items that require opening. 
Why I continue to do so is yet another mystery surrounding my life.

Friday, March 23, 2012

More about my current mouth situation. I'm sorry.

Well, I'm alive and but not exactly kicking.

I've spent the majority of the week lying on the couch while a) holding ice packs and heating pads up to my face, and b) asking when I could take more painkillers. I watched the occasional movie, read a little, and contemplated which body parts could have been removed instead of my teeth so I wouldn't have to give up eating food. Let me tell you, it's not easy trying to eat when you can only open your mouth 2.5 centimeters. The latest issue I've had to deal with is not smiling or laughing. If anyone does anything remotely funny, I have to hold my face in my hands and try to laugh because it makes my face feel like it's simultaneously burning and being pulled apart AND THAT DOESN'T FEEL GOOD. Apparently my family thinks I look funny when I do this. They always start laughing more and run to get the camera. They are so sympathetic to my plight.

I did do something productive during my medicine induced less-pain-than-normal moments: I hand sewed the little birdie on this onesie for baby Eliana at church. 

I wish little Eliana a lifetime of happiness and joy. May she never experience the removal of four impacted wisdom teeth. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Don't Make Me Laugh, and Other Tooth Tales.

The day as documented by Elizabeth.

hen it comes down to it, all I can say is that God certainly created Jello with a purpose.

On Monday, March 19, Sarah, accompanied by her mother and I, groggily waved goodbye to her wisdom teeth. At least, that is how we imagine it played out. Not being by her side throughout the procedure, we can only guess at the details. She does say, though, that the doctor (who we shall henceforth refer to as Dr. Pullgood) rolled his eyes at the nurses on more than one occasion.

When the nurse in the blue clothes summoned mom and I into the recovery room, Sarah met us with a moan. “My arm got THIS big,” said she, indicating a hill-sized area above her wrist. Apparently, the nurses experienced some technical difficulties while attempting to insert the needle for the iv. Doing my best not to cry at her weakened condition, I assured her that it really would be alright and placed Grace, my favorite lamb, by her lucky socks for moral support. 
Coming in close behind, Mom, Sarah’s other faithful supporter, quickly took possession of a very sketchy chair. For a second I grew indecisive in my protector instincts, unsure whether to instate disaster control in the unfortunate event of the collapse of my mother’s seat, or to somehow silence the groans coming from the cot. Thankfully, at this uncomfortable moment, Dr. Pullgood made his appearance in the doorway. He. Had. No. Hair. Quickly and concisely, he mentioned Sarah’s stellar performance in the surgery room. Bathed in humility, Sarah nodded painfully and poked gingerly at the wads of gauze streaming from her mouth. Personally, I doubt very much that she heard a word of what he said as he instructed us on how to care for someone who has just lost half her teeth. 
He spoke.
She poked.
He spoke.
She poked.
Finally, following a good deal of directions and cautions, he made his exit, murmuring something about genetics and marveling to himself  how all three of us looked exactly the same. Why thank you, sir. After all, don’t we all want to look this stunning? (She also made sure to check her fan mail at the first possible opportunity. :P)
By the time we walked out the door, a nurse on one side and mom on the other and she was telling the story yet again. "My THIS big." Yes, dear. I know. You told us that already. Let's just get you home and give you some Jello.

While our feminine parental unit was picking The Twin up at track, Sarah and I settled onto the couch for some quality sister time. This included Sarah’s computer and her very own personal container of lemon sorbet which, keeping Dr. Pullgood’s instructions in mind, I smooshed up in the microwave. She sucked away contentedly while I leaned back and kept an eye on her progress. The birds sang outside the open windows and the setting sun shone warmly behind us. All seemed right with the world.  Soon Josh Turner’s “Time Is Love” music video filled the screen, bedazzling both of us as we gazed dreamily on. Me: Ahhhhhhhhh, he is SO handsome.  Sarah: Mmmmmmmm… Me: *in a distracted tone* I think living in a home with 13 girls had made me appreciate guys more… Sarah: Well, *drinks from sorbet carton* I only live with one guy and I sure appreciate this one. *points to screen with bandaged arm* Me: Uuhhhhhhm… Sarah: *groggily* wait…..I…..*slurp* …I don’t think… *slurp* …that came out right…

Ok then. Why don't we go back to discussing how BIG your arm got.

Ahhh, I love my sister :D

Monday, March 19, 2012

I suppose it's possible I may end up speechless

Last December I went to the oral surgeon for a consultation on wisdom tooth removal. As the nurse lead me into the exam room, she waved me over to the chair and said, "I'll put a movie on for you to watch while you're waiting for the doctor." I got so excited. I started hoping to high heaven that she'd ask what I wanted to watch because I was in the mood for a movie featuring Gwyneth Paltrow or John Krasinski. Then she turned around and said, "It's a fabulous movie containing lots of information about wisdom teeth, so make sure you pay attention." Let me assure you I was suddenly much less enthusiastic about the idea of watching a movie while reclining in a dental chair

Today is the big four-tooth removal day. Elizabeth is home from school and will accompany me to the doctors in order to document the day
like I did for her last year. I'm slightly concerned about the whole process, but I'm almost more concerned about the words that might come out of my mouth while I'm recovering from the anesthesia. After Elizabeth's surgery, she told me I had three noses. She followed that flattering statement up with, "asddie dsadfi muffins tterireons police adsfoe shoes wfeab OUCH."

hankfully we have Elizabeth around to record any of the fine (or not so fine) things I might say. Who knows, I may start talking to Gwyneth and John as though they're with me live and in the flesh.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


Last night Allison and I were reunited for the first time since October. I didn't think it was possible, but she's even cuter than she was then. She was a little shy at first, but after she remembered the games we used to play, she started running all over and talking up a storm. Two of her favorite games are Where's Allie's Bee Bo?? and Push Sarah Over Because It's Just So Funny That We Should Do It For Thirty More Minutes.

The girl loved her fruit cup!

Friday, March 16, 2012

every girl dreams of such a ring

My wedding and engagement rings are being repaired and won't be returned for three weeks.  
I hate for people to think I'm not married, so I bought a temporary replacement ring. 
I sure it's just as classy as anything William ever gave Kate.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I wonder what exciting medical issues tomorrow will bring

Today I went to the urgent care clinic. I had been feeling nauseous and headachy on and off since the Carbon Monoxide Incident, so I went to visit those who wear white coats and stethoscopes. I hadn't done any form of exercise lately, so I decided that I would go to the doctor after Zumba. After forty minutes my stomach protested my decision to jump, lunge, and generally move in ways that caused discomfort, so I left before the class was done. I had to do some in depth thinking about which medical facility to visit. I considered trying to get an appointment with a regular doctor at the clinic, but they don't believe in prompt scheduling so I probably couldn't get in for two weeks. That left the hospital and the urgent care clinic. I swore after The Great Plague of 2011 that I was not going back to the urgent care clinic (something about being told that a heart rate of 134 was "nothing to worry about" didn't really sit right with me), but I decided it would be the best place to go today. The hospital was ruled out because even though I visited twice during The Great Plague, I'm not entirely sure how to get there.

I filled out the required paperwork at the UCC (see that? I'm a Army wife throwing around acronyms!!) then sat down to wait. And wait. And wait some more. I don't think the powers that be understand the full meaning of the word URGENT. My fellow waiting room companions were a woman with a horrendous cold, a boy with an infected hand, and a soldier waiting to get a rabies shot. I don't think his companion was thrilled with the wait because he suggested that the nurse throw the needle like a football over the counter, across the waiting room, and into the man so they could leave. That would have been much more entertaining than the soap opera on the tv.

Finally they called me back and subjected me to a question I find most difficult to answer: are you pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant? What exactly is their definition of "planning on"? Do I plan on producing a small person sometime within the next five years? Yes. Within the next month? No. Welcome to my brain. 
I was told that I do not have CO2 poisoning. I simply have a some form of virus and was prescribed an anti-nausea medication.  

You know what I had to do after leaving that doctor? Call my oral surgeon to ask if I could take the medicine because I'm having my wisdom teeth removed on Monday and was told not to take certain prescriptions. My life is full of doctors and medical questions! The nurse at the oral surgeon's office and I had this delightful conversation:
Me: It's spelled Z-O-F-R-A-N

Her: G as in girl, O...
Me: Z as in zoo, O, F
Her: Z as in zoo, O, S as in Sam
Me: Z-O-F as in Fran
Her: Z-O-F-what's the next letter?

Me: R. Then A and N
Her: Z-O-F-R-A-what did you say?
Me: N as in night. Night as in N, not knight as in K.

Here's hoping for less confusion when four teeth are removed from my mouth.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

between the near poisoning and the weight gain, it's surprising we survived the weekend

This weekend started off with a bang (actually it was a beep) at 2:28 Friday morning. We assumed it was the fire alarm going beep beep beep every 30 seconds, so we stood on a chair and disconnected it from the ceiling. At least, Christopher stood on the chair and disconnected it. I got out of bed, walked over to survey the the scene, got a drink, and went back to bed. Obviously quite helpful. My fire alarm area of expertise lies in standing below them while energetically waving a towel to make them stop beeping, and I didn't think that would be of much help here. The beeping didn't stop and we eventually realized it was coming from the carbon monoxide detector. Then we discussed whether we were going to die or not. We choose to be proactive in keeping ourselves alive, so we opened all the windows to let in the freezing, straight-off-the-river air. On the outside I remained very calm, but on the inside I was thinking, "How does one know if they are being poisoned by carbon monoxide? Do they feel nauseous? Because my stomach does feel a little funny. Is my throat burning?" After consulting the instruction sticker behind the carbon monoxide tester, we decided it was the battery, not an alarm telling us to RUN FOR OUR LIVES INTO THE FREEZING COLD AS FAST AS WE COULD. 

So that was a fun night.

Saturday afternoon we went to the science museum. In the outer space exhibit, I stood on a special scale that told me I would weight 511 lbs. on Jupiter. I don't think I'd want to live on Jupiter for too long. After the museum, we went to the AT&T store at the mall because my phone had stopped making and receiving calls. The man behind the desk told me I could use his phone to call tech support, but just as he went to hand it to me, the phone broke. Technology was against me at every turn. That night we saw Act of Valor. I thought it was an excellent movie.

Sunday we went to church and sat one row away from our favorite baby, Ethan. We're not sure what his real name is, so we assigned him one. He is I may have brought up borrowing him for a week (or forever), and Christopher replied, "Sure. You go get the baby and I'll go get the car. Then to save time, we'll drive straight to the police station." Except for that last part, he is coming along quite nicely when it comes to my frequent baby-borrowing plans.

You all have a lovely week. Try to avoid poisoning of any sort.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I will reward my exercise efforts with chocolate

It's only Tuesday, but I've already been to the gym twice this week. If you do the math, that means I've been TWO DAYS IN A ROW, something that has happened approximately never before in my life. Yesterday I went on the treadmill. It's the only piece of equipment I trust myself to use without worrying that I might break it. After all, I was told on my personal tour of the gym that each piece of exercise equipment is less than two months old, so I would hate to be the person who makes the purchase of another expensive heart-strengthening/muscle-tightening/leg-stretching apparatus necessary. Especially after I was told I couldn't have a calendar of events for the month of March because they're too poor to afford paper.

A very interesting thing happened while I was walking to the locker room. A large group of soldiers were standing where I was trying to walk and one of them finally noticed. He looked around, started waving his arms and loudly announced, "Female! Female!" They parted like the Red Sea. I felt so important. The fact that a general was holding a ceremony at the gym while I was there proved without a shadow of a doubt that this gym is nothing like a YMCA back home.

Today I went to a new Zumba class. It was my first time doing Zumba in front of a mirror and, while I strategically placed myself in the back row, I saw enough to know that the below picture is very very true. 

Sunday, March 4, 2012

here, there, and everywhere (but mostly everywhere)

1. This week I saw three Amish buggies which is three more than I'd see in a month at home. I saw fifteen deer which is fourteen more than I'd see in a month back home. I saw three men in some sort of hunting attire walking down the road with guns over their shoulders. That's three more hunters with guns than I'd see in five years back home.

Toto, we are no longer in Kansas. 

2. I just finished 
transferring all 283 pictures on my camera to my computer. I needed to clear the space so I'd have room to take more pictures of important things such as pizza and my impressive collection of paint chips. I came across this picture and it took me a minute to remember why I felt this house was so important it needed to be documented forever. Then I remembered. It's the home of Jon and Kate Plus 8. 
During my visit to Laura's, we decided to pop by the Gosslin home to say hello. We hopped into Old Blue and off we drove. And drove. And drove. They really do live way out in the middle of nowhere, but I assume that's their goal. They were probably trying to avoid a situation wherein two girls s-l-o-w-l-y drive by taking pictures of their house and being all "oh look! There's their dog!"

In other words, they were trying to avoid us.

3. It was with great sadness that I learned of the retirement of my very dear friend and most favorite baseball player EVER, Mr. Jason Varitek. 

I will continue to wear my #33 shirts with pride. And a few tears. And I shall name my second son Jason in his honor. The father of my future children does not agree with that decision, but he'll come around. 
I am probably the only person in the entire state of New York to feel such sadness over his announcement.

4.  I'm beginning to realize that I have many "very dear and good friends" whom I'm never actually met. The list includes such little-known people as George and Barbara Bush, Channing Tatum, Jason Varitek, and Carrie Underwood. I choose to believe it's only a matter of time until they embrace our friendship and invite me over for Christmas dinner.