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Archive for January, 2009

I have an honor roll pin!!!!

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 30, 2009

YES!!! TODAY IS REPORT CARD DAY!!!! I only had to wait until my daughters brought them home. But I get to wear honor roll pin for a day. I make them let me……. You know how you’re not supposed to live vicariously through your children? Oh well. I love my smart little girls, and soon to be teenage daughter (holy crap that snuck up on me!) Their school does not give out the bumper stickers so I think I will order some of my own, wait, is that horribly lame?

I failed school it failed me. Despite my uneducation (I am aware that is not a real word-it’s me being ironic)  I can somehow think and thanks to the worlds best mom who read to us every night I love books. I can’t write and that sucks but I am trying to figure it out. It’s frustrating as hell as an adult and terrifying to face these things head on and not something I want my children to struggle with. I don’t blame my mom and dad they were dealing with a different world then we have now and I was pretty good at sliding under the radar.  Today the world is different  for kids like me, they get help. I specifically remember the day I labeled myself stupid, sitting in the 3rd grade wondering what the teachers were talking about. I don’t think I ever understood what any rule in any of my core subjects of Science, English, or Math by the time high school rolled around. My attitude was just let me do it because I can’t understand the “why” or the rules of anything….severe case of ADD I find out after my school years are long gone. I somehow passed the tests and my teachers kept bumping me up a grade. Oh and one time I placed 3rd on a state test out of the entire school despite having F’s and D’s in most of my subjects-then I was labeled lazy which was equally frustrating for me. This was in the dark ages before they treated anything but ADHD or dyslexia. Anyway this is partly why I can’t spell (that and genetics-my mom has a worse case of spelleritis) and why I do not understand gramer only that sometimes my words don’t look right. During my ACT-this is really sad-I was adding up numbers because I didn’t know my times tables. Can you imagine? Now they can use calculators….grrr…I most likely would have done okay if I’d had one. I am so happy that my daughters will not struggle with feeling stupid and trying to get by being cute, which is right up there on at the top of the stupid list. If I could have been helped it could have been avoided…. The awesome part is that we learn from our past experiences and my children will not go down that path. Mikayla has the same learning issues I did and is excelling in school. Also I am fairly certain my extremely bright Everett is going to have his behavior struggles but school will not fail him, over this mom’s dead body.

Love you Cady and Mikayla-you rock my brainy nerd children- Even with a mom who has a hard time helping with your 3rd and 7th grade math homework you continue to bring it and I am so proud for you!

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Jessica Simpson you are beautiful

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 30, 2009

I am extremely annoyed, no I’m angry. I was watching TV today and there was this promo for a gossip television show about how Jessica Simpson has “packed on the pounds” along with some of her past commercials of her joking around eating junk food. Gah! What are we telling our children, specifically our girls? So I looked up the pictures which I’m sure just added fuel to this entire debacle even if only one more click and I got more furious.

She is incredibly beautiful and healthy and curvy like it was her God given body. Not half starved, I work out 3 hours in the gym everyday so I can please my manager and everyone in plastic land- just healthy. I’m pissed because that picture of her is precisely what I looked like in High School when I went on a starvation diet that most likely ruined my metabolism because I thought I was soooooo FAT. I wanted a breast reduction for my high school graduation present because I thought they made me look fat even after all that dieting and getting down to a size 5, the truth is I was perfect. I hate what media can do to our body image. We had starvation contests, looked at those magazines, and even hated our hair, our clothes….everything trying to be those plastic girls.

My best friend was a girl athlete and she had muscular legs, she always thought she was fat-she was in truth a Godess. Another friend was unhappy with her arms….-her freaking arms- because “gasp” she could pull some skin off of them. Not to mention a close friend who was hospitalized several times for anorexia. And the list could go on for paragraphs-something almost every girl in America could relate to.Can we hunt some of these people down…who is to blame? Wallop some of the media not just for Jessica but for all the girls in America. Because when they see these things they think, man if she is “fat….” and nothing will take it out of their head. Its hard enough being a girl we don’t need this.

One of the most awesome things about living in the Caribbean is that women embraced their bodies no matter what they looked like. That and walking around every day in a swim suit you just learn to love every fat cell, every imperfection-maybe not LOVE It but accept it. Even when we lived in Canada the women there were happier with what they were given, so much more accepting. We really have it mixed up in America.

So for my 2 daughters and my future daughter I wish them peace and love with what God gave them. No starving, no excessive obsessive exercising, be healthy and happy and ignore everything else. In my opinion, and not that this should matter, real men don’t care if you are that rail thin model or not. And God bless you if you were born like that-because even those girls aren’t happy with their body. The boy Tools may care about image more then anything else but you don’t want to be with them anyway.  And other women/girls who would judge your body are only insecure and need a hug. Everything else is fake, don’t worry about it.

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Doing the happy dance, at least in my mind…

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 28, 2009

Got off of the phone with my friend and we are officially starting our book club this week! We will meet without children (yes I need a break every so often) for adult breakfast once a month. Oh I am excited and now I can stop driving all my adoption readers crazy with the book talk. Well maybe anyway, not making any promises.

Okay a miracle just happened. I clicked on the spell check and nothing was in red, nothing.

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I went shopping….

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 28, 2009

When depressed shopping is good therapy, wait, maybe Oprah said that wasn’t a good therapy or was that Suzie Ormond on Oprah?….hmmmm. Do you know what has always upset me is that Oprah has that show about her “Favorite things” and then she has Suzie Ormond on. So conflicting, Oprah, why do you do this to me? Anyway I had a babysitter so I spent 3 hours shopping. (Being on my feet is a good thing as long as I don’t bend over or lift heavy things.) My favorite place to shop is Target specifically sales. So I bought some more stuff for Emma even though I’ve told myself not to. I found a really cool sling for $9.99 (it was $45!) I love it; I tried it on when I got home and put a doll in it so I could figure out how it worked because it’s really complicated. You can wear it 8 different ways. Cady thought I was insane and laughed at me. I think she may be right. It was a little hard to figure out so I had to go online to their instructional video. Its pink with brown stitching and is made of stretchy cotton-its so cute-even if I don’t’ wear pink or anything that matches pink Emma will be in pink most of the time because I am THAT mom, the one who loves to make her little girl look very much like a little girl. I think this sling may be my newborn winner. I don’t really have a good newborn sling. I have a really old one from Target that they don’t even make anymore and I know it will kill my back. My Mei tae-Everett thinks is his. I have an Ergo along with a Peanut sling and hotsling. I like the hotsling/peanut sling for awhile but I would rather have something that didn’t throw my back off to one side, specifically now. I don’t like the Ergo for newborns and I don’t have an insert anyway so it’s not like it would work.  So babywearing…I found the perfect newborn stage, I love it and I can’t wait.Update on my back: I feel like such an old lady this has been awful and I have not been able to exercise which lead to me being not so careful about what I am eating. I also cannot clean my house well because I can’t bend over. And James is not so much the best house cleaner. Then I’m terrified we will get a call for a baby and I won’t be able to take care of her, travel to NYC to pick her up…all that stuff, and then AT THE EXACT SAME TIME I’m terrified that we will NEVER be getting the call. UGH!!!

It is getting better if I do absolutely nothing, not even sitting like I am now. Just lay there-and that is depressing. I have been able to read and rein Everett into the same room most of the time. I am forcing myself to be still-I am somehow for the majority of the day been able to do this but I think he is getting so sick of playing with mom while I am laying on the couch.

Also yesterday I went to the bathroom-leaving Everett playing with his “train circle” in his room. Everett has about 20 magnetic trains. He puts them in a “circle” and then plays with them for hours making them talk. Eventually he gets angry because there are 20 of them and they don’t do what he wants them to. Honestly I do not know why I go to the bathroom, oh wait, I guess I do. But generally it leads to some sort of disaster with Everett. So I come out and he is not in his room. I am trying to find my son in this house that I will admit is just too big for a 2 year old and this mom. I love old houses, but it’s TOO BIG, if we ever get the chance to sell (not likely with the economy in upstate NY) I want something easier. Anyway I call for him after not finding him with his toys in the family room and he runs to me with a cheese stick wanting me to open it. He has long since mastered opening the fridge so I keep a drawer for him. So…cheese stick in hand and I settle on the couch which is what I am mostly doing these days because of my old lady back. About 5 or so minutes later I smell a horrid burning smell. I get up as quickly as my back will allow and hobble to the kitchen where smoke is billowing out of the microwave and there is a half opened bag of frozen peas spilled all over the floor, a chair propped up to the microwave with evidence of the empty bag left on the chair. I open the microwave. There is a bun and the rest of the bag of peas in the microwave, the bun is literally black and smoking, the stench is gagging me. I grab a paper towel and dispose of the bun outside while Everett tells me “mommy I made lunch.” The peas seemed to survive, shriveled but not smoking. The worst part is that I can’t really bend over to clean up this mess so I have to sweep it all into a pile and wait for James to get home. Everett and I have a little talk about how if he wants to make lunch he needs mommy to help him and that I would love to cook with him. The smell is so awful he no longer wants to make lunch with mommy. (It was 9:30 AM-we’d just finished breakfast ))

Everett still has food issues. He no longer eats until he vomits but he has to have control over his food. I think this stems from one of two things but more so a combination of both. He was given a bottle to comfort him while with his birth mother for the first 3 months of life and assuming that he was neglected, I think it’s a fairly good assumption considering her profession and habits. He was an “obese” baby, as in he weight the same at 3 months that he did at 11 months. But then again my Cady was a chunker and I still feel it’s because my husband is 6′7″ and comes from a family of chubby babies. Everett is also big for his age, as in tall. Mikayla was my average baby. Cady always wore about a year ahead of her size until she got into grade school and now she is a bean pole, just tall. His foster mom told me he was “disgusting” fat. They put him on what amounted to a regimented feeding schedule and even when he screamed hours for more food, they would not give it to him. Not intentionally they put him on a baby diet. After a lot of research and trial and error I find the best approach is to let him have free access to healthy foods. He seems to moderate himself better then if I try to control the food. I also let him have a child’s size chocolate shake almost every day, his therapist recommended it. Something about the sucking the thickness through a straw, the sugar and chocolate is good for him. My son is solid muscle. Seriously, no exaggeration, I should video tape him, he has mastered the kart wheel, just last night he did a full front flip on my bed, he leaps over the pews at church when service is over because he would like to get to the front and scream in the microphone and often he does….he likes to spin ON HIS FREAKING HEAD which gives me heart attacks. I can’t catch him; he is too fast for me. It’s a good think he started to listen to me. I called his Pediatrician about the break dance head spin and she told me that it was okay…really??? It’s a fact….Everett is a force of nature. The other day I caught him giving Cady a horse ride on his back-or rather caught Cady. A game he thinks is fun only Cady is his horse. She is 60 pounds and he was actually crawling across the floor with her on his back her knees bent up all of her weight on him. I screamed for her to get off (I don’t like to scream) and told her to never EVER do that again. So ya, he eats a lot of freaking food all day long almost constantly but he is also perpetually in motion.

Back to my books. I’m reading The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray. Actually I read it but I’m considering reading it again because I was so anxious to see what happened I skimmed through some really important stuff and that is not right, the book is too good for that. I love her, I worship at her feet. I won’t spoil the book. However, there were specific parts I was actually hitting the couch, yes, I am well aware that I may be insane. Perhaps it’s the cold, the too much snow, my broken back, crazy cabin fever. The last few chapters brought me to tears as I finished the book at 2 am. Now I have to go back through because I didn’t mark my favorite quotes and there was so much amazing stuff in this last book of the series-my favorite so far. I didn’t think she could top the 2nd book, Fallen Angels, oh but she did and I have a new favorite author….wait didn’t I just say that about John Green? I am a fickle lover for my favorite authors.

I ordered 7 more books off of Amazon.com. I didn’t know I could get used books there! Do you see how sheltered I am? Wishing we had a book exchange trying to hunt one down in Syracuse. My problem is that once I love a book I will not part with it….and so far I have had a streak of amazing luck. Speak I read totally by accident, Paper Towns-accident, Monster-accident… (okay the award on Monster helped…but there was no award medallion on Speak-despite the fact that it was an award winning book) and I did not know that John Green had won the Printz award for his book Looking For Alaska until after I read Paper Towns. I love it when I find books like that, so randomly meant to be.  Two of my really good friends recommended Libba Bray’s series so I can’t take credit there. I don’t know that I would have read them otherwise, which is stupid because I always say I don’t like fantasy but the truth is that I do. I loved The Hobbit as a middle schooler and read the ultimate Trilogy (have to admit I skipped most of the songs) in high school and there is no way I could have appreciated the way I should have at that age so perhaps I should re-read? A thought. I have never ever once liked anything vampire related other then Twilight. I didn’t even like that grade school book about the vampire rabbit, even though I read it. I LOVE Harry Potter series, it’s the only books I did read during my mommy phase. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Twilight (even if I AM conflicted about it). The truth is that I do feel Stephanie Meyers is brilliant and I do feel her books are well written and extremely compelling. The best part is that I wouldn’t be reading all of these other great books if I hadn’t fallen in love with Twilight and started to read again. And the way her books are spreading I imagine that there are many other’s out there, specifically young girls, who are starting to read because of her master art of story telling. So ya I still worship at her feet and will be at the premier of the next movie.

But Libba Brey’s fantasy series is far superior in my mind (obvious exception to Tolkien), specifically for young girl’s formidable minds. It’s not something I would give to my 12 year old daughter to read, thinking more 15 and up. How I wish I had this series when I was being a stupid 17 years old. And what I love is that they are my Mommy friends who told me about it, YEA-I’m not the only insane 30 something who loves YA literature!!!  We are considering starting a book club and I am giddy school girl excited over this.

Oh and I got a little help this time when I ordered my 7 books. I went to John Green’s website http://www.sparkesflyup.com, found on the back of my copy of looking for alaska and scoured until I found some of his recommended books. This was not easy and took way too much time but I did it. So I got 3 of the books he seemed to think highly of and then I randomly selected the rest because they popped up on this really cool spot at amazon.com “people who bought this also purchased….” I don’t think these books will be as monstrous as Libba Bray’s. Just like I love me a long movie I love long novels too…even if I am really bad at savoring every word so I”m thinking all 7 will maybe add up to her one?

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I read another book…and it got to me

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 26, 2009

I’m almost done with Someone Knows my Name (incidentally an amazing read) but then I went to Barnes and Noble and finally found a copy of Looking for Alaska by John Green and had to set the book aside and read his. I’m sort of angry that that they did not have An Abundance of Katherine’s….but I will save that for another week. I have at most a few minutes to devote to what books I want to read-run to the book store and purchase them.

I read fast…too fast, but it’s the best I can do given 3 children and busy husband and crazy house to take care of. So now I read while waiting, I read in the car after dropping kid’s off, I read at Doctor appointments, I read while Everett naps, I read while Everett finger paints sentences at  time, I read while Everett takes a bath sitting on the tile floor taking moments to smile up at him, I read at night until my eyes are blurry and I can’t read anymore. This is how I was before, and sadly I have come to realize I have a hard time pacing myself. This is why I gave up reading in the first place. Why must I be so obsessive? I think its this fear that I won’t be able to cram all that I want to know and feel into one lifetime.

Looking for Alaska was not meant to be read fast. I will have to go back and re-read it. After reading Paper Towns by same author I hoped for another hilarious book albeit serious and dealing with real stuff that I find  fascinating. I sometimes think part of me is stuck at 16 years 10 months and 5 days. Perhaps why I so love young adult literature???? Ready to admit now that there were parts of Paper Towns that made me want to throw the book down because I didn’t want to know….but won’t finish the sentence because really if you are reading this you should read Paper Towns. This novel was darker from the beginning. Parts of it were funny, and amazing, and it was all wonderful. I skipped through the graphic sex stuff but not before I think (I hope) I get why it was in the book, and needed to be there-something about intimacy…but I’m far to tired to put it right in words and really can’t, just read the book. Something we all hopefully learned as young people-the hard way. I also was troubled with the flagrant drinking and smoking…but the truth is that there was a hell of a lot of that going on in my experience as a young person in a predominately Mormon community…along with the sex. Its just nobody wants to admit it or read about it. My 17 year old best friend who ended up pregnant…well she sort of “flagrantly” showed everyone what happens when all you preach is “abstinence” and ignore that teenagers are out there sexually active….but I digress. The thing you see as you start the book is a black page with the words “before.” The first chapter starts with “136 days before.” So its my fault because one look at that and I knew. Before and Afters only happen after something incredibly sad, at least ones as ominous as that. It was going to be hard for me to read. I don’t want to spoil the book…as if anyone is here on my sorry blog that is supposed to be about adoption-looking for books to read, but if you are this is a good book. And seeing as how it was published eons ago (in book circles) I doubt I could spoil it. I’ll say it again-the man is a literary genius. I’m thankful I read today when I had a husband around to care for the little ones and I could be alone and cry without disturbing their lives. I hate knowing anything before I read a book so I couldn’t have known what it was about. I don’t like to read jackets on books or reviews.I go to lists and sometimes I just pick random books….

I stumbled across this author by accident. Researching reviews of Twilight trying to put my finger on exactly what was haunting me about the whole Twilight obsession and he has a famous “vlog” with his brother on youtube, (brotherhood 2.0.) And seeing as how I am fairly new to the whole youtube phenomena I think that has been around for a long long time. (He makes some derogatory comments in regards to Edward Cullen, that are actually extremely witty despite my conflicted love for said character.) A few laughs and clicks later and he read an exert from Paper Towns and I thought “I have got to read that book.” A few clicks later and I felt like a moron….not for the first time in my life when I realize I will never be close to as intelligent and quick as people I encounter. But I can appreciate it-both him and his brother are awesome! I wish I had time to sit and click through youtube. I feel like I am the last one on the planet to hear these things…but they are both really funny. Truth be told I’m sort of out of it…and I shouldn’t feel guilty but it was a necessary 4 years of being a foster mom. And then the years before that there was no time to breath let alone keep on top of these things. We lived on an island in the Caribbean, really difficult to get any books unless I brought them with me from the U.S. and or loved trashy romance novels sold at the grocery store, there was only the medical library with Reader’s Digest books. Now I’m feeling like I went horribly wrong…and I should have taken time to nourish my brain.

***edited*** last night I spent 3 hours typing up why this book got to me…and then I realized how deeply personal what I wrote was and deleted it from public eyes.***hopefully my sleep deprived midnight rants did not get seen by anyone…

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We are home!

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 24, 2009

I just realized I didn’t write about my little adventure on our flight to Orlando. I forgot my photo ID, aka driver’s license. I was switching things out from my purse to a carry-on and left it on my dresser at home. I am that girl-I think I honestly have a diagnosable disability….its called scatterbrainedness. I’ve actually locked my keys in my car left the lights on and ran out of gas all at the same time once.

The airlines let me check in only because James had a random credit card with my name on it in his wallet (one I have never used). Then they wished me luck for security. There was no time to go home for the license. I signed the back of my card and we went to see if they would let me on the airplane. I was then taken to a special area and patted down from head to toe which made me laugh. I know, I am so mature. Next the security woman got her metal detector wand out (whatever that thing is called) and started to go over me. She had to inspect my pants and buttons. When she got to my hair the thing went wild. She was like “do you have a metal on your head?” Puzzled…. it dawned on me. My hair extensions.I explained to her and she was facinated. Asking me how they worked, how much they cost, where she could get ot done. The beads the keep them in are metal. So she had to go through all of my hair with her hands and wand, no kidding-it took forever. James was off to the side snickering. They did allow me on the flight. My mom mailed my license to me so the flight home was less eventful.

No news of a baby… Waiting impatiently

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Amusement parks & old lady backs

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 21, 2009

My back was progressing well. 2 trips to the chiropractor before we left and I was feeling almost normal. One day spent at Universal and I am back to square one….but it was worth it :). DH and I were like two little kids. He’s a wimp when it comes to the scary stuff. I was raised with 4 brothers and maybe that is why I always did things most people didn’t want to do, couldn’t admit my weakness and loose my place as the one in charge of 4 boisterous boys. Anyway it was fun but I am paying for it now.

I finished another book (sort of) I found this one hard to read because it was written in movie script form and not that it wasn’t well written, I prefer regular prose and dialogue and found it hard to really get into. So I read/skimmed Monster by Walter Meyers. The story written from a young African American boy’s POV who is standing trial facing a lengthy sentence if he convicted. There is some ambivalence as to if he committed the crime or not, but in my mind he didn’t. Not sure…still for sure what his involvement was. I think this was done on purpose by the author. The young man is writing as a form of therapy which I can relate to but that is the extent of it for me, everything else took me quite out of the comfort of my world. The book is set in Harlem, Prison, and in the court room. The line that affected me most was this (said by his defense attorney) “You’re young, you’re black, and you’re on trial. What else do they need to know?” That one line made me want to vomit….thinking that if one day someone looks at my son and…. I finished the book on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Fitting, and not on purpose sort of just happened that way. Then the following day President Obama was sworn in. I am hopeful by the time my almost 3 year old is seen as a young black man there will be more and more people in the world that see him as an individual and judge him based on his actions, who he is, rather then by what they think based on his skin color.

I also read the 2nd in the series by Libba Bray: Fallen Angels. I like this series because #1 its fun to read and #2 there is enough “girl power” in there to make me feel good. Its also very real….but fantasy. The characters are believable and deal with real life problems. All of the girls fight the rigid rules and expectations placed on them because they are women…I love that. She is sneaky about it, so its not like you are being preached to. I don’t have a favorite quote because I just read, an almost guilty pleasure read.

I talked to my mom today who is lovingly caring for our children. Cady is involved in a drama competition tonight and I am sick we are missing. Everett is giving my mom a run. I think we will pay for our time apart, I can’t wait to see him. Even Molly the St. Bernard is misbehaving in our absence. Mikalya seems to be the one keeping it together and then I hear this from my mom today ‘Mikayla is reading Twilight.’ I know I am a total hypocrite. Given the strict nature of my faith I struggle with reading literature that has sex/swearing/drugs in it. Twilight contains little of these things. Still….I would almost rather have my impressionable 12 year old read something others would call ‘dirty’ then have her think this is the way relationships would work. I don’t like to limit what she reads specifically if I have read it. My mother has also read the Twilight series and we have discussed these things. I know she LOVED the series a much as I died because she owns it. I also know she didn’t want me to read it….or she would have recommended it to me. Maybe its because my daughter is 12 maybe I would never want her to read the books .

I haven’t not allowed my girls to own Barbie’s but I have never encouraged it. Nobody I know grew up to look liken a barbie doll. I don’t own Disney Princess movies aside from Little Mermaid (because I find it funny and love the music)…early on I was reading Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty to my 2 year old Mikayla and thought “this is crap” and I won’t feed it to my little girl. So I made up my own versions of the stories for her and delivered it along with the pictures. One where Cinderella had a life outside of Prince Charming,. she didn’t get rescued anymore then she rescued him and they did not “live happily ever after” they had to work at life and their relationship.

I loved my little girls to be and act like princesses, but not in the sense of a fairy tale. I’d believed the hype and while I was rather emtionally inept I was not the type of girl who was suppoed to marry at 19 years old get pregnant a few months after only to discover the man was abusive. Yet it happened to me. I was totally naive. I was strong, thankfully, even though it was hard and even though it almost destroyed me- I was able to leave that relationship. There was no way my little girl was going to think a man would solve her world. I continued with this with Cady. So what do I do? I didn’t think she would want to read this book, stupid, as every 12-30+ year old women is reading this series. And stupidly I LOVE these books!!! I know…hypocrite. My mom told me she already explained to her. My mother is more horrified that a teenage boy and girl are spending every night together in bed, even if there is nothing going on. She thinks that it gives young minds the wrong ideas. I agree, but for very different reasons. The hard and cold truth is that you can’t protect your daughters from this idea that your worth is based on a relationship with a fabulous boy. I can’t rewrite this vampire fairy tale for her. At some point you have to hope they can figure it out on their own… I plan on discussing the book with her at length and she will NOT be reading the final 2 books before she is 15, they are above her maturity level in my opinion.

Still no word on a baby girl 😦 . Our SW has discussed us being open to either sex. Dh is all for this, I would be if on a spiritual level I had not felt this baby is a girl. I can’t imagine how insane this sounds but I knew Everett was a boy, I knew he was the child I had been waiting for all those years when I first saw him smiling and reaching for me in his little walker.

James should be back soon with our dinner….today I made him take me to the beach and we walked (I hobbled) and froze, its unusually cold. I love the salt water smell and the sound of waves. When we lived in the Caribbean each morning I walked with my dog on a secluded beach the turtles came to lay their eggs. He would chase sand crabs and try to catch the vervet Monkeys while the sun came up. I plan on posting a picture of that beach when I get home along with the story of our island dog and a little of our life there. I cried today, I always miss that simple life. But Florida is NOT the isolated beach….and I am sorry to be so negative but the towering building on this beach and horrid hotels/condos should be illegal. I wish we had more time to search and try and find some untouched beauty (there has to be some left in Florida?) That is the Wyoming girl in me. So I’m in a hotel room…had a wonderful time, really I did, and ready to go home and see my children. Hoping Cady rocks the competition tonight, I’m sure she will. “break a leg-my love.”

Oh last night we froze and ate dinner at Sea World (they kept part of the park opened for the Veterinarians!) We went to the carnival part after I drove James mad by staring at the only animal exhibit open for an hour (the beluga whales-I could watch them for days). So we ended up getting several cheap stuffed animals…one is bigger then I am, a cheap guitar, and some light up necklace. Didn’t I tell you we were like 2 big kids? Well the worst part is that we didn’t actually win 3 out of the 5 prizes. Dh said I batted my eyelashes and they gave me stuff. So not true, but I think that this is how they get people to play these games. I really wanted a light up necklace, why? Because I suck at these games. Dh is oh so cute, at 6’7″ one would assume his athletic ability was a given. However, he was a band nerd and lived for jazz music and the trombone rather then basketball. Finally the guy felt sorry for me and slid me a necklace on the sly. Then we went to the ring toss and somebody got one on the bottle, it wasn’t us. I smiled, pointed it out, and he hands me a giant stuffed dog bigger then my body, I explained it wasn’t me…no matter. You see how these things work? Then we got 2 abominable snow men and a guitar. Dh said I had to stand next to him from then on out and smile and be “cute”. 🙂 I have no idea how we will get it all home. I’m thinking the people who clean the room may enjoy our spoils. Then we had a private viewing of “Shamu Rocks” I love these things-okay-Sea World is my favorite park of all time. We spent our time at Universal and while I loved it, and it was great, this is my thing. A year after my brother died we came to Sea World as part of our family vacation (one year to the day). I spent the entire time at this horrible Dolphin pool-I hate zoos, I always have, I do believe they help in conservation but I have never liked watching any caged wild animal, still I am facinated by them even it makes me sad. Most of Sea World does not make me feel sad, instead I felt happy to watch the amazing shows and other things. This Dolphin pool was not a happy scene, they have much improved since this visit, when they fed the Dolphins I purchased fish and fed them. In between I tried to get them used to me by standing very still with my hand in the water, hoping ot make friends. My mom and family gave up on me and left me there-I think I spent 6 hours there. I was mostly numb emotional time in my life, there were very few moments I let any guard down. Not once did a Dolphin come and say “hi” to me…as I had hoped unless I was feeding them but there was one who swam very close to me several times….and for whatever reason I was able to cry-not much-but a little. After that trip I started my path of healing, rather then being kept numb all of the time. I always felt it was this experience that helped me come out of it. So I love Sea World and always will.

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My week of books part 2

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 18, 2009

My book report on Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson by: Me

This book was harder emotionally for me to read, not because it wasn’t good, oh it was, it was sad, there were funny parts, but it got to me. You will want to run to this girl’s high school wrap your arms around her and protect her…and then she surprised me with her strength. She’s amazing….this girl’s POV will grip you from beginning to end. The book is different in a quirky refreshing way, I LOVED it…really really loved it.

Just some of my favorite quotes:

“Poor Nathanial. Does he know what they’ve done to him? We are reading The Scarlet Letter one sentence at a time, tearing it up and chewing on its bones.”

(quotes from the art teacher-I loved him-why was my art teacher not like this-why? I may have enjoyed art)

“This is where you can find your soul, if you dare. Where you can touch that part of you that you’ve never dared look at before. Do not come here and ask me to show you how to draw a face. Ask me to help you find the wind.”

“Art without emotion is like chocolate cake without sugar. It makes you gag……Think about love, or hate, or joy, or rage—whatever makes you feel something, makes your palms sweat or your toes curl. Focus on that feeling. When people don’t express themselves, they die one piece at a time. You’d be shocked at how many adults are really dead inside—-walking through their days with no idea who they are, just waiting for a heart attack or cancer or a Mack truck to come along and finish the job. It’s the saddest thing I know.” (you can see why I related, though, I know I’m not “dead”-i have been following my dreams….just forgot some parts of myself along the way)

–This made me laugh—its so true not that I don’t love my brother’s who were jocks, this did NOT apply to them, but we all knew someone that this describes.

“The same boys who got detention in elementary school for beating the crap out of people are now rewarded for it. They call it football.”

And another favorite referring to boy genius (like my husband who drives me crazy to this day with his brain power)

“Ninth grade is a minor inconvenience to him. A zit-cream commercial before the Feature Film of Life.”

There is so much more, I have half of it marked up and dog eared along with my thoughts/feelings that the book invoked scribbled down the margins. A book that gets your mind working. Not a bad thing…really its not.

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My week of books part one

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 18, 2009

Why I loved Paper Town by: John Greene by Lori L**** (maiden name) This is my unofficial book report please feel free to grade me. I won’t go over the plot, but this may spoil the book so don’t read further before reading the book. Oh, and to make this clear, go out right now and purchase this book, read it….yes, it is that good.

1. It made me laugh out loud in the airplane, at the car rental place, while dh was sleeping…in the hotel lobby. This was my favorite “funny” of the book for several reason which I will tell after the part that got me laughing so hard I thought I would pee my pants “They’d given me a minivan. They could have picked any car, and they picked a minivan. O God of Vehicular Justice, why dost thou mock me? Minivan, you albatross around my neck! You wretched beast of high ceilings and low horsepower!” That was funny like made me laugh for 2 entire minutes because who hasn’t been forced to drive their parents minivan? well at least in my world. We had an awful white “space shuttle” minvan. It was my car…and secondly it was funny to me because I swore, I mean a holy promise, a blood oath, sacred pinky promise with friends, I told my parents…everyone who would listen to me that I would NEVER no matter what happened in my life purposely drive a minivan as an adult. Now I proudly and happily drive my minivan and when Mikayla is old enough to drive that is what she will be driving. The entire book was laugh out loud whitty funny, in ways impossible for me to describe because I lack that kind of amazing power…trust me you will laugh from beginning to end even through the “real” or darker parts.

2. “That’s always seemed so ridiculous to me, that people would want to be around someone because they’re pretty. It’s like picking your breakfast cereals based on color instead of taste.” -no comment necessary-the entire book is full of this good stuff. So much that most of my book is dog eared and underlined. The stuff all teenage girls/boys should know, it will actually expand their minds, what a novel thought for a book? I have read a few Y.A. novels I haven’t commented on, will not mention, they are so full of clothes, boys, who is who….its like thats all they think girls care about….sad reflection of our society. What do they have to read that will make them think!? My answer: THIS-READ THIS-give it to your teenagers to cleanse their minds.

Truly this man is a genius, not like Meyer’s story tellling-fantasy, no this is very different. I imagine his books will be studied in English classes and if they are not already studying him, they should be. I am horribly “behind” in the lit world but there cannot be many if ANY young adult authors as gifted as he is. So forgive me if you already knew, and why didn’t you tell me if you did? I plan on reading everything he has written after this experience. The book was suspense, mystery, funny, real, honest, full of poetic prose that will stay with you forever….yes its the best book I have read in 12 years and I doubt anything will top it. Really why is THIS book not on the NY Times best sellers list? It should be. ***edited to add that this book was on NY times best sellers list**** Shows how much I’ve been paying attention.

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Hello from sunny frigid Florida

Posted by footstepsonmyheart on January 18, 2009

What is it like to spend 12 years of your life devoted entirely to your children and have a week where its just you and your husband-its weird, and wonderful, but truthfully weird. Also dh is busy with a lot of vet conference stuff (real reason we are here…sort of anyway). Please forgive typoes as I am in the hotel on dh’s notebook an I hate it and can’t type well and normally I type like 200 words a minute its how I get to write so much blathering bs.

Okay I’m not complaining-really I am not even if it sounds like I am. I have having a wonderful time, the weather is chilly for Florida however its NOT -10 like it is at home with lake affect snow heading our way. I got to spend a few hours soaking in some sun, in a jacket, but still….my legs saw some rays of sunlight. It was heavenly. Dh and I get to have rare time w/o kiddoes and just be together,  no car seats, not tantrums, no worrying about potty breaks…which is so amazingly uncomplicated that we almost do not know how to behave. And we are having entirly too much fun for two 30 somethings.

My goal on vacation is to read a book a day. I usually read children’s books, which sadly has been my repertoire the past 12 years. I have progressed from picture books to chapter books as my children got older.Mikayla and I still read together and I love that time, won’t ever end it as long as I can get it to last w/o forcing them to read and talk to me about books. So now I have decided to read all the really good young adult fiction I can-since I am going up in progression its been awesome, I am hopeful one day I will be able to read adult fiction.

Friday I read Paper Towns by John Green. I have a new hero….and his name is John Green. Today I read Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, she is my 2nd new hero. I am also reading Someone Knows my Name by Lawrence Hill. I break up my reading the other books with the last book…when they get too intense and I want to skip ahead or skim through the prose too quickly-which is one of my problems. Technically the 3rd book is not young adult!!! Tomorrow I plan on reading Rebel Angels by Libba Bray…I read A Great and Terrible Beauty last week.

All this reading has started my mind a whirling. Some of its good some of it is depressing. Today I was at the vet conference, the largest in North America, at this ridiculous hotel/event center, total waste of natural resources…I dont’ know the entire thing makes me sick, actually Orlando is sort of making me sick. I am a girl from nowhere Wyoming, and I still get overwhelmed at times with BIG. NYC….is awesome, okay awesome….this is not….but I am having fun…I told you this was going to sound whiny. But I’m walking around this vet conference with my stupid name badge that is labeled “visitor” and is different in appearance then my dh’s “Doctor” badge of honor. And I started to people watch. I saw a lot of other Doctor wives/girlfriends/husbands/SO….and I started to realize people see me the same way I was looking at them; as my dh’s accessory as if I don’t even exist and it just sucked. When did I become nothing? I know I’m a mom, I wanted to be, dh doesn’t treat me like nothing….he’s pretty good at making me feel like the best something in his life. It’s the way people look right through me like his pretty little accessory, only I’m not pretty enough..right? So I don’t even win the accessory prize. Dh has 15,000 clients at his clinic. People travel from out of state to see him-women and men alike hero worship him, we regularly have cookies and other baked goods delivered to our house. He is like the Dr House of veterinary medicine only with a pleasant personality. We go ANYWHERE, random places like Target, we see clients, do they talk to me? We were in Montana on vacation this summer and ran into a client. Do they even notice the “wife” a.k.a.  accessory? I don’t care, okay so I must, but normally its like, hey don’t you people get enough of him already, give the poor man a break. It just is. We go out to eat, and half of the time some random client has an animal issue and has to talk to dh. We go to the Emergency room with our son’s asthma, or best yet when I had a heart issue and the male nurse is cutting my shirt off, and somebody recognizes the last name and dh is their “Doctor.” I am again the nothing in the room. I know this is so self centered. The point is when did I disappear? I was once a person, not the Doctor’s wife…. What happens to me when my children grow up? This must be what a midlife crisis feels like…. Its not that I don’t love my husband, its not that I want a different life, I don’t. I am quite content. I guess I just forgot myself for so long I lost who I was and it sort of scared me. So I’m going to change that. I am going to think and be somebody besides a wife and a mother and even if its something a trite as reading a book I love, or writing a ridiculous story that only I will enjoy….its something.

On a different note I had a little conversation with my youngest daughter today….and told her I was impatiently waiting for her to show herself (which I do realize is delusional….really I do and to be honest I don’t much care if it is) I don’t know if she listened to me. But I sort of had this feeling that I needed some peaceful time, some space in-between the madness. Our life has been crazy since the day we got married, and I finally had some down time to think. Thinking is a good thing. It lead me to reading, which lead me to writing, which is leading me to find myself and that’s a good thing. So Emma darling mommy figured it out, I can’t be the best mom unless I am happily pursuing my own interests. I won’t stop doing this because you come to our family it just means less time, but that’s okay I can deal with this. YOU are so worth it, so get your adorable little self down here, please.

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