Monday, October 27, 2008


It started snowing today. There was even a teeny tiny bit of accumulation on the grass at campus tonight. And it's supposed to be in the mid-60s for Halloween. Isn't it great that one day you have to wear a wool coat and the next, you can wear sandals? Ah, only in the midwest!

It'll be slow posting this week. I just finished grading 263 pages worth of essay exams and I have a new round of papers coming in. Plus, Halloween is Friday and I have a few things to do around the house and for my daughter's school. I have to find the USB adapter for my digital camera so I can show everyone my daughter's costume. I'll add that to my list of things to do...

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hot for the Holidays

I was inspired by Missy, and even though I wasn't going to participate at first, I thought, "What the heck. Let's go for it!"

I lost one pound this week. Only one, but it's a start. I am, however, quite worried I may have done some serious damage yesterday after getting into the Halloween candy. Bad PMS chocolate cravings and I totally caved in. Hopefully, the upcoming week will be better.

I'm home again today with my kiddo. She's finally starting to feel better, but the asthma medication and decongestant are wreaking havoc on her sleep--my girl is WIRED. She was literally running sprints through the house yesterday for over an hour. I've got another half-hour before she gets her meds, so I'm going to sit down and enjoy the temporary peace and quiet.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Imagination of a Three-Year-Old

I was sitting in the pediatrician's office with my daughter today--she's been sick for almost a week and had a rough night with wheezing--when she started talking about toilet paper. I don't know why she started talking about toilet paper, but she did.

Anyway, she went on to say that toilet paper lives in the cabinet. And because paper towels are kind of like paper, they should also live in the cabinet. Made sense. So I asked her what else lives in the cabinet. "Tissues!" she squeals. "Tissues live in the cabinet, too!"

So she started telling me a story about toilet paper, paper towels and tissues and their little houses in the cabinet. The t.p., paper towels and tissues all live together in the cabinet, but they're sort of like next-door neighbors. The paper towel's house is made out of straw, the tissue's house is made out of sticks and the t.p.'s house is made out of bricks. (Can you see where this is coming from?) The story rest of the story went something like this and I'm NOT making this up...

One day, there was a mommy who had very dirty hands, so she washed them and used soap and sang the "Washa, Washa, Washa" song. Then she needed to dry her hands, so her hands huffed and puffed and blew down the paper towels. Her hands were dry, but the paper towels had to move into a new house in another cabinet.

Then there was a little girl who didn't feel good, and she kept huffing and puffing and saying, "AAAAHHHH-CHOOOOO!" A lot of boogies came out and knocked down the tissues. It was okay, though, the boogies could live with the tissues in their new house.

Then there was a daddy who had very loud toots. That daddy would huff and puff and toot very hard. He tried to knock down the toilet papers house but the toots weren't strong enough. Then he had a stinky toot. He knocked down the toilet paper and broke his pants. So he made new pants out of some more toilet paper.

The End.

I was laughing so hard that I had tears rolling down my face. Thank goodness I was able to pull myself together before the doctor came into the exam room. Turns out the kiddo has some bronchial nastiness going on and is a bit dehydrated. The doc also checked her hemoglobin levels, which were in the normal range, but just barely. She'll be home for the rest of the week, which she's very excited about. I promised her we would lay on the couch together after her nap and watch Hello Kitty Becomes a Princess. It should be a pretty low-key afternoon.

And I can't wait to tell my husband about our little one's story-telling skills!

Friday, October 17, 2008

When Good Mommies Go Mad

Okay, I consider myself to be a pretty mild-mannered person. I have my moments, don't get me wrong, but in my line of work, I've trained myself very well to keep my temper in check and roll with things when they happen. This carries over into my personal life, too, so I think that's a good thing. Being mild-mannered has its advantages.

However, there are times when mild-manneredness just doesn't cut it. Today was one of those days. In my own defense, I think I was at least partially justified.

I was shopping at the local Target store with my daughter. We shop at Target A LOT. We know the pharmacists on a first-name basis, see the same friendly cashiers over and over again (the store has a low turnover rate from what I can tell) and have never been disappointed with the service. Until today.

I was waiting at Guest Services to make a payment on my bill and my daughter was sitting in the cart. She and I were talking back and forth, playing a little bit, while I waited for the gentleman in front of me to finish with the young girl at the Guest Services Desk. When he finished, two young women came up and walked right in front of me, straight up to the counter. I realized they weren't customers--from what I could make out, one of them was a store employee and she was coming in to check her schedule and the other one seemed to be a friend tagging along. Okay, fine. I can deal with that.

But here's where things went seriously wrong. The girl working at the counter opened the book with the schedule and started ranting about how someone was supposed to come relieve her a half hour earlier so she could go home. I was still okay with that. I didn't want to hear it, but whatever. I was still waiting in line. She CONTINUED to rant for the next five minutes, complaining to these two young girls while I stood there waiting. Then she said, "Somebody needs to get their a** over here so I can go home."

I shot her a look. I can forgive a slip up in language, but 1.) You're working at the Guest Services desk and there's a guest (me) waiting in line. 2.) You've already kept me waiting while you ranted about your day. And 3.) I don't take too kindly to people using profanity in front of my daughter.

So, even after I shot her a look, she STILL kept complaining to these two girls, and after hearing "a**" come out of her mouth two more times, along with a few other choice words, I blurted out, "YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME."

I stormed over to the checkout lines and went up to the first cashier I saw. I was really upset and talking loud enough that people from two lanes over were looking at me. I told the cashier that I really just wanted to make a payment on my account and explained what happened at Guest Services. She was so sweet and explained that they can't process account payments at the registers, but lo and behold, the manager was walking by and the cashier flagged her down and explained what happened. The manager took my payment and personally processed it at Guest Services--where the Guest Services worker was STILL chatting with her friends.

I talked to the cashier for a few minutes, thanking her for her kindness and apologizing for getting loud. I told her it obviously wasn't her fault, I was just frustrated. It wasn't about waiting for my turn--I'm very good at waiting. I just did not appreciate an employee intentionally keeping me waiting and using profanity in front of my daughter. She laughed and said, "If it had been me, I probably would have started screaming at her!"

I then spoke with the manager, who was equally kind and very apologetic. I explained to her, too, that it wasn't about the waiting. I didn't appreciate the way I was treated, but I'm a big girl; what had me most upset was the profanity. She actually walked with me for a minute to see if there was anything else she could help me with, and we parted ways on very friendly terms.

As for the girl working in Guest Services? Someone finally came and relieved her so she could go home and she saw me on her way out. I actually laughed out loud when she had the nerve to shoot me a dirty look.

I don't know if it's immaturity or a lack of basic common sense, but I could not understand how in the world this girl could purposely keep me waiting, use profanity not once, but multiple times only six feet from where my daughter and I were standing, and then behave in a manner that made it seem like it was my fault.

Maybe I'm getting old, but I never acted like that when I was younger. That being's official. I'm turning into my father.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

More Mindless Rambling

The week got off to a crazy start.

Woke up Monday morning just nauseated and exhausted. By Monday night, after making a VERY un-wise decision to have class instead of cancelling, my back hurt so bad I wanted to scream. Spent an hour on Tuesday in the hospital lab (to see what kind of bacteria is infecting my kidney this time...). Spent Tuesday night teaching a class and had to bite my tongue and not make a scene about a student studying for another class's midterm during my lecture. Went to work today and got caught up on a boat load of paperwork and set up some appointments for next week.

Cuddled with my kiddo for a little while this afternoon. That was so nice. I'm glad she's not old enough to not want to cuddle--I'll miss that when she gets older. I'm cheating on my "Five in Five" plan, because I'm on the computer and she's not in bed yet. Bad mommy.

Ah well. I've got dinner cooking and I have to change clothes and get ready for class tonight. Hope everyone is having a nice, easy week.

More nonsense later...

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Running Blind

I'm sitting at my kitchen table right now, typing with my eyes closed. It's a good thing I took that typing class back in high school! I've just managed to snag a few minutes to myself, which is pretty rare on a Saturday. Or any day, for that matter. It's been a heck of a day...busy, but pretty good overall. Got some shopping done this morning, finished cutting out and organizing the pieces of fabric for my daughter's Halloween costume and graded some papers. It was a pretty productive afternoon. I just finished eating dinner, which was pretty darn tasty if I do say so myself. I made boneless, skinless chicken thighs with marinated artichoke hearts, green beans, broccoli, brown-rice-noodles (which are just like regular noodles, but made with brown rice) and blueberry cobbler. Oh, yummy yummy.

Okay, my eyes are open now. I'm trying to figure out how over the course of a relationship, two people can grow close enough to finish each others' sentences, to feel each other's pain, to convey a feeling with nothing more than a touch...and yet, there are still some days in between, some moments where the air is heavy with silence, where you can't help but shut your eyes in what can only be thought of as a show of quiet desperation...where where the same two people can open their eyes, look at each other and think, "You don't know me at all."

Anyone ever had that experience?

I think it's one of those things that happens when you've been with someone for a while, when you feel like you really know each other, but still manage to get blindsided by something...something that deep down, you feel like you should have known, or your partner should have known, all along. Sometimes it's a breakdown in communication. Sometimes it's nothing more than a misunderstanding. And other times, it's something fundamental, something that to one half of the couple, is critical. It may not be a big deal to anyone else, but for the person who's clutching to it, it's a very, very big deal. And it's worse when it's been explained over and over, when something has been asked over and over, and it just doesn't seem to make a difference.

Do you ever just long for someone to understand you? To really get you? I want that. And most of the time, that someone is my spouse. And other times, to be perfectly honest, that someone is nobody. I've got a deep well of "stuff" inside of me, thoughts swirling in my brain, feelings all tangled up inside, emotions just beyond the surface that I want to give voice to. But I keep it all locked up out of fear that I won't be understood. Or worse, that I'll be understood, but it just won't matter.

Ah well. I'm just kind of rambling now, so I think I'll scoot. I've got dinner dishes to clean up, laundry to do, bathrooms to clean, floors to mop. More papers to grade. More of all kinds of stuff that needs to get done. And it's not getting done with me just sitting here!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

"Five Things" Update

So, I started my new "Five Things in Five Days" list on Monday. So far, I'm doing good! I've eaten two salads--one on Monday and one today (Wednesday) and they were actually really good. I've remembered my vitamins. I'm doing my Pilates breathing when I'm stressed out...which is about ten times a day so far.

I'm NOT doing too great with the getting to bed/getting up earlier thing. It's nice and cool outside and snuggly warm under the blankets. I'm not motivated to crawl out of bed any earlier than I absolutely have to.

Haven't talked to my hubby yet about what's bugging me, but I have until tomorrow. Or Friday, since I technically didn't start my list until Monday. So that's the scoop! Hope everyone is having a good week. The weather here is rainy today, but the temperature is wonderful. It's a perfect day for taking a walk in the rain...which I might do right now since I'm on my lunch break!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Five Things in Five Days: Health Makeover Edition

When I first hatched the idea of doing "Five Things in Five Days" to better myself, my first goal was to focus on the mommy aspect. I came up with a plan, a short list of things that I could work on in less than a week, that would hopefully add up to some big changes in the grand scheme of things. From my original list, the only thing I've struggled with a little bit is the 30 minutes of activity with my daughter each night that I'm not working at my second job. Truth be told, sometimes I am just way too tired. We do still get some physical activity--kicking around a soccer ball, playing tag, playing catch, dancing, etc.--but sometimes it's only about 15 minutes or so. By the time I get home, get dinner on the table and take care of the odds and ends that require taking care of, we get short on time. For the most part, though, we're doing pretty good.

Anyway, this week I've come up with a new list of things to work on for the benefit of my health. I don't have high blood pressure, but my last few readings have been a little higher than usual. I attribute much of this to the stress in my life, but I'm also keenly aware of the fact that I'm not caring for my health the way I should. This is problematic for the main reason that I have an on-going sinus arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat/palpitations) and not taking care of myself could lead to more serious issues down the road.

So, here's my Five-in-Five list...

1. I will make a point of eating three salads this week. I like veggies, but I usually find salad to be kind of boring. I've been poking around on the internet today looking for some ways to jazz up my salad. I think if I throw in some chicken or other protein, it could be a satisfying meal.

2. I will do my best to get to bed fifteen minutes earlier in the evening and set my alarm for fifteen minutes earlier in the morning. I need to add some simple strength training to my workout and that fifteen minutes could be valuable.

3. I will remember to take a vitamin each day.

4. When I begin to feel stress building inside of me, I will pause in whatever it is that I'm doing and do some Pilates-style breathing.

5. I will tell my husband what's been bothering me for the past few weeks. (Then I'll blog about it!)

Right now, I have a bunch of laundry to fold and papers to grade. Neither one is particularly appealing at the moment, but it all has to get done. Then I have to figure out what to make for dinner tonight. Anybody up for a salad?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Taking it Literally...

My darling daughter never ceases to amaze me. Case in point? This afternoon.

We were on our way home and she said she had to go to the bathroom. I asked her if she could hold it until we got in the house and she said yes, though she was bouncing in her seat, literally holding herself. I didn't even close the garage door and rushed her into the house. She made a beeline for the bathroom and I ran out to close the door, calling over my shoulder, "It's okay honey, just go make pee on the potty."

She sounded confused. "Make pee pee on the potty?"

"Yes!" I didn't know why she sounded confused. She's been potty trained for...well, I don't know exactly how long. Probably around a year.

Anyway, here's what I didn't even think about. Ever since we started potty training, we've always said to go IN the potty. This did not occur to me until I heard her frantically call out, "Help, it's spilling!"

Yes, she made pee pee ON the potty. She was upset. I laughed. I'm still laughing!