Friday, April 30, 2010

Fridays with Kevin

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I found these pictures of Kevin with Brutus. He was such a gentle dog and was always good about letting the kids crawl all over him. He gently took treats from them and never knocked them over. Kevin loved Brutus, I like to imagine that, somehow, they are together again.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


Late this afternoon, I went with my Mom to have Brutus put to sleep. He was growing tired and let us know it was time. He was a trooper- loyal to my Mom until the very end.  We held him, said our goodbyes, told him how much we loved him and what a great dog he was. He went peacefully and quickly.

Rest in peace Bruti Tuti Wootus Woo- we'll miss you!


August 1997 – April 29th, 2010

Yard Birds

Thankfully, the hillbilly fence that Matt erected(there I go saying that word again) in our yard last night is temporary. We have a nice wood picket fence picked out- I just want to make sure the little bitches, I mean ladies, won't fly right over it. We plan to do some gardening and the little cluckers will ruin anything we try to plant. They can't help it, they are foragers. Let's hope this works.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tuesday Random

I have a therapy appointment today. A much needed therapy appointment. This week has been difficult. I can't seem to shake the thought that two years ago I still had my little boy. I had no idea that I had so little time left with him. I am having a hard time getting anything done, I just feel down.

We are working on the garden that we have been planning to put in. We have to get the chickens fenced off or they will destroy it.  They are like rototillers. We are also getting estimates for a new deck and bathroom in the basement.  I think I might have a party when the old deck comes down and the new one is erected(yes, I love that word). At least I will have a beer while they haul off the spiral staircase from hell.

Ava has a new trick:

DSC_0398 No steps yet, just a lot of unassisted standing. She also had her 9 month check last Thursday. She weighed in at 19 pounds 12 ounces, just a pound more than her 6 month check. The Dr. said no worries though, she is very active and is clearly "chubby" . He also said to not be surprised if she doesn't gain much weight between now and her one year check. He said to just keep breastfeeding and giving her healthy foods and she will gain what she needs to. Developmentally, she is still doing well. He asked if she was verbal because the whole time we are there she just gives him the hairy eyeball. I assured him that she babbles away at home.



I am still doing the cloth diaper thing. Did you know that people make cloth diapers in all kinds of fun prints and styles? I have discovered Etsy which has tons of sellers with adorable diapers.  The one Ava is wearing above is hand dyed to look like a rainbow. I really enjoy cloth diapering. Who knew? I am glad that Matt just rolls his eyes and lets me do my thing.

Brutus, my mom's dog, is holding on. He seems pretty comfortable, just tired. The vet suspects that he has cancer in his bones and that is why he is so anemic. Poor guy.

I am off to go run some errands. Maybe a little sunshine and fresh air will improve my mood a little.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Old Friend

We spent yesterday afternoon with one of my favorite dogs ever. Brutus, my mom's dog, is struggling. His body is failing him and his time here may be very limited. Emily is heartbroken. I am too. My mom is doing her best to make sure he is not in pain and does not suffer. I think everyone did their best yesterday to not cry. We are hoping his visit to the vet this morning can provide ways to keep him comfortable.

Brutus has been a faithful companion to my mom for over a decade. We all love that dog to pieces.  It breaks our hearts to see him winding down. As I was explaining to Emily that part of having pets is taking care of them when they are dying, I think I was reminding myself of it too.

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Friday, April 23, 2010

Fridays with Kevin

Kevin was so proud of himself after building this tower. Much like the other kids he rejected most toys and preferred to play with household items. One of his most treasured items was a tire pressure gauge.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


I don't dream about Kevin that often, not nearly as often as I would like. The other night I got to see him.

We were laying in bed and his mouth was all blue. I asked him why and he said he was eating a blue Lifesaver. He opened his mouth and showed me. He asked me if he could have a little piece of chocolate. I got him some chocolate and continued to lay next to him. I asked him to say a bunch of different words so I could hear him talk. I was amazed at how his verbal skills had advanced. In my dream, I knew to treasure every moment of this. His hair was the same- a little too long and messy. He was still a little nugget, but looked older.  We giggled, cuddled, and talked. Then I woke up.

As much as I love having dreams about him it is hard to wake up. Wake up and realize that he is gone. The whole next day I feel like a wound has been opened. Like he died yesterday. But if this is the only way I can "see him"  I will take it.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Emily: Mom, there is a permission slip in my bag.

Me: Oh, what for?

Emily: Sigh, we are going to watch the growing up movie.

Me: (Still not catching on to what she was talking about) What is it about?

Emily: You know, mom, growing up.  Big eye roll.

Me: Oh, okay. Bring it here then.

I read the information on the movies that they would be shown and signed the slip.  They invited parents to come view the movies with the kids. I started to giggle thinking about me attending the viewing of the material. As if I haven't scarred my child enough already. You see, I am very open about these things.  I see no reason to not use proper terms or shy away from talking about the human body. I say the words penis and vagina because, after all, that is what they are called. She has seen breastfeeding everyday for the past nine months. She knows where babies come from. We have had "the talk" a few times and she knows all there is to know- age appropriate, of course. 

Me: This says that parents can come too.

Emily gets this look of horror on her face that is priceless.

Me: Maybe I can volunteer to help…

Emily: Mom, you can stay home. I have this covered.

Me: Ok, just let me know if you change your mind.

Emily: You know, they are going to show the boys the movie about girls and we have to watch the movie about boys….. Disgusting!

Me: It's not disgusting, Emily. It is just a penis.

With that she walked out of the room after the world's biggest eye roll.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Found It

Ava enjoys playing in my purse. Rather than fight her I just remove all things dangerous and let her go to town. It was working well until things started turning up missing. Like my credit card, drivers license, insurance card, etc…. I find them in odd places, put them back, and she hides them again. It's all fun and games until I am at the store without a way to pay for my groceries. I can't exactly point at my angelic nine-month-old and blame her. So I guess I will just make sure to check my purse before I leave. And if the credit card is missing I will check the dog food.


Monday, April 19, 2010


Please tell me that I am not the only one that is occasionally guilty of what can be found stacked up in my bedroom right now.

DSC_0323And the clothes are not even folded. Or at least not anymore after everyone has been digging through the baskets for a week. No worries though, I will get them put away today. Maybe.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Nine Month Pictures

Since I have spent a small fortune on cloth diapers in the past few weeks, I thought it would be prudent to take Ava's nine month pictures ourselves. All we needed was the distressed chair that sits on our front porch, an adorable headband, a camera, a little time in Photoshop and voila!

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Nine Months

Today our magnificent turd is nine months old. We celebrated this morning by having watermelon, steel cut oats, and strawberries. Matt told her that since she seems to enjoy watermelon as much as he does that she can stay.

Ava is quite the little explorer. Baby gates are her nemesis. She is crawling with great speed and expertise and is cruising around the furniture like a pro. She will let go for a few seconds at a time and look for applause.

Her favorite pastimes include: nursing, naps in the recliner, spending time outside, getting in the dog food, playing in the dog water, and eating paper. She also enjoys dancing to mildly inappropriate hip hop songs. Here is what happens if I try to do something crazy like let her in the kitchen while I am making dinner.

She is just a little over 20 pounds and wears 9-12 month clothes. Her feet are finally growing and she is in a size 2. She normally doesn't wear shoes though.

She eats anything we give her and her favorites are still the same kinds of things: avocados, bananas(I swear she said banana the other day, but she has yet to repeat it), broccoli, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, quinoa, brown rice, lentils, and green smoothies. 

Even though she spends most of her day engaging in turd-like behavior, I treasure this time that I have with her. I love watching her navigate through babyhood and look forward to seeing her transition into a toddler. Yeah… I think we will keep her.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Saturday Random

I have a virus in my e-mail. If you got an e-mail from me, I didn't mean to send you information on how to enlarge your penis. Really, it wasn't me.

Cloth diapering is going well. Matt is even on board. The only thing I notice is that some of the diapers are really bulky and won't fit under her clothes. I use those at home and let her crawl around in a diaper and a shirt.


We went to Emily's science fair on Thursday evening. Emily did an experiment comparing the density of a store bought egg vs. one of our eggs. Our eggs were more dense. Not sure why….


Speaking of chickens, Ava has made friends with them. Previously she was hesitant to be around them. I don't blame her. I imagine they would be pretty frightening to a little kid. I took her out to feed them and I think they are at peace with each other.


Yes, I know we need to mow the grass. I plan on doing that today. I find it relaxing to mow with the rider. It has a cup holder for beer…  I mean water.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

All My Fault

Yesterday's unfortunate incident that required my first born to receive four stitches on the back of her leg  was entirely my fault. Even though I wasn't even there when it happened. It wasn't me who left the tomato cage in the yard(although I could be guilty of this at some point). My crime? Telling her that there was no way she was going to stay inside and play video games and to get out and play. Thirty minutes later she is back home with a gash and exposed tissue. That's what I get, I guess.

We packed up and headed to the ER. Lucky for us they were super busy. We got checked in and waited for an eternity to get into triage. I played with a new picture taking app on my iPhone, because that is what good moms do when their child is injured.


We got checked out by the nurse and got sent back to the waiting room again. I played with my iPhone some more and Matt grew a long white beard.

Emily was being good about it. She was not in very much pain and was thinking her gash was pretty cool. Then she started to ask questions about what was involved with getting stitches. She asked Matt and I if we had ever had them. Matt was stitched up a few times as a child. Me? I was far too cautious to ever become injured. No broken bones, no stitches, rarely a band-aid. But I did recall after the birth of Ava that I did require an obscene amount of …ummm….. repair down there, if you know what I am sayin'. Something about pushing out a 8 pound baby in one push that didn't sit to well with my vadge…

So I just explained to her that if I can sit through 45 minutes of repair work on my lady parts- she can get four stitches on the back of her leg. I think it gave her a little perspective.

We finally got a room- which was lucky because there were people on beds and in chairs in the hallway. This room had a TV and Emily took advantage of the cable(we don't have cable) and turned on the Disney Channel.  The nurse got her wound cleaned and told us we would have a long wait for the doctor.  Emily started watching a movie- which I told her not to get too involved in because there was no way we would be here another two hours….. 

So we waited, and waited, and waited some more. Matt and I took turns with Ava, Emily watched her movie and I played with my iPhone some more.

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After a few hours and the end of the movie that Emily was not to get too involved in, the Dr. came in and had her stitched up in about 5 minutes. The worst part was the shots to numb the area. I held her hand and she got through it with no tears.


The staff was great and were very apologetic for the wait. Emily was cool though- she got to lay in a bed, watch cable, and will have an impressive wound to show her friends at school. 

As we tucked her in to bed she was complaining that her leg was a little sore. I once again reminded her of the trauma I experienced in my lady region. Matt looked at me with one of those you are such an inappropriate mother looks and asked Emily if she knew how inappropriate her mother is.  Emily was like, ummmm yeah. I asked if she would change me and she said no.

I kissed her goodnight and told her if she gets hurt again I will take the co pay out of her allowance.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hocus Pocus, It's Time To Refocus

In one of my many books on weight loss the author talks about the phenomenon of diets beginning loudly and ending very quietly. That struck a nerve with me.

I am very good at starting "diets" and even staying on them for sometime. I will talk about it with whoever will listen. I get cocky and can't believe how easy it is. I can do this, I tell myself. No problem. Then life hits. We get busy. We eat on the run. I start to feel left out when everyone else is digging into food I should not be eating. My emotions get the best of me and I turn to food. In the past I have just quietly gone off my diet hoping no one would notice.

I have struggled this past month. I have lost just a few more pounds and have not been honest with myself about my use of food. But, I don't want to go away quietly. Even though I knew this would be a journey and not always a pleasant one, I am not sure I really believed it. Now I do.

About a week ago I really took note of an instance where I abused food. It was late at night and my mind was going about a mile a minute. I was thinking about Kevin and the day he died. I was going over every detail in my mind trying to find things that we could have done differently.  I tried some of the relaxation techniques I have learned in therapy but nothing was working. I then began to think about the unfortunate events surrounding his funeral service and I couldn't take it anymore. I knew if I got up and got something to eat my mind would calm down and I would be able to get to sleep. So I did. It was on purpose, I knew what I was doing. That experience had a big impact on me. It was the first time I really paid attention to how I use food as a drug.  I ran from my feelings rather than address them.

I have also noticed that I have let a few things back in my diet that I shouldn't. I have issues with specific foods and while I am good about keeping them out of the house I will eat them while we are out. I feel myself slipping back into eating unhealthy foods and I don't like how it feels. Matt, Emily and I all feel like crap if we eat a processed meal- makes you wonder why we do it… It is hard when you are on the run to make a meal from scratch. We have soccer practices, junior theater, and softball is starting soon.  Matt and I both agreed we need to make more of an effort to not eat out no matter how busy we are. We have a cooler and I can bring food along if need be.

I am using this time to refocus on what my goals are, long and short term. This past month was not a waste, I learned from it and will keep going.

Yesterday Matt took a photo of me in the park with Ava. The rules were not followed. Normally I insist he only get the top half of me and only shoot from above. This was a full body shot of me sitting in the grass.  It is one of those pictures where you look at yourself and think, holy cow balls is that really me? And this is 20+ lbs down from where I was. I am ok with it though- it is what it is. Sometimes I need a reality check in order to refocus on what I need to be doing. And it will make an awesome "before" picture……

As the second anniversary of Kevin's death approaches I will be working very hard to not turn to food as a way of running away from my feelings. It is going to be hard. Just typing this is making me very anxious. We'll see how it goes- I do feel much more prepared this year.  Luckily, I have an awesome group of people around me that won't judge no matter how I handle it.

So in the past month I have learned a lot, failed a little, and vowed to keep going. Not too bad…

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Boob Update

So my boob is better. Well, getting better. It is still has a wedge shaped red spot where the duct is/was clogged. I no longer feel like I have the world's worst hangover except I didn't get the fun of drinking.

I was nursing Ava yesterday morning, because the cure for a clogged duct is frequent nursing which to me, seems like a cruel joke. Almost like if the cure for a broken leg would be more walking… Anyway, I felt like I was going to toss my cookies so I had Matt get me a bucket just incase. There I was on the couch nursing a baby with my head in a bucket. I wish I had a photo of that parenting moment.

Matt was a saint and I was able to rest almost all day yesterday. I am so grateful that he has a flexible work environment and he takes my boob problems seriously….

Monday, April 12, 2010

Boobs, Spring, and Other Things

I woke up in this morning with my left breast feeling like it was going to explode. I have had this happen before so I immediately knew I have a clogged milk duct. Soo…. I have the chills, body aches and my breast feels like it is on fire. Good times. I am going to try the old school method of treating this- warm compresses, frequent nursing, and rest. Hopefully by tomorrow I will be feeling better and can avoid a trip to the Dr. and antibiotics. I know I usually have a photo to go along with my writings, but I am pretty sure no one wants to see what a breast with a clogged duct looks like…..

This past weekend was a busy one. Since I am supposed to be resting I will let the pictures do the talking.