Happy Birhtday Ryan and a Stroll on the Green

First off - I need to wish my middle child a Happy 5th Birthday
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He got to open his Optimus Prime Voice Changer Helmet
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this morning, Daddy is reading to his class ("Poor Puppy" - the book is another gift.) and then we'll have cupcakes and some more gifts with the Grandparents after Little Dragons. The party is at the Martial Arts school tomorrow. More on that next week when I have party pictures to share.

I like working in a fairly large city - by CT standards. It has all the culture and charm of a big city, with a MUCH shorter commute. My office is very close to the New Haven green and surrounded by the Yale campus. This creates an interesting mix of people - ideal people watching conditions. Here are just a few things I witnessed on my stroll:

  • A man proposing to a woman at a bus stop. Far more romantic than a park bench on the historic green.
  • A wino proclaiming to be Jesus.
  • Two elderly women protesting The War on the steps of the courthouse. Better watch out Pres. Bush, these ladies mean business... too bad reality isn't' as black and white as their sign was.
  • Around 100 or so overweight, middle-aged, balding men in the exact same navy suit and red tie.
  • High School girls break dancing with a man old enough to be their father grandfather.
  • Yale students immersed in academia and completely unaware of the reality around them (I miss those days sometimes...)
  • Construction workers arguing with hot dog vendors over baseball (the joys of living where Yankee and Red Sox territories clash! now you know why I am a Mets fan.).


Thou Shall Covet This Sweater

I'm killing two birds with one proverbial stone today (no actual birds were harmed in the making of this blog). A little knitting content and a little pimping too.

If you look in my sidebar, you'll see a link to Not Your Mama's Crochet by Amy Swenson. It is under my patterns because I am a contributor (S3). I am also a fan of her designs - and her blog - Indiknits. A while back, she posted an idea for a cabled sweater design. EXACTLY what I have been wanting to knit. I have been anxiously watching her blog for progress on the sweater and cured at my monitor when she posted about knitting something else - how dare she "cheat" on that sweater? But after much ripping and reworking, it is done! Now I REALLY need to knit this sweater! Hopefully, I will have wrapped up my WIPs - and Holiday knitting - by the time she publishes the pattern.

While you are at Amy's blog, check out her wedding pics - the scenery is gorgeous! As are the brides - of course!


Make room on the Bandwagon...

Although I haven't been blogging much about my knitting/crocheting lately (I'll get on that Cynthia - Promise!), I read a few knitting blogs. Okay. More than a few. I heard about Ravelry a while ago, but figured I'd wait since it is still in Beta. Now, I'm seeing blogs about all this cool stuff on there and I am feeling totally left out. So, I shook off the high school flashbacks and put my name on "the list". At last check, there are 9010 people ahead of me and 2 after me.


Mental Furball

You know how you mentally compose blogs while you are driving or in the shower or "listening" in on a conferance call? Doesn't it just SUCK when you get to the computer and you can't even recall the topic of the post - nevermind the actual content? Yeah, me too. So, in stead of enjoying my brilliant wit and insight on some yet to be rememebered topic - I'll pimp some more.

Crazy Aunt Purl

AKA Laurie is a 30-something divorced "Cat Lady". She knits. She writes. And ya'll - she's funny! She gets all self-help-y with a great deal of humor and southern charm. I admire her courage to put so much of herself out there in her blog and her book. Though I am not divorced (or planning on it!) and I only have 1 cat, there is so much I can really relate to on her blog - like her "non-diet". Go check her out. Laugh till you pee yourself. Tell her I sent you!


Random Monday

1. Baby Tad-

Ryan unearthed his and gave it to Colin - who is enthralled by this thing! "Six minutes till night-night" Yet another reason why I love leapfrog! The first being that they replaced all the toys that were burned, melted or otherwise ruined in "the fire". I just had to return the carcass to them and they sent a replacement. (So did Learning Curve and Fisher Price.)

2. C'elle Revisited- I was telling Todd about it - and he asked if we could sell my C'elles. men....

3. Outlet Shopping- We packed the kids up in the SUV and headed to the outlets to get shoes for Thing 1 and Thing 2. We ended up getting Sketchers for them, Colin and me for only $130! (I would have paid that just for the Things' Airators at the local shoe store.) Then I found out that the Little Me outlet was closing... 2 Christmas outfits, PJs and argyle socks! Checked out the Gap outlet too (no WAY I am paying regular price in the Gap!) fleece pants for #2 and #3, PJ pants for #1 and 3 long sleeve Ts for #3. Why are long sleeve Ts SO hard to find without the snap crotch?

4. Fall yardwork - check. Now my shoulders and knees are killing me! Todd still needs to finish chopping fire wood and bagging the leaves.

5. my knee- I forgot to blog about my irritated patella. Three months of PT (exercises at home) should solve the problem. I tripped over the stupid baby gate and landed on said patella - which is no longer irritated - it's PISSED. sigh...


Back to the Pimpin'

Since Cynthia posted a comment on yesterday's post, she gets to be pimped today!


Cynthia shares two of my favorite passions- knitting and cloth diapers. Luckily, she has a VERY cute little model to show them both off! I also had the pleasure of meeting her and her lovely family recently at my Halloween Party. So, go check out her fluff, fibers adn family - and be sure to tell her I sent you!



Remember my post about my "Inner Diva"? (I still think it is the coolest thing E.V.E.R.) Go read it - I'll wait....

Deb commented: You might get me to cloth diaper with the next one. This thing is going to take some convincing. I don't even know why. You know me -- I'm NEVER at a loss for words!

Well Deb, this should make the Diva look a lot more attractive. (I still think you need to try it - or get knocked up again)

Appearantly, some (male) doctor/researcher figured out that menstrual blood contains stem cells. His research poses the hypotheses that these stem cells may be useful somewhere in the future. Of course, some brilliant company has taken his research and run with it. I saw an ad online for it and assumed it was a scam.

Last night I got a card in in the mail from C'ELLE - aka the nut jobs collecting the menstrual blood. The parent company is the one we've banked Ryan's cord blood with (my dad was diagnosed with cancer for a second time in 5 years around the time I found out I was expecting. we decided it was worth the price of storage.) SO, yeah.. they are actually legit!

Curiosity got the best of me. I had to check out their web site. OY! go read the FAQ... you need to use a cup - similar to the Diva. BUT then you have to put the sample in a test tube and store it in the fridge until you are ready to ship.

So, how's that cup sounding now?


More Pharmaceutical "Fun"...

At Andy's last eye doctor appointment, we learned that his eyes were responding to the drops and uncrossed. His depth perception improved. Now we are weaning him off of the drops.

Since it isn't nearly as common as drugs like Viagra and Lipitor, it needs to be ordered. Fine. We were running low, so I called it in several weeks ago (Oct 25 to be exact.). We are now out - and no call from the pharmacy to let us know they were in. I called them.

PHARM TECH: Pharmacy, can I help you?

ME: I hope so. I called in a refill for my son's prescription a while ago and I wanted to know if it came in yet. I know it needed to be special ordered.

(gave her the pertinent personal info to find said drugs - which are
not a controlled substance like his patches.)
PT: Is it a perscription?

ME: uh, yeah.

PT: Oh, that isn't a special order then.

ME: Well the sticker on the bottle says it needed to be ordered.

PITA: let me see if it has been ordered.

PITA: You don't have any refills left. We need to call the doctor.

ME: I'm looking at the label on the bottle. It says one refill left.

IDIOT: well, that isn't what my computer says.

ME: How it is it possible for them to be different?

JACKASS: it says you refilled it on 10/25.

ME: NO! THAT was when I called it in to be ordered!

MORON: Let me check the bin and see if it is in.

......................................more waiting - cooking dinner - changing diaper - wanting to reach through phone and smack that bitch! WHY didn't she look there first?.......................................................

DUMBASS: it;s not in. would you like me to order it for you?

ME: Are you serious? Why do think I called? YES- order it already!

STUPID: let me check with the Pharmacist.

..............................yep... on hold again.... read a story to Ryan..........................

LOSER: OK- he is ordering it now. It should be in on Wednesday or Thursday.

ME: It better be. I'll be in on Wednesday and every day until I get his drops.

It really toasts my cookies that other peoples incompetence/idiocy are affecting my kid's health. I know it isn't brain surgery, but c'mon folks! losing prescriptions and not ordering/filling them is just plain unacceptable! Good thing I'm not Super Nanny - they'd be in the Naughty Chair for a Looooooooong time! The most disturbing part of all this is that these were TWO DIFFERENT pharmacies. Not even the same chain.


Level Twelve and Bureaucratic BS

During spring vacation, just before Andy turned 4, he started reading – really reading. He figured out that there was a secret code in those letters and began unlocking it. I told his teacher and asked that she reinforce that skill in school. I was told, “That is a Kindergarten skill.” And? It was clear we’d get no help at this point, so we had him read a lot at home. Remember, he was a “special needs” student in an “integrated” pre-k class - appearantly you can't be smart AND have a speech delay. Kindergarten rolled around and the teacher sent us a note saying “Andy knows all of his letters!” I responded with “Andy knows how to read.” Once the children were FINALLY assessed for reading groups in January (almost a YEAR after he began reading), he was at “Level 4”. The goal for the end of Kindergarten was “Level 4” – he was at “Level 6” by that point. I’m not sure where he was assessed in September, but the teacher told us at “Back to School Night” that none of the children lost a level and almost all had gained over the summer. Friday was Report Card Day. In the comments section the teacher wrote, “Andy is expected to be reading at Level 6. He is reading at Level 12.” Level 12! HOLY CRAP! I mean, I know he reads a lot and he is getting better… but damn! Level 12?! The child amazes me! Now if we could get him to settle down and focus in music… he loves it, but I think he is over stimulated – and I don’t know that the music teacher is aware of his ADD diagnosis. I’ll have to ask her to join us for P/T conferences.

Ryan’s report card was pretty good as well – about what we expected. He is holding his own academically, but he would be doing a LOT better if he could learn to mind his business and follow directions…

My Mom got them both Webkinz - their first Webkinz - for their good report cards. So, we spent the day yesterday with the two of them fighting over Gram’s laptop. Joy.

Once we reached a truce in the Webkins War (round one of many I am sure). We headed for home – with a planned stop to pick up Andy’s patches at the pharmacy (he’d worn his last one that day). We spent an HOUR at the pharmacy. Todd went in and I waited in the car with Colin (was sleeping – woke up with a blood curdling scream), Ryan (trying desperately to sleep) and Andy (annoying the hell out of Ryan). Todd came out empty handed. WTF? We called around before we dropped it off to make sure they had it (Since it is a controlled substance, the pharmacies are limited in their stock.). Turns out that even though they had entered the information into their computer, they lost the hard copy and they wanted us to go and get a new one today… before they would fill it. Um - NO! YOU lost it YOU deal with it! Finally, I went back in (Todd was losing patience) and spoke to the manager. He tried looking for it – again. I don’t think he found it, but he did end up filling it. What a freaking pain!


Go see the Doctor

well.. the Doc isnt' in today.. she is taking the Boards...

Vegan Heart Doc
Heather is one of the most brilliant people I have ever met. yep- I actually know her IRL. we did our undergrad together. Of course, by the time we got our BSs - she was already half way through med school! She isn't just freakishly brilliant though.. she is a lot of fun! I am happy to call her my friend and (sorority) sister.

Her blog centers around
being healthy. She is a vegan, an interventional cardiologist and an aspiring tri-athlete. He blog offers tips on being a good patient, taking your meds, eating/cooking healthy, tri info - and the occasional pic of her ADORABLE (and vegetarian) niece!

So, drop by and wish her some luck on her recertification today!


Holiday Fluff 'n Stuff

I am happy to pimp my friends' blogs. I will tell anyone who stands still long enough about a good deal or great service. Self-promotion isn't my strong suit. I'm just gonna put on my big-girl panties and suck it up because I have GOT to show you what I am stocking tomorrow (noon EST) for the Holiday season.

Christmas Kittens
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Christmas Puppies
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and Custom Holiday Embroidery
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let the Pimpin' continue

next up in the Hot Seat is Missives From Suburbia

Deb is another dear friend and talented writer disguised as a Mommy. Like Cathy, she has a kid about the same age as Colin. She also has a husband who bears a striking resemblance (on the phone anyway) to Santa! I better not for get her pack of (not so) wild dogs. her blog is halarious! she is in the midst of packing and moving.... and injuring herself.... you can also check out her appearance on the Today Show on her blog.


Pimps 'n Hos - Blog style

So, have you noticed that I've updated my sidebar? I added more links to the blogs I frequent. I thought I'd highlight them on at a time so you can see why I read them... My original plan of attack was to just go right down the list, BUT I decided that if you're pimpin' me you get to move up.

First in the Hot Seat- For Me For Once

Cathy is a writer cleverly disguised as a full time Mommy. Her blogs range from silly and playful to very deep, raw and real. She looks at life and family - and all of its ups and downs. I admire her not only for her talent, but for her courage to wear her heart on her blog and her strength to put her butt on the Beach..

So go check her out already! If you wanna be pimped - or moved up the list.. drop me a comment

Inner Diva


One of my favorite breastfeeding benefits has been the lack of a period... I sure miss those days.. still breastfeeding, but not enough to ward off "the curse". sigh... since it has returned.. it has returned with a vengeance... very heavy - like "cant leave the house" heavy- followed up with day after day after day of spotting which seems to stop as soon as I decide I need to call my midwife.

My husbands reaction is to call/see the doctor for every little thing (yes, I know he is the exact opposite of most men - but trust me this is equally annoying.). Now ladies, you KNOW what she'll say when I tell her my period is problematic, right? yeah "The Pill"- now, as wonderful as it is, I really don't want to have to remember to do one more thing each day - never mind the potential side effects (migraines, weight gain etc).

While perusing a cloth diapering message board, I see frequent discussions on cloth pads... they sound comfy but I have never been a pad girl.. even cloth. I just can't stand them. I'd seen a few mentions of a menstrual cup- which sounded interesting, but complicated and uncomfortable. In one such conversation about a month ago someone mentioned that, while there is a short learning curve, it is as if you aren't even wearing it.. AND - this is what sold me - you only have to empty it 2-3 times a day...

SO- in short, there is a product that does not wick or leak, you can't tell you are wearing it AND you only need to "deal with it" a couple of times a day. No more late night runs for tampons - or forgetting to stick some in my purse (shudder) - or trying to find a clean bathroom on a construction site... I can "deal with it" in the privacy of my own (clean) bathroom...

I ordered the Diva Cup a few weeks ago and finally had a chance to test drive it. I think this past weekend really was a true test-and it passed. Train ride- no problem. subways, walking - no problem. lunch, play, hot cocoa - totally forgot about it!

I am SO glad I have found my inner Diva!


A subway named Desire

I spent a lovely weekend in the City (that is NYC - Manhattan actually - for those of you who aren't from these parts) with (blogless) Kim and (are you blogging again?) Kathy. we were all over the city. good food. decadent hot cocoa. hilarious play! bargain shopping. and of course stellar company and conversation....

unfortunately, thanks to the USCG, Kim had to take a late train back to suburbia. damn military... keeping us safe harumf!

I always enjoy talking to Kathy. She is smart, crafty and witty. she is also single and has the time/opportunity to consider things like what her own desires are... I tell you I am jealous. There are times I envy the freedom and excitement of being single in a big city... but at the end of the day I am happy to be home with my husband, kids, cat and suburban lifestyle...

It did get me thinking... what are my desires? If you asked me last week I would have said 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep... ok - did that. I spend my work day focused (more or less) on my clients' desires and trying to make them happen. then I go home and focus on the family needs/desires (kids can't tell the difference). I guess that means that I desire an income to support my family.. and I desire peace in my house... which means fulfilling my families desires. but what about me - just for me? I'll have to think on that..


Halloween recap

we started festivites 10/20 with Andy attending a birthday/Halloween party. here he is on he way out - right before the camera battery did..grrr...
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The festivities continued on Saturday with a party at AMAA. there were LOADS of kids there and lots of fun. Colin started dancing, but Todd and the camera were on the other side of the room and by the time he got to us with the camera, this is all I could get.

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since Todd was manning the camera, I didn't realize that most of the pics were blurry... so no good group shots. I do think this is a pretty spooky pic of Andy...

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for reasons I don't understand, Ryan was in a snit. I he could have won the prize for "most creative" costume if he's acted like a swamp monster, but he wouldn't perform... he also didn't want his picture taken.. see..
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HA! I caught him!

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notice the 3D glasses? those were his "glowing eyes" his idea.. as was the swamp monster. I, however designed & sewed the rest of the costume. since he REFUSES to wear any pants other than "soft pants" (the rest of us call them sweats) I have removed the "swamp" and now he has another pair of soft pants for school - not that he doesn't have a dresser drawer vomiting jeans...sigh...

I took the day off on Halloween when it occurred to me that there was NO way I was going to have a clean house, hot food AND my sanity for the evening's festivities. I was even able to be a "harvest helper" for Andy's class.

yes- "harvest helper" why not a Halloween helper? apparently Halloween isn't PC. the kids put on costumes for a costume parade and had treats for their "Harvest Parties". seriously... do they actually think that ANY of these kids are harvesting anything other than candy????
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the kids looked great and had loads of fun (not to mention sugar!)
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then I took the boys and headed home for our own party. FIL took lots of pictures. I asked him to email them to me when he uploaded them but he said something about "film" and "developing"... whatever... he did take this with our camera.
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I believe I was in the middle of telling Ryan to stop punching the blow up ghost..

I went in and took pics of these cookies
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b/c I wanted to remember to post about them. YUM-O! 1 box yellow cake mix, 15oz can of pumpkin and a half bag of mini dark chocolate chips. drop onto cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 8-10 min. SOOO good! they were a big hit at school and in our house. they were SO easy I'll certainly be baking them again soon!

I also made this interesting punch.
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Jell-O, 7up and gummy body parts. it was good, but I'll jsut save it for next Halloween...

I then put my camera on the counter and didn't take any more pictures... aside from the usual culprits (the grandparents, my sister, Jimmy, Kim and Jason) my sister had a date! yes! and the MOST surprising part? he isn't insane, drunk or a total ass! the best part is that he is SO good with Jimmy - it seems instinctual for him- and that makes me a very happy auntie!

we also got to meet the lovely Cynthia and her equally lovely family. I'll wait while you go check out her blog. make sure you get to see the pics of her little cutie Em! He is SO sweet! and such a good boy! we chatted and ate and compared baby sweaters before we said goodbye. (the boys were chatting about cartoons, Muppets and music.. hee..hee..). about 3 minutes after they left, I realized that we didnt' get any pics of us or the babies.. WAHH...

so then I cleaned up and went to bed... I'm still tired...