Not Even A Snow Day!

Posted in Everyday Life on December 6th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Our first ground-sticking, hill-sledding, angel-making, sidewalk-shoveling snow of the year is here.  And why not – it’s already December 6th!

I slept in this morning, which is more than I can say for my poor husband.  Ironically, last night, he was all gung-ho about staying up late.  He’s like, “And we can stay up late because the kids have been sleeping in lately – nothing to do tomorrow until later…”  And he was right – the two littlest ones have been sleeping in lately – until today, of course.  We stayed up really late last night thinking the kids would sleep in, but WRONG!  They woke my poor husband at 7:20 in the morning today!  Myself, I didn’t stir until 9:30ish, and I was lolling out of bed when WHOOSH!  The door to our walk-in bedroom closet flies open, and it is snowing into the closet!  Turns out, the closet window was not locked, and so the winter storm had pushed it open, which pushed open the door to the bedroom, and all of a sudden, we had a winter storm in our house!  ‘I guess we’re getting some snow,”  I thought as I pushed the window shut, closed the door, noticed the baby was still sleeping and climbed back into bed.  A few minutes later, and WHOOSH!  It happened again.  “Wow, we’re really getting snow!”  I said to myself as I noticed the ground was already blanketed when I shut the window the second time.  This time, I manipulated the frozen lock until it was shut so we wouldn’t have to experience the WHOOSH effect again.  Well, that’s a heck of a way to wake up, especially twice.  Besides, it was late enough and time for me to contribute to the daily household stuff.  Once downstairs, I checked weather.com, which informed me that we were forecasted to get 1-2 inches of snow during the day, and another possible inch at night.  Immediately we began making plans to go sledding, especially since our 4-year-old had been waiting for this all year.  Well, it took us all over an hour to get ready.  And that didn’t even include lunch.  We dressed everyone in 2-3 layers, and then we realized we should probably have lunch before we tackled the sled hill.  Seeing how difficult it was to unravel everyone from their winter clothes enough to find mouths to insert the lunch, we munched on a few pieces of lunchmeat before heading to the sled hill.

Well, the baby wasn’t happy on the sled hill – and before I get all kinds of nasty comments, YES he was bundled intensely!  2-3 layers, then a snowsuit, then a fleece bag-like thingie, then a few blankets, and my husband and I built a little tent-like thing around his carrier…  But he IS a July baby, and I have a theory that people are best suited for the season in which they were born, so…  no sledding for the little guy.  Or for mom, for that matter.  I got down the hill once though, and it was lots of fun – much easier climbing the hill this time than last year being a few months pregnant!  Although I was disappointed about only getting to go down the hill once, after that I got to sit in the warm car and catch up on my newspaper reading in peace and quiet after the baby fell asleep, so that was nice.  And after sledding, since we had kind of cheated on lunch, we treated the kids to Pizza Hut because for some reason, they like to eat there.  And every time we’re set to go, I realize I don’t like it, but I think I’ll be able to find something – but I was wrong again!  I just don’t like Pizza Hut!  Well, their iced tea is pretty good…  but their buffet sucks, and so now I’m headed home with 4 exhausted kids and I’m all hepped up on iced tea…  But the rest of the afternoon went surprisingly smoothly and we even let our daughter have a friend over – providing her mom drove her here so we wouldn’t have to venture out in the snow again.  When the friend’s mom got here, we were chatting about the snow, and we were all dumbfounded about how much we were supposed to get.  Usually, the weather channel will over-forecast us.  If they say 1-3 inches, we usually get a ground dusting.  Today, they say 1-3 inches, and for most of us, it snowed from the time we woke until well after the sun set.  We waited until it was finished to go out and shovel, and by then it was dark and we had gotten a few inches.  Now I see on the news that we could get a few more inches…

But anyway, lots of fun today, and all without calling an official Snow Day!  Can’t all major snow falls be on Saturdays?!?

My Thanksgiving Curse :)

Posted in holidays on November 30th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I think I was somehow cursed last Thanksgiving.  I fell ill the day after Thanksgiving, and just as I was starting to feel better a few days later, I felt another virus coming on.  This cycle continued until just before Christmas, and because I was pregnant and exhausted, I tried to rest a lot and get well during that time, but it was stressful because I had a 1½-year-old to chase after.  And while I was sick, I was unable to eat any Thanksgiving leftovers.  So then all during the year, foods like turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and even creamed onions (which I used to love) just haven’t seemed very appealing to me.  I think I subconsciously associate the Thanksgiving fare with being sick, but I thought I’d be over it by now – wrong.  Thanksgiving dinner was great and everything, but I’m just not as enthused about those leftovers as I want to be.  On Thanksgiving day, the turkey was delicious.  That leftover sandwich I had on Friday was pretty good.  The cold turkey snack on Friday night was ok.  I didn’t finish the turkey snack on Saturday night, and today for dinner, I will have anything but turkey or Thanksgiving leftovers.  And I am blue in the face from reassuring my husband that it was absolutely nothing he did wrong with the cooking or the fault of any of the guests who brought delicious side dishes.  It’s just my Thanksgiving curse, and I hope it’s gone by next year.  But even if it’s not, no biggie because my Thanksgiving will be made more special than food by the wonderful people in my life.  Maybe I should “train” my body to accept the Thanksgiving food by making turkey and creamed onions more often…

At any rate, the helpers in the kitchen on Thanksgiving day were adorable – check them out:

And below are my two oldest daughters waving to Santa at the Welcome Santa Parade from the day after Thanksgiving:

And if their names were numbers that ordered them by birth, below is a cute picture of #2 and #4:

Windy City White House

Posted in Travel on November 13th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Windy City White House” is more of a reference to our visit to the Windy City rather than a blog post about the recent election – it’s over and done with, and although I won’t talk much about the outcome, I am happy to not have to hear about it on the news anymore.  While in Illinois, my mother-in-law kept talking about what huge news it is that Obama was elected and how his pick for Chief-of-Staff, Rahm Emanuel is a fellow Chicagoan – making it a ‘Windy City White House’.

But back to our family – it’s my blog, after all.  We scheduled an early Christmas with our family in Illinois this past weekend (the early Christmas theme is something that seems popular with tangents.org bloggers), and overall, it was great.  There are a few reasons we decided to do things this way – 1) We’re sick of the hustle and bustle of opening our presents from Santa and then rushing off to Illinois on Christmas Day  – add to that having the flu during this trip twice and UGH.  Best to travel before flu season.  2) My daughter was off school Friday for parent/teacher conferences 3) We wanted to beat the rush and other travelers.  Overall, it was a really great decision, although the trip was last minute, and so we did forget a few of the presents which we’ll now have to send.  We left Ohio on Friday morning and after a bit of traffic-sitting (of course), we got to my grandparents house about 40 minutes past schedule.  But no matter, they’re fully aware of the traffic problems plaguing their area.  We were treated to a delicious lunch of my grandma’s sloppy joes (love ’em), and the girls got to open presents.  My grandpa gets tired really quickly, and so we didn’t stay too long there, and then it was on to our hotel.  My husband uses hotwire.com and got us a suite at the Sheraton for $49 – a nice price for the area.  When we pulled up to our hotel, we were pleased to see it was the same hotel where we spent our wedding night – that was a nice surprise.  My mom and my sister brought her two boys over for some swimming, and we all had a blast even though their indoor pool was chilly.  Luckily, I had thought to turn up our room’s thermostat so when we got back to the room we didn’t freeze, although it was quite crowded trying to get 10 hungry people changed out of bathing suits and trying to order pizza at the same time.  It was a suite, but it was probably the smallest suite I have ever seen, and we had 6 little kids and 4 adults in there.  My mother and sister wisely decided that they couldn’t wait for the time it would take to get pizza, and they got something to eat on the way home.  That was a good idea because my mom had to get up early the next day and didn’t want to be out too late.  They know their area well enough to realize that pizza delivery on a Friday night would take over an hour – and they were right.  My poor kids were starving and I had to raid my diaper bag.  I found a little bag of oyster crackers and two small bags of peanuts, so I divied everything up 3 ways (Survivor-style) and it quieted them a little until the pizza came.  Overall, the kids were kind of spastic all day, especially my oldest for some reason…  My husband blames the tension of the Chicagoland area, but then again, he hates it as much as I do.  We love seeing family, just wish we could visit them somewhere else!

Saturday morning we were up bright and early to meet my mother-in-law for breakfast at Uptown Cafe in Arlington Heights – the place has the best eggs benedict in the nation.  And I know this because way back when, before we had all these kids, my husband and I used to travel constantly, and one of the things we would look for was good hollandaise sauce.  We never found any that came close to Uptown Cafe’s.  And the owners remember us – we used to go there a lot when we lived in the area; I was pregnant with my first daughter.  They are surprised every time they see us because we usually have a new baby or two.  After breakfast, we went back to my mother-in-law’s house, and I felt badly for dropping in on my husband’s sister and her family without any notice.  This is one of the details that was overlooked in the last minute planning.  But it was ok; I didn’t have my gifts for their 3 kids, so I’ll have to send them.  But our kids had lots of fun playing together, and it’s important to me that my kids know their extended family, especially since a lot of hatchets have been buried over the years on this side of the family.

Next, it was time to see our good friend, the author of the sublife blog on tangents.org.  It was great to see him, especially on his own turf, but he’s right in his blog – there really wasn’t much time for chatting.  The kids wouldn’t have allowed us to just sit and talk peacefully, and we wanted to take them somewhere fun, so we went to an overflowing Chuck E. Cheese.  After waiting in line to park, I realized that I hadn’t seen our camera since I took a picture of the kids on the luggage rack at the hotel that morning.  Sound familiar?  Yes, I have terrible luck with digital cameras.  And worse, this one was not mine – I had borrowed it from Jamiahsh for the trip, so I was sick about losing it.  Luckily for me, it turned up when we got home though – YAY!  I was especially upset because I knew that I had put it in my diaper bag – I really thought someone had taken it.  Pessimistic of me, you’d think, except that we did have our tokens stolen from our table at Chuck E. Cheese with my husband less than 5 feet away.  Takes all kinds to steal game tokens from little kids, doesn’t it….  at least they didn’t also steal my digital camera.  We got lunch at a Vienna Beef hot dog place in Arlington Heights called Jimmy’s – highly recommended you get real Chicago-style beef sandwiches and ‘dogs if you’re in the area – YUM!

The ride home was uneventful – the kids slept most of the way, thank goodness.  We did manage to stop and get me my crave case of White Castles, and so our car reeked of steamed onions – thank goodness we weren’t pulled over or we may have gotten a ticket for disturbing the peace.  Maybe I wouldn’t have stopped if I’d known what White Castles would do to a 2-year-old’s diaper.  I tried to deliver some to my friend Carol who graciously pet sits for us, but for some reason, she neglected to pick them up.  My husband says that not everyone likes White Castles.  We picked up the slyders (as White Castles are known) in Dolton, Illinois; not the best area, but it just off the expressway so we made it unscathed.  Ironically, something made me talk about Dolton just before the stop; I was telling my husband how it’s gotten to be a really bad area and that I knew a family that had left there in the ’80’s because it was getting so bad, so imagine it now.  Then we saw a sign that said “Dolton Bowl” right across the street from the White Castle, and we laughed at the irony.  But overall, a nice trip, especially considering the area where we had to take it.  One positive thing I will say about the area is that they have excellent food.

Three quarters of my kids on the luggage cart: 

Cold

Posted in Everyday Life on October 27th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , ,

It’s a strange sensation; something I haven’t experienced for about a year.  Last winter I was pregnant, and due to the fact that pregnant women have 2/3 more blood coursing through their bodies than non-pregnant people, they rarely get cold.  Then I had the baby in the middle of summer, went to Florida, and now that we’re back in NW Ohio, it’s cold!  The older I get, the more I dislike the cold weather.  Not only do I dislike bundling everyone up, including myself, but I especially dislike the winter gas bills.  We have a humongous furnace that increases our gas bill by 144% in the winter months, which is why I opt to freeze a few months out of the year.  I just can’t bring myself to turn on that huge furnace for the season yet.  Every year when we get our first winter-sized gas bill, we vow to winterize the house and we talk about getting a new furnace, but somehow, we never get around to doing anything.  Maybe this year will be different, but in the meantime, I’m going to try to hold out until at least November 1.  Maybe I should check the weather forecast before I say that…

American Psycho Hellboy… Never Mind

Posted in Movies on July 24th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

We managed to fit in some movie watching this week while the kids are with Grandma, and I was attempting to put them all together in a clever blog post title, but it wasn’t to be.  Probably my lack of sleep with the new baby and my recovery process has inhibited my creativity.  I hope to be back in full swing soon, but it will probably take a few months, especially because once I’m feeling better, I have lots of stuff around the house I need to catch up on and as much as I would like blog posting to come first, it doesn’t.  As people keep reminding me oh so helpfully, a c-section is major surgery 🙂  Don’t I know it. 

So the 3 movies we saw this week are Hellboy 2, American Psycho, and Fortress.

I did not like Hellboy 2.  I actually would have left the theater, but I never got around to asking my husband if he wanted to and that was a good thing because he liked the movie.  It gave me a good laugh when we were walking out of the theater and he told me he liked it because we always have the same taste in movies and I really didn’t like this one.  That also means I don’t have much to say about it except that the Abe fish-like character reminds me of C3PO from Star Wars, and I can’t believe the actor who plays Hellboy, Ron Perlman, was also Vincent the Beast in the old Beauty and the Beast tv show from the 80’s with Linda Hamilton.  I thought he was going to be some Andre the Giant huge guy wrestler type, but it turns out, he is just a regular actor.  I suppose my impatience with this movie had to do with the fact that my infection flared up and I was raging with fever yet again in the movie theater.  So even though I felt crappy and wanted to leave, I could not pass up a night out with hubby while the kids were away.  Even if it was to see Hellboy 2…  I’m just glad one of us enjoyed the movie.

Next up is a movie from the early 90’s called Fortress.  It’s set in the future – and it’s always fun to see what people thought the future would be like when the movie was made over a decade ago – and revolves around a corporate owned underground prison (think Walmart does Alcatraz).  The main characters are sent there when they break the “one child per couple” rule.  They had lost their first child, and now they’ve been caught trying to have another, so they are both sent to prison, even though she is pregnant.  This is a fun action-packed movie.  When I looked it up on imdb.com after we watched it, I learned that it is actually a kind of cult classic movie and there are actually multiple endings.  Our version was the less happy of the endings, but I still liked the movie.  It’s kind of violent for early 90’s, and if you look it up on imdb.com, don’t let the keywords fool you.  Let’s put it this way, if I had seen the keywords first, I wouldn’t have watched this movie, but in retrospect, I don’t think there was really much adult stuff in it – just violence and gore, but they didn’t overdo it like they do in some movies nowadays, like the Saw movies for instance.  American Psycho on the other hand…

I will start by saying that Christian Bale was excellent in this movie.  I wasn’t so impressed by him when he was Batman in The Dark Knight, but he definitely shows versatility and depth in this movie.  He plays a Wall Street executive who is just about as big a jerk as one can be.  Also, he has blood lust and likes to kill people in his spare time.  The movie is very strange for reasons I can’t quite put my finger on.  For one, I was confused about what the movie was trying to be.  I guess it’s just a story about this man, an American Psycho.  But at times throughout the movie, the music was strange, and it just didn’t play like a normal movie.  And then there were the constant 80’s references.  I guess it was supposed to take place in the 1980’s, given the characters’ huge cordless phones and constant talk of musical artists such as Phil Collins, Huey Lewis, and Whitney Houston.  Why they would change the time period of the movie, I don’t know, but they did a good job because if Reese Witherspoon (who is about my age and would have been a kid in the ’80’s) wasn’t in it, I would have been convinced the movie was actually filmed in the ’80’s.  And I have to say the end confused me a lot.  I won’t say more because I don’t want to spoil anything, but if anyone who reads this has seen this movie, maybe you can answer a question I have.  I don’t think I’d recommend this movie since there are many disturbing scenes and it didn’t seem worth it to me to sit thru them for what you get from the rest of the movie.  I don’t think I’m going to put it on my list of baddies however, but then again, Hellboy 2 isn’t going on there either.  Just 2 movies I didn’t really like and wouldn’t see again, but I don’t feel like I wasted my time watching either of them, and that’s always a good thing.   

Reasonable Running Time?

Posted in Uncategorized on May 11th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , ,

How long does it take you to “run in” to a store?  I suppose it depends on the size of the store and what you need.  If you’re running into the gas station to pay for gas, then it will probably take a fraction of the time it would take you to “run in” to a Super Walmart and pick up milk, diapers, and say, deoderant, or something else that is usually located all the way on the other side of the store. 

But apparently the phrase “running in” has different meanings for different people.  To me, it means ‘get in the store and get what I need as quickly as I possibly can’.  To my husband, it means ‘get some shopping done so my wife doesn’t have to get out of the car, and we don’t have to bother unloading the kids’.  The problem here lies where my husband is the slowest shopper you will ever meet.  This is not an exaggeration.  I’m very thankful sometimes that I was blessed with a man who doesn’t mind shopping, in fact, he even likes it, depending on what we’re shopping for, of course.  But it takes him forever to get anything.  I still can’t figure out why…  is it because he reads every package of every brand of every product in which he’s interested in order to comparison shop?  Is it because he is unorganized and doesn’t remember what he’s at the store to get?  Is it because he gets sidetracked and ends up shopping for three items when he’s in the store to buy only one?  It could be a combination of all the above; I haven’t figured it out yet.  But what I have figured out is to no longer put myself in the situation of being the car babysitter while my husband’s 5 minute “run in” to the store turns to 10, 20, sometimes upwards of 30 minutes!

Now that I’m in the third trimester of my pregnancy, I don’t always want to go in the store, whereas normally, I don’t mind…  like most women, I don’t mind shopping, even if hubby is taking forever and a day in the electronics section.  Which reminds me real quick – TANGENT ALERT – a brand-new Super Walmart in a town nearby has the right idea.  They put a really nice big magazine section right by the electronics department with benches in between for the wives to park themselves while the husbands wishfully browse the electronics – Walmart doesn’t often earn my kudos, but this is an example of some good store planning!  Anyway, back to my venting…

So before the pregnancy, for some reason I was never the one who got to “run in” to the store – I always got the ‘babysit-for-the-3-bored-kids-in-the-car’ job, ugh.  I finally put a stop to it because hubby’s “running in” took so long, and then I got pregnant and don’t have the foot power to last very long in stores anyway.  So the other day, we’re coming out of a store, and he says, very smoothly as he’s already walking toward the Office Max and away from the car, “I’m just going to ‘run in’ real quick and check for something.”  Uh-oh.  Did he say ‘run-in real quick’?  You may take me for a fool, but I believed him.  I thought he would be really quick because we had a meeting with a start time about an hour away, and he knew I wanted to make a few stops before the meeting, so surely he wouldn’t jeopardize my errands by letting Office Max take too long…  So I was under the impression that after I waddled to the car and pulled up to Office Max, he’d be ready to go…  WRONG!  I’ve been through this enough by now to know not to worry…  I used to sit there and seriously think, ‘what if he’s being held hostage in the Office Max or what if he’s passed out and gotten hurt or something?  But we’ve been together for over a decade, so I now realize he’s just a “forever shopper”.  I finished reading the daily newspaper and glanced around – no husband.  I put on the radio and listened to a song or two…  no husband.  I checked the time and started to get irritated, dreaming of the ice cream stop that was going to be one of my errands before the meeting…  no husband.  I put on the mp3 player and listened to about 3 songs, trying to keep calm and not cry out of frustration (impatience+pregnancy−ice cream = easy tears) …  no husband.  Now our new car starts to rumble and shake.  Since we got rid of the Ford months ago, I didn’t think it was a mechanical problem…  then I remembered that the gas light had come on earlier, before my husband “ran in” to Office Max.  I turned off the car, and waited some more.  Finally he came out of the store – empty handed.  I hadn’t thought to turn off the car while waiting for him since he was just “running in”, and now we were out of gas after idling for a good twenty minutes or longer – I hadn’t been keeping track.  Luckily there was a gas station right across the street, and instead of walking there and having to buy a gas can, he pushed the car and I steered it over to the gas station…  it gave us time to blow off some steam…  well, me anyway.  I was also wondering what could possibly take a person so long in a store only to have them come out with nothing?!?  But, I was literally too peeved to ask and I didn’t want to talk about what happened at Office Max.  All I knew is that my errands weren’t going to happen and I was going to the meeting ice cream-less.

In my husband’s defense, he doesn’t do this because he’s not thoughtful or considerate; it’s actually the opposite.  He wants to save me from having to go into the stores, and save me from the trouble of having to deal with shopping hassles…  and he takes long in stores even when I’m with him, that’s just how he is…  He just doesn’t have a very good concept of time, and he doesn’t realize that I’d much rather entertain the kids and myself in the store than in the car.  Also, being a woman makes me prone to thinking ahead, while he is impulsive.  If he had thought ahead about the Office Max errand, we could have discussed it, and I could have planned to get my errands done at the same time, or even gotten gas while I waited.  Instead, since the Office Max errand was brought up at the last possible second when I couldn’t even say no because he was too far away to hear me, I thought it’d be quick enough where I could leave the car on and not run out of gas.  The good news out of all this is that the meeting ended early enough that I was able to get my daughter’s birthday party stuff before that store closed, so really the only errand I missed that day was my ice cream.  And I can do without putting more weight on my poor feet right now anyway, I guess…  And this experience reinforced my mantra that I will NOT wait in the car while my husband “runs in” to anywhere ever again.  At least not without a full library of reading materials or a laptop so I can blog about him while I wait…  In case you think I’m being too hard on him by the way, I told him I was going to be blogging about this incident – he took so long we ran out of gas, for crying out loud!!!  And NEVER will I wait in the car for him to ‘run in’ anywhere while the kids are with us!

Weird Pregnancy Symptoms

Posted in Kids on May 5th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Since this is my fourth pregnancy, I’ve experienced a wide variety of the symptoms that go along with being “with child”.  It’s amazing to me how every pregnancy is different, even when they are experienced by the same woman.  Pregnancies are as different as the personalities of the children that result.  Is it possible then, that a child’s personality can actually be displayed through the symptoms of the mother’s pregnancy?  For example, my aunt told me that when she was pregnant with my cousin, she craved spicy food after not really liking it before.  My cousin, the result of the spicy food pregnancy, is now 31 years old and has always been a fan of spicy food!

When I was pregnant with my oldest daughter, my husband would blend a huge glass of juice for me every morning with lots of fruits and veggies in it.  My oldest daughter now prefers snacks of fruits and vegetables to junk food.  I didn’t really crave the fruits and veggies, so that’s a different example, but it’s still an illustration of how womb behavior may affect the child throughout life. 

My second daughter was, for lack of a better word, crazy in the womb.  She was the last thing I felt before I fell asleep at night, and the first thing I felt in the morning, and let’s not forget all those middle of the night bathroom trips…  she was kicking and rolling during those too.  I would often joke that I didn’t know if this baby ever sleeps.  Once she was born, I got the answer:  she doesn’t ever sleep and never did apparently.  It felt like she was tearing me apart from the inside out with her strong movements in the womb, and to this day, she is our strong-willed, “spirited” child.

My third daughter was very gentle as a fetus.  She rarely moved – compared to her older sister at least – and when she did, it was always in one spot.  As a toddler, she has a very sweet, patient, and obedient demeanor.  So, as for #4…  so far she moves a lot.  I don’t want to jinx anything here, but her movements remind me of our second daughter – the spirited one.  But I’ve also experienced some strange symptoms with this pregnancy that I haven’t felt before.  First, I’ve been having nightmares.  It’s common in pregnancy to have more vivid dreams, and I’ve experienced that, but lately I’ve had lots of nightmares, ones where I actually wake up too creeped out to go to the bathroom…  Strange.  And with this pregnancy, red fruit has been especially tasty.  I don’t crave it, but things like tomatoes, strawberries, and especially red grapes (I’ve always preferred green to red until now!) taste extra yummy to me.  It’s so weird to me how tastes can change during a pregnancy.  I’ve never liked bologna and still don’t, but during my first pregnancy, I liked it and ate it quite often.

There is probably some scientific research out there that speculates about how much a mother’s pregnancy symptoms impact the resulting child, but rather than research it, I think I will just wait and see what my girls are like when they enter adulthood and we can sit down and read my pregnancy diaries together, compare their personalities with that of their womb behavior, and share some good laughs.

A Day of Mini

Posted in Uncategorized on April 21st, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Finally the snow has stopped (quick, where is some wood for knocking?!?  Our snowblower has been put away, which is enough of a jinx, but add a comment like the above, and I’m asking for trouble!), and the weather is finally being cooperative enough for some outdoor fun.  So this weekend had us taking in the first mini-golf game of the season with friends.  Unless, of course, you count the mini-golfing we did in Florida in January, but I don’t count that since in Florida the mini-golf is more like a distraction to the lizards hopping around the course and the captive alligators you can feed at our favorite mini-golf place in Orlando.

I did not do very well this weekend.  Of the four of us actually playing (the kids futzed about the course), I came in last.  I will blame it on my pregnancy bump – it’s getting quite large lately and is throwing off my balance, not to mention my stamina.  I was distracted by looking for a bench to sit on after every hole.  Yeah, that’s it, I can’t mini-golf while pregnant.  Nevermind all the practice I got on my computer this winter (see previous mini-golf posts of mine where I have links to (mostly) cool computer versions of mini-golf), I just can’t mini-golf while pregnant.  Oh, just kidding, I’ve done it before, it’s no big deal and not that much different, just gotta swing around the bump.  I just lost because I was rusty, and I didn’t take my time putting.  Besides that, my husband did extra well this time, and he usually comes in last, so last place had to go to someone.  I don’t really care if I win or lose, for me, it’s just about learning what the ball does in various situations, gaining that experience, and most importantly, having fun!  I did win the mini-bowling we played afterwards though…  I really want to get one of those for my basement.  I’ve always liked bowling, and here is a way the physically impaired (as I am for a few months here) can still enjoy participating in the sport.  Pipe dreams, of course…  if I had that kind of money or space in my basement, I could think of a dozen better things to put down there…  mostly animals…

But anyway, I looked for cool mini-golf shots on youtube, and I actually didn’t see any…  just a lot more people worse at mini-golf than I am who don’t even realize it.  But I did come across this pretty cool contraption at a mini-golf course in Colorado, check it out:

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I Passed!!!

Posted in Kids, Uncategorized on April 18th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Yesterday I did something I’ve never done before – I passed a 3 hour glucose challenge!  I haven’t had a gestational diabetes-free pregnancy since my first-born 8 ½ years ago!  It feels really good to know that I can eat whatever I want for the next few months without having to worry about pairing proteins with carbs and cutting out desserts; I can hardly believe it.  I don’t have to go and speak with the endocrinologist or the dietician, and I won’t be taking non-stress tests at the hospital.  Most importantly, I won’t have to inject my body with insulin – something with which my husband and I were not very comfortable anyway.  And since gestational diabetes often leads to large babies, I am curious to see what this one will weigh.  The previous 2 babies were both 8 lbs. 12 oz, and my first baby (no diabetes) was only 7 lbs. 2 oz.  Of course, she was a little bit early and is still pretty small for her age to this day.  But, I just wanted to share the news because I’m very excited that I have a few less things to worry about, and I know I had people waiting to hear the results of my test.

Hunger and Boredom

Posted in Uncategorized on April 17th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Took my 3-hour glucose “challenge” today, and since it was SO fun for me (sarcasm adundant), I thought I would spread some of the ‘cheer’ by giving you a run-down of what this medical test entails.

First, why do they call it a glucose challenge?  To provide extra motivation, maybe?  Whatever the reason, I think they should change the name because glucose challenge makes it sound like I was there to run a relay or something.  But the glucose challenge is quite the opposite.  It requires that you sit at the medical office for 3 hours and do nothing.  Literally.  Sure, you can read or sew or Sudoku, but you are not supposed to get out of your chair with the exception of donating a vial of blood every hour.  The test is given to pregnant women to determine whether or not they have gestational diabetes, which is when the pregnancy hormones block the body’s production of insulin, which will make blood sugar skyrocket and potentially lead to a large baby.  Since I’ve had the condition for 2 of my previous pregnancies, I just might be a glucose challenge expert by now.  My husband wanted to know why couldn’t I just skip the one hour test and go right for the 3 hour test since we both knew that I would fail it since I am craving sweets and I’ve failed my last two 1-hour tests.  (MAJOR chocolate malt craving the other night, by the way.  If I do have the diabetes, it will stink to have to fend off one of those cravings with sugar-free chocolate…  somehow it’s just not the same.)  The Dr. wasn’t down with skipping right to the 3 hour test though, so lucky me, I’ve had to do them both.

Sure enough, I failed my 1 hour, which is why I got to spend my whole day at the doctor’s office waiting to get poked with a needle today.  And that’s not even the funnest part.  They make you fast from 10pm the night before until whenever your test is over, which for me wasn’t until 1:30 this afternoon!  They were a little late on my last blood draw, and I was on the verge of wreaking havoc in the office when they finally called me in.  Luckily, my daughter had gone to school with the nurse’s daughter a few years ago, so she recognized me and noticed the desperate look in my eyes, otherwise I think they might have forgotten about me.  One more minute, and I was going to carry out my plan to go to my car and scavenge for crumbs my kids left behind on the road trip to Illinois.  Luckily, it didn’t come to that, but asking a pregnant lady to go without food for over 12 hours is a pretty brave thing to do!

I forgot to mention that for 3 days prior to the test, they put you on a special diet.  I was like, oh great, here we go, but when I got the diet paper home and looked at it, the diet actually turned out to be the best part!  For 3 days, I was under doctor’s orders to load up on carbs, eat anything I wanted, and to make sure that I ate dessert with both lunch and dinner.  No problem, mission accomplished!

And a final note, before I take a nap, since they literally drained the energy from my body today in 3 separate installments…  they have a new flavor of the glucose drink you have to drink.  It used to be just orange, which tasted like orange pop, but today I was offered a cola flavored one also.  So I chose the new one because, what the heck, you only live once, and I’ve had the orange one more than a few times by now.  Which brings me to a question I have:  if there is 50g of dextrose in these little drinks, why don’t they taste better?  It’s not like they taste bad (the orange ones anyway), but shouldn’t something that is basically liquid sugar taste a little better?  I can think of probably about 50 things that would taste much better and have lots of sugar in them.  Why don’t they let me binge on candy and desserts before the glucose test instead of downing that drink?  And if I do have gestational diabetes, is it really the best thing for my body to be ingesting all this sugar just for them to test me?  And what do they need a whole vial of blood for every hour?  I am beginning to feel like someone’s science project!  I guess doctors know best, even though sometimes it’s hard (downright impossible for people like my husband!) to put your trust in them.  But back to my point…  if you ever have to take this test, I would stay away from the cola flavored glucose drink.  It’s not very good, and every time I think about drinking it, I feel nauseous!  It reminds me of the ‘flat cola’ remedy my mom recommended one time when I was sick as a kid.  I felt like I was going to throw up, even though I hadn’t, so she had heard somewhere that I should drink flat cola.  We just happened to have some in the house, so I tried it, promptly vomited everything up, and couldn’t look at cola for months.  And I still remember it.  Sorry Mom…  that one just didn’t work 😉