What it's all about...

I'm a 39 year old wife, mom, daughter, sister, aunt & friend. That should tell you who I'll be writing about most of the time.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

6 Days Until Christmas

Wow, I haven't posted in a long time. I have been so busy the last few weeks, I'm surprised I'm posting now. Hopefully I can make it coherent and not too rushed. I have been crazy-busy at work. Last week I trained the warehouse guy in our Utah office to use the computer system. He was here all week and I was dreading it every day leading up to it. It was all for naught. He was awesome. Caught on really fast and has a great attitude about it all. There is a lot of work to be done in that office and he has really taken on a lot, but I am very confident in his abilities. Yay for him!!
We took our Christmas card pictures on Sat. 12/8. Dad came over and took them for us. We were pretty and they turned out good. I uploaded them that night and we picked them up from the store the next day. They look great. I was ambivalent about having photo greeting cards, but I think I am a believer now. I mailed about half of them out last week and the last few that I needed confirmation on addresses went out yesterday.
The day after we took our pics, we got our Christmas tree. With our reduced budget this year, we ended up with a tree that we were not in love with at the lot. I think we are still not in love with it, but it is ours. We decorated it the following night with the ornaments we've collected through the years. It's good. And there were presents under it for awhile too. No, we didn't open them. I had only wrapped the gifts that were being shipped out, as they were a priority. I had planned to send them out last week, but we still needed a few more things. Shell and I went shopping over the weekend and picked up the last things, so I shipped everything out yesterday (Tuesday). I tracked them this morning and they should all arrive on Friday-just in time! Our tree looked bare, so I wrapped some of our kids things last night. They were VERY happy this morning to see gifts for them under the tree finally.
Last night we went to the high school choir concert, because the kids were chosen along with a few others in their choir to sing during one of the songs. It was very enjoyable. I love it so much that my kids are in choir. I have the best memories of being in choir, and I want that for them too.
Oh, I almost forgot!!! They both got speaking parts in the musical they auditioned for. They aren't the parts with the most lines, but they will be speaking pretty consistently throughout the show. I'm really proud of them. So now until the performance in March, they have rehearsal for the musical every Wednesday after school. Shell will pick them up and bring the boy to my work and take the girl home with her. The boy has Karate on Wed. nights, so I'll just take him there directly after work. Just one more reason I can't get my house cleaned, I'm never there!!
Pictured: Top - The kids singing in the choir concert, Middle - Our Tree, Bottom - The one we chose for the Christmas card.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

I Stole It

I stole this from another blog that I read. Can you imagine?!
 blog it


My children make me proud. All the time.
They are in their school's elementary choir. They have choir practice on Mondays and Thursdays after school from 4:00-5:15. I go directly from work to pick them up. Well yesterday (Wednesday) there was an after school informational meeting about the musical being put on in the spring. The choir students automatically have a part in the choir in the musical, but if they want a speaking part they have to try out. That's what my kids want - speaking parts. For last years musical, they both tried out for speaking/solo parts but did not get them. They were disappointed (the girl mostly), but I think they finally understood that the younger kids don't usually get them, especially without some experience. So they have been looking forward to this years musical ever since. They sang in the choir during the last musical, so now they think they are qualified.
So the meeting was supposed to go until 5:15 yesterday, giving me the right amount of time to get there to pick them up. My boy called me at 4:45 to tell me that they were done. I told him that I couldn't leave until 5:00, and that I would be there as soon as I could. Just wait inside the doors for me, I told him. I left at 5:00 and of course there was construction on the street that I take to get to their school. The normally 5-7 minute drive took me almost 15 minutes. When I got to the school they came out with the choir teacher, who waited with them. I apologized for the delay and explained that I was under the understanding that it didn't get over until 5:15. She was nice about it and explained that she didn't feel comfortable leaving knowing they were still waiting. Then she said:

"You'll want to keep in mind that if your kids get speaking parts the rehearsals will only go until 4:45. And I'm sure they will, because they are so talented."

"Because they are so talented".
You heard it here folks. My children are talented. I know, it's only elementary school choir. And people and teachers have been telling me that they have various talents through the years. But this is the first time they've been called talented referring to music. And that makes me happier than I could have imagined.

And after telling Shell this, we agreed that if the speaking parts come to fruition, someone will pick them up at 4:45, come hell or high water!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

A long post about my friend

I have had so may posts compiled in my head for the last week (almost) since I last posted, but haven't written them because I didn't have the pictures I wanted to attach available. So stupid. So I am going to write them and attach the pictures soon, but I have something on my mind for now.

For a few days now I have been planning on calling my best friend Eric. Notice the planning statement, I didn't say that I did call him. Why? Good question. I wish I knew. Actually maybe I do, I just can't figure out how to get past it. Some background (this is going to be a little long):

We have been friends for so long. In fact, next year it will be 20 years that we have been friends. Wow. Anyway, we met in our freshman year of HS and it didn't take long before we were pretty much inseparable. We spent so much time together and on the phone. We shared so much. My family welcomed him at holidays and outings. He became such an important part of my life, that I had a really hard time when he made some friends outside of school and me. As he explored and came to accept his sexuality, I felt very left out. It's crazy to think about now (and a little embarrassing), but I was very jealous of his first boyfriend. Not in a "I want to be your girlfriend" kind of way, but more like I was afraid that the new friends he was making would make me seem boring and not worth the effort. When he came out to me, I was very proud that he could tell me and trust me with it. But the friends that he made were gay and older and presumably more exciting than me. He dropped out of HS to go to Beauty School, and I saw him less. Life was happening to him while I was still in school.

I came out in the spring of my senior year and started dating Shell. He was a great support to me and was the only friend I had who could understand and stand beside me. We reconnected, but now I was spending most of my time with Shell and he was dealing with his life. After Shell graduated, we moved into an apartment with Eric and our friend Lennea. Over the course of the year we lived there, many people came and went and our relationship had some real tests. Shell and I moved into a place of our own, and Eric and I grew close again over time.

When we moved to CO, it took a toll on our friendship. We were so far removed from each others lives, that we didn't seem to have anything in common anymore. We were hardly even talking on the phone when he called me at work one day to tell me that his mom had died. He was sobbing and the pain in his voice broke my heart. What I felt erased everything that had happened over the years. He was my friend. I loved him and it pained me deeply to know that he was hurting. I got on a plane that night and flew to CA. I could only stay for a few days, which made me feel like I wasn't doing enough. But I spent every moment I could with him. It was where I was supposed to be.

His life spiraled downhill after his mom died. I felt useless so far away, and didn't feel like I could help him. He was moving from place to place, and there were long periods of time that I didn't hear from him and I worried about him constantly. I felt like I should be doing more, but I didn't know what. Shell & I were in the process of trying to get pregnant and I felt that our struggle was miniscule compared to what Eric was going through.

Life settled down a little after the kids were born. Eric had a boyfriend and they were living together. They both came to visit for the first time when the babies were 9 months old. I realized how much I had missed him. He was Uncle Eric to my children, still is. They warmed up to him so fast, which made me really happy. The next time he visited, it was just him and we had such a good time. The kids were a little older and were able to interact with him more. They grew very attached to him. He comes to visit when he can, and we all enjoy the time with him and are sad every time that he has to leave. When Shell & I had our commitment ceremony in Las Vegas, I chose Eric to be my Best Man. Because of work, he was stuck in L.A. longer than we planned. He arrived in Las Vegas just a couple of hours before the ceremony. Along with my sister, he did my hair and makeup and helped me get ready. I felt so beautiful, thanks to them. After our reception, he drove back to L.A. and went to work the next morning. I can't imagine getting married without him, so I am so grateful that he made the sacrifice for me.

So, life is full for us both now. Our lives are very different, but our friendship has evolved to embrace those differences. There are times that we talk every day, and other times a week goes by, sometimes longer. I miss him a lot. There are many times that I wish he was here to share moments in my life and my children's lives. They adore him. I don't blame them. I love him like a member of my family, sometimes more. In my heart, he is part of my family. And just like with my sisters, I don't call as often as I should. The truth is, they (my sisters and Eric) call me way more than I call them. And I think that the reason for this is mostly true for all of them. First, I'm busy and a little lazy. Whatever. Secondly, I think that the fact that my relationship with Shell is one that I fought against my family for, so I hesitate to complain about it. When Shell and I are having problems, I don't share this with my family. It's silly, I know. But somewhere in my mind I think that if I acknowledge that all is not always great in our life that it confirms that I made a wrong choice. Couples have problems, regardless of their makeup. I know this, but it still holds me back. And when things are great, I don't feel like I don't have anything to talk about, so why call? With Eric, I let laziness get me most of the time. I love when he calls. I want to hear about what is going on with him. I just usually feel like I don't have anything interesting to share with him. The other day when he called, I went on and on about how sad it makes me that I won't be getting any Christmas presents from Shell, since we agreed that we are not exhanging gifts to save on money. After hanging up with him, I felt so shallow and silly about what I had said. I'm really complaining about that? I'm not getting gifts from my wife, poor me. I feel so stupid, and I haven't talked to him since then. Well, he called to ask about a gift he saw for my girl, but that was it.

So none of this explains why I'm not doing my part in this friendship and calling my best friend more often. There is no good reason. Simply put, I feel that I don't have something worthwhile to add to the conversation most days. My complaints and worries would not be considered problems to most people. I'm pretty sure that Eric doesn't look at it this way, but sometimes he might. I'd hate to become the friend that he doesn't want to call because I complain about petty things or just have boring things to talk about. I don't want that. And I don't think he'd ever tell me if that became the case. He doesn't really talk about our friendship, good or bad. So I'm left to worry about it. It's so counterproductive.

The bottom line is that I love this guy for all his strengths and weaknesses. I've seen him go through so much in the close to 20 years that I've known him, and I am proud of him for the integrity and character that he continues to show. I feel lucky that he considers me his friend and shares his life with me, the good and the bad. I wish all the time that I could tell him this, but the times that I have tried to tell him, he kind of shrugs it off. I hope that he knows.
Me & Eric, 2005

Friday, November 30, 2007

Finally Friday

I'm so glad that the weekend is here. I've been looking forward to it since...um... Monday. And I am writing this on my home computer. And I posted pictures on past entries. I am very proud of myself.
We are going to the Art Museum tomorrow morning. I am really looking forward to it.
I watched a preview of the upcoming season of The L Word. Oh boy. I love that show, and I really love that preview. Can't wait to see what they come up with this time.
It's 10:30 and I am exhausted. Am I that old already?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Winterize Sprinklers..Check!

The sprinkler company came this morning and winterized the sprinklers. And there is no damage done. What a relief! And then I realized that my boy had a orthodontist appointment scheduled for this afternoon that I forgot about. There was no way I could leave work and after staying up longer then usual this morning, Shell wasn't going to be able to take him either because she'd be sleeping. So I rescheduled it for next week. I can't believe I forgot about it. I probably wouldn't even have realized it if I hadn't gone in my planner to write down the sprinkler company's information for future notice. Why do I have a planner if I don't check it often enough to notice things like this??
I really want to add pictures in my posts. But I only post while I'm at work, and I don't have my pictures saved on this computer. I really need to get on while I'm at home and do this. But once I get home we are finishing dinner preparations, eating dinner, making sure homework is done, going to Karate 3 nights a week and spending my hour a day with my wife. Most nights I'm busy until the kids go to bed and then I just want to sit in bed and fall asleep to something I've recorded on TV. What an exciting life I lead. Ha!
I talked to my best friend today. I'm so glad he called. I suck so bad at calling people. Especially him. And my sisters. And the very few other friends that I have. Why? Well see reason above for why I don't get on the computer at home. Then add in that I kind of feel that I don't have much to add to the conversation. That about sums it up. Basically I just suck. I really need to work on this.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Winterize Sprinklers..Uh Oh

So as responsible homeowners living in Colorado, one must have their sprinklers winterized when the weather starts to turn cold. Well...we procrastinated on this and the damage may already be done. We were right on top of it last winter, had it done in enough time to have the aerate and fertilization done as well. And then this year rolled around, and we didn't. To be honest, I did call the place we went through last year and they had already finished for the year. I called a couple of other places (this was a couple of weeks ago) and they were done as well. I figured we were screwed and stopped calling. Yesterday there was a light dusting of snow when I woke up and I thought that I'd better give it a try again. I found a sprinkler and landscape company who will still do it. The scheduler called me back this morning and said that it is VERY rare for the actual sprinkler pipes underground to freeze (that was my big fear), but pretty likely that the backflow preventer did freeze. If it did, it will probably be around $150 to replace it. The winterization costs about $75, so let's hope that some miracle occurs and the backflow preventer is fine. Please, please, please! She is supposed to call me back and let me know when they can get out to do it, hopefully by the end of the week. It's only in the low 30's today, but tomorrow and Friday are supposed to be in the low to upper 40's, with it dropping back into the 30's this weekend.
Speaking of this weekend, we are going to the Denver Art Museum on Saturday. It is a Free Day so we are taking the kids for their first visit to an art museum. I'm sure that my girl is going to love it, I hope the boy will too.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

So much to catch up on...

It is the Tuesday after my fantastic 4-day Thanksgiving weekend. I really enjoyed my days off. A (not-so) brief run down:

  • Thursday (Thanksgiving Day): We went to my parents for dinner, it was sooo good! While there, we worked out our strategy for Friday's shopping. Shell didn't get off work until 6, so it was up to me to hit the early sales. The girl is getting a Nintendo DS, and Circuit City had the best price so that was my first stop. They opened at 5am, I was in line at 3:50 and was about 20th in line. Luckily this is not a hot item this year, as I was in and out of the store in less then 10 minutes. Yippee! Then on to Gordmans to pick up luggage for my parents and a dog bed for the hounds. A quick drive thru for hot chocolate at Starbucks and I was at Kmart at 5:45. I got what I needed there, and then stood in line FOREVER! Talked to Shell as she was leaving work to head to Penneys. After Kmart, I headed to Kohls. Didn't have any luck there, so went to Target. Shell met me there, and we shopped. We checked so many things off our list that day, it was great. The kids stayed overnight at my parents on Thursday, so I could get done what I needed to. After we were done, Shell went home to sleep and went back to pick up the kids and eat Thanksgiving leftovers. Took Joe to have his follow-up bloodwork and he weighed 5 pounds more than he did 2weeks ago. Yay Joe! The bloodwork looked great too. What a relief! I was so tired that night, I did get up at 2:50am after all, that I was asleep before Shell left for work, probably about 8:45. I slept all night.

  • Saturday morning I got up and mom picked me up at 10am to go shopping with her. We went to Walgreens ( stocked up on wrapping paper, tissue paper, gift boxes and gift tags), Michaels, Kmart (she checked off most of her list there), Hallmark (my sisters b-day present-check), Tuesday Morning (cute things there-must go back), had lunch at Pei Wei (yummy lettuce wraps) and the Restaurant Supply Store (Shell's gifts). We were gone for 7 hours! When I got home, my boy was complaining that his ears were hurting and he had a bit of a fever. So we ate dinner and Shell took him to the Urgent Care. He did in fact have an ear infection, so he got a script for Amoxicillan and they were home by 10:30pm. Off to bed we all went. Whew, what a day!

  • Sunday was a pretty lazy day. I slept in until after 11! We browsed the newspaper for the sale ads and made our grocery list. Me and the kids went to Wal-Mart and Shell went shopping again. She picked up a few more things off our list. We had hot dogs and mac & cheese for dinner and were in bed around 9ish. It was a great weekend!

  • Monday was a busy hectic day at work, but I met Shell at Kmart at lunchtime and we picked up a few more items then went over to Hallmark and got our ornament for this year. It's a Nightmare Before Christmas ornament. Every year we get a new ornament that either says the year or that we can mark with the year. We used to try to find one that symbolized the year somehow, sometimes it works out that way, sometimes not. We also got baby's first Christmas ones for the new babies in the family. We are almost officially done shopping, and it's not even December yet!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Counting Down

35 days until Christmas. It's practically here. But we have an almost plan. We sat down over the weekend and made a list of the people we are buying for and what we plan to get them. Excluding our kids. They are going to be the challenge, as usual. But as for the rest, I think we've got a good plan. We are done shopping for my parents. I bought a gift for my best friend, just one thing left to get him. We will do some shopping on Friday for the sales, and after that we should be mostly done. We have scaled way back this year. After the tickets for the Championship Series game, money for Joe's mystery illness, and the tires that both of our cars need going into winter, our Christmas budget has really diminished. We chose names in Dana's family and for my nieces & nephew. My sisters and I are not buying for each other. I do have to get them something for their birthday (They are twins), which is two days after Christmas. Thanks for that Mom! But I think that if we stick to our plan, or at least close to it, we should be fine.
I'm so looking forward to Thanksgiving. Not only do I have a 4 day weekend, but my mom is cooking this year. I love the stuff she makes for Turkey Day. This is easily one of my favorite holidays. No gift giving/buying!! Just hanging out and eating. However, speaking of eating... My blood pressure is still not good. Still higher than my doctor would like. He is now forcefully suggesting exercise. I guess I need to listen now. Since my last appointment, I have not walked one day. And of course the weather is changing to cold today. We are supposed to get snow tonight. I think I need to break out my Walk Away The Pounds DVD's again. Yay!
The Writers Guild strike is now affecting me. Up until last night, all my shows were on as scheduled. Until last night. Then, it was reruns for How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory. I love, love, love those shows. I do not love, love, love reruns (Unless I didn't see the episode when it was first run, but with my DVR that rarely happens). So now it's inevitable that my shows will slowly start to taper off as the ones in the can are aired. I wholeheartedly back the writers and what they are striking for. And really, in the whole scheme of things my life is not going to end without new episodes. But once you get invested in a show, it's frustrating to see it interrupted. Oh poor me!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

On We Go

It's Thursday and so far so good. We have not broken our "No fast food" and "no Starbucks" vows. We have made dinner each night this week. Well, last night was leftovers but it still counts. My wife hasn't yet complained about doing the bulk of the cooking, and I've just mentally complained about doing all the dishes. It's been a good week so far. And we are going to finish the week on Saturday with an adults only get together. This makes me happy. We are going to have the first (hopefully of many) game nights at Dana & Jeannie's. I love games. Specifically games that are not card games. I don't really love card games. Except for Shanghai. I'm hopeful that we will be playing games I like. Even so, it's a night with no kids. Yay!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

One day down...

Yesterday was a success. Why you ask? Here's the thing: After the money spent to make Joe well again and the stupid bills that won't pay themselves, we are faced with the sad fact that we have no savings. Six weeks before Christmas this is very hard to swallow. So before we went grocery shopping on Sunday, we sat and made a plan. A "Absolutely no fast food purchases" plan. This may sound easy to some, but we are family that sadly eats a lot of fast food. Not just as a family, but Shell and I purchase a lot of it during our lunch times at work. Me and the kids pick up "a couple of hamburgers" on the way home from Karate at least once a week. And Starbucks, oh Starbucks! I LOVE LOVE LOVE their Caramel Frappuchino Light. I have one at least once a week, usually more. These things add up to a lot of money, not to mention a lot of calories and fat. So, we vowed to make it one week with no Starbucks and no fast food. And since Shell is not working overtime this week, we are eating dinner as a family most nights. This puts most of the burden of cooking on her, I usually make the side dishes when I get home if possible. So although we spent a lot more at the grocery store, I'm sure it will balance out. We followed our plan yesterday perfectly. Woo Hoo! How sad is that? If we can really do this (and we have to), Christmas may be possible after all. Still not the way we usually do it, but maybe better than we thought.
I am hopeful that in the absence of fast food and the sinfully yummy Frappuchinos, I will lose some weight too. I weighed myself yesterday morning, and it was the same as the scale said at the doctor. Usually their scale reads higher than mine. Not this time. So this is now the heaviest I've ever been. I've got some work to do.

Monday, November 12, 2007

A New Week

It's Monday. Of a new week - finally! Last week sucked so much, I'm so glad it's over.
The new office person for Utah was scheduled to be here with me last week. Her flight was supposed to arrive at noon on Monday. She missed that flight and had to fly standby arriving at 5:00. Ed (service mgr) took her and I to dinner to meet and get acquainted. We went to Joe's Crab Shack, and while I don't "do" crab, I had a delicious steak and yummy shrimp. Anyway... Tues morning when Ed went to her hotel to pick her up, she was still asleep so he had to wait and then when they got to the Enterprise (the company was renting her a car while she was here) she discovered that she forgot her Drivers License. And it went downhill from there. Needless to say, we flew her home early on Thursday. So now they are back to square one with no office person in Utah. The phones are forwarded to my office, where I will now dispatch service from. Yay!
Then my Joe dog. He was a lot sicker than I realized. When I got to the vet to meet Shell, his prognosis was not good. He was very dehydrated and his body was in shock. His heart was racing but his blood pressure was almost nonexistent. He was not very responsive. They started him on an IV with fluids, and said that he would have to go to the after hours urgent care, but that it was very possible that he would not survive the night. After 2 hours on the IV, we left there and took him to the Urgent Care where they hooked him back up to the fluids, added electrolytes and and antibiotics. At that point they weren't really sure what the cause was, the concern was getting him stable, which he was not. He was being carried everywhere. He was down almost 10 pounds from his normal weight. He was a very sick boy. Overnight he had an incident of blood pressure crashing again, but they were able to get him back on track. When we picked him up Friday morning, he was a very different dog from the one we dropped off. He walked out himself to greet us. He was still a little dehydrated and had more of the IV antibiotics to go, but he was on the road to recovery. We took him back to our vet where he spent the day attached to his IV, getting small bites of food and getting lots of love. I picked him up after work and got his feeding instructions, and his course of antibiotics. It's still not completely clear what happened, but they suspect it was gastroenteritis that just hit him full force. So now he is at home and finally yesterday started acting like himself. We are so relieved.
The last of the (not so) fun from last week: After spending about $1200 on Joe, Shell learned that they cancelled overtime at her work for at least the next 2 weeks. So our Christmas money went to Joe's bills and I'm not sure where we are going to get the money to replace it. Christmas just got a lot tighter. Bah Humbug!

This is how Joe spent almost all of his evening after getting home.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

My Poor Joe

Joe is sick. He is my sweet basset hound, and he is a sick dog. Of course I can't get him into the vet until 5:00 today, so in the meantime Shell is calling me to tell me that he is so weak and lethargic that he isn't always making it to the backyard before he lets loose. And loose is the operative word here. Very loose. I am afraid that he is already very dehydrated. My wife is afraid that our carpets will never recover. I am pretty sure this may be a warranted fear.
We got our Joe last August from the Rescue. He was very underweight when we took him in. He has the sweetest temperament of any dog I've known. Although he doesn't really know commands, he notices when the tone of your voice changes and will stop whatever he is doing - right or wrong. For as long as we've had him, he has had stomach/intestinal issues. This is easily the worst I've seen him. The kids were very concerned this morning, because he loves when they wake up. He greets them both with lots of tail wagging and the expectation of petting. He does not lick people. He has accidentally licked all of us about once each. With each one we hoped it meant he would continue, but no such luck. I love him, in spite of it all. I know that Shell does too, in her own way. Our children adore him. I am really hoping that he can make it until his appointment and then they can help him. He needs help, big time.

Joe, just a couple of weeks ago.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Monday, Monday

It's Monday. The start of a week I'm not looking forward to. It should be reminiscent of every week in the last 2 months. I will be training the new office person for our Utah office. I was supposed to do this 2 weeks ago, but that girl chickened out when she got to the airport. Among other reasons, we decided to withdraw the offer of employment. So here I am again. She will be my shadow all week. Thankfully she doesn't fly in until noon, so I have a little time to myself. I don't love the idea of someone watching everything I do. I really work independently; I know what needs to be done and I get it done, but I don't follow a daily agenda. I need to show her pretty much everything I do, and make sure she is comfortable doing it. I will be her 1st contact with any questions she has once she is back in Utah. This is a first for me and I am nervous. I know I am good at my job, but can I train someone else to do it?
On a totally selfish note, having her here next to me all the time means I won't be able to just randomly jump in to check my email or leave blog entries, or just surf the internet during down time. I'm not supposed to do it, she certainly can't know that she can.
On a lighter note, I had a really great weekend. My boy had testing on Sat. for his next belt, and passed with flying colors. He is now a Green-Brown Belt. I'm really proud of him. I think the hard part of his training is now beginning. He is on track to earn his Black Belt next fall. It's going to be hard, but he can do it. His test was from 7:15am to 12:45pm. We went to McDonalds to eat and then went back for the belt promotion ceremony at1:45. That went until 3:30. We went home, spent some time with Shell and then she left for work at 5:15. The kids and I hung out and watched TV and did laundry until we went to bed.
Shell got home Sunday morning about 7:15am, and we cuddled up and went right back to sleep. I finally got up at 10:00 and started some laundry going. She got up at 11:30 and announced that she was taking the girl with her to run some errands. I convinced her to go to the grocery store too. They left, then I took the boy with me to clean my office. We got home and soon after my dad came over to give me my very first lesson on mowing the grass. Yes, I am 33 and had no idea what to do. Growing up, my dad always mowed the grass. Then when I moved out, I lived in apartments. Then we moved here and either lived with my parents (briefly), my sister (even more briefly) or apartments again. We rented a house where the landlords took care of yard maintenance. Then we bought our house and since Shell's dad was living with us, he took the yard as his contribution. He moved out in September, so the grass hadn't been cut since then. It REALLY needed it. Anyway, my dad gave me the general idea, made sure I could start the mower, and left me to it. AND I PROCEEDED TO CUT MY GRASS! I got the front and side yards done and will tackle the back yard probably Saturday. It was a lot of work, being that the grass was about 6 inches high, but it was very satisfying. I did it all by myself - with coaching by my boy. He was very helpful in letting me know when I missed a section.
While I mowed my front jungle, my wife baked a cake and started dinner. It was all so yummy. Oh, and the errand that she ran earlier in the day was to go to Kohl's and buy me 3 new outfits. She is a hopeless shopaholic, and really does love to buy me clothes anyway. But she thought I could use some new things to boost my spirits going into this week. I feel very lucky to have her.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Goodbye October

Hello November.
We had a fun night last night. It was warmer then I expected, and we started at 6:00, so we were able to do a lot of trick-or-treating. And Shell didn't go in to work early, so she went with us. Dana & Jeannie and the kids came along, so did Angie and her kids. All the kids had fun. After the others left, we went over to my parents to raid their candy bowl and trick-or-treat at a few houses by them. Mom was finally able to quit her job at Dish because she got a job as a school bus driver. I'm really happy for her. So now she has 2 weeks off before the training starts - I'm so jealous.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween

I can not believe that it's Halloween. There are less than 2 months until Christmas! This is going to be a very tight holiday for us. Usually we go way overboard with our spending and have too much fun. Well this year we'll be lucky to get the things we REALLY want for others, probably won't get to the things we'd just LIKE to give. More on that as the weeks count down.

My life has been crazy-busy lately. Work has been the most hectic and stressful for me it has ever been - in 5 years at my job I've never considered leaving. Well in the last couple of months I have found myself seriously contemplating it. This saddens me. I need to figure out something though, because it's taking its toll on my overall mood more and more. And that really pisses me off.

I adore my kids. I really, really like them as people in their own right, and I love them to pieces as my children. Their intelligence, imagination, creativity, compassion... Well, all of those and more just amaze me and make me very proud to be their mom. But as they are getting older, I am feeling less confident in my abilities. For example, they both had a project due for school. Same one, as they are in the same grade in a school that believes (as do I) that all kids in a grade should be learning the same thing, thereby leveling the playing field. Anyway... The project was to make a Medieval Castle. They are learning about the Middle Ages, and also had to write a report and do an oral presentation to accompany it. But the castle was the main attraction. I was lost. Couldn't figure out how to do it, so instead of tackling it a little at a time over the last month (since the assignment was given), we started it on Sunday. It was due today. My brilliant children have had their written reports done for 2 weeks now. To say the least, I was in panic mode. Shell had some ideas, we used a few. I had no ideas and flew by the seat of my pants. We did get them finished in time to turn in, but when I dropped them off at school with their castles, I saw other kids with amazing castles. I don't think I could have come up with those even with more time. It makes me sad for my kids. I wonder, but don't think I really want to know, what they think of me as a parent. I don't think they care that they have two moms, it's never affected them negatively at all. I want so much for them to look back fondly on their childhood. I'm afraid they won't sometimes.

The kids and their castles

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Siblings Out There

My beautiful children are the perfect sum of Shell and I. They are interesting combinations of us both. Our boy is so much like Shell it is scary. He even has her toes - how did that happen?! Our girl is very much like me, physically and otherwise. But how she got a mole on her chest in the exact same place as Shell and her mom is baffling.

However, they are only genetically mine. We wanted desperately to have children, but did not want there to be a third parent in the picture. We agreed to choose an anonymous donor and do not regret this at all. Fast forward to now and here I am, a blog addict. I LOVE reading other people's blogs, especially those written by lesbians who are trying to get pregnant, currently pregnant, or already have children. Anywhoooo, I have read a few from moms who also conceived their children through anonymous donor inseminations. Many actually. And a couple recently have caught my eye and piqued my interest, because through Donor Sibling Registries they have made contact with and sometimes met in person their childrens' half siblings - other offspring of the donors they used. After talking it over with Shell, we decided it couldn't hurt to register and see what happens. So I did, and after they verified that I had a right to it, I was able to log in and see the information they had on the other children that were born as a result of our donor. It made me teary to realize that there were other kids with a similar genetic makeup out there growing up. I panicked as I wondered if they were happy and well-cared for. This is what I know about the kids that are listed (it's pretty interesting):

Boy/Girl Twins born Jul 30, 1998 - these are mine :)

Girl/Girl Twins born Dec 17, 1999

Girl born Jan 6, 2000

Boy born Mar 17, 2000

Girl born Mar 18, 2000

Boy/Girl Twins born Sep 23, 2002 - born to the same parents as Mar 18, 2000 girl above

So many twins...So many girls! On almost all of them, their email addresses are posted so I can send them an email and make contact. Shell and I agreed that we won't tell the kids about this just yet. We want to see what will come of the email first. I don't want them to think they might have contact with any of these kids, and then for some reason it falls through. We are being protective, that's our job. Now I have to figure out what to say in the email. Do I tell them that we are lesbians right off the bat? I guess I have nothing to lose by telling them, I'd need to eventually anyway. This is the first time I've felt that our kids may suffer due to it. Another reason not to tell them until I know that something could come of it.

That was quite the rambling post, it sums up exactly how I feel about this. Now to get the emails written. Here goes nothing!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Things to think about...

Well first of all, no World Series tickets for us. We tried for over an hour, but no go. We're disappointed, but we tried our best. All the home games sold out in less then 3 hours. So we'll watch them from home and cheer on the Rockies from there. Did I just say that?? Thank god it's almost over and I can get back to being my neutral self.
My physical yesterday went well, I guess. The best part was that my eyesight is perfect! I always worry about this because both of my parents wear glasses and I feel like it's just a matter of time until it's my turn. Luckily, the time has not arrived yet. I had blood drawn to test all the normals, ie cholesterol, blood sugar, thyroid, etc. I had a Tetanus Booster shot. Here were my concerns and what the doc said:
Achy Knees - My knees have given me problems sporadically throughout the last 10 years or so. Usually they bothered me the most when I was sitting in a tight spot (in concert seats, theater seats, restaurant seats) and couldn't get up or stretch them out. I had them x-rayed when it first started and the dr recommended stretches/exercises. Well, I did that for a couple of months and then stopped. In the last 6-9 months it has gotten considerably worse. It is almost unbearable in those small spaces and now after sitting for a while (sometimes as short as 20-30 minutes) it hurts standing up. Doctor's Advice - He sent me for complete view x-rays on both knees and will call me when he gets the results. He hopes it's just a case of not enough movement and normal wear and tear. It is probably exacerbated by the extra weight I carry. It could be early stage osteo-arthritis. I can't wait to get this follow-up call.
Fatigue - I am tired almost constantly. I sleep 6-7 hours almost every night and can't imagine that I'd need more. I'm only 33! I try to eat some protein every 3 hours, in case it's a case of my blood sugar dropping but that doesn't seem to be helping. It is not uncommon that I drive to work and/or home from work fighting to keep my eyes open - I am that sleepy. I doze off at my desk in the afternoons more often then I care to admit. Doctor's Opinion - The cause for this could show up in my blood work. He asked if I snore. Now a year ago I would have said no. But in the last year Shell has mentioned more than once that she has heard me snoring. This could be a sign of sleep apnea, which would also explain being tired so much. If the bloodwork comes back normal, he wants to try an apnea machine to see what it says.
Breathlessness - I am finding myself out of breath with my heart beating like crazy after doing things that never caused it before. I can't walk from my basement to the 2 floor of my house without getting winded enough that I can't carry on a conversation. Grocery shopping leaves me out of breath, sometimes just walking to and from my car at work does it. Doctor's Opinion - My heart was beating fast for the dr, he even checked it twice to confirm. See below.
Doctor's Concerns and Opinions: My blood pressure was high - checked twice to confirm. I have to have it checked again in about 3-4 weeks to see if it is the same.
The bloodwork could possibly give us a clue to some if not all of the issues above. In my opinion, losing weight and exercise would probably solve all of them. My wonderful doctor didn't once say that losing weight would "fix" anything, but it can't hurt overall. I MUST get some exercise in every day, and since we don't know what is going on with my BP and heart and knees, he insisted that I do just 10 minutes a day of very low impact cardio (walking). After 4 weeks, I am to go back and see what has changed. If I am consistently doing the walking and nothing else is going on, he expects that alone could bring my heartrate and blood pressure in normal ranges, my breathlessness should abate, I might sleep more soundly at night eliminating the fatigue and my knees might feel better too.
So, I think this might be the wake-up call I've been waiting for. I chalked the achy knees and breathlessness to being overweight. But the high blood pressure and heartrate is concerning. I have to do this. The only recommendation he made regarding my eating habits, was to limit my portion sizes and try to incorporate protein in every meal. I can do that!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Here we go again

Yesterday, tickets for the World Series went on sale. And, like thousands of other people, we tried to buy some. Just 2. Well, no go. The tickets went on sale at 10:00 am, and I was online (so was Shell from home). The farthest we got was an error message saying the page could not be displayed. For over an hour I tried this. She gave up about 45 minutes into it. This happened to everyone I know that was trying. There was an uproar. People went to Coors Field to demand answers. It was crazy. Last night, they announced that something malicious got into their server, causing the crash. Whatever, shouldn't they have planned for something like this - had a backup plan maybe? So they have apparently taken care of the problem, and we will try this again at noon today. FUN!
At 10:30 this morning, I have an appointment with my doctor. It's a "Well Woman Visit", basically a physical. I haven't had a "physical" since playing high school volleyball, a few years ago. I scheduled this visit because I am concerned with my health. I think that overall I'm probably fine, but I am very overweight and I know that can cause problems. My knees hurt all the time, I am tired a lot more than I should be, I get horrible headaches, and I Can't stop eating. So I think I will be having blood drawn as part of this visit, I hope so actually. A small part of me hopes that they will find something wrong, so I can have something to focus on "fixing". It doesn't appear to be enough to just want to be healthier, I obviously don't want it enough or I would be doing it.
I really hope that I am back to work from my appointment before noon so I can take a crack at these tickets again. Good luck to us!

Friday, October 19, 2007


I'm so glad it's Friday. It's been a really long week - month actually. We've got less then 2 weeks before Halloween. My boy is going as Harry Potter and my girl is going as a Hollywood starlet. I love that the boy wants to be Harry because he read the book, he hasn't seen the movies. He is done with the first one and just getting into the second one. We can't emphasize the importance of reading enough in our house, and we are very lucky that both kids love to read.
Speaking of reading, I am reading a great book by a first time author, who happens to be one of the parents at my sons Karate school. The book is The First Key of Kalijor and the author is Paul Lell. I don't usually get into Science Fiction/ Fantasy, but to support his work, I bought it. I am loving it! He has a second and third book in the series in the works, hopefully the first one gets some notice and the others can follow. It's very good. I am compelled to finish it soon for two reasons. 1. It's great and I want to see what happens and 2. I want to start reading Rosie O'Donnell's book. My fantastic wife let me order a signed copy and it is waiting to be cracked open. I love that Rosie so much! I read her blog (among others) daily and enjoy her a lot.

Moving on... Next week is going to be interesting. I am training a new hire for our Utah office, here in mine all week. This is a new one for me. So today (once I finish blogging) I am dedicated to getting my filing caught up, and get my desk organized, so I can show her "how it's done". Oh boy.
Last but not least, today is my dad's 57th birthday. He'll never see this I'm sure, but I just wanted to acknowledge it. There have been some concerning incidents lately that make me worry for him, so I am hopeful that this next year of his life turns around in a positive way. I have come to appreciate my parents so much more in the last 10 years or so, and I really cherish the relationship I have with them. I am grateful that my kids have them in their lives, and really thankful that Shell is loved and treated as family. That was a years-long struggle, but now it's very comforting that it appears to be a non-issue.
Oh and yesterday my basset hound Willow turned 3. Happy Birthday to Willow and Dad!!

My Willow girl

Dad deep-frying turkey

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Catching Up

It's been an exciting couple of days to live in Colorado. We went to the NLCS game on Sunday which was SO MUCH FUN! The Rockies kicked Arizona's ass and the people in the stands went wild at every play. It drizzled through the whole game, and didn't get out of the 40's, but we were very bundled up and our seats were under the awning, so we never got wet. Yay!

Then on Monday... Rockies beat Arizona AGAIN in a 4 game sweep, sending them to the World Series. My boy and I watched the game, which didn't end until after 11pm, but it was so much fun to watch it with him. At the game on Sunday, we bought him a batting helmet that has Matt Holliday's number on it, so every time Holliday was up to bat, he put on his helmet. So cute.
So, we are going to try to get tickets to the World Series games. They will be playing here Oct 27, 28 & 29, which are Sat-Mon. I surprise myself every time I think "I really want to go". Who is this excited-about-baseball person I've become?? The tickets go on sale Monday. Shell is going to try to go down to the stadium and get them. I was planning on going online from work and trying, but I just found out that I am going to be training a new person all next week. That kind of puts a crimp in those plans. So we'll see. Ticket prices range from $65-$250. I'll leave it up to Shell what she is willing to pay. Oh, and Christmas is less then 10 weeks away... Merry Christmas to us!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Take me out to the ballgame

I guess I need to work on the "nothing exciting enough to blog about" block. It bothered me most of the day yesterday: I finally started a blog, what to write about... So, this morning I thought - I know what to write about, and it is exciting too, at least to some people it would be. We are going to the National League Championship Series game on Sunday. Now normally, I am not a sports lovin' lesbian. I love me some ice skating, gymnastics, um yeah that's about it. But I can watch baseball with some interest, and know what's going on. Now my wife on the other hand, she is a football and baseball LOVING woman. Loves it is an understatement actually. Anyway... even though we live in Colorado, we are not Colorado Rockies fans. My wife is a lifetime New York Mets fan. So really, the only time we go to a Rockies game is when they are playing the Mets. Normally, the Rockies pretty much suck. Well this year they don't. I personally think that some baseball star aliens have taken over their bodies. And they are now one series away from going to the World Series - for the first time ever. Being the baseball freak and her baseball tolerating wife that we are, we are going to the game. Not because we are suddenly Rockies fans, but because it's a championship game and who knows when the opportunity may come along again. I am (in spite of myself) getting excited. It's going to be a lot of fun, and I can't wait to share it with my wife. We are going with her best friend and her girlfriend, who I really do enjoy hanging out with. The only downside to this whole thing - the high temp on Sunday is only supposed to be 55 degrees, and it's a 6:30pm game. Brrr!

Go Rockies!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Blogging, Take 1

Why do I have a blog? That's a good question. The answer is simple and complicated all at once.
  • I have become (mildly) addicted to reading blogs, blogs that belong to people I don't know. And yet I visit them daily to see what they are doing in their lives. Before, I didn't think anything exciting happened in my life, so why would I need a blog. But after reading so many over and over, I realize that exciting things don't happen to a lot of people, but they still blog. So why couldn't I?
  • I'm sure that nobody will read a (boring-see above) blog about my life. And I wasn't sure that I would want anyone I know in real life to read it. Would I censor it, knowing that they might? But I think I've come to the conclusion that I don't care. I don't care if anyone reads it, or if someone I know does. It's for me.
  • My kids are 9 years old. I am long past: trying to get pregnant, pregnancy, babies, toddlers, and the stories that accompany all of those stages. But I find myself struggling at times to remember some of them, and that makes me sad. So, at least I will have a way to document the ones that happen now. And along the way, I can include those memories for prosperity.
  • My life may seem normal and boring to me, but that's probably because I live it every day. To someone else out there, it might be interesting. Here is what I can write about: My lesbian relationship of over 15 years, the amazing woman I am madly in love with, our brilliant 9 year old twins, our very precocious yet lovable basset hounds, life in our first house purchased brand new last year, my family who I am grateful to have in my life, and my wife's family who I love, sometimes for the pure fact that they make me more grateful for the normalcy in my own life. Hee hee.

I think those are my obvious reasons for blogging. I have no expectation for myself to blog every day, or to make it interesting. It is what it is. I am doing it for me, so anyone else who comes along is just icing on the cake. Oh, right and speaking of cake... I really need to lose weight, maybe I'll get motivated soon and be able to write about that too. So here I go...Come What May.