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Showing posts from September, 2008

Circus Freak

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I am growing out my bangs, so I expect to look like a dork for a year or so.
Ah, who am I kidding? I've got a life sentence.
I went to a new dermatologist yesterday. I'm afflicted with several auto-immune disorders (what can I say, I'm a lucky goil) that require the intervention of a dermatologist from time to time. The last physician I tried was . . . well, I had a few names for him, including an implication that his parents were not married when he was born. Me no like. So, I selected a new doctor and made an appointment. Lo and behold, he was downright nice and spent more than .000023 seconds with me.

I was diagnosed with vitiligo when I was seven years old or so. When I was fourteen, my parents took me to a renowned dermatologist in DC. Together we decided that my condition was so advanced that depigmentation was the best option (and Dr. Stolar had helped to pioneer this treatment, so were fortunate to have the go-to guy so near to where we lived). It took about two years…

We've got a what? And a what?

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She speaketh the truth . . . well, sort of.At my daughter's school, they've just finished a unit on home and family. The kids made construction paper booklets about their respective families. A's teacher showed me the one she made.

Miss Angela (flipping through the booklet so that I could see each page): She said you have one bathroom.

Me: We have two, but close enough.

Miss Angela: She said you have two bedrooms.

Me: We have three, but close enough.

Miss Angela: She said you have three dogs, one cat, and one fish.

Me: Hey, she got that one right!

Miss Angela: Oh, and she said the fish lives next to her bed.

Me (picturing our 35 gallon aquarium in my daughter's bedroom): Ah, no.

Miss Angela: She also said that a rabbit or gerbil of some sort lives next to your husband's side of the bed.

Me: Um, definitely a "no" on that one.

By the way, that fish (a Kissing Gourami) is immortal. My sister-in-law gave us the aquarium when she was moving to Kentucky some 11-12 years a…

The Last Hurrah

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"Bam-a-lam, the damn thing gone wild"
Pie and I attended the last farmers' market of the season last night. We ate copious amounts of still-warm kettle corn and enjoyed a performance by a local musician. The kid danced on the sidewalk and spun around until she was dizzy, lurching into the path of passersby. She happened upon a stray nickel on the sidewalk and then waved it exultantly. "Look! I found a quarter!" What can I say, she's got a lot of "joie de vivre."The last farmers' market does indeed seem to signal summer's end. We have half a bag of leftover kettle corn in the pantry at home and once that's gone, withdrawal will set in. May seems awfully far away. I bought some potatoes and bi-color corn at the market, which makes it official that I failed to reach a goal I set at the beginning of the summer. I had every intention of learning how to prepare an obscure vegetable of some sort. The hard-working Hmong farmers always have s…

Older Than She Looks

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I'm teaching the pre-K class at church again this year. We have several teachers, so I'm only on tap for one or two Sundays a month. That's probably a good thing, because to be honest, I'm really not that good with kids. And I have to think that the kids know it. Kinda like how they say dogs can sense fear (not that I am comparing children to dogs, mind you).

The formal religious education schedule got underway yesterday, and it was my turn to teach. During the summer, the kids hang out in one large group and take on various craft projects and whatnot. But during the school year, they are divided by grade and follow their curriculum accordingly.

I had four students in the Pre-K class yesterday. I gathered the kids into a circle and lit the chalice. I thought it would be fun to have each child say their name, their age, and talk a little about what they did this summer. The first girl said she was four. The next boy said he was four as well. Then it was A's turn.

"…

Of Wine and Twisted Ankles

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The three of us went to a local wine festival yesterday. Now, don't look at me like that. A co-worker of mine is the keyboardist for the band that was playing at the festival. I'd never been, so I asked him ahead of time if it would be appropriate to bring a child without looking like the worst parents ever. We have no babysitters and if we didn't take the kid, we'd never get to go anywhere. Brian assured me that yes, lots of kids come to this thing and it really is very family-friendly.

Well, there were half a dozen other kids at the shindig and that was it. So, I felt a little guilty, but not, um, guilty enough to leave.

When we first got there, I saw that the band was finishing up with the sound check. I spotted my co-worker and headed up to the stage. I was carrying the kid on my left hip. Inexplicably, I promptly tripped over a bright yellow cable that was at least as thick as a garden hose, wrenching my ankle in the process. I tripped and then did one of those scra…

My Old Man

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In February of 1999, I drove to our local humane society "just to look." Or at least, that's what I told my husband. I had a young Boxer at home and felt confident that she needed a sibling. This was shortly before I got involved in Boxer Rescue.

I entered the kennel area and walked down each aisle, looking at the homeless dogs to the left and right of me. Some dogs hurled themselves against the bars, desperate for attention. Some had given up and didn't even lift their heads as I passed. The staff members had gamely written little tidbits about each dog on colored index cards. "I love to play with toys!" and "I know how to sit!" A few of the dogs had adoptions pending.

After my initial pass, I left the kennel area and tentatively approached the front desk. "Would you give me a list of the dogs in whom no one is interested?" I asked. A young woman flipped through a three-ring intake book and made a list of kennel numbers on a small piece o…

Discipline Problem

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Does this look like the face of a "discipline problem?"I've started to dread picking up my daughter from Kindercare after work each day. I've now signed so many Incident/Accident Reports that I'm not even bothering to keep the copy they give me anymore. If it's not an incident involving another child, it's an accident attributable to A's clumsiness. Last week, she somehow got a carpet burn on her forehead.

I'm starting to wonder if I made a mistake in moving her from an in-home daycare to a commercial center. We had two reasons for switching her. One, her old daycare was 20 minutes away and once gas went to $732 a gallon, we decided it would be best to move her to a more convenient location. Two, we had no one to take care of her when her old daycare provider took a vacation. With a commercial center, it is generally open on a daily basis. In addition, I liked the idea of A getting used to a more structured environment, where math and phonics are t…

All Fundraisered Out

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Please forgive the dearth of blog posts recently. One, I'm still busy being mad at my husband. Two, I worked my ass off at a fundraiser on Saturday and haven't quite recovered from it.
I volunteer for a Boxer Rescue organization and we have a huge fundraiser every September called "The Boxer Bash." Basically we invite every dog lover in the state to come to our event, and then we do everything we can think of to separate them from their money. We have a silent auction, bake sale, food sales, etc. The event is a lot of work. We spend about six months preparing for it.
This year, it rained. We'd dodged the bullet for the past seven years, and then our luck ran out on Saturday. We kept our fingers crossed that the rain would not be a dealbreaker (most of our events were indoors - we rent a large exposition building for the occasion). On Saturday morning, Chloe (my foster dog) and I were scheduled to be at the local Fox station for a live interview. We got there at 7…

Big Girl

"Mama, I want to walk," she said. "Because I'm a big girl." We were headed into the grocery store and she didn't want to ride in the cart. Beat down from a long and taxing week, I didn't argue with her.

"Just stay next to the cart," I said flatly, and grabbed her hand.

As I looked down at my "big girl," I couldn't help but notice that she had magic marker all over her shirt and hands, and that she had a snot nose. So near, and yet so far.

A started a new swim class at the YMCA tonight. It's called "Intro to Kinder Swim" and it's for three-year-olds. The best part about is that I don't have to be in the pool with her. Woot! It was a little scary leaving her there while I wandered off to the observation lounge, but it turns out I know the instructor so that made me less nervous. They (the instructor and her assistant) strap a foam "cube" to each child's back and then work with them in the shallow ar…

He loves me, he loves me not

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Check out this photograph that my daughter took of her daddy. I couldn’t stop looking at the picture and then it dawned on me why I was so taken with it . . . I have never seen this expression on my husband’s face. It’s one he reserves especially for her, I suspect. Sure, he might smile at me, but the smile is filtered through 16 years of stuff. Four babies lost to miscarriage, the death of his parents (and our beloved dog), long periods of financial instability, more than a little nagging, one large interstate move, and the occasional night spent on the couch. He loves her freely and fully, this curly-headed comet who lives in our home - the consummate daddy's girl. I fear my cuteness wore off in the mid-90s sometime.

Is this how a marriage goes, then? Eventually you start to realize that your hand hasn't been held in a very long time (except by a three-year-old, when crossing the street). And that maybe no one is too concerned anymore about what you did all day. And that your…

If you give a kid a camera . . .

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The kid's latest obsession is my camera. As long as she is careful with it and I don't hear an ominous thud while she is using it, I don't mind if she takes a few shots. Here are the results of a photo session Saturday evening:


I can assure you that I don't want any part of me to be photographed. And most definitely not THAT part.
"He drinks a whiskey drink, he drink a vodka drink . . . "
Noggin, of course. Our TV misses broadcasting movies with bad words and gratuitous sex in them.

Giddy is blurry in real life, so it's fine.
Shoot when you see the whites of their eyes (was that the saying?)

Poor downtrodden old Karl

That must be our . . . or it could be our . . or maybe the . . . ah, hell if I know.
Here's one for this year's Christmas card.

Synonyms for vomit: purge, cast (WTF?), cat (really?), be sick, disgorge, retch, puke, barf, hurl, spew . . .

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She's cuter when she keeps the contents of her stomach . . . in her stomach.I know you were hoping for another puke-related update, so here it is. I regret to report that the situation did not improve after my last nausea-filled post. I had to stay home from work with Pukey McPukerton yesterday, because she repeated Wednesday night's performance on Thursday night.

Call me a crazy, paranoid, over-reactive mom, but I did take her to the pediatrician on Friday. The kid kept saying, "But I'm fine!" The problem is that she also said that on Thursday, and then spewed black beans on her bed a few hours later. We saw a new pediatrician, who apparently just joined the practice. I dug him. He poked her and prodded her, and pretended to find live flamingos in her ears (this joke goes over very big with the preschool crowd, I gather). He diagnosed her with . . . a virus. So, we just ride it out and hope we don't catch it. I am washing my hands so many times a day that you…

Thanks for the links! (Added bonus: a vomit story!)

I'm a bit bleary-eyed this morning, because I was cleaning up vomit at 1:00 a.m. The kid came into our room, whimpering, and repeating "Mama . . . " At first I tried suggesting she go back to bed, but then I smelled it . . . that acrid, nostril-assaulting aroma that could only mean one thing. And right then she spewed again. On our carpet. It was actually pretty impressive - she got quite an arc on it. So, we rolled out of bed, got her cleaned up in the shower, and threw all of the contaminated stuff in the washer. My mom always said that you can clean up your own kid's vomit, but that it's almost impossible to clean up some other kid's vomit. I hope I never have to test that theory.

We decided to keep the kid out of school today; her dad is staying home with her. She has been a bit off for the past week or so. Her cheeks have been flushed, but I thought maybe it was the heat we'd been having. Everyone kept asking me if she was teething, but she's alre…

The Teen Pregnancy Thing

So, which is the bigger tragedy? That Sarah Palin's oldest daughter (age 17) is knocked up, or that Ms. Palin gives her children names like Track and Trig? My middle sister emailed me yesterday regarding the names - I had been blissfully ignorant until then. I was aware of the pregnancy, however, because well, it's hard to miss. I scan CNN.com on my lunch break every day. I like to keep up on current events just in case I am ever called to be a contestant on my favorite game show, "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me." You just never know.

The answer, of course, is that the names are the true blight on our country. I mean, who does that to their children? A lot of people, I guess. My mom watches "Maury" in order to collect unusual names. She calls me with new name suggestions from time to time, just in case I ever decide to change my daughter's name. "I've got one for you," she'll say. "Sha'Diamond." Speaking of The Maury Show, th…

Trop de chiens

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That's Chloe on the left and Tula on the right.I had a lot of dogs at my house this weekend. On Friday, a dog was returned to the rescue. Tula's original foster family was out of town for the weekend, so I agreed to take Tula until they returned. The adoptive family brought Tula to my home on Friday evening.

It goes without saying that dealing with a surrendering owner can be challenging. This particular family had had Tula for 12 days. They returned her to the rescue because they decided that they are "too busy" for a dog. Now, I don't mean to imply that I've cornered the market on "busy" but it was hard not to wince as this family stood in my living room explaining how "busy" and "active" they are. I work full-time and devote 12+ hours a week to rescue. I have a husband, a three-year-old child, two dogs, a foster dog, a cat, and a fish. I do at least six loads of laundry every week. I pick up the poop from the backyard. I prepar…