Monday, January 31, 2005

The belated present

I was so upset that Rich's present didn't arrive on time for his birthday last Friday but he got it today! Even though I ended up telling him what I had ordered for him, he was still surprised when he opened it up.
Rich is a huge fan of George Custer so I ordered him a t-shirt with Custer's personal flag on it and under the flag it says:

U.S. 7th Cavalry
Little Bighorn Battlefield, Montana

I also got him Custer's flag. It was larger than I thought it would be.Rich is toying with the idea of putting it on his car antenna. He thought this was a pretty cool gift!

You have to understand Rich and his....give me another word for obsession.....fascination with George Custer. He knows everything about this man. I admit that we have a huge portrait of George hanging in our living room. When Lillianna was 3 years old she admitted she had always thought George was a member of our family. He had the biggest picture in the house,what was she supposed to think?

So all in all, Rich's birthday present was a success.

What fun birthday gifts have you bought for your spouse?

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Compliment or insult? You decide.

This was posted on The New York Times about blogging parents.I think it makes us sound like self absorbed,narcissistic people who couldn't care less about our children.Apparently we write about our mundane and boring existence to get attention from other boring and self absorbed parents. Who knew? I thought I started my blog because I enjoy writing. I didn't start out being a mommy blog but I am a mother and I write about my life. Why aren't I considered a wife blog? I certainly write enough about Rich.

On the one hand, Dotmoms was mentioned in the article and it is definitely cool to have a blog I write for mentioned in The New York Times. I just wish the writer had more respect for what we do. The final comment in the article was,

And of course the more parents blog, the less likely they are to get the attention and validation they seem to crave. "If every parent in the world has a blog, then maybe it really will be about the child rather than the parent," Ms. Waldman said. "Because at that point the child is the only one who's going to read it."

I print out many of my posts and keep them in a binder for Lillianna. She reads my blog everyday unless I tell her I wrote about something that I don't want her to read.She likes to check out Dotmoms twice a month when I have written for that website. She isn't traumatized because I write about her. One day she said, "Well, I see you wrote about me again." Surprised, I asked,"Does that bother you?"
"No,"she explained,"But now I want to write about you." I laughed and said,"Go right ahead." Here is Lillianna's post.

Please read the article and let me know if you thought it was a compliment or insult.
I am voting for insult!

Friday, January 28, 2005

Happy Birthday,Rich!

Today my darling husband turned 38. He was 26 when I met him and he seemed like such a baby to me. I was a mature 30 at the time and was quite worried about our age difference. Now it just seems ridiculous to have even thought our age would be a problem.

I am very disappointed that the present I ordered didn't arrive in time but we had our friends and family over to celebrate and it was a nice evening.

So,please wish Rich a happy birthday,because he's a great guy and he deserves it!
Thank you.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

No school again today

This is Lillianna's fourth day off this week because of snow.At this rate she will be in school until July! I can't imagine that the school will open for one day tomorrow so she will probably be off then too. At least I can get some shopping done then. I am planning dinner for Rich's birthday and I still don't know what I am making!! The present that I ordered for him hasn't gotten here yet and I will be so disappointed if it doesn't get here by tomorrow.

I am off to shower and brave the elements and head to the scrapbooking store. The wind is blowing the snow around but I have to get some more paper to make Kara's scrapbook. I might as well work on her book for a few hours today before going to work at 3:30pm.

This is a boring little post but between PMS and a stiff neck, this is as good as it's gonna get today!

Are you computer savvy?

I have a computer question for anyone out there with computer knowledge. When I use McAfee Virus Scan, it tells me I have "x" amount of unwanted files or viruses. I can't clean,quarantine or delete them because they are write protected. So...... great! I just have viruses that I can't get rid of?
When I checked the support page I have the option to leave a message on a message board (someone asked this question yesterday and hasn't gotten an answer yet)or pay a tech from $29-$79 to fix my problem by phone. Is there a better way?
Any suggestions??

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

When praise is not helpful.

Suzanne wrote a post at DotMoms about praising our children's talent.
That got me thinking. I definitely agree that we should encourage our children in whatever they do because in a child's mind, he/she can succeed if their parents say they can. If mom looks at her child's drawing and says,"What the heck is that thing? What a messy paper!" that child believes he is an artistic failure and may never draw for pleasure again. If Dad covers his ears while his child is giving a concert in the living room,that child may never feel comfortable singing in public again.

Children dream of many things and I for one wouldn't think of squashing Lillianna's hopes for the future. All talent involves practice so the more a child practices the better he becomes at that task. It's quite simple.

This brings me to the American Idol try-outs. Are these tone deaf performers a product of parents who told them they could do anything? As adults, are they so used to hearing empty praise from friends and family that they aren't even aware that their horrendous singing is torturing everyone within earshot?

I think kids who love to sing or dance deserve praise but I wouldn't want to see someone I know,screeching out a tune on national t.v. and being made the butt of Simon Cowell's joke, you know?
What do you think?

Monday, January 24, 2005

Go Team!!


An unplanned pajama party

I knew there was a blizzard warning as I drove to job #1 at 7am on Saturday morning. Living in Massachusetts for almost 42 years gave me the knowledge that we could be in for 3 feet of snow or just a flurry. You just never know how Mother Nature is going to act. I finished job#1 at 12:30pm and drove down the road to job#2. I was supposed to work from 1pm-9:30pm and then I was scheduled for Sunday from 7am-3:30pm. Keeping in mind that there could actually be a blizzard, I packed 3 pair of underwear,jammies and a change of clothes. If it was snowy out, I was not heading home after my shift to risk life and limb in the ice only to turn around a few hours later and go back to work. Plus, Rich had said that if I drove home Saturday night then he was not letting me out Sunday morning. He rarely puts his foot down so I knew he meant it.

A few hours into my shift it began to snow. Justine,who wasn't scheduled to be in until 6:30am Sunday morning, came in at 3pm Saturday afternoon. She also came with an overnight bag.By Sunday morning it would've been dangerous to drive so she came to work while it was still safe. We had a sick call so Julie, who was on call, came in at 3pm with her overnight bag and a good supply of food in case the overnight person called in. If that happened,Julie would have to do the overnight shift too since she was the one on call.

It started to get pretty bad outside with snow drifts half way up our windows. We tried to look out but with the wind gusts it was hard to see anything but white on white. At that point the overnight person called in and Julie figured she would be alone on the 11pm-7am shift. Justine and I knew we were sleeping at work at that point so we said we would all do the shift together. The more the merrier and all that.

From 9pm until 7am it was just the three of us. I am a morning person so I was worried how I would make myself stay awake and then work my regular shift the next day. We decided we could each have 2 hours for a nap. I was the first to nap from 11:40pm-1:40am. I changed into my flannel pajama pants and t-shirt and tried to sleep. I think I got a good 30 minutes of rest in between tossing and turning. It was actually enough to keep me going.

I brushed my teeth,changed my clothes and put on my make-up. It was a brand new day for me. At this point I was starving so Julie laid out all the food she had brought:granola bars,Rice Krispie treats,grapes and a sandwich and said to help myself. I ate some grapes which tasted like little green sour apples. They were delicious. Justine's nap ended at 6:00am and she was proud of herself because she woke up without us waking her up. Yay,Justine. I must add that Justine looked adorable in her cow slippers.

In spite of the fact that the three of us worked for 24 hours with just a short break to rest,we really worked well together and made what could have been a horrible situation into something that turned out to be kind of fun afterall. So, thank you to my pajama buddies, Julie and Justine. I enjoyed being snowed in with you!!

Did you ever have to sleep at work due to bad weather?

Saturday, January 22, 2005

My husband, the super hero

Thursday was just not a great day for me. I only had a few hours to do what I needed to do before I picked Lillianna up from school,dropped her at my friend Janet's house and went to work.I was in one of my trash bag moods which is where I go through the house with a big garbage bag and throw away just about everything that's not nailed down!

So there I was frantically tossing every bit of debris in the trash when the phone rang at 12:00pm. It was the school nurse telling me that when Lillianna went out for recess she got snow inside her boots and now her tights were wet and her feet were freezing. Lillianna got on the phone to confirm the frozen toes and to beg me to bring up a new pair of tights for her. I was showered but not dressed and I was supposed to have 1 1/2 hours left before I had to pick her up from school. I hate to go skipping down Selfish Road but I have so very little time to myself and now I have to cut into my cleaning time, get dressed and run up to school.

Wanting to be a good mom but feeling very put upon, I agreed to bring her tights up.
I threw on my clothes and sneakers and ran out the door without make-up. I had to plod through a huge snowbank to get to the car. I was not happy when I realized my sneakers were wet. I have been driving my Mom's car for the past week just to keep it in good working order since she is in Florida. I got in the car, tights in hand and started the car. It wouldn't turn over. I tried again. Nothing. I tried again. No luck.

I looked over at Rich's snow covered car and thought, "Ok, well I guess I will have to dig that car out!" I had told Rich to drive my car that day since I had my mother's car. I started the car and began to brush off the snow. It was slow going so I got back in to put on the defrosters.That's when I noticed the big old E telling me that the gas tank was empty.Empty!! That was it. I had had quite enough. I called Rich on his cell phone and had a melt down. I rambled incoherently about the gas gauge being below E, how was I going to make it to school without running out of gas?........What was I supposed to do?

Rich tried to calm me down and finally told me I would have enough gas to get to school but I would have to get gas after that. That would be great except I don't pump my own gas! Ya, ya, that sounds pitiful but that's the way it is,folks,sorry I am not a hip and happening woman.Big disappointment, I am sure. So now Rich is telling me that if I just pop the trunk and jiggle a few wires, that'll pop the gas tank when I pump my own gas. In my head it sounded like....blah,blah, are so screwed...blah,blah,blah!

Finally I shouted something like, "That's it! I've had enough!" and I hung up the cell phone and stomped upstairs, still clutching the tights. I called the school to tell them the car wouldn't start and to please explain to my child with the frozen toes that I was sorry and couldn't bring up the tights.Meanwhile I ignored the ringing cell phone like the bitchy wife that I was and I began to stress about what I would do next. Call Janet and tell her I couldn't bring Lillianna over? Call in sick for work because how the heck was I going to get there with no car?

I finally decided to answer the phone. Rich asked sweetly, "Would you like me to come home and bring you your car? Then I can take mine back to work." Was my husband offering a solution? Could this overwhelming problem actually be solved? "Ok," I sniffled. He was home in 30 minutes. I gave him a great big hug and thanked him for coming home. He noticed the 3 trash bags in the living room and asked, "Are you sure you really needed the car or did you get me home just to take out the trash?" That just made me laugh and once again I thanked G-d for granting the wish I made long ago. I wanted to marry someone with a good sense of humor.

Rich was a super hero in my eyes. He was kind and compassionate and he rescued me from a difficult situation.I got overwhelmed by how much I had to do and then because of the car problem I couldn't even bring Lillianna a dry pair of tights.

So,thank you to my dear husband who didn't yell at me even though he probably wanted to. You're the best husband ever!

Friday, January 21, 2005

The "outing" of SpongeBobSquarePants

I have turned a deaf ear to the Brad Pitt/Jennifer Aniston situation because quite frankly, I don't give a damn about these movie stars. They aren't friends of mine, I don't know them and their life has nothing to do with mine. That being said, I just can't turn my back on the SpongeBob issue.Is he gay? Is he promoting a gay lifestyle to unsuspecting children who will clearly be influenced by, you know.....a sponge!!

If he is living happily with his friends, why do we have to pick his lifestyle apart?
A family is what you make it. Some of our family are people we are not related to. They are our close friends who we love as family.

I don't watch SpongeBob's show, although Lillianna does, and if he is promoting kindness and friendship then leave him alone. I hate to break this to anyone but SpongeBob is a cartoon! He can't make lifestyle choices. A cartoonist may be able to do that but "Bob" is not real.So if the public at large wants to make a big deal out of SpongeBob being gay (and how is that even possible since he is not real?) then I say, "If you have this much free time on your hands,go volunteer at a hospital or homeless shelter. You have to get a life."

Even if there were to be an episode where SpongeBob is French kissing another male sponge I wouldn't get hysterical. They are sponges. Put it in perspective,people, ok??

How do you feel about this situation?

A question of ethics

I received the following e-mail from my cousin,Risa.She asked me to post this on my blog so that she could get other people's opinions on what she should do. She is 38 and has been married to her husband Al for 7 years, I believe. (Sorry if I got that wrong!)

Any way, this is what I was thinking if possible, to ask in your blog.

Recently, a man in his seventies at the pier who I work with asked me out for coffee. He caught me off guard, so I said sure and blew it off.

Then two days later he asked me out for coffee on a day that we don't work. He gave me his phone number.

I told Al about the "meeting for coffee" when Bob first asked and Al said sure but then when I brought home Bob's phone number two days later,he said to tell Bob that he didn't like it.I don't want to go any way and threw out the number.

Bob and I are acquaintances but then it made me mad. Shouldn't he take his wife out for coffee instead of a woman in her thirties? I mean what kind of person does he think I am? I just know that it's inappropriate. It just bothers me that he had the nerve.

I don't want to be naive but I don't like hurting people's feelings either.

This week end I'm going to tell Bob that I'm just too busy. Which is the truth and if he pushes for another time, I will tell him that it's really not appropriate. What do you think????

I did bring up the fact that what if the roles were reversed and a woman in her seventies asked him out for coffee. Al said it would be different. He was so funny. He said that he doesn't drink coffee.

It basically depends on the woman. Women can be just as bad.

Let me know what you think. The consensus is that it's inappropriate. The age ranges are from late twenties all the way up to early seventies. A couple of
responses were a quick yes but then once they thought about it, the answer was a definite no.

My opinion is this: I don't really think any married person should invite another married person of the opposite sex out for anything. I can't see any situation where I would invite a married guy out for coffee and I love coffee!
I would say,"No,thank you," to any invitation from any married or single man of any age. To me, that is very inappropriate.

What do you think?

Thursday, January 20, 2005

What the heck are cankles?

Tonight was quite a funny night at work. Justine was talking about something and used the word cankles. I thought I heard her incorrectly. I asked her to repeat what she said. She said cankles again. What an absolutely silly sounding word. Just hearing it makes me laugh.'s so goofy. I had to ask her what cankles were and when she told us we all burst out laughing. (Not so loud that it interfered with our job,though,just to be clear!)

When I got home at 10pm, I asked Rich if he knew what cankles were. He certainly did, much to my amazement. He was surprised that I didn't know. Wow, I am 2 weeks away from turning 42 and I have never heard of cankles.

Do you know what cankles are?

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

How did you survive the first year of parenthood?

I have a friend who is going through what we all went through that first year of parenthood:she is torn between plotting her husband's death and taking the baby and running away. This is by no means a male bashing post. In fact if there are any men out there reading this, I hope you will comment with some helpful suggestions.
For the sake of privacy, I will call my friend Tanya. I have always liked that name so what the heck?

Tanya was complaining about her husband, uhm, let's call him Sergio. No this is not a story in Penthouse but let me have a little fun with the names, ok? So Tanya works 24 hours a week and Sergio works 40 hours a week outside the home.Their daughter, Esmeralda,is taken care of by Tanya's sister. Still, it's hard for a new mom to leave her baby and go to work no matter who is caring for the child.Tanya is stressed just because she has to work and leave her baby in someone else's care. I remember feeling that way and it is horrible.{Guilt + work= sad mom.}
One of Tanya's pet peeves is that Sergio refuses to put Esmeralda's hat on when he takes her to his sister-in-law's house. He may put the hood up but he won't put on the hat. Come on, what's the big deal, Sergio? Bundle her up!

I don't want to put words into anyone's mouth (a hot fudge sundae maybe, but not words!)but I believe Tanya said that Sergio won't put on Esmeralda's hat because Tanya told him to do it! He doesn't want to be told what to do with his baby.
Keep in mind we live in Massachusetts. It was zero degrees today. ZERO! It gets freakin' cold here. A hat is a necessity!

No matter how you look at it, the truth is, after that bundle of joy arrives, the wife looks at her husband and thinks, "Oh my G-d! This guy is a moron!!" and she is aggravated. She is sure she knows everything and her husband, if he ever had any brains, now is completely brain dead. The husband looks at his beautiful bride and thinks, "When did she become a nagging hag? Does she think I'm an idiot? I'll just tune her out and hope she goes away.......nope....still there.....damn! I think I will hide in the bathroom!"

We totally forget how much in love we were and why we got married in the first place.
That first year is all about communication: sitting down, explaining your needs, listening to your spouse's needs and figuring out what you can do for each other to make it all work for your family! If this doesn't seem practical you can do what Rich and I did, pay $125 an hour for a marriage counselor. She kept us from killing each other. I will be forever grateful for that.

So please tell me how you survived your first year of parenthood. I will print out all your comments and give them to Tanya. I am sure she will appreciate it.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

A re-cap of the day

This morning I woke up at 6am and I took a shower. At 7am I woke Lillianna. She was reluctant to get up so I took her pink bear and her purple bear and made them dance on her head. She stopped being grumpy and giggled and asked for the bears to sing a song.They did. Then I asked her to help me get Rich out of bed. I challenged her to a race. One, two, she went. We woke up Rich. I helped Lillianna put on her heavy tights and long warm dress. She brushed her hair and I put it in a ponytail. Lillianna hugged and kissed me and we snuggled for a few minutes. I poured her a bowl of Frosted Flakes and I sat across from her and we talked. While she brushed her teeth, I packed her snack,juice and lunch money and put everything in her backpack. I got out her heavy coat and zipped and buttoned it to the top. I wrapped her warm fringed scarf around her neck and helped her on with her mittens.
We said good-bye to Rich who said he wasn't feeling well.
I hugged and kissed Lillianna and dropped her off to school before heading to work.
On my way home from work, Rich called and said he threw up twice and was on his way home.

At 1:50pm, I picked Lillianna up from school and gave her a big hug and kiss. When we got home I gave her a snack and then we read Anne of Green Gables on the couch all snuggled up for an hour. It was lovely.
There is a reason I am telling you all this. So far Lillianna has talked to her Papa and my sister Kara and her re-cap of the day goes like this....

"Well, Mom forgot to send me to school in a hat and it was freezing out and Daddy threw up!" End of story! How the heck did she miss all the rest??????

Do you and your children have a different memory of the day's events?

Monday, January 17, 2005

Cause and effect

You can read today's post over at DotMoms.

Friday, January 14, 2005

What do I get for 50 bucks?

Last summer, my doctor recommended that I use Rhinocort nasal spray every day to help with my congestion. He didn't like how much Sudafed I was taking and he thought this would be a better approach. When I went to pick up the prescription I nearly fainted when I was told it cost $30. I paid the price but I was horrified. This will cost over $300 a year just so I can have clear nasal passages. Once that bottle was empty, I never refilled it.

Today I just couldn't take the congestion anymore. The over the counter saline spray hasn't been working.I called the pharmacy and reluctantly refilled my Rhinocort. As one of my co-workers pointed out,my health is certainly worth $30 a month. Ok, fine.
I picked up the prescription and the price showed $50. Fifty dollars! Fifty U.S.Dollars!! The woman in the pharmacy said, "The price went up and it's really expensive. I wouldn't blame you if you didn't want to take it." I had to think about that and then I decided I am not spending $600 a year for a nasal spray that only lasts around 3 weeks at the most. I decided to call my doctor on Monday and talk about alternatives.

In the meanwhile I have been thinking about what I would expect from this nasal spray if I paid $50 a month for it.
For that amount of money, I want an good looking doctor to appear in my bedroom right before bed and say, "Lay down dear and I will administer your nasal medication for you. Ok, here we go. *spray* Ah, now that's one nostril. *spray* And there's the other one. Now take a breath. Better? Now I am going to sing you a lullaby for your relaxing enjoyment. Have a good night and sleep tight. See you tomorrow."

Yup, that's what I expect for my 50 bucks! What would you expect for $50 medication?

A packing quiz

Question: Your 7 year old daughter is sleeping overnight at her aunt's house out of state. How many pair of underwear do you pack for her?

A) One: She will be wearing one pair to get there and then she only
needs one other pair for the following day.

B) Two: One the next day and one "just in case."

C) Three: One the next day and two "just in case."

D) Four: I don't have to give you an explanation of why I am packing
four pair of underwear.I think four is a
good number of underwear to pack and who asked for your
opinion anyway? Oh, I did? Sorry!

Ok then,how many would you pack?

Hold on tight

Today is extrememly windy. I don't think Dorothy knew such wind as she was blown into Oz. I held Lillianna's hand very tightly as we walked to the car to go to school. We barely made it. I was so grateful that we didn't bring umbrellas because even though it was sprinkling out, the umbrellas would've been blown inside out.
I jokingly said to Lillianna, "Be careful walking into school. I don't want you to blow away." Lillianna replied,"Mom, I think gravity will help."
What can you say to that?

Harry's punishment

On the news this morning, I learned that Prince Charles has ordered Harry to go to Auschwitz as a punishment for his poor taste in costume. It didn't say what Harry has to do once he gets there. I would like more details.

Sarah Ferguson, who until today I have liked, said that Harry has learned his lesson and that the Jewish groups in Britain have forgiven him so we should just get over it. I believe she said, Harry needs a break. A break? Ya mean like, cut the boy some slack, man? Did anyone hold a gun to his head and force him to dress like a Nazi? A Nazi!!!! He didn't go as Superman or a pimp. He chose to dress as a killer who enjoyed wiping out the Jewish people.

When I lived on Kibbutz Eyal, one of the products we made were lenses for glasses.
Many of the volunteers worked in the lens factory. One kibbutz member was a man named "E". He had been a small child during the holocaust and his whole family had been killed. He had a number tattooed on his arm which always gave me the chills.He was a quiet and very nice man.

One day, an English volunteer who had been working next to "E" decided to put a swastika instead of a check mark on the lenses that passed inspection. So there they were, a box of lenses, all with swastikas on them! The volunteer leader came to the factory,made the volunteer apologize and then escorted the boy back to his room, helped him pack, and took him to the airport.

The volunteer leader yelled,"Do you understand what you did? Do you? "E" barely survived the holocaust. His whole family was killed. How could you work next to this man and do such a thing? We want you out of the country!" He was packed up and at the airport within a couple of hours. Done! There is no tolerance for this kind of behavior!

So Auntie Sarah, giving Harry a break is out of the question! Nice to know you approve of this kind of behavior!

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Is there a difference between rebellion and stupidity?

So Prince Harry wore a Nazi uniform to a party. Didn't anyone think that would be a bad idea? Hmmmmm......come on now. Think about it.The world is turning up it's nose at the English royalty over this now. He is a moron.

Rich said that Harry has always been rebellious. He was not defending his actions in any way. He was just trying to understand the lad. Seeing as he will never be king like his brother William, I guess he figured, "What the heck?" Diana would be trying to do damage control if she were here. Would Harry have done that with his mother watching? I doubt it.

What is your opinion about Harry's behavior? What if anything should we expect to happen next? Should he apologize?

For once, I didn't follow the rules!

Lillianna's school is on a college campus. As I pull onto the street where the school is located, I first pass the commuter parking lot for the college students. The next entrance leads to the semi-circle drop off/pick up spot for the elementary students. In the morning, I drive into the semi-circle and wait in line until I reach the walk way. While I am in line,Lillianna unbuckles her seat belt but remains in her seat. I unlock the doors as I reach the walk way. Lillianna leans over to kiss me and out the door she goes. Once I get to the walk way this takes about 3 seconds.

Picking her up is a different situation for me and for some of the other mothers. The semi-circle in the afternoon is a congested mess of crazed parents trying to flag down their children while remaining in their car. The children scan the mass of cars and try to spot their parent. Meanwhile, cars are no longer in a single file around the semi-circle like they are in the morning. Some cars are double or triple parked. Children are forced to dart in between the cars to find their own car.

I have never attempted to pick Lillianna up in this way. I park in the commuter lot,walk across the cross walk that leads to the school and then wait at the end of the school entrance walk way. Lillianna waves to me the moment she sees me. If for some reason I am running late and she doesn't see me, she goes straight to one of the two other moms I wait with. If one of those moms are late and I am there first, their child comes and waits with me. We never leave until their mom is there. Sometimes it is a matter of being one minute late and our children know they are safe with these moms. The three of us live in the same apartment complex and we help each other out.

This past Monday we got a note home from school from the principal. Since the college students will be back from break next week, we are no longer able to park in the commuter lot and walk across to get our child. We must drive up in the semi-circle. I was outraged! She thinks I am going to be a part of that chaotic car catastrophe every day? Never gonna happen. When I read the note to Lillianna she said, "I'm not comfortable with that Mom. I can't recognize your car from the side. I only know it because of it's license plate from the front. How will I ever find you?" I told her that wouldn't be a problem since I was never going to do it!

I sent a note to the principal today explaining why I wouldn't agree to her request and I said since the safety of the children is always her number one priority, I was sure she would understand why I would continue to park in the commuter lot and walk to get my child. How would I feel if I just went along with her order and Lillianna got hit by a car trying to weave through the other cars to get to me? I can't have that! Lillianna's safety is my responsibility. I take that seriously.

This morning at drop off, the teacher on duty, waved for me to pull up beyond the walk way, all the way to the end of the circle. That would mean that 3 cars would be behind me and that 3rd car would be at the walk way. Lillianna would have had to get of the car and walk on the street,past 3 other cars who were letting their kids out before she got to the walk way. I pulled up a smidge and let her out. She was still right near the walk way. I didn't check to see if I got a dirty look from the teacher because I don't care. I'm the mom! Generally I am a rule follower but not when it compromises my child's safety.

What would you have done in this situation?

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Donny or David......Who did you love in the 70s?

If you are asking yourself, "Donny or David who,then you are way too young and will not be interested in this post at all. For you lovely mature women,like me, you know I am referring to Donny Osmond and David Cassidy. It was kind of one or the other in those days. I never met anyone who was a fan of both.Donny drew the sweet and innocent girls to him while David's fans were more wild and rebellious.

Big surprise coming at ya.......I was a Donny Osmond fan. Ya,ya,groan all you want. I thought he was the perfect boy next door although technically he was a Mormon in Utah.To this Jewish girl,he was the kind of boy who would understand me, you know, when we started dating and all. He wouldn't do "bad" things because he was religious and he was a gentleman.

Now David Cassidy......just look at his long shag haircut and his carefree way with girls. He went from one girl to the other. He was not the boy for me. Ok, I liked the Partridge Family tunes but I didn't dig David. No sir, I sure didn't.

Several years ago, Donny insulted Rosie O'Donnell on her talk show. He basically made a rude fat comment. I suppose that's redundant since there are no flattering fat comments, are there? Then on another show, Marie Osmond came on and commented about what Donny had said. Marie confessed that Donny had made fun of her when they were younger and she had gained some weight. On this same show, Donny showed up in a dog suit and sang "Puppy Love" to Rosie. Too late. By then I had already realized Donny was a big phony and he really didn't care about people's feelings. He wasn't the sweet boy I had thought he was.

So when Rich told me that Donny will be at the local Wal-Mart signing his book next week I had to laugh. Donny Osmond at Wal-Mart. Poetic justice. That's about what he deserves.

Who were you a fan of? Donny or David?

Lillianna's 2nd post

Today I took a shower. When I stopped the water I waited patiently. Mom was sneaky. She was as quiet as a mouse. She opened the shower curtin and said,"Boo" AHHHHHHHHHHHHH
She made me jump. I said,"That that was a good one Mommy" Then she took out the linty towel, "Not that one!" I yelled."Yes, that one." She stared drying me off but then she said,"I will have Daddy wash this one." So she got my cute little baby towel. Then I asked her,"What noise should I make?" She said I had to oink. I said, "Can I quack instead?" "Sure." Then she said that I sounded like a duck with a cold that needed nose spray. I just laughed. She brushed out my hair and then I said that I wanted to write about her so it all leads up to here.
The End

What funny things do you do with your children?

You can read Lillianna's first post here.

{A note from Mommy the editor. I did correct Lillianna's spelling on some words and helped her with the quotations which she is learning in school. As for me using a linty towel to dry her with.....this is a new Strawberry Shortcake hooded towel that for some reason leaves white threads all over her. We're still working on correcting this lint problem!}

One more day of rest

I woke Lillianna up last night at 11:00pm because her 5 hour nap was worrying me.
It took a few minutes to get her to wake up and then she looked very confused.

"Hi Sweetie. You slept through dinner. How are you feeling?" I asked.

"What? Huh? I missed dinner? I'm hungry. Can I please have my chicken cutlet now?"

"Uhm, well, no. It's 11:00pm," I explained while trying not to laugh and gag about eating chicken so late at night.

"What? Oh my god, what happened to me?" she asked in a panic.

"You kind of took a real long nap."

She then became frightened about sleeping so long and she sat up and hugged me. I reassured her that she would be fine. Her body must still be sick and just needed a rest. I fed her some Frosted Flakes without milk and some Gatorade, which was suggested by her pediatrician last year when she was sick. Then she snuggled into bed with me and watched tv while I went to sleep.
When I woke up at 3:00pm she was thankfully sound asleep,so I turned off the tv.

This morning she feels fine but I am keeping her home just one more day. This stomach bug is making it's way through the entire student population and I want her to rest, just to be on the safe side.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Being a mom is never easy

Last Thursday night on my way home from work, I called Rich on my cell phone at 9:00pm. We had only been chatting for a few seconds when I heard him say, "Go to the bathroom if you have to throw up!" That is never something you want to hear. To make a long story short, Lillianna threw up twice and had diarrhea once during my 30 minute drive home. Once I got home, we tucked her into my bed with a bucket by her side. She only threw up one more time before she went to sleep and then it stopped and we mostly slept through the night.

The following day,I gave her Gatorade and light foods to eat and she kept it all in. A very good sign.She pitched a fit when she realized she had to stay home from school on Friday. Cries of, "It's not fair! It's just not fair!I'm missing pizza day in school!" came from the living room. We gave her an explanation of why it was better to stay home and rest and not infect her classmates and eventually she agreed without any complaints.

She felt fine during the day and played with her toys in between sips of Gatorade. Saturday she spent some time with Kara who took her to Plaster Fun Time and out to lunch. She felt fine. Sunday she went to her friend Marisa's birthday party. Still felt fine. Monday she went to school and to Brownies. She was on top of the world. Monday night/this morning at 1:00am she woke me saying her stomach hurt and then she had a bad case of diarrhea. She woke up at 3:00am,4:00am and 6:00am with bouts of diarrhea. When she woke up at 4:00am she begged me to let her stay home from school.

"Mommy, please don't make me go to school. Sometimes I can't get into the bathroom if it's full. What if I don't make it in time?"
I assured her that she could stay home and rest and that I would call in sick for work. Nothing is more important than her health. When she woke up at 7:00am she had forgotten that conversation and had a melt down when I told her she wasn't going to school. Rich told her a story of a boy in his 7th grade class who had diarrhea and didn't make it to the bathroom, in fact he didn't even make it out of the classroom!
Lillianna stopped her hysterics and settled down. She was ok with staying home.

Later in the afternoon I took a nap while Lillianna watched tv. When I woke up at 5:00pm,I found her lying on her blanket and pillow on the living room floor sound asleep. She woke up briefly at 5:20pm, talked on the phone and then went back in the living room. I got off the phone at 6:20pm and Lillianna was on the floor asleep again. Now it is almost 10:00pm and she hasn't woken up. I have felt her face and back to see if she is hot: cool as a cucumber. I have checked her breathing a million times and she is indeed breathing! I have already called work to say I wasn't sure if I'd be in or not tomorrow. I don't know what to do. Obviously she has a bug of some sort and it is still taking it's toll on her. I want her to rest and feel better but I know I won't be her favorite person if I tell her she is staying home again.

What would you do?

Does your spouse blog?

Since I started my own blog I have been anxious for Rich to start a blog too. He is a phenomenal story teller and he has a great sense of humor. He always frowns and says, "No. I don't have anything to say." Is he insane? He always has something to say. Just ask the local radio stations out here. He leaves the most side splitting messages on "the whiner line" and the DJs crack up when they play them. On one sport's station he calls himself,"The man from Maine" and he leaves messages with a Maine accent.That's pretty funny since we live in Massachusetts! Once he met one of the hosts of that show and he was amazed when Rich told him who he was. Now when Rich leaves a message, the host says, "I know that guy. I met the man from Maine!" I think that's so cool.

Tonight he said he was thinking about a blog. I was thrilled and excited and I was ready to pounce on the computer and set up a blog for him but then he said he wasn't so sure about this. Scaredy cat!! I will wait patiently for him to tell me to go ahead and set it up but waiting isn't something I am good at!

Does your spouse blog?

Do you like hermits?

Oh, I don't mean the kind of people who have straggly,dirty hair,moss covered teeth and live in caves in the mountains. I mean those yummy molasses cookies. For the first time in 11 years, I bought hermits at the store yesterday. I am not sure why I have never purchased these delicious treats before,but that's how things are sometimes.

Although we enjoyed our dessert we felt that these hermits didn't have the zing of molasses that we love. They were a little on the bland side.
Instead of looking up a recipe on the internet,I wanted to ask if anyone had a tried and true hermit recipe that they wanted to share with us. I would be happy to try making them myself but only if the recipe was truly scrumptious.

What is your hermit recipe?

Sunday, January 09, 2005


Last night I was supposed to work until 9:30pm but I had a lot to do at home before I went to sleep. I asked if I could leave at 9:00pm if it wasn't busy. Luckily that was possible. Normally by the time I pack up my things,get organized enough to leave,warm up the car and drive 30 minutes back home, I arrive around 10:20pm. Last night I arrived home at 9:45pm.

I wrapped a birthday present for a party that Lillianna is going to today. (Happy 6th Birthday, Marisa!!) I chatted briefly with Rich. Then I took the phone and was just about to put it back on the charger when it rang in my hand. It was 9:55pm: a time I am never home on a Saturday night. Who would call me at this hour? I answered quickly so that Lillianna wouldn't wake up. I was surprised to hear my best friend Liane's voice on the other end of the phone.

She called me the other day but I had just stepped into the shower and missed the call. I was so frustrated. She is 10 hours ahead of us and the timing is always tricky. I couldn't believe my good luck. It must have been fate that I asked to leave early. In between talking to Liane, I got to talk to her 5 year old twins, Kayleigh and Brian. Brian talked first and I asked him questions about his bike and painting and he babbled on and on. Then I asked, "Did you know it was snowing here?" He gasped, "Snowing? I have to tell my mom!"
Then I heard him yelling for Liane. When she got on the phone she laughed and said, "Brian wants to know if it is snowing right now?" I said it was calm at the moment but it had been snowing and sleeting during the day. He seemed astonished with this news and he made me laugh.

A while later,Kayleigh got on the phone. She is a cutie pie chatter box and didn't need any prompting from me. She told me all about her painting and how Brian was frustrated because he wanted his painting to be exactly like her painting and that Mommy was helping him fix a mistake. I told her Lillianna was asleep because it was late at night for us. "Really?? It's morning here," she exclaimed. I was just about to explain why that was when she continued on, "That's because the globe is always turning...." and she rambled on about that. I could make out some of what she said but not all. At that age is easier to understand kids in person especially when you don't see them that often. She just cracked me up. I miss those kids, I really do.

Liane and I talked about so many things. I hate having her far away for another 2 years but I am so grateful for those phone calls that keep us connected. I am also thankful for the role fate played in my being home when her call arrived.

When has fate played a part in your life?

Friday, January 07, 2005

Barnyard noises

Most days I dread styling Lillianna's hair. No matter what conditioner or detangler I use, she always screams when I get to a snarl. I have tried many kinds of brushes, combs and picks but the end result is yelling and screaming. Some days I expect DSS to knock at my door asking,

"Are you killing a child in here?"

"Uhm, no. I am just putting my daugter's hair in a ponytail.Doesn't she look pretty? This is a new scrunchie,too. What a cutie!"

Today after her shower, I sprayed detangler on her hair and began combing with a large toothed pick.


And so it began. In desperation I said, "Look, you can make all the noise you want but you have to moo like a cow."

Lillianna laughed and when I got to the next snarl she yelled.

"NO! You have to moo!" I chuckled.

Lillianna couldn't stop laughing but she did moo in between hysterical giggling fits.

"Oh Mommy. You're so funny."

Well, before we knew it her hair was snarl free and we weren't tense and stressed and crying like we usually are. This strategy worked for today and maybe it will work again tomorrow. Who knows? Perhaps I will make her cluck like a chicken next.

How do you change a difficult situation into something fun?

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Birthday party dilemma

Another one of my friends needs some advice. I figured, "I might as well blog about it and see what happens."
Here's the situation: Jaime's daughter Hailey will be turning 6 in a few weeks. Hailey wrote out her birthday list and to Jaime's horror, there are 18 girls on the list. Jaime had not been planning on entertaining 18 little girls and told Hailey she would agree to 10. Completely devastated, Hailey confided in her grandmother that she really wanted all 18. Jaime asked my advice.

I told her that if Hailey really couldn't scale down the list then go ahead and invite them all. Some people are bound to not be able to make it. That's just how it goes. As for the sleep-over part (oh, did I forget to mention that?)she should just invite 3 or 4 of her best friends and that's it.

What is your advice?

You say tom-AY-to. I say tom-AH-to.

Words are fun. I love words. I like them to be spelled and used correctly. My co-workers know I am usually sitting with the medical dictionary close at hand. I can't stand spelling errors. I also hate mispronounced words.I personally will not use a word if I am not 100% sure of it's meaning. What's the point? My goal is to be understood. I try to make sure that happens.

When Lillianna started to talk, I made sure she said library and not liberry. That drives me crazy especially hearing an adult say that. I just want to ask, "Oh, is a liberry like a strawberry? Can you make jam and muffins out of it?" Which brings me to the one word which I have mispronounced my entire life but I just can't make myself say it correctly. I simply can not do it and believe me, I have tried! This is absolutely humiliating because it is the month I was born in: February! I say Feb-u-ary just like everyone else, not Feb-ru-ary. I can barely make eye contact with anyone when I say this word because I am deeply ashamed that I am too lazy to make myself say it correctly.
Although, in my almost 42 years, I have never heard anyone say it as it is spelled.

How do you pronounce February?

Monday, January 03, 2005

Boys will be boys

This morning, while I was waiting to drop Lillianna off at school, I noticed a huge puddle on the walkway right where she gets out. There were 3 cars ahead of me at the circle so that gave me time to warn her.

"Try to walk around that puddle, Lillianna, ok?"

"Sure, Mom"

I watched the kids carefully maneuver around the water.Just then I noticed Lillianna's friend Kyle and his older brother, Sean, getting out of their dad's car.
Sean walked on the outer edge of the puddle but Kyle, without hesitation, sloshed right in the middle of the puddle. When he reached the dry ground, she shook each leg to rid himself of the excess water. Then he looked at his feet as if to say, "Hmmmm, I wonder how I got wet!"

I burst out laughing. That kid just cracks me up every time.

New Year's Eve Panic

Ooooops.....I totally forgot that I had a new post,New Year's Eve Panic, over at DotMoms.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

New Year's Resolutions

Happy New Year!

I am not one to sit and write a long list of unrealistic expectations for the new year. Who needs that kind of stress? I used to make myself crazy in my younger years by writing all the changes I wanted to make.By February I was crying about what a failure I was because I hadn't follwed through with a single thing on my list. This famous list looked something like this:

Get a boyfriend.
Ok, you can't just go out and purchase a boyfriend like you would a new pair of earrings. Relationships are complicated and eventually I realized that I didn't have any control over this resolution so I stopped listing it!

Lose weight.
Most of us put this at the top of our list every single year and one week later we order pizza and Chinese food in defiance of our unrealistic goal.I learned to be kinder to myself over the years. I found a diet last May that I could stick to and although it's been slow going, I have lost 35 pounds. I have a little set back every now and then but I have not gained that weight back! This is the first time that has happened and I am very proud of myself.

Travel the world.
Ya, ok, nice thought. Over the years I have gone to Israel-lived there for 2 years,Denmark-I spent Christmas of 1989 there visiting my dear friend, Charlotte for 10 days, and England-I went there for the first time with my mom when I was 19 years old since I worked for a charter travel company and then again in New Year's of 1989-1990 to visit my friend, Karen. That didn't make me a world traveler but realistically I didn't have the money or the vacation time or the desire to do such a thing. Why did I keep putting this on my list? It's just another mystery.

Try to be kinder to people.
Do you know what? I am kind to people even though sometimes people are just not kind.If this happens at work I try my best to help them and calm them down if they are upset or anxious. That's not easy but I always try to remain professional.
If I encounter a rude person in my daily life, my first attempt is kindness but unfortunately that doesn't work with some people and I will not be kind to someone who is clearly just a B*&^%. I may be nice but I am no doormat. Those days are over, baby! So,I stopped adding this resolution too.The truth is ....I like the way I am.

So what the heck did I put on my list this year? Well, here are my hopes for the new year.

To make time for more family time.
We had so much fun bowling yesterday and watching videos last night.Our schedules are hectic but as a family, we have to find time to be together. We are all going to work on this so we should be able to succeed!

Buy a house.
Ya, this is a biggie and we can't really do it until our financial situation changes but I am hoping that happens and that we have our own home again. This time I hope it's free of squirrels in the walls which is why we got rid of our last house!

To clean as I go along.
It was so easy to keep my mom's condo clean when Lillianna and I went to visit last month. Mom just picks up as she goes along so that's what I did when I was there. I have often tried to implement that simple strategy in my life but somehow one person slips up then we all end up making a bigger mess. Now I am determined to make this work and Lillianna is eager to participate. She made her bed and cleaned the living room wihtout me asking her to this morning while I was in the shower. I was so proud of her.

To continue to stand up for what is right even if it isn't popular.
This is not always easy to do and sometimes I think I should back down but I have to be able to live with my decisions and since I am a role model for my child, I will always choose to do the right thing!

What was your most important New Year's resolution this year?