Monday, February 28, 2011

Normal....Where Are You???

What a peculiar day this has been. It's days like this that make me miss my good friend, NORMAL.

We're having strange weather (last day of February...70* at 7:00 a.m.? Wild thunderstorms last night followed up by a tornado watch this morning? Seriously?) Tucker is still sick and home from school, and every single time I try to complete some task I start, I get sidetracked. Like really, really sidetracked.

Okay, so that last one isn't all that peculiar. It's actually pretty NORMAL. But the rest of this day? Nutso, I tell ya.

I want my boy to get better. Pneumonia is hard on anyone but particularly rough on an asthmatic. He's having a tough time regaining his appetite and when he was getting dressed this morning I could count every vertebra, every rib, up and down his skinny little back. :( He's stick thin anyway and I think he's lost about 5 pounds since he first became ill week before last. Right now this guy is his best friend:

He has had Crispy Strips on three different occasions in the last 5 days. It's just about the only thing he thinks he can stomach and as long as he'll eat them, I'll make the drive into town to buy them.

Funny the things a person finds appetizing when they're ill, isn't it? When I have a bad cold or respiratory troubles, all I ever want is my Mama Jones's sweet rice. (Not really rice pudding because it isn't thickened. Just white rice with milk, sugar, vanilla and nutmeg, served hot.) If I have tummy troubles I always crave spicy, tomato-based dishes (spaghetti, pizza, etc.) and I know how not NORMAL that is.

As for the weather, we had a strange glow in the sky early this morning. Kind of yellowish, kind of eerie. Then it turned BLACK. Now mind you, I had to take Perri to school because she had to take SO much stuff with her this morning (her usual backpack; her trumpet because she had to bring it home to practice over the weekend; her softball gear because tryouts start today) and it was too much for her to lug onto the school bus. So I am out on the road (with Tucker in tow) in my little two-door Speck (the gas saving grocery-getter we bought last summer) when the wind starts really whippin'! Pulled back into the garage just as the rain was starting. It was so dark in the house that at 8:00 a.m., Tucker and I were turning on the lamps. Not NORMAL, I tell ya. Wickedly strange weather.

So after a completely, peculiarly, oddly disjointed day, I am searching for and anxiously awaiting the arrival of NORMAL. The last two weeks have been quite abnormal around here and even though NORMAL is far from perfect, he is my friend. And I miss him.

At least until he hangs around for too long and I start craving some excitement. ; )

For now, I'm putting out the welcome mat and hoping he shows up at my door. If you see him, please send him my way. You'll recognize him, I'm sure. He's the one who looks...well, NORMAL. ; )

Friday, February 25, 2011

Well here we are...

We have our new internet service all up and running now! YAY!!!

And if you're reading this, I truly appreciate the fact that you were willing to come back here after my week-long hiatus. : ) You're a good egg.

Unfortunately I don't have much time to post this morning. My little Tucker Man is very ill and has been home from school all this week. Please say a little prayer for him, if you will. He really scared me on Wednesday. :( His oxygen level dropped and he was very weak and pale. We managed to raise it with an albuterol nebulizer treatment and avoided a hospital stay. However x-rays did show pneumonia in both lungs and he is now on a couple of heavy duty antibiotics. His asthma makes it very difficult for him to get over things like this. :(

I hope to be able to get some rest so that I can think clearly enough to make a decent post here in the next day or two. I'm so tired, mostly just mentally exhausted, and I feel like I could sleep for a week.

Again, thanks for hanging in there with me! Love my blogging friends! : )

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Gonna be AWOL

Due to some technical difficulties (we're going to be between our current and our new Internet servers for a few days) I am going to be gone for a few days. Hope to be back here and posting again by Thursday evening, Friday at the latest.

Do me a favor. Behave yourselves! (Or not...I don't want to be the blogger who takes all the fun out of everything!) ; )

Monday, February 14, 2011

Blue, blue Monday. :(

I'm feeling a little like Garfield on this Monday morning.

It wasn't that long ago that I posted about not minding Mondays so much. It has such a bad reputation, being the proof that yet another weekend is over and done and another work week has begun. Under ordinary circumstances I truly don't mind them so much but this Monday stinks.


Not one but TWO sick kids. :(

Yeah, you read that right. Both of them. Fever, congestion, sore throats, one of them coughing and one complaining of a headache.

I think it's gonna be a long week. :(

On a lighter note, we had Valentine's Day dinner yesterday before my son-in-law went back to work. This was the main course:

Yes, it's a 3+ pound heart-shaped meat loaf.

Hey, how much more festive can you get? ;)
(Yes, I'm a bit odd.)

So today is Valentine's Day and I have two sick kids, but since neither of them are truly miserable (just really not feeling well), I'm gonna try to look on the bright side.

We have sunshine! The wind is fierce but the sun is shining brightly and you can just see the promise that spring is on the way. (Just don't stick your head out the door because it is COLD out there!)

I have plenty of food in the house because The Hubster and I made a grocery run on Saturday and totally stocked the pantry.

There is laundry to do, there are movies to watch and games to play, so we won't be totally bored out of our skulls.

Best news of all? PITCHERS AND CATCHERS REPORT TODAY!!! Yes, spring training has begun! My Yankees should be beginning their spring workouts at George Steinbrenner Field in Tampa today.


Can you tell? ; )

Now I'm outta here. I must tend to the sick and afflicted. I must do laundry. I must daydream of getting bleacher butt while watching my Yankees PLAY BALL!

Catch y'all tomorrow. : )

Friday, February 11, 2011

Some Favorites on Friday

I'm going to tell you about some of my favorite blogs. There is no way on earth I could post about all of my favorites at once, so I may do this kind of post once a week or so, just so you can check out some blogs that may be new to you.

But first let me tell you a few things about what it is that makes a blog enjoyable for me.

1. I think the most important thing is the person behind the blog. While I may have never met the author and I may not really know them, I think you can tell an awful lot about a person by the things he/she blogs about. The tone of their musings, the humor, the subjects of their typical content. I have to say I've come to really like some of the authors I've 'met' through my blog. : ) There are some really nice folks out there in blogland!

2. A certain way with words. I love it when the written word evokes emotion of one sort or another. Make me laugh! I LOVE to laugh out loud when I'm reading! Bring a tear to my eye. It takes a powerful honesty to do that. Make me question myself. Make me question those around me. Give me something about which I must think.

3. Just fluff. When your day has been long and your load particularly heavy, a little bit of fluff can go a long way toward relaxation. Fluff is good.

4. The REAL story. Tell it to me. Don't sugar coat it to make it easier to digest. If your heart is breaking and you need to spill, do it. Don't hold back because it isn't PC to let it all hang out. I like honesty. And I respect it.

5. Pictures. I so admire great pictures. I don't care if they're landscapes, posed babies, snapshots of random moments around the house or just something that drew the photographer's attention. My own lack of photography skills may be partially to blame for this fascination of mine. My pics stink.

6. Inspiration. Inspire me! Show me the room just redecorated with things you already had around the house. Show me that Goodwill find that you repurposed and made beautiful again. Or share with me the things that inspire you.

And there you have some idea of what draws me to a blog.

Here are three of my favorites. (Yes, I'm about to attempt to narrow this list that's as long as my arm down to only three blogs!) I hope you'll check them out, explore what they have to offer and enjoy them. And tell them that I sent you. : )

Relyn is one of the most gifted writers I've had the pleasure of 'meeting' since I started blogging. She has such a way with words. Her computer screen is her canvas, her keyboard a paintbrush. And she creates some of the most lovely and touching works of art. Relyn asks you to Come Sit By My Fire. Take her up on it.

Amanda shares everything from fabulous recipes to the fact that her very swollen feet (she's currently expecting) now fit snugly into her husband's HUGE socks! : ) She is super sweet and always has something fun or interesting to share. And did I mention that she posts fabulous recipes? ; ) There is some good stuff happening in Amanda's kitchen! Drop by I Am Mommy and see for yourself.

Coralie is a busy lady. She has not one, but TWO blogs I enjoy! The first I discovered was Charming Vintage Recipes. She digs up some of the coolest old-school recipes, things you haven't had since you were a kid or have maybe only seen on old movies or television shows. I'm a sucker for all things that pertain to the days when ladies were ladies and gents were gents. So much of what she posts just takes me right back to those days. (I was born in the wrong decade, I tell ya!) Her other blog is A Vintage Cottage Home and it is chock full of gorgeous images of things I consider to be highly collectible, like vintage postcards and books, magazines from days gone by, beautiful advertisements that beckon you back to days when life was simpler. LOVE the stuff she shares!

Whew! That was tough! Choosing only three...okay, so it was technically four if you consider the fact that Coralie has two blogs. But hey! If you'd see my list you would really appreciate what I've just been through! ; ) Hope you'll check these out and tell 'em Kelli sent ya, 'cause I not only like these blogs, I really like the ladies who write them, too!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

My Latest Adventure

Or my only recent adventure. It isn't like I'm always doing new and exciting things, ya know.
And I'm also pretty sure that most of you won't really consider this much of an adventure anyway. But I'm one of those for whom...well, it just doesn't take much. ; )

So here's the big news:

Last night I signed up and started working out at our local fitness center!

*Wow. I'm thinking if I dropped a pin right now, I'd hear it hit the floor. And I'm on carpeting.*

Seriously folks, this is BIG stuff for me! I have a very distinct comfort zone and seldom step anywhere near its boundaries, let alone outside them. We got Perri a membership there the first week of January to give her somewhere to go to workout and stay fit. All those years of gymnastics left her with a desire to be moving almost constantly, and for that I am so very grateful. You see, I've never been athletically inclined or anywhere close to physically fit. I mean really nowhere close. But over the last couple of years I've been feeling the need to get myself into better shape. Age creeping up on me? Perhaps. I'm feeling it and I have no desire to spend the rest of my days sitting around doing nothing and allowing my body to fall into even greater disrepair.

My first night at the gym taught me a few valuable lessons I thought I'd share with you, my lovely readers. : ) Don't laugh too hard, okay?

#1. If you should go to the gym with your fabulously fit 13 year old daughter, don't allow her to convince you that the stair climber is the place to start especially if she's the one who has to adjust the settings for you because you have absolutely no clue as to what all those buttons do.
Can you say OH. MY. GOODNESS? Three minutes into level 6 and I was nearing the point of hyperventilation. To a beginner, anything above level 3 on the stair climber is Satan's spawn, I tell ya.

#2. The wet noodles that take the place of your legs after 3 minutes at level 6 on a stair climber make it extremely difficult to maintain any sort of dignity while walking to the next machine.

#3. Handrails on the steps leading to different levels of the fitness center are useful and necessary features when attempting to ascend/descend the stairs on the wet noodles that take the place of your previously stable (if not firm and shapely) legs.

#4. The dual motion handlebars on the elliptical trainers are a godsend. Not only do they provide an upper body workout and strengthen your core muscles, they also provide just enough upper body motion to hide the involuntary trembling of muscles too long unchallenged.

#5. The rowing machine ROCKS.

#6. Before leaving home for a good, strenuous workout, make sure the music on your iPod has been changed since Christmas. You might get there, all set to kick up some Nickelback and some All American Rejects to get motivated, only to pop in the ear buds and discover only Christmas carols, Josh Groban, Michael Buble, and the soundtrack to My Best Friend's Wedding. Not what I consider great workout music.

So there you have it. The What Not To Do List for a first time gym rat. Consider this my PSA for the week. I'm working out at home this evening and going back to the gym on Thursday, so I might be too sore to even type by that time!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Playing Catch-Up

It's been a few days since I've had time to post. Just thought I'd check in, let everyone know what all has been happening around these parts, and to say I haven't forgotten ya! Just been super busy.

On Friday the Hubster took Tucker to the Monster Truck Jam. Talk about a happy little guy! : ) He had a BLAST! And Perri and I took advantage of their guy time to enjoy a little girl time for ourselves. We went shopping for Valentine Dance shoes and found them right away! Talk about a great deal, too. They were $45 beauties and we got them for $8.97!!! CHA-CHING!!!! Perri's happy, Mom and Dad are happy, and all is right with the world! ; )
And THAT is Perri stylin' and profilin' in Penney's! LOL!!! Yes, we had fun!

Saturday brought some blustery winds and even a few snow flurries, but that didn't stop us from having a yummy grilled meal. : ) Everyone was here except for Josh (my SIL) and unfortunately he was stuck working. :( It's been too long since I've gotten to see him and I miss the guy when he isn't around.

Yesterday we went to the inlaws'. We hadn't been up there in a very long time and it was good to go visit for a bit. Since my FIL was working for most of the afternoon and wouldn't be there to eat with us, we grabbed a couple of pizzas on the way up. (You see, my MIL LOVES pizza and my FIL really, really doesn't.) So we ate pizza, MIL and Tucker played games, we all talked and laughed and FIL got home in time for us to spend about an hour with him before we had to head home. It was a good afternoon. : )

Then it was Super Bowl time! Not as much about the game for me as it is about the commercials. ; ) I ADORED the one with the little Darth Vader! How cute was that? And my second favorite was the Doritos commercial where the guy is going out of town and he tells his buddy to feed the fish and water the plant while he's gone. HILARIOUS!!! The ETrade commercials were still cute but just a little bit of a letdown compared to the previous ones. This one is my favorite though.

But that just about covers the craziness around here the last few days. I doubt I'll be on tomorrow...February 8th is usually not a great day for me. :( Tomorrow will be 13 years since we lost this man.

(Pictured here with my mom.)

Here are a couple of other posts I've written about him in the past, in case you missed them. He was an incredible man whose story deserves to be told over and over again. Sure do miss him.

Hope everyone has a terrific week! I'll be back soon! And I promise I'll be around to visit your place soon, too. Silly ol' real life. Just keeps getting in the way! ; )

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I am NOT sick! : )

That's my positive thought for the day. With the wind whipping around outside (quite fiercely, I might add) I am attempting to clean up my computer files a bit and I stumbled across this piece I wrote a couple of winters ago. It is my reason to be grateful today! Yes, we're having a very loooooong winter and the kids' school year has been extended to the max. Yes, I'm beginning to feel the effects of cabin fever and the sunless skies only compound that problem. But this little essay reminds could always be worse and actually has been in the past. Hope it makes you count your blessings today, too. ; )

The Winter of My Discontent

Here I am, lying in bed under a weighty pile of quilts and blankets, waiting for the flu to decide that it has had enough fun at my expense. My muscles ache, my sinuses feel as if they are about to explode from the confines of my face and, thanks to those wonderful commercials, I can just see those mucus bullies who have set up housekeeping in my chest. Other than drinking plenty of water and taking pain relievers to lessen the misery, there isn’t much to be done. It is strictly a waiting game and, quite frankly, I’m tired of waiting. I’ve been very patient (at least by my standards) and I think it is time for Mr. Flu Bug to move on.

This is just the icing on the cake for me. I mean, has this or has this not been the longest winter ever? Will it never end? I have always loved this time of year and often reminisce about those wonderful snowfalls of my youth. My friends and I would sled and build igloos and snowmen to our hearts’ content, oblivious of below zero wind chill factors. As a child who longed for more snow days and school cancellations, winters never seemed to last long enough. I still say I’d much rather be bundled up against the cold than unable to escape the heat, but let’s be realistic. I’m no longer a school girl who yearns to ensconce herself in multiple layers of mismatched clothing and make snow angels for hours on end. I give up already. UNCLE!

Even my kids have had enough. Their school year has been extended to the max and the desire to get ‘er done is outweighing the desire to sleep in. They want bicycles taken out of storage and sleds stowed away until further notice. They want to play outside after school without having to wear a parka and mittens. I feel their pain. I want to open windows, hang sheets on the line to dry and (dare I say it?) mow the grass. Of course, you are welcome to remind me of that last one in July, when the temps are in the 90s and humidity reigns supreme.

I’m so anxious for winter to be over and done that I even got an early start on my spring cleaning. I’ve been purging closets of unnecessary clutter, washing and ironing curtains, cleaning windows and wiping down the woodwork. That is, until Mr. Flu Bug decided to pay a visit. I was a rude host in the beginning, telling him I had neither the time nor the desire to deal with him, and attempting to go on about my business. I soon discovered that was not the way to handle the situation. It certainly didn’t send him packing. If anything he was even more persistent and finally got my full attention by bringing on a bout of aches, pains and chills that forced me to bed. So here I am; aching, chilling, wallowing in self-pity, infecting every blanket in the house and creating even more laundry to be done once I’m back on my feet. Ain’t winter great?

I guess for now I’ll simply dream of those better days that I know are coming. The flu will be long gone (good riddance!); the sun will be shining on my freshly mowed lawn (can’t you smell that wonderful aroma?); crisp, clean sheets will be billowing in a gentle breeze (is there a better feeling than curling up between line-dried sheets?); and I’ll be relaxing on the front porch swing with my hubby, watching the kids ride their bicycles (if the tires haven’t dry rotted after spending so much time stored away). Closing my eyes, I can see it all so clearly. I can even feel the warmth of that gentle spring breeze.

No, wait… my mistake. That’s just the heat pump kicking on. Again.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Where'd it go? Did you see it SPEEDING past???

I'm talking about THE WEEKEND! Boy oh boy did it ever disappear quickly! And then Monday decided to grab it's tail on the way past. The last three days have been a whirlwind around here!

I am happy to report that on Saturday we had SUNSHINE!!! YAY!!! Did I EVER need that! It was a gloriously beautiful day and we got ourselves ready and headed out the door. Perri was in need of a dress for the Valentine Dance at school, so we went shopping. : ) It was so nice to feel the sunshine on my face but it was still a bit cool to stay outside for long periods of time, so shopping seemed like a great compromise. ; ) (Shopping is ALWAYS a great compromise, isn't it?) It was a great day, as we even found a dress for 40% off! YAY Kohl's!!! : )

On Sunday we went to church, came home and had Swiss steak for dinner (hadn't made that for a long time!) and then ran to town with Brie to grab a few things we needed. Back here to goof off for the rest of the afternoon and then I played short order cook for the evening meal. Everyone wanted something different, so I ended up making BLTs, fettucini alfredo and corn dogs. I chose chocolate Cheerios for my own evening meal. ; )

Yesterday Brie and Hayden both had appointments and I had to go help out. Brie was having a glucose tolerance test. (Still don't understand why they waited until she was seven months pregnant...I had mine and was put on the diabetic exchange diet at about 4 1/2 months when I was pregnant with Tucker!) Hayden had his 2 year check-up, just a little late. He turned two in October but between illnesses and snow storms, she hadn't been able to get him there for the check-up and...*shudder*...the dreaded immunizations. Guess who had the honors of taking the little man upstairs for that good time! It wasn't too terrible, but I don't know that he'd agree with that assessment. ; ) The big guy is now 3' tall! WOW! He's grown so quickly! : )

Needless to say I have had no time to work on the big changes I mentioned here on Friday. I did spend a little time looking at the possibilities but I'm just not sure that I have the time to deal with it right now. It's gonna take a lot of time for me to learn how to make it all work, but at least I know it's out there and when I do have time, I can mess around with it and see what I can do. For the time being, I think we're okay right where we are. : )

So I guess this has sort of been a Miscellany Monday post...only on Tuesday. ; ) I'm always just a little behind, huh?