Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Blah Blah Blah

Sorry for the lack of entertaining posts lately. I just haven't had much to say lately, I guess. Or I could pull the optimist card and tell you that I've just been finding other things to do with my time besides sitting in front of the computer. :)

My poor kid looks like he's been beaten, and it's all my fault. The other day we were out playing on the swing set in the yard and he fell off the seesaw when I gave him a rather powerful push. He tumbled head first and landed across the bar on his chin. He's bruised across his jaw and chin.

Then,Sunday we took J to the beach for a park day. We had a great time, he played his little heart out, and when it was time to go, I scooped him up and jabbed his other cheek with my not-really-all-that-long-and-dagger-like nail. So now one side is bruised and the other side is cut. Poor boy. He's over it. I'm still hurting.

We've officially registered him with school, and he starts next week. Don't ask me how I feel about it right now. I'm still processing the whole baby growing up thing, and I'm still preparing myself for the pride/anxiety I'm having. I know he's going to be just fine. It's me that'll be sitting out in the hallway feeling lost.

But in other and better news, I met up with a couple of other local knitters/spinners last night for some girlie no-kid time. We all hit it off really well, and stayed out way past our bedtimes. It'll be interesting to see if our husbands will let us do it again any time soon. :) I sure hope so.

Oh, and I found a local source for spinning fiber for whenever I want some instant gratification while waiting for internet orders to ship. Sure, it's not as cost effective, but sometimes you just need a little something, ya know?

Knitting is going slowly while I work on other stuff--namely work and course work and keeping my house from falling apart. I don't know if I'm really succeeding at any of them, but they sure do seem to take up a lot of time.

And to top it all off, my back is killing me. Not really sure what I did to myself. It's not one of those acute and terribly painful things like a pinched nerve or a pulled muscle, but more of a nagging dull and constant ache that makes it suck to sit or stand in any position for more than a few minutes. Blech!

And I promise, the next post will have pictures and fun stuff and a whole lot less whining. But for now, I'm beat and it's bedtime.

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

So fast

J and I went and interviewed with a preschool this morning.

Wow, just saying that takes a lot out of me. Preschool. My little baby is going to preschool.

Hold on. Let me catch my breath.

We went and met with his class, and took a tour of the place. It's small, it's intimate, it's clean and well-structured while still allowing kids to be kids. I immediately had a good feeling about it, and J fit right in, immediately striking up conversation with the teachers and the other kids. He was raring to go and ready to stay today.

I have a feeling I'm going to be the only one with separation anxiety on his first day.

He'll start in a couple of weeks, just part time. I figure if he's going to start Pre-k in the fall I need to get him used to the routine, and honestly, he needs the time without me. I'm no dummy, and I know that I smother him a whole lot more than I should. I think it's just a mother's instinct to not want to place their child in situations that are going to be difficult for them, and we had a rocky start to our daycare experience, which probably didn't help much. But I think we're ready now.

Holy crap! Where did my little baby go?


Sunday, February 17, 2008

I must be insane

My super crafty SIL proposed that this year we try a handmade Christmas instead of dealing with the consumerism overload that we dealt with this past year. Now, I'm totally all for it. I love the idea of handmade goodies and they certainly are much more meaningful than anything you can buy in the store. I've already begun deciding what to make everyone, and figured that if I want to even pretend that I'm going to finish on time, I'd better get started NOW. Besides, won't it be lovely when November rolls around and everyone is stressing out and scrambling from one store to the next to get that last lead-painted plastic must-have on their list, to be sitting back, sipping coffee and otherwise being content and finished. Don't worry, I'll only chuckle at you under my breath.

Ever since she proposed the idea, I've been obsessed with finding just the right thing for each person. No generic gifts here! So far my list is going pretty good, and I've got a solid idea of everything I want to do. The problem? Right now I'm feeling incredibly brave-- as if I can take on and master anything, and I'm afraid I may be stepping out of my crafty realm in some areas... even bookmarking crochet patterns *gulp*, and sewing patterns. *bigger gulp* I know for a fact that I wield a hook about as gracefully as an elephant walks a tightrope. And my sewing machine? It's buried under a stack of dog brushes and combs and about 5 years worth of dust in the hall closet.

But I WANT to do these things, and I think I can, given enough time and patience. I've got all the time I need, I'm sure. It's the patience that I usually find myself lacking. And so, if you find me curled up in some dark corner, rocking back and forth and wildly muttering something about seam allowances and jammed up bobbins while trying to slit my wrists with a size J hook, just back away quietly and call the guys with the white coats.

I always start out with the greatest of intents and faith in myself, but I know myself well enough to also realize that I'm going to have some major failures and reassessments before this is all done. But it'll sure be fun to get to play with the sewing machine again now that J's old enough to know not to eat the pins or stick his fingers under the presser foot.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Size does matter

We had some rough weather a few nights ago, and when I woke up in the morning I realized we'd been hit with a power surge. Fortunately, everything in the house survived except for my computer monitor. Poor old thing! She was a good monitor- big and bulky and taking up far too much room on my desk. But I loved her and all her 17" of pixelated glory. She served me well for nearly 8 years, connecting me to family, friends, school, and all sorts of strange places in between. So I sighed a heavy sigh when I came to accept the fact that no sort of fiddling with her power cord was going to revive her.

New monitors are cheaper than ever now, and I'm really looking forward to an LCD screen and the smaller amount of space it will take up. Can you even buy an old fashioned monitor anymore? The reality is, no matter how much I'm looking forward to a new monitor, my checking account is not looking forward to shelling out for one, even at the cheap prices they can be had for. I suppose cheap is a relative term.

But I can't be computerless for weeks on end. That's like an alcoholic going cold turkey while working at the liquor store. Too much. And yes, I do admit that I spend far too much of my time on the computer. We all have our problems, right? So what's my solution?

My ancient little (I think it's a 15" that was hiding out in the shed. I got this baby for almost free back when I worked at Best Buy. $12 total for it and the little computer with the 4 gig hard drive that I was so glad to have. Amazing how quickly technology changes and we get spoiled to the new stuff, isn't it? I'm telling you, looking at this tiny monitor is doing terrible things to my eyesight! But it works, I think it might actually have a better picture than my old one, and it'll do until we're ready to buy a new one.

Sometimes I'm proud to be a packrat.

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Monday, February 11, 2008

So Proud

Well, he's a graduate!

Today was J-man's last session with the speech therapist. Despite my skepticism about the whole thing, he truly has made huge improvement. His shirt stays dry almost all the time. His jaw muscles are stronger, although not 100%, and he's starting to develop the ability to elevate his tongue independently. The therapist and I agree that we've done what we can with weekly visits, and now all we have to do is continue at home. She agrees that he does have some degree of general hypotonia, and so a lot of his delay is something that will just have to happen on his schedule.

And now that our Mondays are free, we're looking to fill the time with a playgroup or even *gulp* preschool.

He's growing up so fast.

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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Window shopping

This weekend hubby and I decided to go window shopping for some new furniture. If our bedroom wasn't in a complete state of chaos and disorganization I'd take a picture so you could see just how horrendous our current ensemble is. Think 80s, think enormous, think laminated wood. Imagine a 9 foot long headboard on a queen size platform bed. Now squeeze that into a bedroom that's only about 13 feet wide. Yeah, that bad and then some.

But it's served its purpose well over the years, being handed down to us by friends when we literally had little more than an old full size mattress and a $5 screw together table in there. So don't get me wrong when I say I'm over it. It's not for lack of appreciation, it's just time for something new. Something OURS. Something we can choose together and enjoy for many years to come.

Oh, and I was on a mission to find a coffee table for the living room, too. I wanted something with lots of storage potential since many of J's toys reside in the living room. It would be nice to be able to store them in something that looks like it actually belongs in a living room, ya know?

Is this post making me sound materialistic? I'm really not. Anyone who's read here for any length of time would know that, though. I'm just sick of the "early Goodwill look we've got going on.

So, four furniture stores later, we wander tiredly and mostly discouraged into the last one on our list. So far we've found a few 'maybe' types of things, but nothing that's made us both stop and go "Wow!" And if we're going to spend an ungodly amount of money, we want it to be something we're both going to love for a long time.

Imagine our shock when we wandered upon a set of bedroom furniture that we both loved instantly!

I'm especially lusting after the chest that sits at the foot of the bed. I have this weird love of boxes, and a beautiful chest fits well into that odd obsession. Of course, we won't be buying the entire set, as that would be furniture overkill. We're just going with the bed, the dresser/mirror combo, and (just to spoil me) the chest.

And look! They had a coffee table that fit the bill, too!

Not only does this bad boy have plenty of room to toss J's toys into, but I totally love the lifting top on it. Have I ever told you that we don't have a kitchen table? We eat on our laps every single meal. There's just no room in our house for a big table. Especially considering our dining area is currently the office. I know this sort of table design isn't something new, but I'm still in love with it's functionality. And most importantly, we both agreed upon it instantly.

But wait... there's more.

On the way out of the store Jonas spotted this cute little thing, and it is a perfect solution to the "no table" dilemma.

Our kitchen just isn't big enough for a true table and chairs, but this little bar and stool set will fit nicely and won't take up much space at all. And while it's certainly not the most durable piece of furniture I've ever seen, the price is certainly right.

Of course, there's lots of other things we have to accomplish before we can actually bring our new finds home, but the list is made, and that brings us one step closer.

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Thursday, February 07, 2008

Please, just once

can I have a day where something absolutely ridiculous doesn't happen to me?
Tuesday's super-stupid event:

I left my car unlocked in my parents really long driveway in a really good neighborhood while I ran in to get J after work. Sure call me stupid. You can call me even stupider when I tell you that I left my purse inside as well as Mocha's meds, which are controlled narcotics, in there too. Well, you can see where this is going can't you? Yep, my car got broken into. Can you call it breaking in when all they do is open the door?

Did they steal my purse, the dog's meds, or even my cell phone? Nope. You know what they took? A 30-pack of toilet paper I'd just bought at the wholesale club. And it's not like it was in plain sight- it was in the trunk!

Sometimes all you can do is shake your head in wonder.

Today's super-stupid event:

So, the dogs are bouncing around and doing everything they can to let me know that they have to go potty. I can't walk both of them at the same time. That's just too much dog to hold onto while also keeping control of a three-year-old boy. I took Kelli first, since she's the one that has that look that means "Hey Ma! My eyeballs are floating!" Once she's done, I return her to the house and leash up Mocha. Of course, I shut the front door because it's darn near 90 degrees outside today (that's a whole separate topic, though).

Well, you see, Kelli is the over-excited type who does not enjoy being alone in this world. Once we're out of sight she has a momentary meltdown of barking, whining, pacing, and of course jumping at the door.

What did she do? She locked us out of our house! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the flipping dog threw the deadbolt. And of course I didn't have my keys or my cell phone on me because I wasn't going anywhere but to the end of the yard and back.

My situation looked bleak. Who wants to be outside in 90 degree heat with a furry dog, a sweaty kid, and nothing to drink for several hours until someone comes home? Not I. Not J. Certainly not Mocha.

I've heard that it's pretty easy to break in through a locked sliding glass door as long as it doesn't have a bar across it. Well, just so happens my bar is not in place because I was just out on the porch this morning. I figure it's a crapshoot at best. I mean, they say you can do these things, but they also say you can jimmy a car lock with a coat hanger and I've never succeeded at that before, either. But I figure it's worth a shot. What else am I going to do for the next 2 hours, anyway?

Imagine my surprise when it took me all of 30 seconds to lift the door off the latch and slide it right open! Hooray for being inside! But let this be a warning to you... or a couple of warnings, I suppose.

Don't ever leave yourself in a position where your dog can lock you out. And even more importantly, if you have a sliding glass door, make sure you have a safety bar on that mother, cuz if I can do it, your house is in serious trouble from folks that know what they're doing.


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Work in Progress

Finally! Some knitting content!

But first, kudos to Amanda for being the first to correctly guess the mystery object. I guess it wasn't as hard as I thought. I've never seen a tire shred so much before, so I was amazed and a little shocked when hubby hauled that out of his trunk after telling me "I had a flat on the way to work today." I think that's the first contender for the understatement of the year award.

Ok, so now onto the knitting. I'm still working on the tidal wave socks, and loving them completely. The pattern calls for 5 repeats on the leg, and then a plain stockinette foot. I'm seriously considering continuing the pattern down the top of the foot, but I'm not sure what it'll do to the striping. I guess the best way to find out is to give it a try, huh? What do you think: follow the pattern, or experiment. I mean, it's the foot afterall, and no one is really going to see it. Is it worth the extra effort to do the pattern down the foot? I'm not worried about it feeling bulky in the shoe. This yarn is incredibly thin. I really enjoy the pattern, though, and it wouldn't be that much more work, and might actually speed things up since it holds more interest than boring stockinette.

Jeez, I'm indecisive!

Here's what my desk looks like this morning:

And a closeup of the pattern, just because I love it so much.

And that's all I've got for this morning. :)

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Monday, February 04, 2008

Healing in Progress

I do realize that not everyone likes this sort of stuff, so if you're the type that can't stomach cuts, scrapes, and other sorts of owies, turn away now.

I've been taking progress pictures of Mocha's nose every couple of days just to sort of document the progress. I guess it's some sort of perversion that's rubbed off from work where we get to see some really gnarly wounds and stuff. It's fun, and often amazing, to watch the healing process. That, and Mo really hates going to the vet, so it's much easier for me to take a picture in and show it to the doctor rather than make her suffer the indignity of kenneling for the day.

So here they are- in chronological order.


These first two are from the day after surgery. You can see the bruising and inflammation. And, of course, you can see the pain in her eyes and demeanor. Poor girl. For the first couple of days she looked like she was a sharpei mix instead of a chow her nose was so swollen.


After the inflammation went down, these cracks appeared vertically down the front of her nose. They were there all along, but became deeper and more pronounced with the swelling. Don't they look awful?

What? You want a close up? Ok.

And here it is a few days later- looking much less inflammed and more healed than before.

Tomorrow she gets her sutures out and she'll be almost good as new. The scars will make her look tough, I suppose. I'm just glad that it has healed so well. I guess I'm incredibly fortunate to work where I do, or my dogs are, at least.

And kudos to the first person to identify this mystery object: (don't worry, it's not an animal part)


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Friday, February 01, 2008

Still here... somewhere

It's been a crazy-hectic week here. Nothing major, just one of those weeks where no matter how hard you try and no matter how many hours you seem to be on your feet, nothing seems to get accomplished.

Brief synopsis:

Met up with Michele last Sunday for some knitting time while Hubby and J went to watch Alvin and the Chipmunks. I got either 2 or 3 repeats on my latest sock done- Tidal Wave socks in Tofutsies. I really love the color (tenderfoot) of the yarn, but I'm concerned about how thin it is, and it's inelasticity. I'm knitting these on size 1 needles, and I sort of feel like I should go down to a 0, but can't bear to knit on them. I'll play it by ear. They fit me, but I'm afraid that they may slouch more than I like. But I love the color and the pattern, so I'm willing to take the risk.

And I got a great surprise, too. Michele and her husband bought the supplies and made a couple of swifts. I'd link to the directions, but I can't get the page to load right now. I've been considering shelling out the money for one for some time since I have a hard time convincing hubby to help wind skeins with me, but haven't done so yet. I'm in heaven over it. Too cool. Thanks Michele and T!!

We also went to the pet store for a sucker fish for J's aquarium. J instantly spotted a tank if tiny little black moors and commented on how they looked just like "baby Spaz fish", and so we ended up going home with one of them as well. The sucker fish went belly-up in less than 24 hours, but baby Spaz, who is really so tiny I thought that Spot would swallow him whole seems to be thriving. So much for phasing out the fish in this house.

Work's been a bear this week. I've tried so hard to have a good attitude about it, but it's getting more and more difficult to deal with coworkers who sit on their fat, lazy asses all day while a select few people do all of the work. Honestly, I don't mind working, and actually like my job, but it sucks to sit and watch them get away with earning a paycheck for browsing the net all day and otherwise doing nothing. I didn't make any friends today, either. Got the silent treatment all day, and it suited me just fine. I work tomorrow, but don't have to be back again until Tuesday. I think I'll use that time to try and get my head back on straight.

That's it. No spinning to report, no knitting at all since Sunday. I've just been too damn exhausted and busy with all the little things to enjoy anything this week. Hopefully that'll change soon.

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