Construction: Days 39-48

The heads continue to roll here in Wester. We are nice people. Why are we having such a hard time finding workers who actually work?

So. The guy that was supposed to do the texture repairs on all of the downstairs walls? Fired. The work he did was slipshod to say the least and in the middle of the job, he found other jobs that he had to do first. Basically, he walked out. T says he was the laziest worker he had ever laid eyes on. From the minute he walked in he complained about the difficulty of the job and how things like removing trim or masking 'weren't his job.' That got old quick.

Super painters to the rescue! Turns out, the painter does texture and drywall repair, too. It took him a whole week, but he got the walls and ceilings repaired and they look like new. Got the bill today. His work is good. But not free. Ouch!

The tile for the bathroom arrived and was installed. When T walked in, he was all "Wow." He sounded so serious I thought something was wrong. When I asked about it he said, "This is nice. Really nice." It really turned out well. Except for my gorgeous accent tile. Sigh.

First, they sent the wrong tile altogether. Giant diamonds instead of tiny. Then they installed the correct harlequin-shaped tiles incorrectly; short and fat instead of tall and skinny. When I told the tile dude that it needed to be re-done, he tried to convince me that it looked better the way it was. Both he and his dad agreed! So I had to 'splain him that harlequins are supposed to be vertical not horizontal. They ripped it out, but the replacement tile won't be here until Friday. Bummer.

The tile guys also set all of the fixtures in the bathroom. I ended up making a mad dash for faucets because David had forgotten to tell me to get one - even though I asked (written down on my question list) if I should go pick one up. Grrr! The contractor place only had one faucet in stock that I could get that day. It was okay, but not what I would have picked out, so I went to Lowe's instead. I found a great faucet that is all curvy and tall. LOVE! So now all the water is hooked up and functional. The toilet has a push button on top. Fancy!

We had the final electrical trim-out. So now all of the lights, switches, switch plates, outlets, and outlet covers have been installed. There was a bit of last minute running around there, too. I thought David had purchased the light for the bathroom when he picked up the vanity. Nope. He forgot. When I got to Lowe's, I remembered that we hadn't gotten a ceiling fan, either. So I picked up one of those, too. It all looks great. My one complaint is that the ceiling fan is a little low. I picked the one I did because the display was flush mounted. The electrician installed it with a drop down. No problem for munchkins like in our family, but I have some friends that could lose an eye with a fan at that height! David says it is no problem to fix that. Whew!

Today the cabinet for the wet bar was installed. It is gorgeous! They made it custom to fit the space. Solid wood. It bugs me that I didn't get a choice on the doors, but the ones they selected are nice. I think we are going to stain it medium dark to go with the new stair treads and banister.

We are getting so close! The carpet is going in tomorrow. I can't wait! If the door folks hadn't goofed on the attic doors, we would be move-in ready this week. We have a bunch of attic access doors in the new living space. They are all odd sizes and shapes, so they had to be solid core exterior doors, since they have to be cut to size and the attic storage isn't insulated. They sent interior doors. Rats! The real doors should arrive on Monday. Luckily, with the carpet in, T should be able to set up his weight room again. That will make him a LOT less grumpy - which makes me a lot less grumpy, too!

After the long slog, the project is finally getting exciting again! It has been a lot longer than the projected three weeks, but I think the final product will be worth it!

And we thought we had it bad...*

Consequences of Deforestation

*Thanks (again) to Mrs. B who always sends me things that make me laugh. You rock!


Ten O'clock and All Is Well

For a little boy who spent three days in the hospital, Q is a complete wild man! We even went to the park today. Yay! He probably feels better than he actually is, but his coughing has decreased dramatically. Now that I think about it, I don't think I even heard him cough once today. We are supposed to do the dilator four times per day until his cough is completely gone. Guess I'll have to watch him like a hawk tomorrow to see if he is sneaking any coughing in! Even if he is all cleared up, we will probably continue on this schedule at least until his follow-up appointment next Tuesday. Thank goodness he has stopped fighting the nebulizer!

My dad had surgery today. He, too, is recovering amazingly well. Of course, he is the MOST STOIC MAN ON THE PLANET, so even if he was in miserable amounts of pain, he would never let on. Hopefully, he will get to go home tomorrow. Yay for advances in medicine that make a major surgery practically a day surgery! Sister L is with him now. Sister K will be in for her shift next week. I go the following week. I totally got the easiest shift - he'll be practically well by then! As he requested that I leave the kiddos at home for my visit, it will practically be a vacation! (The temptation to pick them up is just too strong for him to resist. Surgery + heavy lifting = Asking for trouble)

I am glad things are smoothing out so nicely.


Three Long Days

A week ago Friday, Q started coughing a little dry cough. On Saturday, he was getting a little whiny and wanting to veg on the couch. That night he started running a fever. By Sunday his fever was up to almost 104 degrees and Dr. GanGan said we should take him to the doctor. Funny thing about Wester, none of the doctors' offices are open on the weekend. Not ever the doc-in-a-box clinics. (In Small Town, our pediatrician's office was open seven day a week. I just assumed it would be that way here, too.) Our only option was the emergency room. Um, no. Through the magic of Motrin, his fever was contained and we made it through the night.

On Monday morning, I called the new ped's office. I was a little nervous about calling because the last time Q was sick they said they couldn't see him for three weeks. (There was an insurance mix-up, but that is another post!) Luckily, they were able to get me in to the doctor. Not our doctor, but beggars can't be choosers! After an eternity, we were seen my a competent but difficult to understand doctor. He is Chinese and kept referring to Z & Q as 'Girl' and 'Boy.' He pronounced Q to have a double ear infection and allergy induced pre-asthma. He prescribed what seemed like an impossible regimen of pills and potions and sprays.

I am a medicinally moderate person. Four prescriptions with one lasting for a year struck me as beyond excessive. So I was tacky and called my old pediatrician from Small Town. He agreed with me that it was all quite necessary in the short term, but recommended a different duration. Hmm. I was glad to be validated by someone who had actually been to medical school.

The next morning, Q's fever had disappeared and he was acting completely normal: running, playing, fighting with Z. Whew! I thought. I was glad that I hadn't started the antibiotics since he seemed miraculously healed. I didn't do the nebulizer meds (nebs), either. All he had was a little cough that sounded like post-nasal drip.

Imagine my surprise on Thursday when he was all droopy and clingy again. His fever jumped from 100 to 103 in less than half an hour. He seemed to be coughing a lot, so I did a breathing treatment with a dilator and a steroid. When he still couldn't seem to catch his breath, I called the doctor's office. Get thee to the emergency room! said the doctor, so after another quick neb off we went.

Honestly, I felt like this was a major over reaction. I figured they would give him some oxygen and maybe some hardcore nebs and send us home. WRONG. As soon as the triage nurse listened to his lungs, her eyes went wide and she ordered another breathing treatment. We went back to our room to be seen and the parade of torment began.

The physical exam wasn't too bad except for the whole tongue depressor thing. He was all smiles when the nurse tilted him back for the RSV culture. Have you ever seen an RSV culture? Basically, they shove a coat hanger with a tiny piece of cotton on it through your nose and into your brain. Q was not smiley when that was over. Next was x-rays. He perked up after that. He loved his glow-in-the-dark stickers.

As a matter of fact, we were playing under the blanket with the ER doc came in to tell us he had a 'pretty good pneumonia going' and that we would be checking into the Wester Hospital Hotel. Blah. He would send someone over to get the blood work started. It turned out to be not just blood work, but an IV port that they put in. Q was completely freaked out and cried and cried for us to take it out. So sad, but I managed to hold it together.

I had just gotten him calmed down from the IV when the nurse came in looking very distraught. The doc we saw at the clinic had taken over the case and requested a flu culture in addition to the RSV. Out came the coat hanger again. Only this time, Q knew what was coming and begged the nurse not to hurt him again. I had to help hold him down. We cried together after it was done. So much suckage.

We ended our eight hours in the emergency room with a trip to the peds ward at 10:00 at night. (Thank goodness Bun was here! She took care of Z for that entire afternoon and evening. She is the most amazing friend!) At 10:30 Q finally got some dinner. After all the paperwork and the parade of caregivers, it was midnight before Q fell asleep. I went to sleep, too. For about a minute. An alarm was going off. Q's oxygen levels had tanked. The RT came to give him some oxygen and give him some nebs, but Q fought her hammer and tongs. He absolutely REFUSED to put on his mask for either the oxygen or the dilator. He was hysterical, kicking, screaming, hitting. It was like he was possessed. I was stunned. He had never acted that way before. He was just SO done with it all. It was a crappy day to be Q.

He continued to fight the oxygen and his levels kept dropping. Alarms went off about every 15 minutes all. night. long. Finally, when his oxygen level rivaled a sack of hammers, I suggested they get an oxygen tent for him since he was so opposed to the mask. (Your job? Let me do it for you!) He finally settled down to sleep around 3:00 in the morning. He was so exhausted that he slept through the continual alarms and the near hourly poking and prodding.

Friday was miserable. There were more blood draws (damn vampires!), x-rays, and breathing treatments - now with more beatings! (They used this thing to pound on his rib cage to loosen up the junk that was keeping him from breathing.) He alternated between docile and Tasmanian devil tantrums. The poor RTs never knew what they were going to get. The IV had him swamping his diapers and the steroids made his parts hard. He could barely keep his hands off the thing. Poor thing. He was so bored and that was the only thing he had to play with!

I did finally get to meet out actual physician. She is awesome! She is the chair of the peds department and was highly recommended by a friend of mine. She broke the news that Q didn't have pneumonia. He has asthma. Asthma that will require aggressive treatment when he is little to keep him from crappy lungs as an adult. Oh, joy. The day was salvaged by the arrival of Grandma and GanGan. I went home for a shower and to play with Z a little. I was sure she thought of Q's illness as an attention sucking vortex and wanted to give her a little one on one time.

When I got back to the hospital, Q cried and cried when GanGan and Daddy left. I tried to be cuddly and offer comfort, but all I got was an elbow to the eye for my troubles. Luckily, once his tantrum abated, he fell sound asleep. He slept all the way through the night. And so did I. In fact, I didn't wake up until T and GanGan arrived the next morning! Exhaustion makes even lumpy hospital recliners feel like sleeping on clouds.

Saturday was better, except poor Q was SO bored. His oxygen levels were up, but not up enough to go home. I suggested that T bring him some Batman cartoons to pass the time. Between that and Grandma, he was content. Or as content as you can be when you have to lie in a cold, wet oxygen tent with a needle in your arm and your arm taped to a board. In yet another heroic act of friendship, Bun came and spent the afternoon with us. A good break for all of us, I think.

Saturday night was quiet, too. Well, except for my prank caller. Some drunken bimbo kept calling the direct line to our room and hanging up. Finally, after five calls, she demanded to know who I was. Her husband had been calling this number! It was on his bill! When I told her she had gotten the pediatric wing of Wester Hospital and woken up my sick baby, she hung up on me. Did I mention is was three a.m.? Yeah.

This morning, we got the news that we could go home. We will have to be hyper-vigilant about Q's breathing. Until his coughing is completely gone, we have to do dilator treatments four times per day. After that, we will continue with inhaled steroids for another six months. For someone who has to think long and hard about taking an aspirin, the road ahead is daunting.

Q is SO glad to be home. He missed his Z. Z missed him, too. It is hard to be Queen with out a minion. Grandma is staying for the next week to help get him settled in to his new life with a nebulizer for his significant other. She is a saint.

All in all? Three very scary days. I am glad they are over.


Happy Shamrock Day!

I was going to do something all cute with shamrock graphics and the smiling faces of my beautiful children... but, no. Instead, I got to remove much hated wallpaper. Good times!

Actually, I didn't hate it hate it, more like it was kind of 'meh.' Very boring/conservative/NOT my color scheme. So today - at the behest of the wall texture guy - I removed an entire bathroom's worth of navy and white striped wallpaper. Luckily, it had been hung over walls that had been both textured and painted, so the glue bond wasn't all that strong. It came down with a minimum of fuss and a maximum of mess. I still need to go in and rinse off the remaining glue and paper remnants.

It turns out that it was lucky that I did obsessively remove the rest of the paper. I was planning on removing it and painting the bathroom later on and would have been seriously ticked when I found out that only some of the walls behind the paper were textured. The previous owners added a water heater to that bathroom and tore up the walls. Rather than re texture, they just papered over the dry wall. Now that I have found it, the texture dude can do it all at one time. Huzzah!

It looks so different without the wallpaper! So much bigger. It is a relief for my eyes to have the paper gone because it fought terribly with the green/turquoise/brown monkey shower curtain and the rest of the kid's monkey decor. Now, to get rid of the balloon valance! It looks like antebellum underwear with a petticoat and little precious ribbons. Gag. So glad to see it go!

Any bets on how long it will take to get it painted?


Construction Days: 36-38

At last! Progress! And drama! Lots of drama! The slug-like (non)painters? Fired. The crew hired to replace them? Fired. The crew hired to replace them? Are the hardest working painters I have ever seen!

The head guy of the first crew has been in the hospital, but he sent his flunkies to do the job. Meanwhile, he was pestering Eldon for money, money, money - well beyond what he was owed. (My guess is that he didn't have health insurance and was trying to get Eldon/ME to pay for his care.) The underlings were working at glacier speed and were doing a half-a$$ed job of it.

The second crew said they could start the next day, Saturday, and would meet David at my house at 10:00. At a quarter of 11:00, David called to say that there had been some kind of miscommunication and that they had to finish up another job first. Hopefully that just meant cleaning up and getting their stuff packed up. Apparently not.

The third crew arrived yesterday in a gold Ford Taurus - the most unlikely painter vehicle ever! They had a look around and got to work around 1:00. They got the entire ceiling rolled (not sprayed, rolled) in one afternoon. They got more done in half of one day than the first crew did in two full days! Today they rolled on the color (which I LOVE, by the way). They got the entire living room, the bathroom, and most of the two new bedrooms done. All they lack is the walls where the ceiling line is curved. Awesome!

We also had a return visit from the electricians today, with a surprise bonus: a granddaughter just Z's age. They were fast friends in about a nanosecond and disappeared into Z's room. We finally have our lights/fans/floods in working order. They had been installed weeks ago, but they kind of forgot about installing the switches. Apart from a pretty dramatic shower of sparks and one burned up pair of pliers, all went smoothly. Let there be light!

I also had a visit from the plumber to scout the location for the wet bar. Luckily, our first choice for location is the easiest place to get water. Huzzah! Unfortunately, Eldon didn't realize that I had planned to put a bank of cabinets on that wall, so it took a while for us to get on the same page. But now we are!

My gorgeous vanity was delivered today, along with the mirror. I am so tickled! I still love them. I can't wait to see them installed. Hopefully soon!


Meanest Mama on the Block

I scared the neighbor kid half to death today. And had Z slamming doors and wailing "You ruined everything!" like a teenager. (I am afraid for when she actually is a teenager!) My mama-bear instincts were triggered and the neighbor kid (NK) bore the brunt of it.

The back story: NK is a weenie. He gets all freaked out by our dogs and is a total drama queen about them. He has, on a number of occasions, muttered words like 'sue' and 'lawyer' under his breath as he stomps off. He gets all power trip-y about bossing Z and especially Q around. He once told Z that Q was 'no longer allowed on his property' which is crap because we share a driveway. Why do we let him come around, you ask? Well, a) for some reason Z & Q love him; b) he is the only other kid on our street; and c) we really like his family.

So this afternoon Z invites NK into the yard to play. T was outside working and hustled the dogs into the house to avoid any unnecessary drama. Holly and Blackie watched them longingly and were whining to go out to play with them.

All was well until Q noticed that he was in the yard. As I mentioned, Q loves NK, so he wanted to go outside to play, too. Of course, when Q opened the door Holly and Blackie made a beeline for NK. As Holly alone is three times Q's weight, there was nothing he could do to stop the thundering herd.

As soon as the dogs were out, I could hear NK castigating Q all the way from the kitchen. It was the straw that broke the camel's back. I charged out there like an angry rhinoceros all crazy eyed and blowing steam. For the first time since 2004 I used my teacher voice (firm but not yelling and capable of squashing a small miscreant like a bug) on someone other than my own kids. I told NK that he would NOT come into Q's yard and fuss at him about letting his dogs out as he stuttered about Holly being big and jumpy.

I went on to tell him (as I was wrangling the big dogs back into the house) that I know the dogs are obnoxious, but they live here and if he wants to play in our yard (with the cool play fort) he just needed to deal with it. NK's eyes got all round as he looked everywhere but at me and started I'm-sorry-ing before I was even finished. He high tailed it out of the yard before the dogs had even been crammed back inside.

Which broke Z's heart and led to the aforementioned door slamming, hair tearing and teeth gnashing.

So I burst into tears.

Breaking one kid's heart in defense of the other's? Sucks. Being the meanest mama on the block to protect my baby? Worth it.


Champagne Taste - Diet Coke Budget

So I am finally getting started on Z's comforter. I have been planning for months and have run out of excuses for stalling. That and I am feeling terribly guilty about Q's lovely and completed room. Of course, his room just required some paint (purchased in August. Applied last week. Thanks for the help, Bun!) and furniture arranging. I used all the same stuff from his room in Small Town. I do still have to put up the rope accent trim at the ceiling line, but it still looks finished without it. Z's room, on the other hand, still has boxes, bare windows, and no bed spread. Oh, the horror!

I designed and sketched and calculated for hours last night. I am adding a quilt top to the existing comforter, embellishing the existing bed skirt, and adding a second skirt because her bed is pretty high. All in all, I probably need to get $30 to $50 worth of fabric. (Whoever said that sewing was inexpensive was WRONG!) But what is killing me are the trims. I need 12 yards of three different fancy trims (giant ric rac, eyelash fringe, and pom pom fringe) At an average price of $3 per yard? OUCH! The trims will cost more than the entire bed-in-a-bag set! Yow!

Then, to add insult to injury, when I went to Hobby Lobby to get the fabric I have been eyeballing since January? Gone. And the very sincere, completely unhelpful staffer had no idea when more might materialize. Arg! And the adorable Eiffel Tower toile that was supposed to reinforce the french theme? Is pink and brown instead of pink and black. Gah. I was so desperate, I actually considered going over the brown parts with a black Sharpie. All four yards worth! Holy hand cramps, Batman! I came to my senses.

So progress has come to a halt as quickly as it got started. I do have all of the parts for the curtains, so I guess I'll start there. I just hate starting before I have all of my ducks in a row!


Construction: Days 32-35

The progress, she is very slow these days. I am reminded of my high school Calculus class where Mr. Larson taught us about approaching zero: you can get close, but you will never get there. (Kind of like 'infinity plus one' in reverse.)

The builders were able to frame up and enclose an entire new house on top of my house in a week, but it took them forever to get the trim done and even longer for painting. Actually, now that I think about it, there are still some missing trim pieces. Finish the trim in one day? Ha!

If it weren't my house, the listless-ness of the painters would be comic. The painters were supposed to come on Monday, but we had no painters. The main painter dude was in the hospital with some kidney ailment. Tuesday the painters (minus the head dude) arrived around ten and were gone before lunch time. At first glance it appeared that they had just been hanging out in the attic, but closer inspection revealed that they had caulked the trim. On Wednesday, they had to recover from the rigors of wielding the caulk gun, so they didn't do anything but deliver the equipment to paint the next day.

Today they arrived around 9:30 and left before two, leaving a BIG stink in their wake. No low-VOCs here! There was so much paint funk in the air, I assumed that they had primed the entire attic. Nope. Just the baseboards. We had to open the windows to keep from getting high on paint fumes. Too bad I forgot to turn off the heat. Here comes a $500 utility bill! Yay!

I picked out a lovely shade of pale cocoa to go on the walls (Harvest Hill in the fan deck). I think it will be gorgeous with the carpet and the tile in the bathroom. I wonder if anyone is ever going to ask me what I picked.

I did get to pick out the tile for the bathroom this week. I am so excited! I picked out a stone- look tile with a matte texture for the floor. It should be nice and un-slippery. Also? It has a tiny bit of sparkle. Love! For the walls of the shower, I selected a marble-look tile in cream with brown veining. The piece de resistance, though, is the trim. I found the COOLEST harlequin shaped tumbled marble tiles for an accent. It is going to be gorgeous! By far the nicest bathroom in our house. If it weren't for the relative lack of closet space, I would move the master upstairs!



An actual conversation with T:

T: (coming in from driving Z to school) You really shouldn't leave your phone plugged in when your car is parked in the driveway. The blue light makes it really obvious. Someone is going to steal your phone.

R: (skeptically) Mmmkay. Where did you put my keys? I need to leave for the gym.

T: Oh, I left them in the console.



My computer has a slide show of the pictures in the 'My Pictures' file. As I have something like 10,000 pictures on my computer (we are excessive picture takers and also neglectful deleters), I am always seeing some different detail from the lives of my children. Often, in a moment of down time, I am completely sucked in. I am mesmerized by pictures of Z and Q in all of their stages since infancy, convinced that each is more adorable than the last.

Tonight is such a night. I came over to my computer to shut it down for the night only to be drawn in by pictures of my babies. Before I even knew it, I had tears rolling down my face. And I can't seem to stop them.

My babies have gotten so big. I am so proud of them. In so many ways my life has gotten easier as they get older: no more midnight feedings, or crying without knowing what was wrong, and (many) fewer diapers. But still. I don't feel like I am done with having babies. But T is.

I wasn't one of those disgusting pregnant women who claimed that being pregnant was the best time of my life, or that I 'never felt better!' I seemed to get a little of every unpleasant side effect. Nausea? Check. Hormonal migraines? Check. Sciatica? Checkity check. All the same, I miss being pregnant. I miss that feeling of growing a whole new person inside of me. I miss that feeling of possibility. I miss those teeny tiny people my babies were.

Honestly, I am a better parent of infants than I am of pre-schoolers+. Z has been a challenge to parent and I feel like I am letting her down every day by not being better at it. Comparatively, Q has been a piece of cake, but it seems like we are waiting for the other shoe to drop... He can't be this easy forever, can he? I know that babies turn into big kids, but I still yearn for another little blob of humanity to love.

But it takes two. And T is done. He has never been long on patience and two kids are all he can handle. His feelings are every bit as valid as mine. So I will sit at my computer and look at pictures of my gorgeous babies. And cry a little.


I'm a Rock Star!

Okay, maybe my achievements aren't really rock star level, but I totally feel like people should be throwing their room keys and/or panties at me!

I have been working on a blog make-over for my pal Jamie's photography site. She requested the usual stuff: header and background. Some not so usual stuff: an original logo. And some stuff WAY above my pay grade: navigation bar with drop-down menus. The first three were simple, just the usual back-and-forth-ing to get the design just right. The nav bar has been kicking my rear for the better part of two weeks.

At first, I attacked it by creating a nav bar without drop-down menus. I figured adding in the menus would be simple enough. Wrong. Then I combed Google for tutorials, selecting and chunking code three times. Finally, I stumbled upon this blog, and all became clear. Well, sort of.

With that code, I could make the menus appear, but getting them to look like what I had designed in my mind's eye was another story.

So. Frustrating.

I had my dad look at it and no immediate code stupidity/ignorance jumped out at him. Finally, it came down to adding and deleting the same code fragment to each section of the style sheet until I got that part to look the way it was 'supposed' to look. Then I would go through with the next code fragment. Very slow, but ultimately successful.

Throughout the entire process, I could actually feel my brain struggling to make new connections. Boy, the squirrels that turn my cognitive cogs are TIRED. On the plus side, struggling to learn new things staves off Alzheimer's, so I am feeling pretty pleased about that! Thanks, Jamie, for building my brain's muscles!


Construction: Days 26 - 31

We had a whole lot of nothing going on around here the past few days. The guy who was taping and bedding the drywall would come in for an hour in the morning and then be gone for the rest of the day. Finally, on Wednesday, a crew came in and blew on the texture. The walls look really good. The trash can, recliner and phone that also got textured? Not so much.

On Friday the texture dude came back to repair all the cracks, holes and nail-pops in the downstairs ceiling. Unfortunately, the drywaller hadn't gotten the memo that the gaping wholes needed to be sheetrocked, so the texture dude went home. Wah.

Today the drywall repair guy came and fixed most of the holes in the walls and ceiling. Unfortunately, some plumbing was not installed deep enough in the walls to drywall over and will have to be moved. Two steps forward, one step back.

After not seeing hide nor hair of the contractors for the last week, I finally talked to David today. He had been out for the last week with strep. Can you say patient zero? Anyway, he said he was going to get all of the trim installed tomorrow and the painter would be right behind him. He suggested that I pick out a vanity at Lowe's instead of having one custom built because we have gotten so far behind schedule. I found one I liked and he will be building some custom shelving to make the most of the storage in the bathroom. I also picked out the mirror and light fixture. I am so tickled with my selections! They are going to look so amazing! Someday!


Wow. I can't believe it has been almost two weeks since I wrote! I guess the construction chaos must be getting to me. In a nut shell, here is what has been going on for the last two weeks:
  • Q started running a low grade fever and being generally whiny. His back was covered with a pin-prick rash. He seemed to be over it by Saturday morning.
  • We went to the ranch for the weekend. It was a nice visit, nothing too exciting. T and I had a date - so I guess that was exciting! We stole my mom-in-law for a two week visit. Sorry GanGan! Guess you'll have to fend for yourself for a while! FYI, five dogs, three adults and two children don't really fit comfortably in a crew cab. It was a long drive back to the house.
  • Big. Snow. We had six inches of snow on the ground in out back yard. Grandma and Z made a real snowman with berries for eyes, crepe myrtle buds for a mouth and carrots for a nose. Q came outside for about a nanosecond, but didn't like walking through the deep snow and had to be rescued an taken back inside. The snow was completely gone by night fall.
  • Went to the open house at the school we are hoping to get Z into for kindergarten. Turns out I had been given some misinformation and the selection process isn't as crazy as I had been led to believe. All applicants take a qualifying exam and the ones who pass (50% and up) are then put into a lottery for the 88 available spots. Last year there were only 76 applicants who qualified. Half of the exam is vocabulary based. Since Z has a better vocabulary than some of the teachers I have worked with, I am confident she will qualify.
  • Q's fever returned with a vengeance. I called the pediatrician's office recommended by my insurance only to find that the doctor in question only practices in the NICU. Both the pediatric office and the family practice office could not see him for three weeks. Awesome. I took him to my doctor. Strep. Omnicef. Liquefying internal organs and flames shooting out of his butt. Good times. Turns out, his rash was the beginning of the virus. He had been sick with it for a whole week. Mom of the Year, that's me.
  • My dad came to visit! It was great to see him, but it seemed like the visit was SO short. Probably because I was in a mad scramble of birthday preparations.
  • Both of my babies had birthdays. Z is five(!). How can she possibly be five? I just pushed her out last week! Q is three. My baby! Where does the time go? We had a joint birthday party at an indoor bounce-y place with a pirate theme. Z's stuff all had pink bows. Q's was the standard pirate gear. I made them each a treasure chest cake. They turned out so well! There were more adults than kids there, but I think they all had a good time.
  • I got into a wrestling match with some CSS code and officially had my hiney handed to me. I worked on the dang code for a solid week and was unable to de-bug it by the deadline. (Sorry Jamie!) It irks me that I had to send her an interim code for something that wasn't quite what she wanted. Boo.
  • The nap time decorator strikes again! Well, sort of. I am (finally) painting Q's room. I spent the morning doing prep work and did all of the edges this evening. I think it is going to be gorgeous. Bun is coming over tomorrow to help me knock it out. She. is. AWESOME!
  • Construction is moving at glacier speed. Sigh. On the bright side, today I got to pick out some of the last details: carpet, stair rail, vanity, mirror and light fixture. I am SO excited about the bathroom upstairs. It will be prettier than the master bath!
So that's what has been going on with me. Hopefully I will get back to my regular schedule... but don't count on it!