Thursday, February 25, 2010

It's Not Wednesday and I'm Not London, But This is Random

As the work week goes on, I find that the effort of juggling a full time job, a 3.75er, a husband, and my exercise routine makes me a little...um...scattered some times. This week has been getting to me, so I'm not even going to try for coherent paragraphs that actually have something to do with one another. Thank goodness for randomness!

  • We are supposed to get 6-12 inches of snow. I don't drive in that much snow. So, I woke up this morning, looked out the window and saw...no snow. It was snowing, but not sticking. So, now I'm at work hoping that the snow doesn't start to stick for a few more hours.
  • You remember when I broke up with my stylist? I went to a new one. She changed her hours, so I tried another new one. She left the salon. Last night I had another new one. I love the haircut, but I'm not thrilled with the color. I think it would be easier to just shave my head than find a decent stylist.
  • I'm hooked on Snyder's of Hanover's Sour dough pretzels. I like them so much that I can't bring a box into the house without eating the entire thing in a day. Instead, I buy one bag a day at work. One bag comes with two pretzels. Today, when I opened my bag, there were four pretzels. It totally made my day.
  • We managed to find a way to get Michael to take his Benadryl. Andy needed to take some into daycare for him on Tuesday, so he picked up the generic stuff. It turns out that the generic stuff tastes much better than the brand name stuff. Much better. Who knew?
  • Michael's hives are almost gone, but don't worry, he's picked up another cold. I'm not at all surprised. Let's just hope that he doesn't get an ear infection.
  • One downside to using an elliptical or running, as opposed to the exercise bike, is that it's hard on the toes. I ended up with an ingrown toenail. It wasn't bad, and a little basic first aid has really helped. The problem now is that it's healing and OMG does my toe itch! I've been squirming in my seat all day trying to rub my toe on different parts of my desk. I'm as squirmy as a 3.75 year old.
  • We have been enjoying the Olympics. Michael ended up watching the speed skating the other day, which lead to a major speed skating race breaking out in my dining room and kitchen. I'm ashamed to admit that I was beat out for the gold by a pipsqueak. He should have been DQed for not switching paths around the dinning room table properly, but the judges let him slide.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

What is 3.75?

Do you have a child that is 3.75 years old? Is that child driving you insane? Mine is. But, not always. There are moments when the future 4 year old shows through,and it's brilliant and heartwarming. It's also temporary. A tease. A carrot dangling down in front of me that I never seem to reach.

But, how do you explain it to other people that aren't going through it at the moment? How do you make it clear that despite the fact that your child is wonderful and sweet, the child is also a raving maniac?

How about a few examples.

  • Michael really needed a hair cut. He's been so unpredictable lately that I've been afraid to push the issue. We had some time last night, so I tossed out a causal, "Want to get your hair cut?" Quite to my surprise he said yes, and then preceded through the entire process from getting into his car seat to looking at his belly button every time the woman asked. It was completely painless. Not a single argument. No stalling. Nothing. It was actually pleasant! The stylist even complimented me on how nice Michael was. Pure mothering gold.
  • Also last night. I asked Michael what he wanted for dinner. I gave him a choice. Dinosaur noodles, hot dog, letter tater totters. He picked the tater tots. I made the tater tots. I put the tater tots on the table. Michael threw a massive tantrum because he wanted dinosaur noodles. I refused to make him dinosaur noodles. He continued to tantrum. We sent him into the living room. 20 minutes later I warmed the tater tots in the microwave, took them into the living room, and Michael ate them as if nothing had happened.
  • A few nights ago, Michael the master staller, did a major bedtime stalling act. If it wasn't so annoying, I'd be more impressed by his ability to find a way to impede every step of the bedtime routine. "Put my socks on my hands mommy!", "I want to use the other tooth brush daddy", "You read that last page wrong mommy!". He never even said he didn't want to go to bed. He just artfully drew out every 30 second task to a minute long task. By the end, I was completely frustrated, but he was all smiles the entire time.
  • Right after the most amazing and frustrating stalling of all time, I was getting ready to lay him in bed when he leaned in and whispered, "I'm so glad I have you and daddy."
  • And of course, let's not forget the big one. "Why, why, why, why, why, why...?"
Please, please let four be a little more rational!

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On a different note, we are forecast to get 6-12 inches of snow tomorrow. We have already had record snowfall this year. Mother Nature is just show boating at this point. She clearly has never had a job and need to manage her sick/vacation time.

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I'm pretty sure I'm going to end up staying home with Michael again. I'd like to request that the rational, pleasant almost 4 year old show up; not the crazy, tantruming 3.5 year old. WHo do I talk to about that?

Monday, February 22, 2010

Still Itchy

Michael is still itchy. I'm not surprised, the doctor said it should take about a week for the hives to clear up. It was a little bit disturbing to see that things got worse before any improvement started.

Several commenters recommended that we try the Aveeno oatmeal bath. I had already picked some up, so I did give them a try. The bath certainly distracted Michael for a long time, but I'm not sure how soothing the oatmeal was. Michael's skin seems to respond the best to cool air. The warm bath left him pretty pink all over. I'll probably leave the rest of the packets for me. I could use a nice relaxing bath.

Friday night, Michael had a hard time sleeping. I can't blame him. By the time he got up at 6:00 am, his left eye was swollen shut and his right eye wasn't much better. I tried to get an ice pack on his eyes, but he's too stubborn for that kind of thing. The Benadryl, on the other hand, made a big difference. As long as he takes it, he looks itchy, but doesn't seem to mind the hives at all.

I really wanted to take him out for a little while on Saturday, but I didn't think other parents would appreciate seeing Michael's inflamed face over the train table at Barnes and Noble, so we stayed home and cleaned the house instead. Andy and I had a date night, so my mom got to give him his final dose of medicine for the day. He was a perfect angel for her. (He was not when she gave it to him on Friday.)

He did manage to make it through the night Saturday, but he was up at 5:45. Not the best time for me after a date night. But, that's part of being a mom. His face was still pretty swollen, but his eyes weren't as bad. He was also itchy...um...down there. Poor kid. No wonder he was up so early. I manged to get more Benadryl into him, and he was as sweet as could be all day. We went to the grocery store, played in the snow, and even made a trip to the book store. He did wonderfully.

He was also exhausted by the end of they day and crashed while I was reading him his bedtime stories. It was a really pleasant day, even with the itchies.

This morning Michael decided that he was done with the Benadryl. We tried really hard to get him to take it, but after most of it ended up on me, I decided that I'm done. He doesn't need it, it just makes him feel better. I'm not going to fight that battle, especially since he's looking better today than he has since Thursday morning. Hopefully, this is almost over and I won't have to worry about giving him medicine for at least a few days.

I wonder what will pop up next?

Friday, February 19, 2010

Phone Photo Friday - A Challenge

My challenge to you is to read this post without scratching yourself.

The good news is that Michael took every single dose of his Amoxicillin without a fight. Not even any hesitation. I would give him the dosing spoon and he would drink it up. Every single time. It was such a huge relief. When I gave him the last dose on Wednesday morning I was thrilled.

Of course, no one ever talks about the good news unless there is bad news.

On Wednesday evening I noticed a few bug bite looking spots on Michael's neck and noticed him scratching. I wondered if my mom's cats - that haven't been outside for 4 years - had gotten fleas. Then I wondered if some of the ants had escaped from my mom's ant farm. Both seemed unlikely. I figured maybe Michael had gotten something on his neck, so we gave him a bath and sent him to bed.

He was up four times Wednesday night, so I knew something was up, but I had no idea what was going on. I got him up, looked under his shirt and went, "Wow! Those are hives!"

I'll be honest. One of the first things that crossed my mind was, "Maybe I can give him some Benadryl and send him to school." Any working mom who's short on sick time will understand where that thought comes from. However, it didn't last very long. It was quickly replaced with, "OMG, that must really itch!"

Michael was actually in a good mood, and wasn't scratching much at all. He wasn't having any trouble breathing so I gave him some Benadryl and decided to wait for the doctor's office to open. As the morning progressed I realized I should probably take some pictures so that we could track if the hives were getting worse or better. This is what he looked like.


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It breaks my heart just looking at him. It also makes me really itchy. I think I actually scratched more yesterday than he did!

I called my mom to see if she had done anything different with him on Wednesday that might cause this. The only unusual thing was that he ate a Slim Jim. (Seriously, a Slim Jim? The kid that won't eat most meats will eat that garbage?) There were no chemicals or cleaning products used. They hadn't been in her apartment to spray for bugs. They aren't painting any apartments near her. Nothing that would lead to this.

The doctor saw us 11:00. The moment she walked into the room she said, "Wow, those are hives!" I would be proud of my accurate diagnosis, but it's really obvious that Michael has hives.

We discussed possible triggers and the doctor is very confident that Michael is having a reaction to the Amoxacillin. She make a big note of it on his chart and made sure I understood that he can't have any of the penicillin family of antibiotics ever again. She also cautioned against cephalosporins as well. Crap. She also pointed out that someone with one allergy is likely to have more than one. Double crap.

I have a lot of emotions about this. It's not horrible. It's a lot easier to prevent exposure to penicillin than, say, peanuts. It limits and complicates future treatments for infections, but there are other antibiotics for most infections.

But still, every time I look at him, it breaks my heart. I just want to give him a kiss and make it all better, but that doesn't work.

As far as treatment goes, because he isn't wheezing and it's not getting much worse, she wants me to give him Benadryl every six hours until it clears up, in about a week. A WEEK! That's a very itchy week.

Oh, and the kicker? Michael hates the Benadryl and is now fighting every one of the four doses a day. So that happy dance I did when the Amoxicillin was finished without a fight was wasted.

To Michael's credit, aside from refusing to take his medicine, he's been very good about this all. He was great at the doctor and he was fun and pleasant all day. He was very good about not scratching until the evening when I think it just got to be too much for him. I'm pretty sure if that was me, I'd be whining, crying and scratching all day long.

So, did you make it through without scratching? I didn't.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday. Please!

I come from a very boisterous family. I mean, very, very boisterous family. After watching my family for an hour one evening, a friend was astonished by our conversations. She noted that we all talked at once. Loudly, and about different topics. Yet, we all understood what was going on the entire time. She was right.

Not only are we loud and talkative when we are together, but we are all pretty much the same way when we are alone. We all talk a lot. I tend to talk to myself if I'm alone for a long enough period of time. Talking is just part of who we are.

However, that doesn't mean that we talk all the time. Even we need a break some times. (Well, maybe not my brother. I'm surprised he doesn't talk in his sleep.) We all tend to drift of at times and decompress. We read, or listen to music, or do puzzles, or sew. Anything that gets us away from the noise.

Michael, much like the rest of my family, is a talker. At times it's a bit much, but he does also need down time, so I've always been able to deal with his talking.

Tuesday's are already hard for me. Before Michael started napping at daycare, Tuesday night was my break night. I'd put Michael to bed and Andy would go downstairs and exercise. I could take a nap, read, or go shopping. Now, Michael is up until 8:00. It's a tough adjustment for me.

Last night, Michael was on overdrive. He wasn't just talking non-stop, he was asking questions non-stop. Why? Why? Why? Why? Any time I tried to get him focused on something he would get distracted and start asking more questions. Hard questions! I felt like I was being grilled by the Spanish Inquisition!

When bedtime rolled around, Michael hadn't burned off all of the conversational energy. Instead, every time I'd get him pointed towards bed, he would be off on another tangent. I can't even remember what some of the distractions were, they simply felt like an assault on my brain at that point. I know one of them was that Michael wanted to whisper "swany swan" in my ear over and over and over again. Another was his request that I read a book backwards - which I did just so he would stop asking me to do it.

By the time I finally got him to bed, I was completely talked out. Poor Andy. I had no energy left to talk with him. I couldn't even stand listening to one of the shows that we need to clear off the TiVo. My brain was just too filled up with words.

So please, please, please can I have a wordless Wednesday?

Monday, February 15, 2010

If you aren't cheating, you aren't trying hard enough

When my brother was a kid, my dad became involved with my brother's Boy Scout troop. After a few years, it became apparent that my dad enjoyed Scouts more than my brother did. My brother eventually left the troop, and my dad also drifted away. However, when my dad retired, the troop needed some help, so my dad started working with the troop again. He's their official pancake breakfast pancake maker, and also the "coolest old guy" the kids have ever met. He also travels with the troop for their yearly week long trip to Canada.

I'm not sure how it came up, but on Christmas day my dad was talking about the Canada trip and he said, "If you aren't cheating, you aren't trying hard enough." I'm guessing that he was talking about something similar to pulling your opponent's leg hair during a basketball game. (It's a good guess considering he's told me that story at least 100 times since I took up basketball in 7th grade.) My dad doesn't cheat, and would never want anyone to think that he cheats.

The problem is that he made the comment in front of Michael, and then I made a stink about him making the comment in front of Michael. That's a double fail, which lead to Michael thinking that Grandpop cheats. Michael doesn't know what cheating is, but it must be cool because Grandpop Fred does it.

I did damage control on Christmas, but it wasn't good enough. Every so often, Michael gets back on the Grandpop Fred cheats thing. I explain that he doesn't and the subject gets dropped.

It came back up again on Saturday morning and I tried once again to explain that cheating is bad. Michael drew the parallel and said that only bad guys cheat. I agreed with him. He said, "So, Grandpop Fred is a bad guy?"

Sigh.

I picked up the phone and called my dad. He didn't answer, so I left him a detailed message. It went something like this: "Dad, remember that comment you made about cheating on Christmas? Michael now seems to think that you are a cheater and a bad guy. I'd strongly recommend that you give us a call back and explain to Michael that you are not a cheater, and that cheating is bad."

My dad did call back. He didn't remember making the comment, but he was happy to talk with Michael about how bad cheating is. I hope this lays the matter to rest. I'm a little bit tired of explaining cheating.

The moral of the story? 3.75 year old children are very literal and will take just about anything you say at face value. Also, never react to anything you don't want you child to pick up on, if you do, they WILL pick up on it.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Crazy Snow

I really don't know what else to call what has been going on here in Pennsylvania except crazy snow. The first blizzard was impressive. This second one was just...crazy!

On Tuesday evening, our light fluffy 18 inches of snow had reduced itself to about 8 inches of wet, heavy, snowball making snow. We already had some decent piles of snow around the community, and we had already spent a lot of time playing in the snow. As the evening progressed, the forecast for the imminent Nor' Easter just kept getting worse. The snow fall amounts were not supposed to be as high, but they kept saying the storm would be more intense. Andy and I didn't understand how the storm could be more intense if we weren't going to get as much snow.

We understand now.

The reason the snow wasn't as deep is because it was wetter and heavier than the last storm. 18 inches of powder is very different than 14 inches of heavy, sticky, wet snow. And the wind! Oh, it came whipping across the fields and stuck snow to the sides of houses and tree trunks. It was a beautiful storm to watch, but unlike the last storm, it was also a little scary. Wednesday evening, our power flickered off twice, but came right back. I was so relieved. A power outage would have turned a very fun blizzard into an emergency very quickly. We were lucky, but I know others in the area were not.

Michael and I played in the snow twice on Wednesday and twice on Thursday. We were out for at least an hour each time. We started to make an igloo with J from a few houses down, but every time I got it a few brick layers high, the boys would go all Godzila on it and knock it over. The snow crew was on duty all day Wednesday, and they made huge mountains of snow, which the boys (and me) also played on. The snow mountains were so big that even I was impressed when I climbed up top, I can't imagine what it felt like for two little boys that are about 3.5 feet tall.

On Thursday, the sun came out and the clean up really kicked in. The snow mountains were bigger, so we played on them again. Michael and I also built a snow fort. Michael insisted on a window and a snow kitty. I was happy to oblige. I honestly think I had as much fun playing in the snow as Michael did.

As is normally the case, I'm too busy playing with Michael to take pictures. I was going to wander out yesterday with the camera, but getting dressed to go out was too much work after my other trips out. Andy did capture some shots, and I down loaded them last night. So, here is the second blizzard of 2010 through Andy's eyes.

You saw this poor Cardinal in the last post. I think he's starting to get pissed.

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This next picture was taken about halfway through the storm. Most of the trees were OK, but our pine trees got hit pretty hard. I tried knocking snow off of a few of them on Thursday, and discovered a number of broken branches. One tree was ruined, with about half of it's branches snapped off.


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The wind and snow took a toll on us as well. Michael's face is hopelessly wind burned. As you can see, he doesn't seem to mind in the least.


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I snapped this picture Wednesday night. When they were done clean up on Thursday, the snow was piled so high near that lamp post that only the top half of that truck would be visible. The pile of snow on the other side of the truck is now as high as the lamp post. I'll have to snap some pictures this weekend. You really have to see it to appreciate it.

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Wait, what's this? Lord Vader? Um, what are you doing in my pictures? Hoth? No, no, no. This isn't Hoth. Yes, I know there is a lot of snow and all, but this is definitely not Hoth.

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You brought Storm Troopers?

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Yes Lord Vader, I understand that you have brought your forces here looking for the Rebel Alliance, but I assure you, this is not Hoth.

I don't know how you are going to explain this mistake to the Emperor. Can't you just tell him the rebels escaped?

Yes, I can understand that he's getting tired of that excuse. That's really more your problem than it is mine.

What are you doing with your hand...gak...

Thunk.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Flavor of the Week

I mentioned yesterday that Michael seemed to be getting another cold. I was wondering, which kind of cold he would have this time. Would it be the croupy cough cold? The snot faucet cold? Maybe the scratchy throat with extra crankiness cold? It didn't take long to find out.

As I was participating in a high visibility teleconference yesterday an email notice popped up. My mom had sent me a note letting me know that Michael's ears hurt. Ah, the classic ear infection cold. That's up there with the bronchitis cold and only one level below the progresses to pneumonia cold. It's certainly a doctor visit cold and possibly antibiotics cold.

After I got off my call, I called the pediatrician's office and scheduled with the only doctor that was open. I rushed to my mom's and picked up Michael. When I got there I discovered she had managed to get Michael to take some Motrin. It broke his fever and gave him just enough energy to want to play in the snow. However, it did not make him feel well enough to be cooperative. Getting Michael into the car was not pretty.

For all that he fought getting into the car, he was an angel once we got to the doctor. The doctor was on time, which is amazing for a last minute sick visit at this time of year. I also really liked her manner with Michael. He was very cooperative with her, and she quickly diagnosed a double ear infection and prescribed antibiotics.

Have I mentioned how hard it is to get Michael to take medicine? If not, it's a horrible experience. The last time he was on antibiotics, I ended up in tears on my neighbor's doorstep begging her to help me give them to Michael. (She's a nurse.) When the pediatrician said Michael needed 2 doses a day for 10 days I cringed inside and started worrying about how bad it was going to be.

So, I asked Michael if he would take the medication.

The doctor jumped on what I said in an instant. "You never ask a 3 year old if they will do anything, you tell them what they are going to do."

The first thought through my mind was: I'll speak to my child any damn way I want to lady!

The second thought was: Oh my God, she's right. I'm such a bad parent. I need to be more forceful. It's all my fault.

The third thought was: Wait a minute. She's one of those happy, cheery "you can do it" kind of people. In fact, I bet she's the kind of person who will actually do something she's told to do. I really wish I could let her spend a few days with Michael. Then she would get it.

I didn't actually respond to what she said. I'm sure for most kids, she's right. But, go back up and read my first response. My immediate reaction is to reject what she said. I'm an adult, and I've had years to temper my contrary nature. My initial reaction may be contrary, but I'm able to moderate that with rational thinking.

Michael, he doesn't have any ability to temper his contrary nature yet. I do plan on helping him learn how to do that as he grows up, but expecting him to do that now is unrealistic. I'm going to continue dealing with him the way I have been, and if the pediatrician doesn't like it, she can blow it out her ear.

*******

I was very relieved last night when Michael actually took his first dose of medicine. I gave him the choice of "slurp or squirt" and that seemed to do the job. (Slurp was drinking from the spoon and squirt was getting it from the dropper). He slurped it all down with a smile.

Unfortunately, not long after getting Michael to bed, I discovered that not only does Michael have a ear infection cold, he also has a gag until he vomits cold. So much for the medicine. I hope some of it got absorbed.

Michael was pretty agreeable about taking his dose this morning. Two down, only 18 to go. Wish me luck.

Monday, February 8, 2010

The (First?) Blizzard of 2010

As anyone with a TV probably knows by now, the Philadelphia region got hammered with a Nor' Easter this weekend. This is the second massive snow storm for the season, but the first for the year.

We live north west of the city, and we normally get more snow than Philadelphia gets. However, because Nor' Easters are coastal storms, we tend to get less snow that the city. For the December 19th storm, Philly got about 24+ inches of snow. We only got 10 inches. This storm dumped another 24+ inches on Philly, but this time we got almost 20 inches ourselves. 20 inches is a whole lot of snow.

I'll be honest, I love snow. I would play in the snow for hours as a kid, and this weekend proved that I can still do it as an adult. Not all of the kids in the neighborhood enjoyed the snow as much as Michael did, which you can tell by the tracks that range over our community property. They all lead back to my house.

This was a cold snow, so we opted for the puffy, multi-layered approach.

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Hey, at least he can put his arms down! If you look closely at Michael's hands you'll see that he is wearing trouser socks with finger and thumb holes cut out. I pulled the socks all the way up his arms, and it prevented mitten failures on all three trips outside.

This photo is untouched. The sky really was that crisp and blue yesterday. It was beautiful, but once again, it was also very cold.

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Speaking of cold, these poor Cardinals look pretty chilly. All of the birds were very puffy trying to fight the wind.


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Michael had a blast playing in the snow. He enjoyed having me toss him in the air so he could fall, cushioned into the snow. However, he's getting heavy and I could only do that about 20 times. So, he headed over to one of the snow piles made by the plows. He climbed up one and named it Mt. Everest. (Where did kids pick that stuff up?) He was in seventh heaven as he climbed and dug and tossed snowballs at mommy.

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He was having so much fun, he was practically bouncing! We had been out for about an hour by this time and my feet were getting really cold. That's why I look like such a sourpuss.

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My feet finally got so cold that I had to beg Michael to head inside. He resisted as much as he could. Andy was snapping photos with my new macro/telephoto lens and caught this candid moment of Michael and I arguing over going inside.


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The conversation went something like this...

"Michael, my feet are cold. I'm going to get frostbite. It's time to go in."

"NO!" as he ran away.

I finally managed to entice him to come in with a bribe of hot chocolate with marshmallows.

Unfortunately, by evening, Michael's next cold of the season had taken hold. He was lethargic and running a fever. Maybe I should have made him head in sooner.

Oh, and you want to know the best part of this amazing storm? Here is our forecast for tomorrow night into Wednesday.

"THERE IS A LARGE POTENTIAL FOR HEAVY SNOW FOR MUCH OF OUR AREA... BUT AT THIS TIME THE HEAVIEST SNOW MAY FALL OVER NEW JERSEY AND EASTERN PENNSYLVANIA. THERE IS ALSO A POTENTIAL FOR STRONG WINDS... ESPECIALLY NEAR THE COAST."

Which is the very same warning we had before this last storm. Yikes!

Friday, February 5, 2010

38 isn't that bad

I'd like to thank everyone for the birthday wishes. I ended up having a wonderful birthday.

I did get up early yesterday morning to help get Michael ready for school, but I loaded Michael up into Andy's car and kissed them both good-bye. Then, I went back to bed for two more hours. It was wonderful.

When I got up, I enjoyed some coffee and did some web surfing and did a little reading. No one tried to take the laptop from me. No one interrupted me mid-paragraph. It was divine.

Next, I went up and unclogged both the sink and tub drains. Come on, I'm a working mom, you didn't think it was going to be all laying around and eating bon-bons, did you? Drains don't clear themselves.

I did treat myself to a little bit of shopping. I picked up a new pair of Coach shoes. They are a simple pair of flats made with the tan "C" fabric. I don't normally go for products that are so blatant with their label, but I could picture the outfit in my head, so I went for it.

When I came home from shopping, I read a little more, then I took a nap. A glorious hour and a half long nap. Oh, how I love naps.

After my nap I picked Michael up from school. It's clear that he's finally feeling better. He gave me tons of hugs and kisses, and listened to everything I said. This was even more wonderful that the nap!

When I mentioned it was my birthday, the first thing that Michael asked was if we had cake. Oops. I don't normally do cake for my birthday, but it didn't seem right not to have cake once Michael mentioned it, so we stopped and picked up a carrot cake on the way home.

Andy also decided that we needed cake, so he picked up a carrot cake on the way home. It's a good thing all three of us like carrot cake!

With sleeping late, the nap, a new pair of shoes, Michael being sweeter than ever, and two carrot cakes, I have to say this was one of my favorite birthdays. What came next, just floored me. I had asked Andy for several different things for my birthday, and based on UPS shipments as such, I thought I was getting a new receiver for my Sirius radio. Imagine my surprise when I opened the box and discovered a macro lens for our camera. I've wanted one for a while now, but have never been able to justify the purchase. I am so excited. Now I can't wait until spring so I can have fun doing nature close ups in the park.

So, I have to say, so far 38 rocks!

Hmm...I wonder what I can use a macro lens for in the snow? We are supposed to get about 6-10 inches in the next 24 hours, so I'm sure to find out.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Randomness - Because I Have to Have Some

With London off the grid, I haven't been able to get my random does of randomness. It's really starting to cause problems, and if I don't get some randomness soon, I might just end up coherent. And no one wants that, I'm sure.

So, here we go...

  • Speaking of London - I was in the basement playing with Michael when my phone chimed letting me know I had a text. I so rarely get text messages that I paused for a moment and wondered why Andy would text me from upstairs. Then, I checked my phone and realized it was London. Duh.
  • Having younger friends that use this new-fangled technology to communicate with me makes me feel cool and hip.
  • Are "cool" and "hip" still the correct words to use?
  • Never mind, I don't want to know. Let me live in my fantasy world.
  • We have actually seen some progress on the potty training front. Michael has actually asked to use the potty several times in the last few days.
  • Michael still refuses to consider going #2 on the potty. In an attempt to try and ease him into it, I actually said, "Why don't you sit on the potty and just try to toot?" last night. You can add that to the list of things I never thought I would say.
  • At dinner last night Michael asked if he could see my boobies. I told him no, boobies are private. He followed up with, "Well, can I see half a booby?"
  • Andy and I laughed so hard that we were unable to deal with that comment appropriately.
  • Not my best parenting moment, but dude was it funny.
  • And finally, I will not be blogging tomorrow. For the first time in 38 years, I'm going to take my birthday off. I'm not sure what I'm going to do, but I'm pretty sure sleep with be involved.
  • I'm now thinking of my age as 40 - n instead of my actual age. So today I am 40 - 3 and tomorrow I'll be 40 - 2. It allows me to delude myself into thinking I'm getting younger instead of older.
  • Once again, don't mess up that whole fantasy world thing I have going. It gets me through the day.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

500 in 2010 Update and a Plan

Sunday completed week four of the 500 in 2010 I've encountered several problems recently. The first was my exercise bike breaking, which I whined about here, and have since resolved. The second problem was the monster head cold that knocked me out last week. I was able to get my miles in, but I had to take a break in the middle of the week, and I wasn't happy about that.

So far, I'm still ahead of my plan.

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I think I shrunk the file to much, but you should be able to see that the pink line is trending higher than the blue plan line. I'm happy about this.

However, there is a little more behind this chart than I've been letting on. LauraC mentioned it, but I'm not sure if anyone caught it. We are planning on running the Warrior Dash at one of their races this year. I'm sure that Laura will have no problem running three plus miles considering she just kicked ass at a half marathon. Me, that's a different story. I only started running last summer, and I never even made it to running a full two miles, let alone three.

I've mentioned the warrior dash to several people and I've gotten some funny responses. My mom laughed at me and pointed out that you couldn't pay her to do something like that. Andy said it sounded pretty stupid. I asked him what the worst thing that could happen would be and he as like, "Um...you could get hurt. Duh." One of the women at work responded by putting her hand on her heart and said, "God bless you. Better you than me."

Not very encouraging.

When I told my dad, he had the most appropriate response. " You've got a lot of work to do kid."

Yes dad, I do.

So here is my plan. For the cold months I'm going to continue cross training on the bike and elliptical using the heart rate monitor. My goal is four workouts a week. Two 60 minute workouts in the 78-81 range (That's 78% to 81% of my maximum heart rate), One 60 minute workout staying in the 83-85 range, and then one long workout. I'd like to work up to 90 minutes for the long workout.

Come spring, I'm going to start transitioning to several outdoor running sessions. I'll firm up my plan more after I get a few running workouts in and see where I'm starting from.

My goal is to be able to run a 5K by fall and to complete one of the Warrior Dash races as well.

I'd ask you to wish me luck, but I don't think luck will be enough for this one.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sometimes it's Better Not to Ask

For some strange reason I often ask Michael what he wants for dinner. I don't know why. He always answers dinosaur noodles or nothing. But, I keep asking hoping that maybe he'll ask for grilled chicken, potatoes, and green beans. Yeah right.

So, I asked him on Saturday and I actually got a different response. "I want to go to a restaurant."

Oh. You do?

The first thing that came to mind was the really bad night last fall when we tried to take Michael out to dinner. The night when I had to inhale my food while Andy kept Michael from tearing the place apart. The night when Andy carried his untouched meal out in a box while I hauled Michael out in a foot ball clutch. The night when Andy and I swore never to take Michael out to dinner again.

I asked Michael if he was sure he didn't want dinosaur noodles. Nope. Restaurant.

Andy and I exchanged looks. Are we really crazy enough to give this another try?

Why yes, yes we are.

Don't worry, we didn't go completely insane. We decided to go to Panera, which has pretty low dinner traffic and is easy to leave in a pinch if necessary.

Michael was pretty good. He did stand up on the seat a few times, but if that's the worst he does, I'm happy. He even ate some of his dinner too, which was even more impressive. Overall, it was a decent evening out. When we were done eating, we even had enough energy left to head to the mall for a little while. I might even be willing to do it again some time.

Later in the evening I was thinking about how difficult Michael can be when we take him out. I was trying to think of times when I've seen other people's 3 year olds making a scene, but I couldn't. I was feeling like a lousy parent until I though a little harder. It's true that I don't see many 3 year olds making scenes, but the more I thought about it, I realized that I don't see a lot of 3 year olds out at all. Maybe the only difference between me and other parents is that I'm crazy enough to try and take my 3 year old out.