Wednesday, December 31, 2008

And So It Begins...

as 2008 ends.

I am officially in my IVF cycle. I started shooting up (ha!) Sunday. So far okay. Some headaches, a little burning. I'm doing better with the needles then I thought.

I am in the middle of my first vacation over the holidays in ages.

I have been a slug and enjoyed it.

I have been knitting and finishing stuff.

I might even post pictures of the finished stuff next year.

2008 has been a year of ups and downs.

We got our Foster Parent license, but cannot get a child placed in our home to save our life.

Hubby's mom came to visit for her longest visit ever, but then we lost her unexpectedly in September.

We want to adopt but cannot even start the paperwork till we finish with the medical procedures.

Work has been crazy, stressful, busy, but I wouldn't trade most of the people I work with for a ten foot pole.

My son turned 18 but I'm afraid to contact him.

We are happy, healthy, have a lovely home, healthy neurotic playful animals, toys to play with, friends to share them with and jobs that don't appear to be going anywhere any time soon.

We had some health scares with me and some friends, but we all came through them.

I've met a ton of people online this year that I am happy to have as friends. In 2009 I hope to meet actually meet a few more of them in person. Cookie, Nancy, Karin W, CV, Kate J - I'm looking at you.

I am not making resolutions this year. We are focused on the IVF. We should know if it worked by the end of the first week of February. Keep your fingers crossed for us. If it does work I expect hand knits galore from all my friends that knit. :-) I might even let you make something for the baby. ;-)

I do know that if it does not work it will not be the end of the world, just maybe the end of a dream. There is only so much you can do before you have to let go. Adoption will always be an option.

May whatever dreams you are holding dear for the New Year come true.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

A New Tradition

Wake up at 11 and see that all the kitties are snug on your lap (you're sick so you're sleeping in the recliner in the living room).

Turn on the TV and start finishing the Buck Rogers DVD set you borrowed over a year ago so you can give it back.

Hubby wakes up and joins you (he's sick too and hacking up a storm at night).

You open presents around noon and love all the yarn you've been given:

2 skeins of Sport Weight Blue Sky Alpaca - a pretty cornflower blue
1 skein of Melange Blue Sky Alpaca - a pretty blue green
3 skeins of Suri Merino Blue Sky Alpaca in Natural
The Blue Sky Alpaca Arm Warmer pattern to go with the first two yarns.

Hubby got a book and a video game (Left 4 Dead) and a board game.

Continue watching Buck Rogers for the rest of the entire day while Hubby vegs on the couch playing his game and you knit.

Try to find your RE doc since you are spotting and have to start the IVF drugs on Sunday.

Call your mother.

Wish you had family closer.

Say hi to your friends online.


Go back in and spend rest of evening with hubby.

Merry Christmas Everyone.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

Just want to wish all my friends, Real and Virtual, a very Merry Christmas.

Monday, December 22, 2008

MMM.... Softness....

A good friend of Hubster and I happens to really likes my knitting.

She has a daughter. She's a tiny little thing that is almost always cold.

So this friend asked me if I'd make something for the daughter to help her out this winter.

So I hit the stash and the web. This is what I can up with:

That would be Misti Alpaca Chunky in color 1321 (that would be cornflower blue in my mind maybe).

The pattern would be a take on Envy over at Yarn Ball Boogie.

I screwed up the seed stitch in the first 6 rows, so it's ribbed. So I carried that over to the end of it.

I did 20 cable crosses for the length of it, because I only had one skein to work with since the other was allocated. I used size 13 needles.

No button holes. The buttons I chose and the give of the openness of my knitting mean the buttons go through just fine.

There are two on either end place opposite of the other end diagonally. So she can button it either way she decides to wrap it.

I hope she likes it. It's super soft. I'm tempted to put it in the dryer for about 2 minutes (ONLY) to fluff it up a little bit.

****Ignore the model. She doesn't photograph well. Neither does she wear makeup on a regular basis (ok ever).

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Simply Kind Tuesday

I managed to take part in perpstu's SKT this week without even having given it forethought.

Last night on my way home I had to hit Petco to get food for the furbabies.

As most of you know I have a plethora of four legged animals in my house. 3 doggies: Cliff the Mutt, Oscar the Dog and Scrat the Brat. 4 cats: Rasta Pasta, Nemo, Kaji cutie and Smokey Cat.

I'll be the first to tell you that animals are not cheap. Between the vet and food and grooming (if needed - and boy is it needed for Cliff and Oscar) and replacing things they destroy (angels they aren't) it can all add up.

So I went into Petco to get food and set up a grooming appointment for Cliff and Oscar. I saw that the Assistance Dog Institute has their annual dog bone tree up again. Some years I check it out, and some years I don't.

The thing I love best about this tree is that they have little colored wooden dog bones with items they would like to receive on each bone like:
  • Greenies - large
  • Dog toothbrush
  • Dog tooth paste
  • Dog nylabone the big ones
  • Dog bed
  • Dog collar and leash
  • Bath wipes
  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Kong toy
  • Retrieve toy
You know things they will use and actually need. Not just another mailing asking for money like everyone else this year. All the stuff will be put to use for the animals they are training to help someone in need.

So this year I decided to grab three bones. One for each dog. On the back of the bones they ask for your address so they can thank you. Well I just put one boy's name and Merry "woof'mas on each one. I'm already on their mailing list.

So we got them the Greenies - Large ( a bag of 8), a toothbrush/toothpaste kit, and a BIG box of bath wipes.

Go help make someone's Christmas a little brighter this year. Yes things are tight everywhere. I'm happy to give up something to help someone or something have an easier time right now, because I have a good home, a partner that loves me, a job that isn't going anywhere, animals that are healthy. Sure we saving up for our IVF, but this is chump change compared to that. But that little bit will go a long way.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


or rather how to suck the joy out of Christmas with one easy phrase.

An email went out at work this morning asking if anyone wanted to contribute towards the purchase of a Christmas tree.

I assumed they meant fake.

Then I went to get some tea - I'm sick (and yes going home but had a meeting I couldn't move) - and saw the tree stand.

So I asked if they intended to get a real tree, to which they said yes and I said sh*t.

Christmas tree = major allergies in Jenn = Jenn about to do IVF and not able to take drugs outside of protocol especially antihistamines = no real Christmas Tree in office.

Granted with my allergies that I could argue for never having a real one in the office, at least not within 15' of where I have to travel within in the building (if I can smell it I'm pretty much screwed), I happen to like breathing. Problem is I love Christmas and I just managed to make it way less pleasurable for the rest of my coworkers.

Cannot wait to go home today and go back to bed.

BTW - tomorrow is teach me how to become a pincushion day in prep for IVF. Fun times. Let me tell you.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Can You Hear Me Now?

Maybe not so much, but boy can I hear you.

I am in love with my new hearing aid.

I remembered to grab my camera this morning. Not so much the battery I charged last night. Doh!

But the Streamer works. I can hear phone calls DIRECTLY IN MY HEARING AID. The mic on the streamer is not so great, or my neck isn't thick enough to keep the Streamer in my 'Body Area Network', but I can hold it closer to my mouth and hubby can hear me.

Will have to see if the skin that came with it might be interfering with the microphone a little bit.

When a call comes in on my cell it sounds like a phone ringing right in my ear. It is just so cool. And if my phone is set to silent I still get the cute little phone sound in my hearing aid.

Now let's ignore the fact that I am currently running about with over $5000 worth of electronics hanging from my ears. Yeah they are insured. (the aids and me - hehe)

Yup the Synchro is in the right ear till after the first of year when I can order a matching (though it will be red) Epoq XW for the right ear and my health insurance will pay for $2500 of the cost. Surround sound here I come!

Now we get to go to a movie and see how I do and maybe a show of some sort. Lots of playing to do with the new aid.

Granted with all the new sounds (my keyboard is stupid loud) I'll have a headache by the end of the day, but it will be worth it and I'll get used to it.

Gotta go find someone else to call.

Monday, December 1, 2008


Okay fine.

I'm in.

I'm a lemming.

I love dragons.

Now go click on mine so they will hatch.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


is a very good place to be.

We were going to go on a short ride today. Especially after the spectacular meltdown of yesterday.

However hubby's quad, which was iffy all weekend, absolutely refused to start. Plus mine decided to start leaking fuel. So we got everything broken down and loaded and left camp around 11:30.

We stopped at Lake Mendo, or what's left of it (we need rain bad), and we swapped out and I drove the rest of the way home.

Gas wise it was a really cheap weekend. Only cost us about $200 total and we didn't go through all the gas we took with us (see yesterday's meltdown and Jenn refusing to get back on a quad - I did though).

Last night was a nice pot luck by campfire.

So we are home. We are tired and I still have Sunday's chores to finish.

Thus ends Jenn's lame contribution to her first ever NaBloPoMo

As for NaKniSweMo, well, um, er, eh, I did actually knit on hubby's sweater this month but it is sure a long way from finished.

I did finish my Cherry Garcia cowl. Then frogged the last repeat and bound off again. It should be perfect for the Christmas trip unless I decide to give it to someone as a Christmas present.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Completely Mental Breakdown

I had a complete breakdown on the trail to Bear Wallow (willow? whatever).

Was scared to death. Didn't want to go any farther. I do NOT like my quad.

After hubby got mad and got upset and got me to calm down and stop freaking out (this would be me screaming NO NO NO NO NO NO at the top of my lungs and crying in the middle of the trail - and yes I'm 38 why do you ask?)

He got me on his quad, which is MUCH BIGGER and way MORE STABLE, and I made it back down without another freak out.


Again the campfire saved me at the end of the day.

Friday, November 28, 2008


Lots and lots and lots of dirt.

Lots and lots of Jenn freaking out on her quad going up to M5.

Hubby cracking the frame on the go-kart. Still not sure how that happened but he is fine.

MMMM camp fires good.

Knitting by camp fire pretty good too

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving.

Hugs and good wishes for all my friends out there.

Have a good one.

See you Sunday.

Yeah that means I'm blowing NaBloPoMo.

Oh well. I'll have plenty to back post.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

What I'll be Playing with this Weekend

Last time I was on a quad I rolled it.

Time before that I sprained my wrist.

And I've managed to roll the Kart twice.

This should be fun.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Not Cooperating

New pills to prep for IVF are mucking up my system good.

So I feel like crap, my body is not behaving itself.

Just reminding myself that it's worth it, and it is. No doubt about that.

This is what we want and hopefully it will work.

Keep your fingers crossed.

I'll think we will need all the help we can get over the next two months.

Monday, November 24, 2008

That Kind of Day

Hubby let's me know after my alarm went off that Smokey Cat had been in the house all night. This is the cat that doesn't use the community litter box.

So I get up and grab the black light and start sniffing out 'accidents'. Find nothing and hit the shower.

Battle with Scrat monster over the muzzle. I think I'm winning (ha)

Head to car.

Grab socks from purse to put in gym bag, notice they are wet. What? Smell them.

Smokey Cat peed IN MY PURSE. My Hollywood Pink Malibu Namaste bag. IN IT!

Pull everything out that is wet and does not reek and throw into spare bag in car and head to work after going back in and grabbing the black light and telling hubby.

Scream all way to work (he ruined my Winnie the Pooh wallet too which I cannot replace).

Get to work and make sure the pee didn't get on my knitting. Noro Silk Garden need I say more?

Figure out I can pull the liner most of the way out and stick it in the sink (after emailing Namaste directly). Wash it thoroughly with soap and water. Slap in front of space heater at work.

Go to lunch to find new wallet (love Wilson Leather Outlet).

Come back and liner is dry and doesn't stink. Woo hoo. Maybe saved. May still have to rip out bottom seam of liner and scrub leatherette inside per Namaste.

Get call from hubby that Foster Lady returned my call. They still think we will only take a child we can adopt. Which means our placement has to come from adoption. Who still won't send me the paperwork because I'm undergoing fertility treatment (called again today to beg for the paperwork - didn't work). Hopefully have cleared this up again. We will take a child that might go home. We understand that. We are prepared. We don't care. We just want a child in our home. We are ready. Was told that if we still don't have a placement in 2 months we should go to a private foster agency. Which means relicensing.

I am going to pull my hair out.

But it sure looks like we won't have a placement before Christmas.

And yeah I'm crying.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Productive or Not?

You decide.

9:00 am - roll over look at clock, see hubby is out of bed, roll back over.

10:30 am - look at clock again and decide to stop being a slug

11:00 am - finish shower as hubby sticks his head in to see if he can have his turn.

11:30 am - have finished drying hair, brushing teeth making sure I don't stink and release the hounds

We start a plan to get Scrat to associate Number 2 with getting the muzzle off. Problem is you have to get him to go number 2 first. Gr. So for a walk we go and that works and off comes the muzzle

12:00 pm - start a multitude of laundry since we are going on a quad trip for thanksgiving.

12:30 pm - make sure my villages (travian server 6) are still standing in spite of inbound attacks. Ask hubby for reinforcements.

12:45 pm - start project Kitchen Reclamation while hubby start Garage Reclamation. Overlap each other by bringing him garage stuff from kitchen and taking house stuff in from garage. I'm not sure who won.

1:30 pm - decide I need to learn how to break the back end loose on both my quad and my cart. Finding riding gear first since last time we tried this it ended up with me bleeding profusely and sporting several lovely new scars.

2:30 pm - can break the back end loose from both without going into a roll. This is a good thing. Go back to working on the house and laundry

4:45 pm - figure out how to get Hubby's quad, my quad and my Kart into a 10' X 6.5 ' trailer. Be glad I'm not the one towing it once we do figure it out. Out of 12 tires, only 8 are actually on the floor of the trailer. Don't ask, I'll post a pic.

5:30 pm - have all the finished clothes put away and constant washer dryer swap outs happening. Tell Nemo the LOUD cat it's NOT dinner time yet.

5:45 pm - see what damage the last village raid did (why on earth are these idiot sending 300 TTs to my BFE village when I'm just going to kill all of them?) Tell hubby he lost some horse troops and to move reins to my next village that is getting attacked in a couple of hours.

6:00 pm - dig through freezer for dinner. Ooh ham and BBQ sauce on french rolls. Take trash out since tomorrow is garbage day.

6:30 pm - feed fur babies so they will BE QUIET. You'd they were starving. Feed hubby.

6:45 pm - the battle with Scrat and the Muzzle and going potty with the muzzle on begins anew. Needless to say he gets another walk and I'm freezing my tuckus off.

7:00 pm - start this blog post after maybe teaching Scrat that number 2 means no more muzzle.

7:09 pm - wrap up blog post so I can go in and eat my sandwich that I left on the counter 20 minutes ago. Hope Rasta didn't find it.

7:15 pm - edited multiple times to fix mistakes. Probably don't catch all of them. Sigh I was a physics and computer science major, cut me some slack, eh?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Beyond Tired

6:30 am - Wake up for Kickboxing class

7:30 to 8:30 am - Kickboxing

10:30 to 2:30 pm - Funeral

3:00 to 11:00 pm - Docent meeting and public night at observatory.

I don't know about you but I'm going to bed

Friday, November 21, 2008

Muzzle Training...

... you'd think I was beating the little guy with a lead pipe.

Scrat the Brat eats rocks. Any of the people that follow this blog knows this.

I have insurance on him now and that helped with the last episode, but we like there to NOT be a third episode lest it finally be the one that means he has to be cut open. Not a good chance to take.

So Scrat is being 'woeful'. You put the soft mesh nylon muzzle on him and he starts shaking and gets that no one can resist (unless you've been dog owner for a VERY long time) poor poor me look on his face and stops still.

So out comes the leash so I can walk my dog around the yard because he will not go potty with the muzzle on without being on lead.

I guess he thinks that if he has to wear the darn thing, I have to walk him, even though I am always outside with them the entire time they are out in the yard (it's not fully fenced and they believe in walkabouts).

But I'm not caving this time. He's going to get used to the muzzle or rub his nose raw while he's outside trying to get it off. But it will stay on, he will go potty and Mommy will not cave and he will not eat anymore rocks if I can help it.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

This will Fly

The words our best man said at our wedding:

I've seen them fly before
- off of a 5 foot wake given by a willing yacht
- sky beneath them

When they landed and no knife was whipped
- out to alter the smile of a daredevil

This might work

They are
- companions
- coworkers
- playmates
and lovers

Each strong and capable in ways that elicit respect from one another

- This will Fly

To Love to Ken & Jenn

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


This day, this week, this whatever is pissing me off royally right now and causing MASSIVE MOOD SWINGS needs to stop right frakking now.

If it is the BC Pills I started two days ago I'm going to kill someone I swear. Because to get to IVF and children I have to go through them first.


Monday, November 17, 2008

The Goddess in You

or me rather....


Animal: Owl
Color: Blue

Athena is one of the most powerful goddesses in Greek mythology. She was born from the head of Zeus. Zeus - father of all gods, and Metis - the titan of wisdom, had conceived a child. Zeus was worried about this child becoming more powerful than he was. He had the pregnant Metis turned into a fly and ate her. However, he later developed an incredibly powerful headache. He asked another god to bash him in the head to cure it, and out popped Athena, fully armored.

Athena is one of the most courageous of the Greek Goddesses. The city of Athens was named after her - a place of civilization, beauty, strength. Athena was the protectoress of the weak, the patron of warriors, the one who looked after women and children. She always liked to reason her way through an argument, but if she had to defend herself with weapons, she was extremely skilled. She was both independent and nurturing.

Athena is very good at crafts, and is most fond of pottery, spinning and weaving. She is the goddess of wisdom, and is usually represented by the wise owl.

Which Goddess are you?

The last section of that shouldn't come as any surprise to anyone that actually knows me.

This was total swiped from PerpStu

PS this does not mean I'm going to start collecting owls. But I might have to go watch Clash of the Titans again.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I don't talk much about books here on the blog, though I'm an avid reader.

Spent the day running errands, returning muzzles that didn't fit the rock eater (A.k.a Scrat the brat). So I had him with me today so I could make sure I got the right size.

Of course he hates them and does his best to master the 'Oh woe is me' look when he has it on, but I'm tired of forking over hundreds of dollars to get them out of his system. And it doesn't hurt him. And trust me, ruptured bowels would be worse and we have been lucky so far and haven't had to cut him open to remove any and I don't want to have to. They rarely survive that. Not taking any chances.

I picked up two new books today by Dean Koontz: The Darkest Night of the Year (I'm already up to page 200 and something) and Sole Survivor.

Now I'm going to go into the house and color my hair, read some more and probably work on the necklace I'm making for a friend for Christmas. Or knit. Or finish the laundry (oh that's funny). Or just veg.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hope Springs Eternal...

and then you realized it's a rusty spring.

We are still trying to get pregnant.

We have the IVF lined up to start next month.

There are $3000 worth of fertility drugs in my fridge.

We had hoped we got lucky naturally this cycle.

Twas not to be in spite of being three days late based on my last two cycles.

I'm spotting which means tomorrow temps will have dropped and I'll be in pain. The mental part of that show has already started.

You'd think after three years and in spite of knowing we have a IVF lined up, it wouldn't hurt this much. But it does and I suspect it will for a long time to come.

You want to rant and wail at whatever power that be that has decided that this isn't something that is going to come easy, in spite of the woman leaving her four year old at home to go on a drinking binge. Or the mother that drowned her kids by driving her car into a river or drowned them in the tub. Or the father that almost beat his toddler to death on the side of the highway. Or the b* that locked his daughter in the basement and forced himself on her for decades.

You wonder what you are doing wrong? What should you be doing differently? Why them, but not you?

Is it punishment for giving my son up all those years ago? He got a much better life than I could give him at the time. I did the right thing then, but am I paying for it now?

I just don't know. And most days it is the wondering why that is almost enough to keep me in bed. To lose that battle of tackling the new day rather than hiding from it.

I just wish I knew why me.

Friday, November 14, 2008

When the Light at the End of the Tunnel...

.. is really the nonstop Express Train.

Monday I went back to the audiologist to order my new hearing aid. Oticon Epoq XW in Purple with a black Streamer and Orange Skin.

She checks my ear before putting in the goop for the impression and notices a block. Yep, disguta-Jenn has a complete blocked ear canal. That has never happened before.

So I make an appointment to get it cleared out. I ask her if that could have affected my speech recognition scores and she said maybe and that we will retest.

That was this morning. The block is gone. The hearing aid is ordered. My speech recognition scores did not improve at all. And we did it twice with different words.

Still 40%. Still a 22% drop in two years. Still no way to get it back. Still very sad about it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Comments Broken??

Geez either you folks are slacking, I'm boring the h* out of you, or I did something to disable comments on my blog.

Which is it?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

He's my best boy, and I wish I had his life. ;-)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I'm Short

So you'd think I'd miss the rafters when I stand up in the attic spaces.

But I swear the darn things jump out at me.

And the last one was a doozy.

I think it's time for bed cause the headache sure isn't going away now, it just moved to the new bump.

Monday, November 10, 2008

To Finish Stuff...

you have to first make a huge mess.

We decided (thanks to a friend that is dying to rearrange my house) to redo the living room.

This meant moving the monster TV. That would be a 52" Pioneer Plasma from it's lovely corner in the living room, to it's very own wall.

But first it all got moved into the dining room.

That would be a wall with no power. And a top plate stuffed into a roof corner with 4" of clearance. That means drilling from below. Which means opening up the wall.

Since we are moving the orientation from a corner, with the couch cutting across the living room diagonally, to a wall, all the speakers had to be moved for the surround sound to work.

That means running all new speaker wire in the ceiling. As well as relocating the speakers.

Then we thought, oh network. That's one freaking huge monitor there and it's fun to play games on it, but you need internet. So two network lines got ran as well as phone. Don't forget the TV, though we haven't had TV in the house for over two years, we might want it again some day. So let's pull Coax too.

So I actually spent about 6 hours in the attic on Saturday. With loose fiberglass insulation. Have I mentioned just how ALLERGIC to that stuff I am? Triggered my first ever eczema flare 6 years ago which took a ton of prednisone to get under control. That which I cannot take right now. So I am super itchy but keeping it under control by driving everyone else around me nuts.

This is the corner the TV used to be in. See we are neat little wiring freaks and everything runs down the wall to jacks, speakers, network, cable, power. The whole thing.

After getting it moved. The entertainment center got put in place, but not till hubby and a friend spent the better part of Sunday using the dining room table to lay all the components out and figure out how to hook everything up, before it all got backed up to a wall.

So here it is in place, with the TV mounted. The EC in place. The DVD knickknack shelf in place and a huge mess of cables etcetera left over. Hehe.

Our decorator fiend friend will be coming over soon to finish rearranging the rest of the furniture.

And now to knitting. I finished the Dashing Gloves. And OMGosh they fit! This guy has huge hands. When I first started them and still had them on the needles I got him to try to put them on and they wouldn't even go over his hands. But I finished the first one thinking I could give them to another friend. I decided to have him try it on one day and I was nicely surprised and started the second one.

I think he likes them, or he's just super polite. :-) Yarn is the Jo Sharp Silk Tweed, blend something or other. It's yummy to knit with. I hope they last him a while.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

It is Looking Good

The wall is patched and painted.

The TV is mounted on the wall.

The entertainment center has been organized and put in place under it.

The shelving unit that holds all the movies and such fits next to it without having to cut into the stone of the hearth.

Hubby thinks it is cool.

I think it is time for bed.

Pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

More Construction

Almost missed today's post, but for very good reasons.

1. Esthetician visit - hair removal ouch but so worth it

2. Knit group! Woo hoo! First time in over a month and I finished the Dashing gloves for a co-worker finally

3. Remodeling the living room. We are moving the TV and the wall we decided to hang it from didn't have power. So rip a hole in the wall. Realize there's fire blocking. Rip a bigger hole in the wall. Send wife (that would be me) up into the attic to push/pull electric/speaker/coax/network/phone for the better part of four hours. Patch up hole. Watch hubby putting outlets in. Remember I'm in NaBloPoMo. Come out to office and bore my handful of readers to death.

Tomorrow is paint the patch. Mount the TV. Put the furniture in it's new location to utilize ALL of the living room. Sleep. Throw in random snuggles with assorted pets.

Oh and laundry. Never forget the laundry.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Trying Not...

to go on a murderous rampage.

I doubt I will. If I'm going to prison it's going to be for something totally fun.

And that's all I have today.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

How to Keep Going...

...even when you would much rather curl up in that dark hole with a small light and all your knitting and your dog and never come out.

I have a friend that I know reads this blog. This is in direct response to something they are going through these days, but I do not know if the person is clued in to their own behavior enough to recognize what I am going to discuss. If they do recognize it, maybe they will thank me, maybe they will stop talking to me, but it needs to be said.

So this is intended to be a huge dose of get your head out of your butt because you are not the only one that has ever gone through anything like this, will go through anything like this, that there are worse things that could happen and if I can do it you sure as h* can.

I have 'formally' suffered from depression for over 6 years now. I say formally because I had to really hit rock bottom (as in almost suicidal) to realize that I did not want to follow my brother down that path. Note that I do not state that I am no longer suffering from it.

I've had three different therapists over the years. Been on meds and have been med (at least anti depressants) free for over 5 years. I do not believe you can treat depression with therapy alone. The meds can help. That said I won't take them any longer than necessary either. In my case they are not a solution, merely a means to one.

I do not believe that being depressed gives you a free pass to be passive about everything that happens to you, to just take whatever life throws at you, or to whine about it.

Even today, it is a struggle to get out of bed in the morning. I do not want to face the day. It is so much easier to just stay in bed. This in spite of the fact that I love my job, even when it is driving me nuts. I love my husband, even when he is driving me nuts. I have a few choice good friends that are worth getting up for as well. Depression is not logical, but neither can it win.

Every day that I manage to get out of bed and get on with my life is another battle won.

Some people would say I don't have anything to be depressed about. I have a lovely home, a husband that loves me, more animals then I ever thought I'd get to have, a good job, and some very dear friends.

Again with the not logical. But they don't know my history, where I've been, what I've gone through to get to where I am today. It is not something you can just get over, but it is something you can learn to deal with rather than letting it control you. But you have to WANT to beat it, not just deal with it, or use it to hold pity parties.

Then we talk about dealing with physical pain. Unfortunately this is also something I'm well versed in. For the past year+ I've been in constant pain more than 75% of the time. Some days it's better than others, other days it can prevent me from getting out of bed, but I do it ANYWAY. The surgery I had earlier this year did not completely solve the problem. But I get through it. I keep going and for the most part I believe no one has any idea just how much trouble it can be for me to stand up straight some days.

I go to kickboxing to help strengthen my muscles. I'm eating better to get my weight down so it does not make things worse. Granted I hide it from my doctor because the only way I'm being cut open again is for a C-Section or a cochlear implant thank you very much. But if it gets to the point where the getting out of bed cannot happen, I'll go back. I'm not totally stupid.

It can be debilitating, but thankfully those days are few and far between, much more so since the surgery in February.

When I think about giving in to pain and being a cry baby about it, I think of two things. My sister Anita and now my nephew Danny.

My sister Anita has a rare bone disorder that has results in multiple surgeries, mostly in the lower extremities over the course of her life. I cannot believe she walks without pain. But she walks and rides her bike 5 miles a day and she keeps going. I don't know how she does it. But she's one of the most upbeat people I know and the person I want on my side in a fight, because she doesn't give up.

I just recently (last week in fact) got in touch with my sister Chris after a long time of not speaking and found out some very scary news. My 18 year old nephew's left leg was crushed from the knee down in a motorcycle accident in June. He almost lost his leg, heck he almost lost his life. In fact, even right now it is still broken. I don't know how many surgeries he has had in the past five months, but I do know he just finished learning how to walk again ON A BROKEN SHATTERED LEG. And I talked to him.

I am so proud to call this young man my nephew. To him it is no big deal. He called his mom the day of the accident from the ambulance and was so upbeat she thought he was pulling a fast one till the paramedic came on the line. This is just something he has to handle and get through. He sounds great (so much like his father it is scary) and if you did not know what he was going through you would never hear it in his voice. He is a good egg and I am so glad he is still with us.

Life is to be lived, even if the very act of living is sometimes a chore. But you get through it, you bounce back, you get therapy if you need it, meds (legal please - hehe) to help, a different therapist if your current one is a whack job that is just using you as guaranteed income, you suck it up and you move on.

Yes some days will be worse than others, but some will also be better. Look forward to the good ones, rather than dwelling on the bad ones.

And in spite of my pain and my depression, I am happy to be alive, to be here, to have each new day that has been granted me. Because it is one more day to live and get it right.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Knitting Stuff and a Troll

We got our quarterly EARN points last week so I hit Amazon.

I got (ignore most of the rest of the junk you see in the pic - I obviously need to clean my desk off):

Franklin's new book. It's totally adorable
Stephanie's Page a Day Calendar
Nancy Bush's Knitted Lace of Estonia - man they like nupps. I think I'll be using beads instead.
Rosemary's Elements of Style - but it's only available as pre-order right now. Gr. I want it now!

I also got Lego Batman for the PS2 and Lego StarWars the Complete Saga for my DS.

Now that interesting not so little creature you see there in the picture is my new Stargazer Troll.

My hubby got him for me while he was still in Arizona. I LOVE it. You can see more here.

Now I suppose I should go work on that sweater I started for NaKniSweMo.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Just Say No

I am not political by any stretch of the imagination. And this is not a political blog.

Who I vote for on a regular basis tends to lean towards the person that pisses me off the least by the time the election roles around. Maybe that's wrong but at least I vote. And yes my ballot has already been cast for this election.

That said Prop 8 is causing turmoil, and rightly so. I am not very proud of the fact that I live in a state that allowed this to get on the ballot.

You cannot always choose who you love. Just look at women in abusive relationships with no seeming way out because they love the jerkface and cannot imagine life without them even if it means less time in the hospital.

Given the way I'm taxed as a married person, you'd think the government would jump at the chance to get more people on the married side of the tax bracket. They obviously need the money.

The supporters of Prop 8 like to say that same gender relationships are a straight shot to purgatory, and they have a right to their opinion. This is my blog*, therefore you get my opinion.

And let me tell you that any god that would persecute someone for loving another just because they have the same genital makeup, isn't the kind of god I intend to have in charge of my after life.

Besides I'm coming back as one of Rachel's dogs. They have it made.

Just say no to Prop 8.

It is not anyone's right to control what other people want to do with their life as long as it does not hurt you. And same gender marriage does not fall into that category.

*and yes I will practice censorship in the comments if necessary

Sunday, November 2, 2008

A Whole Other Kind of Fragile

I was doing chores today and I always glance into any of the rooms that are open in the house. This is because Scrat monster has a habit of being where he shouldn't.

Since Scrat was playing shadow this morning (as in stuck to me like glue) I just glanced into B3 out of habit more than anything. I sure wasn't expecting to see anything (okay other the the huge piles of stuff in there - hush).

However, I ended up doing a double take, because our little girl kitty, Kaji, decided to stake out a spot in an empty box marked fragile in the staging area for all the stuff we brought back from Arizona.

On the unusual side was that she stayed in it long enough for me to get a picture, even if she wasn't too thrilled with that.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

It's November

Not exactly sure when that happened.

Okay hush you smart aleck in the back, I know 12:00 am this morning. :-P

It's been a rough month and a half, with hubby's mom passing away, taking care of all of that. Work has been way more stressful lately. Then you take into account my latest hearing results and I just want to crawl into a really dark hole with all my knitting (and a small light) and not come out till the world decides to do thing my way.

While I'm dreaming I'd still like a Black Arabian horsey and a 1976 Volkswagen beetle convertible.

There has been knitting. I'm trying to finish a scarf for a friend that just had the same throat surgery as me. Socks for three different people. A sweater for hubby. I have a few hats I want to make as Christmas presents, but we will see how that works out.

I hope to start posting pictures here again soon. It's certainly not for a lack of any, just haven't done it.

Till next time.

Oh, I finally got in contact with my sister Chris again after way too long. Say hi since she might stop by the blog for a gander.

Monday, October 27, 2008

The Results of the ...

...Hearing Test Today.

Speech Recognition:
  • Left: 40% (down from 62%)
  • Right: 32% (down from 40%)
Audiogram: (tests at 10 frequencies)
  • 6 highest frequencies (1500 to 8000): ain't happening. either 100 to 110, which is the same as cannot hear it at all (profoundly deaf here) ** edited to add that out of these 6, I don't register 5 of them at all. **
  • main speech frequency (750): 70 - border of moderately severe to severe hearing loss - no I'm not ignoring you, I really cannot hear you.
  • next higher (1000): 80 to 90 - severe to profound
  • two lowest (250 and 500): 20 and 30 - out of normal and well into mild to slight
The audiogram part of the show is actually fairly stable. Main is slowly getting more severe and normal isn't normal anymore. It's not good news, but I already knew it was that bad.

The hardest part is the speech recognition. Seven years ago my left ear (good ear) caught up with my right ear in the audiogram. They match each other almost perfectly. Over the past seven years , the only thing that really changes was the two lowest frequencies moving out of normal range.

But my speech recognition in my left ear stayed above 60%. Now it is where my right ear was two years ago. It is a 22% drop in two years.

And it is not something I can get back. And I need it. For the phone, for music, for hearing my kitty babies meow, for hearing my little Cliff the Mutt make his baby alligator noises when he wants dinner, to hear my husband, to do my job, to listen to Scrat Monster yelp at the ball, to hear Oscar the Dog whine when he cannot see me.

Ken and I joke that 50% of how I hear is guess work based on the context of the conversation. Looks like it's actually 60%. I cannot take cold calls. If I don't have some idea of what I will be talking about with someone on the phone I'm lost. Same thing in real life.

Progressive bi-aural sensorineural hearing loss sucks. I'm not nearly as graceful as Alison about it. Like that's a shock to any of you that know both of us. And there is no good reason for the loss, no known genetic markers, nothing they can find. Things like this you want something to blame. Okay, I do, maybe not someone else. Again with the not being graceful.

Call a loved one, call a friend, have your child tell you a story, go to a show, listen to your kitty baby purr, hug your dog till he squeaks. Cherish the fact that you can hear all those things.

Monday, October 13, 2008

I know I need to blog

but with everything going on I think y'all will cut me some slack and I promise to play catch up soon.

Just know that hubby is home and we are dealing with things as best we can.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Pam Rinella - In Memory of

For those friends of my mother-in-law that are being directed here to the blog by her son Ken.

The memorial services for 'The Pie Lady' will only be held on Mt. Lemmon.


Community Center
When: Saturday October 4th
Times: 3 pm to 6 pm

Please bring something food wise to share.

If you would like to bring flowers or something of that nature, we would prefer, per Pam's wishes, that donations be made to The Hermitage or The Humane Society of Southern Arizona in Tuscon, in her name.

Also, if you plan to come up and know more people that are, please carpool. Anyone that has been up the mountain knows that parking is at a premium.

As I get more details, they will be posted here and to the Mt Lemmon Cafe website.

Thank you to everyone that has been such a help during this sad time in our lives.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Beyond Tired

I am still in Arizona, but not for much longer.

I hit the road tomorrow morning (Sunday) with a moving truck full of furniture and a very vocal 7 weeks old kitten that needs a home - any takers (on the kitten people not the furniture though I will need help unloading - feel free to come by Monday any time after 9 am Pacific).

It has been a long week. I am at my sister's right now getting ready for bed so the drive isn't a total bear tomorrow. Hubby is still up on the mountain and will be for probably another two weeks while they continue to get things settled. Our friend Shane flew in last night to help him while I head home and our friend Lisa is holding down the animal side of things at home till I get home.

If you do nothing else for those left behind, please make sure important information such as the following:
  • wills
  • life insurance policy
  • health insurance policy
  • property deeds
  • bank information
  • you get the picture

is in a secure and KNOWN location. That would be known by someone other than the deceased. You wouldn't think you'd have to tell people this.

I've already called my parents and said that I don't care if I'm in your will, I just want you to make sure that there is more than one copy in the hands of someone other than yourself.

Death is never easy to deal with, especially those that were unexpected. 65 is too young.

Thank you for all the kinds words.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Rather Unexpected News...

No one will ever want to have the morning we did.

Sheriff's Deputy knocked on the door this morning at 6:22am to inform my husband that his mother passed away last night and his step father was in the hospital.

Marty is home now and in shock as are the rest of us.

We just spoke to her yesterday and she seemed to be fine.

She went peacefully.

We are getting down there (Tucson) as soon as possible.

I'll be out of touch for about a week.

Think good thoughts. I'm not sure it's really hit us just yet.

Goodbye Pam. You were a very special person who will be greatly missed.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Promise

of things to come.

How can one little room hold such a heavy load on it's shoulders, so to speak?

This room holds two promises.

1. The promise of pictures from the last post (I keep those promises)
2. The promise of a child that will hopefully enter our lives soon and get to stay for a while and hopefully find some peace, even if only for a little while.

First the picture

I consider the main wall in all of our rooms the one wall that is not broken by a door, a window or a closet. This is the wall that is usually the main focus of the room and where I tend to choose to put the predominate color of the schema that is in my head.

I wanted this room to be green. It's a good neutral color and most kids like it. But the green I chose (Behr's Asparagus) is too dark to do the whole room. So I needed something to off set it.

So I found a blue with a pretty name (Behr's Coastal Mist). I painted the other three walls that color and used some of the left over green in the closet.

All the trim in the room is the same green in a semi gloss, and the trim around the window will be that color as well.

We bought new closet doors because the originals were as old at the house and had taken a major beating.

So now I get to have even more fun with the paint on those. This is the first run and that took 4 hours. UGH. It's hard work to get those lines right. I am going to do the other side the opposite way since we aren't sure how it's going to look and this way we can choose to flip them over every now and then if we like.

Then we have the promise of the child. We are still awaiting our first foster placement. No news yet. But we have been reading all the books about trauma and attachment and what some of the kids we might get could have gone through. That means this room needs to be peaceful but cheery enough to help that child work through the events in their life that brought them into our lives, hearts and home.

I want this to be a place where they do not have to be scared or worried or lonely or angry. And while all of those emotions will be a part of them by the nature of their placements, maybe this room can help them forget for a little while and know that they have a place where they are safe and loved and cared for with no strings attached. Then maybe, just maybe, for a little while they might also be happy.

That is a lot of promise for a little room, but perhaps it is a promise that can be kept.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I wish I could say I were Slacking...

but it appears all slacking is only on this here blog.

Quickie update
  • Issue from last post got resolved
  • Last Saturday I worked AGAIN, and then did more lovely things to the new kid room in the house. We are still hoping for our first foster placement. The room is painted, blues and greens, and we are waiting for a phone call. No furniture yet
  • Sunday we played hooky and took the doggies to the Bay Area Pet Fair where my little Cliff the Mutt got THIRD Place in the Most Muttalicious category of The Other Dog show.
  • Monday back to the slog and I let my cold get the better of me
  • Tuesday stayed home sick and start MS4 with Habu Textiles Bamboo Lace weight in Charcoal. Stash yarn from last year. And SLEPT a lot.
  • Wednesday - work and more work and a hair cut and taking care of Hubby since I was kind enough to share my cold
  • Today - rough day - but all is well. I'm not elaborating here any further. Suffice it to say Operation Baby Quest is in full gear again and I shan't be sharing here as promised. I'll just have to torture you in person.
  • Tomorrow - I think hubby and I are going to dinner for our anniversary which is Saturday
  • Saturday - 5th wedding anniversary - not sure what we are doing. Sleeping in will perhaps be on the menu but I might hit kickboxing class in the morning.
  • Sunday - my birthday - again with the sleeping and whatever else I want to do that day. It is my day after all.
  • Monday - I'm taking a comp day
FYI, I started Taunya's kickboxing class and I'm enjoying it. What's not to like, They let me hit and kick stuff that doesn't strike back.

Pictures of the new room next post I promise.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Why am I in this Handbasket...

and where am I going?

And who wants to come along?

Let's just say it was a bad day. I cannot elaborate further.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Scrat Monster is sick again

Hubby took him to the vet this morning around 10:30 with the same symptoms as last time.

Looks like the rock is in his stomach right now and they are leaning towards cutting him open to get it out rather then try to pump it out.

Please send good thoughts.


Make that multiple rocks. One in his stomach they are going to try to get out with a scope. Multiples in both large and small intestines.

We are waiting. And I'm scared.

***Update 10:30 PM ***

Scrat Monster is home. They got the rock in his stomach out with a scope. 4 passed the disgusting way. They think one is still in him but they don't think it is big enough to get stuck.

I now have an $800 rock and $1200 rock. Scrat has to be part cat, because he's just used up a second life. He's moping right now because I'm making him get used to his soft muzzle. It will be worn by him whenever he is outside off lead.

Harsh, but necessary and recommended by the vet.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

15 hours and what do you get?

That's 15 hours on the phone with a client Sunday. 7 hours on the phone with the same client Monday.

2 daily scheduled phone calls with the same client for the next two weeks, not including impromptu dial in NOW messages. And I'm on call for after hours stuff and they have my direct line. Help.

All that equates to a Tired Tiny Tyrant.

I'm hard of hearing. I hate the phone. It's a HUGE effort for me to do one short phone call let alone that kind of marathon. I'm waiting to get sick. I always do after something like that.

But on the plus side I am getting off my keester and I signed up for and am actually GOING to kickboxing classes. They haven't killed me yet, so I guess they are making me stronger.

There has been minimal, like 30 stitches, knitting the past week, but there has been knitting.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Double Digit Doggy

Ten years ago today an event occurred that would affect the rest of my life. Little did I know exactly what the Fates had in store for me.

I was married to my first husband at the time and he wanted another dog and really wanted it to be a Boston Terrier.

December 23, 1998 I get a call at work from my husband saying I need to come down to the Humane Society and see this little guy they have. He's 8 pounds and four months old of half Boston and half Traveling Salesman. So I met Bob there and there was this little yappy, crooked teethed, crooked nosed, bundle of fur in with this little female Fox Terrier.

Bob, of course decided he actually wanted the FT, but it thankfully had a hold on it already. I promptly fell in love with the little brown guy that the FT was just mean to. Really truly while we were there she wouldn't let him near the front of the kennel or the water dish. I was bringing him home or else. (Turns out the little b* had bit him and punctured his lower jaw, but I got that fixed)

We started makin
g arrangements with our landlord to bring the little guy home. The words 'Crate Training' are all powerful for renters that want a four month old puppy. We got permission and I left work early on Christmas Eve to go pick him up, since Bob was picking his parents up from the airport (I think - it's been a while).

I went to pay the fee and they said no he's FREE. So I asked why. He had been adopted out once to a couple with a two year old little girl. Apparently they were left together unsupervised and Cliff bit her. Rather than use this as an opportunity to be a better parent, they dumped him back at the HS. I got him because I didn't have kids. He spent the rest of that day curled up on my lap.

Yeah he's been my dog since day 1.

We napped together, went through dog training together, he was with me when my marriage fell apart and he helped my ex's dad deal with cancer. When he was allowed in the bed he always curled up with me.

Cliff went on to eat one of each of my pairs of dress shoes. He learned that eating Mommy's cross stitch project is a really good way to get in a LOT of trouble. He also learned that chasing after deer in Annadel is an excellent way to send Mom into a panic attack.

He went through obedience training with flying colors.

Cliff has long since redeemed himself for biting the little girl. He is excellent with children. He is a Pet Assisted Therapy dog now. We can take him anywhere and know he will behave.

My husband Ken has never been much of a dog person, even with Cliff, sin
ce Cliff doesn't play much. But he had to take Cliff on a camping trip with another friend and their dog and I got the best compliment ever when they got home. Before that trip, seeing the friend's dog, he'd never appreciated just what a well behaved dog Cliff is.

He's my little bed bug. He has bad knees, but a good weight so they don't bother him. He loves blankets and squeaky toys. He hates the water. His middle name is Tiberius. His first name is actually Clifton, even if he named after the bar fly on Cheers (half Boston, and we already had a Norman dog, get it?)

He is the best dog I could have ever asked for and I don't know what I'll do when it is his time to go.

Hopefully that's not something I'll have to deal with for many years to come.

Happy 10th Birthday baby dog. I love you so much.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Poetry, Physics and Philosophy

The title of this piece brings together three things that are not always thought of in the same context. Physics usually remains removed from poetry and philosophy, while philosophers can use poetry to get their point across and poets use their work to let the reader know their particular philosophical stance.

A favorite poem from my youth is the following:

Fire and Ice by Robert Frost
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

Most interpretations of this piece of work lend themselves to a discussion of love versus hate. Being the geek that I am, I prefer to look at it as an explanation of where the universe may have come from and where it may be going.

The Big Bang Theory is the model that scientific evidence and observation currently supports the most. Basically that the universe began as a hot primordial mess at a specific point in the past and has continued to expand to what we have today.

Many scientists are still at odds over exactly how all that matter ended up in that point at that time with enough energy to create the universe as we know it. The Big Bang theory is not meant to explain that very beginning point in time. It is intended to explain events since just after the ‘explosion’ happened.

We enter the realm of cosmology (NOT cosmetology as my mother loved to tell people) when we start looking at how the Big Bang happened. For the sake of this article, I will focus on the cyclic model postulate.

It was put forth to my class at some point during my undergraduate studies that the universe may be what we call an oscillatory universe. That is one in which the universe could consist of an infinite sequence of finite universes which end with a Big Crunch which then leads to the next Big Bang.

For this to happen, the universe would have to be dense enough to stop its current rate of expansion while maintaining enough matter that it would begin to contract in upon itself due to the gravitational pull of the remaining matter.

The main problem with the cyclic model is the matter of entropy. This being that in statistical mechanics, entropy only increases due to the Second Law of Thermodynamics. This implies that each successive cycle will get longer and longer, while each preceding cycle was smaller and smaller, till again we are trying to figure out how all that matter got into one place, in one point, at one time and decided to explode in the first place. This could also imply that there will come a point at which enough matter is lost in the next explosion that the universe will simply expand in its last cycle until it burns itself out and nothing is left.

So what if we have been here before? What if you have lived this very life in a past universal expansion? What if you may be at this point again in the next one?

What if those weird senses of déjà vu are from the fact that we are going through this cycle over and over again with the universe, and we REALLY have done all this before?

For many of us, this may be a scary proposition. For others, this may be a validation. If it were actually the case, what would you change, what things would you want a chance to do over? Would you donate more time or money to making the world a better place? Would you simply not care because you know it has to end sometime? These questions are no easier to answer than the one of how the universe came to be in the first place.

But in the end, it may simply not matter. Nothing is forever. But, given that all current evidence points to the fact that universe is expanding and that expansion is accelerating, what if this is the last cycle? What if the previous one (if there was one) was the first?

That cycle ended in fire. This cycle may end in ice.

Which would you prefer? Fire and the chance to do it all over or ice and believing that this is all there is and we should make the most of it while we can?


How's that for my hundredth post?

Friday, August 1, 2008

In Memory of

Margaret Louise Connor.

My grandmother passed away a few minutes ago. I think she went peacefully.

It was quicker than they thought a couple of weeks ago.

I'm glad I made the decision to go down and see her while I still could. Another week would have been too late.

Good bye.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Thoughts for Thursday

Having spent 15 hours in a car with nothing but a dog for conversation leaves you plenty of time for thinking. Too much time.

So I came up with the brilliant idea (ha - I've been awake for 40 hours so pardon the delusions) of Thoughts for Thursday.

My iPod saved my sanity on this trip, and my new Griffin FM transmitter with autoscan and the fact that my husband fixed my radio so I can actually SEE what station I'm on (and the fact that leaving at 10:00 at night meant I missed traffic in San Francisco, LA and Phoenix).

One of the songs that I ran through was LeAnn Womack's 'Forever Everyday'

I knew this kid, his name was Michael
He was only four years old
We sat on a rock and started talkin'
And he told me things I didn't know
He said yesterday he was an Indian
And how he played with buffalo
Well, I got a sense that he had been there
And he made me really wanna go

Remember waitin' all year for December
Thought God was cryin' when it rained
And that the stars were fireflies
Dreams were real and big as life
It was forever everyday

I was tuckin' in my little girl
She held my hand and we said a prayer
I prayed, "Bless Grandma with the angels."
And she said, "Hey Mom, she's standin' over there."
Well, I couldn't see her but I don't doubt it
Maybe 'cause I'm older and less wise
What if Heaven’s all around us
But only seen through children’s eyes

Remember waitin' all year for December
Thought God was cryin' when it rained
And that the stars were fireflies
Dreams were real and big as life
It was forever everyday

They say when you're old you're a child again
But do we have to wait 'till then

Remember waitin' all year for December
Thought God was cryin' when it rained
And that the stars were firefliesD
reams were real and big as life
It was forever everyday
I knew this kid his name was Michael

It made me wonder just what would we be able to see if we would just take the time to look and believe.

With my physics degree I know what stars actually are, but I wish I could see them as fireflies again.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

To Be There for Her.

I have a very weird family tree. I am adopted so I have the branches of Mom and Dad. I suppose my branch and that of my siblings are grafted onto that tree.

I found my biological mother 12 years ago and with her a half sister whom I adore as well as a grandmother whom I've only met once, 5 years ago. We were a little worried about telling her that I found them. I am the 'bastard' grandchild that was given up after all. I represent failure on a large scale.

My sister is Anita and in the past two years she's had a heck of a burden to bear. Our grandmother Margaret and Margaret's husband (not our grandfather) have been declining in health. Anita managed to get the husband moved to a VA hospital near Tucson (they were in Las Vegas) and got Margaret settled in the house next door to her (how's that for convenience?).

Anita had to place Margaret in hospice care last week. The doctors are only giving her two more months. She is in liver and renal failure as well as retaining fluids. She is also in the not so early stages of congestive heart failure. There are lucid moments and moments when she 'wants to put a brownie in her ear' and will tell you so.

While Anita's mother also lives in Tucson, I believe Anita is handling most of the care as well as working full time and dealing with her own health issues.

Needless to say I'm going to Tucson this week. One to see Margaret while the lucid moments are more than the demential ones; two to see my sister and try to help as much as I can for the short while I can be there for her.

I am taking Cliff with me, since he is a therapy dog and the place that Margaret is in encourages animal visits. Perhaps he'll help make some of the other people there feel better too.

It seems like so very little though. While I consider Anita my family, I do not consider our mother nor our grandmother the way everyone else sees their mother and grandmother. They didn't raise me (thank goodness - story for another time), but the sense of obligation is still there.

So the her I'm going to be there for is three fold - for Anita because she's done so much, Margaret because she did say she'd like to see me, and me because I feel this is something I need to do.

I leave Thursday morning and will be back the following Monday.

Monday, July 14, 2008

What would you do?

I don't know what to do.

I have a son that I gave up for adoption. He turned 18 in May. I know where he is, I know his parents name and address.

I don't know what to do. I don't know if he knows he's adopted.

I want to let them have my contact information. As an adoptee myself, I know how hard it was to find my birthmother. As a birthmother I want to make it easier for him, while being terrified that he won't want to meet me. I cannot say that I blame him. I've been where he is and my birthmother is a real piece of work.

I have a very close friend that lives 15 minutes from him who will let me use her as a reference. Her daughter knows him through Facebook. It truly is a small world.

So do I:

Contact him directly?

Contact his parents first?

Go through an intermediary?

I have registered with the International Reunion Registry.

What would you do?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Nephew Mine

I still don't have pictures, for which I can still blame your mother. :-)

Happy 22nd Birthday Michael.

I hope you are well.

Aunt Jenni

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Tired of the Brick Wall

It seems we get one step closer to getting a child in our home only to find out something else is standing in our way.

We got our foster license 5 weeks ago. We've been hoping for a phone call, something anything, saying come meet this child we hope to place with you. I've been patient and not called the social worker every single day since the license came in the mail. I only called once to apologize for missing the picnic when I first got sick.

I caved today and called my social worker (SW) at Family, Youth and Children's Services and politely asked if there was anything we should be doing to get a placement sooner.

The first thing my licensing SW said was well how far along in the adoption process are you? I was thinking what the h* does that have to do with getting a foster child. I said not very far because they will not give me the paperwork because we are still trying to get pregnant with medical intervention. Full disclosure here people.

However I was calling them (my adoption specialist) back this week and saying "Look! See! Still NOT PREGNANT! Send me the frakking paperwork. " But I shall wait until I'm not so pissy about it.

So I nicely told the SW that I was calling the adoption specialist back this week and requesting the paperwork.

She said okay and that our placement would probably come through the adoption people because we are listed as a Fost/Adopt home. Again with the people that won't deal with me yet.

So I asked her if that meant that we would get a placement when we start the process with the Adoption people, or if that meant we had to wait till we got approved by them. She said it wouldn't be until we got approved by them. At least 6 months away. And that is if I'd already submitted the paperwork I cannot have.

I asked the SW why we couldn't have a placement now. We fully understand that it may not be permanent, that the child may go home or to a relative. That is always the hope. We are more than willing to offer a child a safe and loving environment until their situation is worked out, or they move on to their permanent home, if ours does not suit them.

She said that she thought that we were only interested in children with minimal legal risk, meaning a very small likelihood of going home. I think I set her straight on that, politely and calmly.

That we are still open to any age group. When it comes time for permanent placement a younger child MIGHT (big big might there people) be preferred if only in regards to attachment issues. But I flat out said simply that we are ready to have a child in our home, even if that child isn't there to stay.

We are fully prepared to have to let the child go. Why else have I been reading every attachment, adoption, parenting hurt children book I can get my hands on for the past 6 months?

At the end of the conversation (in which I congratulated myself for not screaming my fool head off at the woman - I really really wanted to) she said she would send an email out to her staff within the next few days letting them know we are available and ready.

I hung up, promptly burst into tears, and called Ken and made sure I hadn't told her anything he did not agree with as well.

Yes I'm complaining again. But this shouldn't be this hard. A bunch of dingbat teenagers can get pregnant as part of a pact, but I cannot help some child get through a very traumatic experience and give them a safe loving environment in which to heal, maybe for a little while, maybe forever.

This brick wall hurts and I'm a little tired of banging my head on it.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Be Safe Have Fun

I shall be spending the next three days hanging out at Sugar Barge in my rig or on the Sacramento River Delta on my jet ski.

Have a fun and safe 4th of July everyone.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Green Eggs and Ham

I've been slacking on the blog front lately. I can blame it on being sick and still generally negative and didn't want to torture all of you with that.

I am starting to feel better, but the fire smoke is aggravating things, and let me tell you that Biacin is EVIL EVIL stuff. I don't like plorking at home improvement stores. :-( But I will finish the course because I'm a good little patient. (heh - I crack myself up)

So last Tuesda
y I had to run an errand for hubby up in Healdsburg and my friend Susan lives up there and I was like, ooh I can take her egg carton back and finally meet the chickens. As I hit town I saw that the Farmers Market was that night.

So I get hubby's errand done (client's office got broke into and went and picked up their server) and headed back out of town and gave Susan a call. Hmmm, she's not home. So I call her cell. Sure enough she's at the Farmers Market, so I turn around.

I found Susan at the town square and chatted for a bit and made sure she had more eggs for me
to take home. I had to wait till 4 on the dot to actually make the purchase. LOL I love seeing her, she's just the sweetest thing.

So I got eggs from Susan, and then I got some cherries and peaches and boysenberries from a couple of other stands and headed home.

We spent the weekend working on the bedroom remodel some more (moved back in Saturday night), so I got up yesterday and wanted to make breakfast (see I told you I'm sick).

Green Eggs and Ham (prosciutto - mmm Cittero) omelets.

Hubby got a three egg omelet and made a two eggs one for myself.

I started my Fawkes sock at midnight Friday for Summer of Socks 2008.

I cannot believe how fast it's working up. I'm doing it on DPNs, and I'm already at the gusset decreases. The pattern is pretty easy but I still don't have it memorized.

The yarn is just scrumptious. Claudia Handpaint in Citrus. The color is brighter in person and perfect for something based on flames.

And the best thing...

It fits so far.

I will probably do Nanner socks next or the SoS only pattern that Wendy created for this year's SoS, I have some obnoxious stripey yarn that will look great with it.

Monday, June 16, 2008

You should be very very glad...

that I missed knit group this past weekend and the one before.

I have bronchitis. I never knew until today that it is contagious. At least one of my co-workers is going to kill me when they find out. Sigh.

I now have good drugs that hopefully will work at least on the coughing.

There's been knitting, and Travian, and Pirates, and construction, but I'm going to go see if I keep my lungs INSIDE my chest for a little while longer.

However still no munchkins yet. We are hoping for a placement call soon.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Good Thoughts are Needed

I've been up since 3:45 this morning. What woke me I couldn't tell you. All I know is I sat straight up in bed, wide awake and saw my husband getting dressed and little boy Scrat was on the bed (a BIG no-no in our house) waiting for him.

Turns out Scrat woke Hubby up crying. Scrat's been throwing up lately among other things, but then he just keeps on going. I switched his food and we kept an eye on him.

We thought it might be a reaction to the shots he got last week (Lepto, Rabies and Distemper), but his energy level was fine. He horked dinner again last night and we decided to call our vet this morning to see if she wanted to see him.

Then this morning, as stated, he woke Ken up crying around 3 am. Ken took him out to the office to see if he would settle, but he just kept wandering around the office and crying at random intervals then horked again.
So Ken brought him back in to get dressed and take him to the emergency vet that is just around the corner.

I, of course, went with. On the way over, he was in Ken's lap and started crying again. :-( They took him back and couldn't find anything through touch. Gave the vet the history. She gave us some options. We know he will eat anything he can get in his mouth, so she recommended an XRay.

Sure enough, the little bugger has a good sized rock in his small intestine. We don't know if it is stuck, or if it might pass on its own. It is maybe about the size of a robin's egg (not huge, but not small). They have him on fluids and pain meds right now to rehydrate him and to see if it moves any.

We suspect they will probably decide to operate after we talk to them again at 10.

Think good thoughts please. We love the little bugger and would like him back in one piece.

FYI - is a lifeline given what we are going to have to drop to pay for this. Approved quickly for more than I asked for, so one less thing to worry about.


He's OKAY! No surgery. I called at 10 and they said they would do the next X-Ray at noon and then call me.

Pins and needles let me tell you. It had moved but they were not really sure where it still was in the intestinal tract, small intestine or colon. At this point we start to worry about abrasion and possible puncture and subsequent infection, but his blood work as fine.

We made the decision to take the doc's recommendation and inflate the little bugger (poor guy) and take another XRay (he's gonna glow in the dark tonight) to see if they thought it could move further before deciding to cut him open. That was all happening at 12:30 and I went to lunch.

2:30 still no call. Start hounding hubby to call them. He's of the no news is good news. Not she who is hyped on an AMP drink to stay awake (evil stuff stay away from it). So he caved and called them for me.

The rock came out on its own! He is MUCH happier. Hopefully Ken will get to go get him soon. They may monitor him for infection for a little while longer.

I got the little bugger a muzzle at lunch time, so we don't have to go through this again. He's outside unsupervised, he's in the muzzle. Period. First chicken bones (don't ask - they know us well at this place), now this.

And I'm keeping that rock. It cost me about $1000. It's mine.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Kick Me While I'm Down

Today is the last time I blog about our baby quest unless something good comes out of it.

We had a good cycle last cycle in terms of procedure and a hopeful outcome. We did everything right, our doctor did everything right.

However, Friday Mother Nature again decided to kick me in gut, with no warning (no PMS, nothing). There is no baby to be, the last IUI was unsuccessful and we saw the fertility specialist on Friday to see where we go from here.

There is another test to see just how big of an impact the scar tissue from that fateful C-Section 18 years ago (yeah he turned 18 two weeks ago, I cannot believe it) has had on the inside of my uterus. Those results will determine if we actually move forward with IVF attempt, or give up completely.

So I spent most of Friday afternoon hoping that no one at work could hear me crying, because I really couldn't stop crying for long periods of time. Of all the days to be out of Kleenex at work.

Woke up Saturday with a fever and no voice, I guess the Fates decided to kick me while I'm already down. Emotional breakdown followed by a physical one. Gee thanks. It's appreciated. Not.

I am doing better today. Fever broke last night. Mostly just aches and a headache at this point. Trying desperately to keep my depression from getting the best of me. I should be in the office tomorrow, but T if I'm not and you read this, you know why.

Now if I could just figure out who gave me this bug, I'd be much happier, because I'm more than inclined to give it back.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Rinella Foster Home

Guess what I'm looking at right now?

Okay the computer screen doesn't count. I can touch type, you know. ;-)

Foster Parent Identification Card ****** County Human Services Department

Foster Parent Name: Jennifer Rinella
Expiration Date: 5/23/2013
Name of Facility: Rinella Foster Home

How absolutely cool is that?!?!?! I am so excited. And I so wanted to tell someone, but couldn't think of anyone to call (no offense T, you have to put up with me all day at work). So I'm telling all of you.

It's Official!

At some point I'll stop tearing up thinking about it.

I cannot wait till we get our first placement. And, yeah, we got licensed for any age 0 to 18.

It's going to be a wild ride, but we are ready. It's time.

Friday, May 23, 2008

What a way to go!

How to know that I am truly insane?

I got signed up for Sockwars in spite of only having finished one real sock to date (booties don't count).

I figured what the hay? I have Tofutsies in my stash and this will be a chance to use some of it. But I am SO dying in the first week.

Sure enough:

This showed up on my doorstep Wednesday May 14th.

That's a pair of Detonator Socks in KnitPicks Memories in the Mountain Dusk colorway. I think it's mostly purple. Other people see it and say they are blue. It doesn't really matter since they are all mine
. ::big grin::

Now I started the war with a handicap. My dossier was one of several that went missing the first day. Being OCD, I couldn't bring myself to start in spite of having the pattern till I knew if my target was a guy or a girl. Sorry, sometimes I can bust away from it, other times not to successful.

So Saturday morning cast on and knocked out for the count by my husband's cold. Then totally sucking with the increases, I'd blame brain fog, but truly I'm not that great of a knitter, yet. I frogged the first set of pattern
s repeats about 5 times till I picked an increase that I could do and didn't totally suck (boy was I wrong) but I made progress.

Then Sunday I managed to injure myself royally with the quad incidence (it's healed nicely thank you). Scars yes, do I care? Nope. They remind me of my stupidity.

Then Monday I got the email. Your socks are on the way! YELP! I've only got 5 pattern repeats done in the leg for the first sock. Knit, knit, knit, knit, knit. Ow, ow, ow, ow, ow. Stupid Jenn, stupid Jenn, stupid Jenn, stupid Jenn, stupid Jenn.

I managed to get to the heel flap due to us taking a road trip to take Dinke (the turtle) to her new home. BTW She's doing great and she's about to have some male playmates! I actually miss her, but it sounds like she's in a much better place.

So this is what I sent my assassin.

The started sock (without the needles thank you very much), all the yarn (Tofutsies in Three Feet Short), B&B Works Shea it isn't so Foot lotion (this is a SOCK war after all) and the softest fake sheep on the planet.

She liked the swag even if I'm sure she cussed the sock the entire time she spent finishing them.

Then the day after I mailed them, I finished the second sock of the first pair I ever made.

Woo hoo. Then I also signed up for Summer of Socks 2008 so I can get rid of some of the sock yarn in my stash. I cannot wait for it to start.

And yeah, I'm gonna try that Detonator pattern again now that I know how to do the increase.

PS Yeah I'll be there for Sock Wars IV. I'm going to try to take the starting Friday off and hit a B&B on the coast and knitting all freaking weekend. Hubby can hold down the fort for three days.