Tuesday, December 31, 2013

As this year draws to a close...

... Receive My Peace. This is still your deepest need, and I, your Prince of Peace, long to pour Myself into your neediness. My abundance and your emptiness are a perfect match. I designed you to have no sufficiency of your own. I created you as a jar of clay, set apart for sacred use. I want you to be filled with My very Being, permeated through and through with Peace.

Thank Me for My Presence, regardless of your feelings. Whisper My Name in loving tenderness. My Peace, which lives continually in your spirit, will gradually work its way through your entire being.

Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

Friday, December 27, 2013

Freaky Friday

Friday fill-in time!

Every Friday, Hilary at Feelingbeachie.com posts four statements with blanks for you to fill in on your own blog. Join the fun!

1. Every time I hear _____ I think of _____.
2. Sometimes I feel like I forgot how to _____ because I ______.
3. So if there was one New Year's resolution I could make it would be _____ because I know I can keep it.
4. If I could have any pet it would be a _____ and I would ____ with it.

1. Every time I hear "We Three Kings" I think of dancing camels.
2. Sometimes I feel like I forget how to cook because I don't do it much anymore.
3. So if there was one New Year's resolution I could make it would be to read more because I know I can keep it!
4. If I could have any pet it would be a penguin and I would swim with it.

Monday, December 23, 2013

December 23

"I am King of kings and Lord of lords, dwelling in dazzlingly bright Light! I am also your Shepherd, Companion, and Friend- the One who never lets go of your hand. Worship Me in My holy Majesty; come close to Me, and rest in My Presence. You need Me both as God and as Man. Only My Incarnation on that first, long-ago Christmas could fulfill your neediness. Since I went to such extreme measures to save you from your sins, you can be assured that I will graciously give you all you need.

"Nurture well your trust in Me as Savior, Lord, and Friend. I have held back nothing in My provision for you. I have even deigned to live within you! Rejoice in all that I have done for you, and My Lighy will shine through you into the world."

Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

Friday, December 20, 2013

Secret Santa, Part III

The final days of the 12 days of Christmas, Secret Santa style!

Day 9
Hope your Christmas is Merry and SPRITE!

Day 10
Snowman poop (white tic tacs)
Heard you've been naughty
So here's the scoop-
All you get for Christmas
Is Snowman POOP!

Day 11

Day 12
The final gift.
A hodge podge of her favorites for the recipient. A mug with handmade cozy. Pens, pencils, markers, fun little erasers (she LOVES those things), paper clips and binder clips, little notebooks and sticky notes. And sour patch kids. Don't forget those! Everything you need for a good day at the office.

Thank you to Pinterest for all the ideas!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Secret Santa, Part II

The second installment of my elfish fun.

Day 5
A rein-beer (actually it was a diet coke, but still cute)

Day 6
Merry KISSMAS and CHAPPY New Year!

Day 7
We WASH you a Merry Christmas!

Day 8
Grinch Pills
Feeling kinda Grouchy?
Holiday spirit can't be found?
Just try these little Grinch Pills
They're the best medicine around.
Whether eating a whole handful
Or eating one or two,
These tasty little Pills
Take the Grinch right out of you!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Secret Santa, Part I

So I have been excited about this Secret Santa thing since just after Halloween. I've been planning, plotting, crafting, and sneaking around. And of course I couldn't, shouldn't, wouldn't post until it was all said and done so there was no possible way the surprise would be ruined. I chose to do the 12 days of Christmas. Only without the turtledoves, the milking maids, and the catchy, rhyming tune...So really it was NOTHING like the 12 days of Christmas!

Day 1
Doubled Stuf Oreos ("hope you aren't too "STUF"fed from Thanksgiving...")

Day 2
Santa candy bar

Day 3
Hand Santa-tizer

Day 4
Hope the holidays aren't driving you nuts

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Holiday Season

I have posted previously about my excitement this holiday season. But I am aware that not everyone seconds my sentiments. In fact, the holidays can be downright grim for many. I was reminded of this fact during a counseling session with a client a couple weeks ago. And again today as I read today's selection from "Jesus Calling."

"Come to Me with your gaping emptiness, knowing that in Me you are complete. As you rest quietly in My Presence, My Light within you grows brighter and brighter. Facing the emptiness inside you is simply the prelude to being filled with My fullness. Therefore, rejoice on those days when you drag yourself out of bed, feeling sluggish and inadequate. Tell yourself that this is a perfect day to depend on Me in childlike trust. If you persevere in this dependence as you go through the day, you will discover at bedtime that Joy and Peace have become your companions. You may not realize at what point they joined you on your journey, but you will feel the beneficial effects of their presence. The perfect end to such a day is a doxology of gratitude. I am He from whom all blessings flow!"

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A whirlwind... Of pages

I've been reading up a storm. Well, a small storm as there are not many hours in my days available to read.... It appears at first glance that the last book I posted about was back in July. July! Geez oh Pete! Clearly I have to have finished a book or two since then, right?

Indeed, I have. I have read more of the Hannah Swensen series (by Joanne Fluke). Books 2-7 to be exact. And I find they are growing on me. I still find Hannah slightly obnoxious, but I need to pass the time until I get can my hands on the new release of my other Minnesota-based mysteries. I've also been continuing to work my way through Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series, completing books 13-18. I enjoy these characters, but I think it's time for a little break from them too.

That looks like that's it. 12 books in 5 months. Not too shabby. I'm also caught up in "What to Expect: The Toddler Years." I am due to read another chapter in that until February. 

I read through a backlog of magazines the other day and got those cleared off my shelf. And now I'm reading "Matched." I think this series was popular a year or two ago (let's face it, I'm always behind the trend. Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games. Read them all months [years?] after everyone else!). Anyway, I'm finally getting around to Ally Condie's book. My thought so far- it seems familiar, a lot like "The Giver." But we'll wait and see how the rest of the book unfolds.... I am only 54 pages in afterall.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


So last year I did a November blog challenge to post 30 things I am thankful for over the 30 days of November. I thought about doing it again this year and decided against it. Not because I couldn't come up with 30 things to be thankful for, I certainly could. Instead, I just decided to have one day in which I verbally (bloggily?) publicly am thankful.

Of course I am thankful for the usual, family, friends, home, employment, etc. I am. I really am. I am also thankful for the random people in my life who have offered support, kind words, suggestions for dealing with a body that refuses to function the way I believe it should. I do sort through it all and pick and choose what works for me and for my life, but I am grateful for those who have said "Hey, me too, this is what I did." In a way it is nice to know there are others out there. And it is sad. That so many of us are suffering (that word might be a little strong, but I couldn't come up with a better one). And I am thankful for those who take care of me and my family in so many different ways.  I am grateful to live in a country where I can list 30+ things I am thankful for and publish it for the world to see. These things do not escape me. Even on days when I do not feel very thankful, I have things for which I am thankful! And when I focus on those things, then the day isn't so bad.

Wouldn't the world be a kinder, gentler (more gentle?) place if we continued to be thankful all year instead of just daily in November?

Friday, November 15, 2013

The spicy side of life

Every week, Feeling Beachie posts four statements with blanks for you to fill in and post on your own blogs. This week I am co-hosting again! Email if you want to be a co-host!

This week's statements:
1. _____ make me _____ because _____.
2. Whenever someone _____ that ____ I get very _____.
3. I know I should never ____ but sometimes I can't help it.
4. I have fond memories of _____ from childhood.

My answers:
1. Tacos make me thirsty because they are spicy?
2. Whenever someone insults someone that I love I get very irritated.
3. I know I should never whine and complain about my health (because it could be worse. MUCH worse.) but sometimes I can't help it.
4. I have fond memories of playing with my cousins from childhood.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Cloudy with a chance of meatballs

Ever have a day when the weather outside doesn't match your mood? Normally sunny days make us feel happy and sunny inside, especially in the cold winter months (and since there was snow on the ground today, it is now winter in my book). But today, the sun is shining and I feel cloudy inside.

I got word today that something tragic and senseless and probably preventable happened to someone I used to work with (a client, not a coworker). And it has left me feeling unfocused, unproductive, unhappy today. Cloudy. And what happened will affect so many other lives too. I'll do my processing of the event today and move on to sunnier skies tomorrow (maybe even tonight when I get home and can snuggle my Punky). But for many it will be a long time before the sun shines on them again. Which makes me think of all those tragic events that happen to people I don't know. Everyday things happen that bring the shadows into people's lives. I hear it all the time. On the news. In books. In my office. Some days are harder than others to not feel the pain of others. Some days that job at Starbucks looks better and better!

But the clouds will roll away and the sun will return. And I'll come out of my funk.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

There's a chill in the air

And I'm getting in the holiday spirit! 

I'm already ridiculously excited about Christmas. I mean, really, ridiculously excited about Christmas. I like Christmas on the average year, but I feel a little over the top this year. I guess the Christmas spirit has really gotten its claws in me or something.

Maybe it's the anticipation for the much needed girls' trip. Or the planning for the foster family Christmas party. Or the office Secret Santa. Or the fact that Punky might actually be "in" to Christmas this year. 

Whatever the reason, I am ready! I have my Secret Santa all planned. I have my girls' trip present game present and holiday jammies purchased. I even have almost all my shopping done. Almost. Now I just have to wait until after Thanksgiving to let my red and green colors show! 

I do my best to not skip over what is an important holiday. Thanksgiving. Even though I do not eat turkey. Or stuffing. Or green bean casserole... I still like the tradition of getting together with family. It's kind of like a kick off to Christmas! 

I know by the time New Year's rolls around, I will be sick of family togetherness and holiday stress. But for now I am enjoying the anticipation of getting out my trees. And decorating my office. And watching Christmas movies. And baking (even if I can't eat) cookies. 

I don't know why my holiday spirit is on steroids this year. I'm just going to enjoy it as long as it lasts!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Two Mouses Lack Common Sense

Did that title get your attention? Well guess what time it is? (It's time for lunch! Sorry, too many episodes of Bubble Guppies...) It's FRIDAY FILL-IN TIME!

Each week, Feeling Beachie posts four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs.
This week’s co-host is William from Speak of the Devil! He came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) I can’t believe that _____
2) To celebrate ____ I _______
3) The meaning of life is _____
4) I can’t stand _____

My answers:
1) I can't believe that my daughter will turn two in less than two weeks!
2) To celebrate her birthday I will make a Minnie Mouse cake.
3) The meaning of life is not always easily identifiable.
4) I can't stand the lack of common sense in the world today (well, at least in my corner of the world...).

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Cooking and Baking, Baking and Cooking

I used to enjoying cooking and baking. A lot. I liked that, even though I didn't eat a lot of it, I could still put together a tasty meal for people. See, I am vegetarian by choice. I have been for almost 1/2 my life now. I remember torturous meals growing up with meat on my plate. I did not like it Sam I Am. But I would fix meat dishes for others with no problem. 

Then something happened. My body quit functioning the way it used to. And my joy in cooking disappeared. It's difficult to cook when you don't want anything to do with food. It's hard to prepare meals for others when you know eating what you are making will make you feel awful. It's really hard to get excited about food when you have no idea what you can eat.  Meat- gone. Dairy- gone. Sweets, caffeine, carbonation- gone. Gluten- working on getting it gone. Taste- long gone!

Of course, if it makes me feel better I'll do it. But I won't lie, it won't be easy. Gluten is in everything. No, really, EVER-Y-THING. I have to find time to sit down and research meals. Then find time to research where I can purchase items for these meals. Then find time (and money) to actually purchase these things. And at the end of a long day of work, I don't want to think about food or cooking not one meal, not two meals, but most often three different meals. 

As for baking, I still occasionally get some pleasure out of it- though I cannot sample my works of art. And that does diminish some of the enjoyment. However, baking is more of an art and does, therefore retain some if its value as a stress reliever and source of fun. But it depends on the day. 

Some days the kitchen is my least favorite room in the house.

Friday, October 25, 2013


Feeling Beachie posts four statements with blanks each Friday for you to fill in on your own blogs. This week, I happen to be the co-host (*gasp*)!  You can co-host too, just email your statements!

This week's statements:
1) I wear the color ____ a lot.
2) I think that ____ make the ____
3) Ugh! ____ is getting on my nerves!
4) ____ was a major accomplishment _____.

 My answers:
 1) I wear the color black a lot.
2) I think that breakfast makes the day better.
3) Ugh! Medical testing is getting on my nerves!
4) Paying off a credit card was a major accomplishment this week!


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

One Step Closer


I have been prodded and probed and scoped.  Now I get to be X-Rayed. And try to figure out what to eat that DOESN'T contain gluten. Sometimes I think the process of healing (or figuring out what is wrong in order to try to heal) is worst that the illness itself!

I was getting gas this morning and noticed how pretty the moon looked up in the morning sky. And it struck me. We have the technology to send humans to the moon (unless you are a conspiracy theorist and believe that was all a hoax), but we can only "practice" medicine. Multiple tests and horrible procedures to try to find answers as to why our bodies suddenly quit functioning the way they used to function.

It could be worse. They ruled out cancer. Which, of course, I hadn't even been considering as possibly the problem. And only the start of an ulcer, not an actual ulcer. It doesn't seem to be my gall bladder...

So let's see. I stopped eating meat at age 16. Then I cut out pretty much all sweets, caffeine, carbonation, and dairy. Now I have to try to eliminate gluten. So that leaves, what, grass?

Okay, yes, I'm feeling a little sorry for myself right now. I admit it. By tomorrow I'll be over myself. But today I am sad and frustrated. I want macaroni and cheese. Anybody have a gluten free, dairy free (taste free?) recipe?

Friday, October 18, 2013

A joyful new body full of love letters?

Each week, Feeling Beachie lists four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. This week’s co-host is Lisa from Lisa writes! she came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) Help! I really _____
2) My ____ is my _____
3) I cannot wait to _____
4) The sentence has ______________ letters.

My answers:
1) Help! I really need a new body!
2) My daughter is my pure joy.
3) I cannot wait to  have answers about my body.
4) The sentence has to be perfect to end love letters.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Eat breakfast, don't starve

Each Friday Feeling Beachie (www.feelingbeachie.com) lists four statements with blanks for you to fill in on your own blogs. This week Pam from TROUPPETRIE co-hosted and supplied the last two statements. Join in the fun! 

Phew this week's are tough!

This week's statements:
1) I get so ____ when _____
2) ____ is my favorite ____ for _____
3) I would rather ____ than any ____ to make my life easier
4) The one safety rule that is always followed at my house is ____ because _____

My answers:
1) I get so annoyed when the Huz doesn't being in the empty trash bin on trash day.
2) Breakfast is my favorite meal for the day. But not necessarily at breakfast time...
3) I would rather starve than eat any  meat which would make my life easier.
4) The one safety rule always followed at my house is don't run with scissors because that's the first safety rule I thought of that I know we enforce...

Friday, October 4, 2013

Fill 'em in

Each week, Feeling Beachie lists four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. This week’s co-host is LESLIE FROM TIME OUT FOR MOM she came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) The best part of the day is ____
2) The first thing I do in the AM is ______
3) If I hear one more thing about ___ I’m going to ___
4) Tomorrow morning I am going to _______

My answers:

1) The best part of the day is Punky's reaction when I pick her up from the sitter.
2) The first thing I do in the AM is debate whether or not it is worth it to try to go back to sleep until my alarm goes off or not.
3) If I hear one more thing about how the prep is worse than the procedure I'm going to slap someone?
4) Tomorrow morning I am going to do laundry before I go to work.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Girls, help, secrets, and Christmas

Each week, Feeling Beachie  lists four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. Email her your own statements to become a co-host for the week! This week’s co-host is Beth Ann from It’s Just Life– she came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) I am so ____ for my _____
2) ____ me, I ______
3) I am _______ at keeping secrets.
4) I ____ that _____ was here already.

My answers:
1) I am so ready for my girls' trip.
2) Help me, I need more hours in the day!
3) I am excellent at keeping secrets. (Keeping confidences is part of my job...)
4) I wish that Christmas was here already. (Kinda, but then again, I'm not ready!)

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fill 'Em In

After a couple of weeks of radio silence (Radio silence?! I think I've been watching too much Alias on Netflix...) I am back at the blogging. Friday Fill In Fun thanks to Feeling Beachie who posts four statements with blanks each Friday for you to use on your own blogs.  This week’s co-host is Lisa from Lisa Writes (and she is also the author of Quake) – she came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) I have had the _____ time this_____
2) I can’t believe that _______
3) I feel ______ when I wear ______.
4) Technology is a _______.

My answers:
1) I have had the hardest time this week concentrating at work.
2) I can't believe that it is exactly 2 months until Punky's second birthday.
3) I feel comfortable when I wear jeans.
4) Technology is a necessary evil?

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


It is my favorite time to write and reflect, the early morning, rocking my baby (okay, toddler) hour. The actual time varies- at 2 this morning I was too incoherent. But at 6...

I sit here rocking, knowing these days are numbered. And soon it will be soccer (or softball) practice or (gasp!) dance lessons taking up our every waking moment and not cuddles and stories and giggles. "Up please" will turn into "shut up." *Shudder*

But for now I rock.

I had just gotten dressed after my shower, my mind already working overtime with my mental to-do list for the day. I heard the Punk starting to fuss, so barefoot, hair dripping, and makeup-less I go into her room. I get to her big girl toddler bed and she actually crawls out on her own! I hand her Bear. Punky mumbles a "thank you" and stumbles to the rocker for me to pick her up and rock. Within moments she is asleep in my arms. (Side note: good call on the glider versus traditional rocking chair. Much more practical and comfortable in times like these!)

So while I am now behind schedule in my morning routine, I really don't care. She has this impeccable timing and way of making me slow down and reevaluate what is truly important. And being able to hold her and reassure her is the most important thing at the moment. She is transitioning and though she handled the first day like a pro, I know, underneath is some uncertainty, some stress regarding the changes that have happened recently.

As I sit here rocking, I remember wondering how I was going to mother a little girl. I'm not exactly what you call a "girly girl." For me doing my hair usually means a ponytail, my makeup routine includes a moisturizer with sunscreen, a liquid to powder foundation, mascara, and Chapstick. If I'm feeling really fancy, I'll throw in some eyeliner. Clothes are more about comfort and function than fashion. If I could get away with it I would wear jeans and tank tops year round. With flip flops in the summer and sneakers and a comfy hoodie in winter. Having a daughter was scary business!

But I love it. We play with stuffed animals. She wears bracelets from one of my old Halloween costumes. I know how to French braid her hair. We "dance" to silly music in the kitchen. When it comes time for clothes and makeup, she's got aunts that can help her. If she really does have a passion for dancing, I'm calling my cuz.

And now I find myself wondering, if we are able to have more children, what will I do with a son?

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Permission to let go

Over the last few days I have been reorganizing at la casa de Morris. Occasionally I get on these kicks. Well, this time the project is the loft area. Now, mind you, I do my reorganizing based on things I already have at home as much as possible so I am not spending our precious, hard earned, stretched to the limits money.

Anyway. I decided it was time to turn the loft into something more fun and functional. Punky (and any future kids) and I will share the space. 

I cleaned all the medicine and towels and things out of the closet and moved them to the master bedroom closet. Makes more sense anyway as I can put a lock in our closet door to keep kids out of candy-colored medicines and I could not on the loft closet...

Then I moved my books into the loft closet (and ran out of space!) to empty the cubby shelves for kid books and toys and games. I already made a reading nook for the Punkster in the loft, so this was a logical next step. 

As I was relocating my books, I purged a few to the donation pile. It was hard! And sad! And, I won't lie, I may still go home and pull them back out of the pile. But I finally gave myself a reality check- some of those books that have been sitting on my shelf for years, I mean, really, truly, am I ever going to read them? I am sure there is great stuff in them. But I picked them up for free or dirt cheap, so they couldn't have been that fantastic or the previous owner would have kept them, right? I gave myself permission to give up on reading them. Permission to clear out my bookshelf space that is already overflowing to make room for books I really will read. And while part of me feels I have failed another part of me is relieved to not have them hanging over my head anymore. It feels good. And bad. And sad. But mostly good.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Survived the week!

Each week, Feeling Beachie lists four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. This week’s co-host is Donetta from My Constant Thought – she came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) Sometimes I feel like there is so _____ and that I will never _____.
2) I never tire of _____
3) I love the charity ___ because it strives to ____
4) My dream job would be ____ because I’d get to _____

My answers:
1) Sometimes I feel like there is so much 'yuck' in the world and that I will never accomplish enough good to counteract it.
2) I never tire of a good book.
3 I love the charity Autism Speaks because it strives to help those touched by ASD.
4) My dream job would be going back to private practice counseling because I'd get to do what I spent a bajillion dollars educating myself to do!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Do Over

It's official. I am asking for a do over for this week! Thursday late afternoon as I was running late to my last home visit of the day I got the call that no one wants. The "the-car-broke-down-and-I'm-stuck-by-the-side-of-the-road" call. So I cancelled the visit I was already late for and zipped across town to get my child from the sitter and then zipped back across town to pick up my stranded Huz.

Friday was relatively quiet, no news about the car. Saturday was date day for our anniversary. And Sunday we enjoyed some time at the campground with the parentals.

Then Monday happened. Babysitter overslept and I was nearly late for work. Then I hear some rumors flying around about said babysitter. Most of which I do not believe. An update on the car- going to be more than anticipated to repair. Finish up my work day and race across town to get my Punky and then my Huz and off we go to the bank. There it actually went smoothly. No issue with refinancing the loan to cover the cost of the repairs. A few extra dollars a month on the payment and an extra year and a half of payments, but no (additional) credit card debt. That night Punky decides she doesn't want to sleep. She finally settles down at 11...*YAWN!*

Tuesday. Stress and lack of sleep equal not feeling so hot in the morning. But off to work. Oh last minute schedule change because a kid gets to start visitation with his bio parent at the same time I am scheduled to meet with him at his foster home. Okay, a trip to the agency instead of the home. I can adapt. And help another of my foster parents who is picking up new foster kids just as I happen to walk in. Only nobody seems to know there are kids there waiting for a foster home. I help get that straightened out, but now I am running late again. Weave my way (safely) through traffic to pick up my child. This one car thing bites as I have to do all drop off and pick up duties.

Wednesday. Arrive at sitter's. More drama. Messy divorce. Ugliness. Not good. Go to work. Leave after a meeting to pick up Punky from a friend that the babysitter dropped her off with as she had emergency business to deal with regarding the aforementioned drama. Punky not at friend's yet. Friend's mother arrives. Friend's mother leaves and returns with friend's child and Punky. Take Punky home and put her down for a late nap. Begin work at home time.

The bright spot in this do over of a week was the completely unexpected care package from my Auntie! And even though 99% was for Punky, it still made my day and possibly my week!

Clothes, books, snacks, glow-in-the-dark toys, stickers, etc.! A fantastic little pick-me-up.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Fill in Fun

Every Friday, Feeling Beachie posts four statements with blanks in them for you to complete on your own blog. This week’s co-host is Rachael from Print and Stitch – she came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1) I hate when I _____
2) I sometimes long for _____
3) Thinking about ___ always makes me ____
4) My favorite day of this week so far was ___ because____

My answers:
1) I hate when I wake up an hour before my alarm and can't go back to sleep.
2) I sometimes long for more time at home.
3) Thinking about summer always makes me want to go to Lakeside.
4) My favorite day of this week so far was Wednesday because I got to take my kid to the zoo!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!

Today was a zoo day. Punky and I met up with Gramma and Grandpop and went to the zoo. It was a good day, Punky now knows to look for animals in the exhibits and can handle walking and riding through the expansive layout. She even touched a snake! (Uncle Thomas should be proud!) She finally crashed on the way home, but woke up promptly when I turned onto our street. I am hopeful that some rocking and cuddling with her new penguin will help her settle back down and get a more normal length nap....

The only bad thing, aside from the abbreviated nap, is that it makes me wish I could do mid-week fun stuff more often. I long to be home, even just one day during the week, to take her places like the zoo and story time at the library and COSI... Without having to take a vacation day to do it.  

Funny how motherhood changes your priorities...

Friday, August 9, 2013

Friday Fill-In Fun

I missed last week. Oops.

Each week, Feeling Beachie posts four statements with a blank to fill in on your own blog. You can email her suggestions and be a co-host for the week. This week's co-host is from Purrfectly Pickles!

This week’s statements:
1) I always _____ texts

2) A love to fall asleep when ____
3) My dream pet would be a ________ named ________.
4) I love _______ more than chocolate. (Or ice cream!!)

My answers:
1) I always read and eventually respond to texts.
2) I love to fall asleep when it is raining gently.
3 My dream pet would be a Great Dane named Jupiter.
4) I love lots of things more than chocolate (or ice cream) since I can no longer tolerate eating either.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Friday Fun Day

Each week, Feeling Beachie  lists four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. If you want to join the fun and come up with four fill in’s of your own, please email them to Feeling Beachie. This week’s co-host is Mr. Uttley from Uttley’s Take – he came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1. I don’t have a lot of ______
2. When it is a ______ I hate when it ______
3. When I was little, my dream job was __________.
4. I could write a book about ___________________.

My answers:
1. I don't have a lot of free time.
2. When it is a rainy day I hate when it is also a work day.
3. When I was little, my dream job was a majorette, I remember drawing it in art class as what I wanted to be when I grew up.
4. I could write a book about how lousy the foster care system is.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Boy from Down the Street

Sounds like the title of a trashy romance novel or something...

As some of you know, my great many followers of three people, I have been writing letters to Punky since before she was born.  Most are just to check in, let her know I love her. But every once in a while we have a good teaching moment to reflect upon...(nicknames are used to protect the innocent, though nobody's identity is really protected!)

July 23, 2013
My Dear Punky,
I think you are experiencing your first crush and heartbreak. Last evening after dinner, we were hanging out with Gramma and Granpop for a little bit longer before they had to go home. The doorbell rang. Daddy went to see who it was. You thought it was The Boy From Down The Street coming to see you, but it wasn't. You were SO upset! We actually called The Boy From Down The Street's parents to see if he could come over for a little bit (don't think that will work when you are older, young lady!). And then when it was time for The Boy From Down The Street to go home and for you to go to bed, you got upset all over again. You like The Boy From Down The Street a lot right now. I am happy that you have made friends with him and that he enjoys your company too, he's always excited to see you. Daddy tried to console you and put you to bed, but you needed your Mommy. A girl needs a girl when her heart is hurting. As much as I hope it never happens, I know someday you will experience heartbreak again. And I hope I recognize that even if you are "just a kid" that the pain and sorrow is real for you. I hope I am able to comfort you then just as I did last night. But know this, my sweet daughter, you will get through it and be stronger for it. Heartbreak is an unfortunate part of life. Things end. Friendships. Relationships. Lives. Your family will always be here to help you through the tough times. Always.
Love you!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Monday Morning Blahs

Here I sit in the wee hours of the morning, wake but not quite ready to face the day. I showered and then climbed back into bed, something I almost never do. I won't sleep, I'm not really even under the covers. I'm just not ready to go downstairs and wake my parents (henceforth known as the Rents). See, our babysitter requested the day off and the Rents agreed to watch Punky for the day so they crashed on our couch last night (sorry, no guest room at this time). I tend to rise early to avoid the hot water for the shower conflict. I. Hate. Cold. Showers. I get up, get in, get ready. By the time the Huz straggles in, the hot water heater has done its job- at least I assume, he's never complained about me hogging the heat. Typically I then go about my day. There's a hungry cat to feed and lunches to make and then the Punk herself gets up. 

This morning, the cat is oddly quiet. Could it be the Rents' dog is keeping the insistent, persistent mewing to a minimum? So back in bed for a few minutes it is. I'll have to wait the Rents soon enough. And trust me soon enough is early enough on their day off. Not to mention, the Punkster will keep them running all day! 

While I would like to still be sleeping- oh to sleep in! I realize this is just not my lot in life right now. I must tear myself away from my nice warm, comfy bed and begin my day. Begin what it likely to be an impossibly long week. 

I already know some of the craziness ahead- when you have reviews for two kids scheduled at the same time, on the same day, at the same location that gives you a clue... 

Oh, there's the kitty. Well, I got an extra 10 minutes of chill time I don't normally enjoy.
See you Friday for some fun, if I make it through!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Friday F*yawn*un

So yesterday morning when the Punk woke up early and I was able to rock with her for a while and get her to sleep a few minutes longer; I spent that time catching up on my aunt's blog. I was at least a week behind. 

This morning the rocking trick failed. I blame the persistently, insistently mewing cat. 

But whatever the reason, Punky was awake. Early. Too early.

Perfect time to try to sneak in a blog post while she is destroying my kitchen.

And it is Friday Fun Fill-In day!

Each week www.feelingbeachie.com posts four statements with blanks to be completed on your own blog. This week, co-host Susi from Boca Frau supplies the last two statements.

This week's statements:
1. Lately I have been _____ and it's driving me crazy.
2. I sometimes have a _____.
3. My favorite type of music is ____ because _____.
4. I'm always amazed by how much ____ my ____ can make.

My answers:
1. Lately I have been exhausted (but sleeping restlessly) and it's driving me crazy.
2. I sometimes have a strange urge to yodel. No, not really. I sometimes have a strange urge to shop. And I do not like shopping!
3. My favorite type of music is just about anything but country or rap because it isn't country or rap.
4. I'm always amazed by how much attention my cupcakes can make. (Too bad it isn't money!!) 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Making memories

Today the Huz and I took Punky to one of our local metro parks. It was hot and sunny and she didn't really like walking on the grassy trail- so we carried all 25 pounds of her on a short trail. I think we confused her though, so I can't blame her for pooping out on us after walking for a few minutes. We told her we were going to the park- which was true- but she heard "playground." After we finished the short loop, we found a playground to appease the Punk. Of course the slides were unbearably hot, but the swings were in the shade.

While she is too young to remember this experience, we did take a few pictures. And I hope we are beginning to lay the foundation for a love of the great outdoors. Both the Huz and I have a fondness for outside time and activities (not that we don't also love TV night...).  And with biologists in the family, I feel it only right to explore with her to see if she will be the next one stepping into hip waders to survey fish. 

I'd still like to take her camping, but I don't think the Huz is ready for that adventure yet and I certainly have no intention of playing single parent on a camping trip with a toddler. Not. Going. To. Happen. We'll need all our eyes and hands to keep her occupied and safe. Perhaps next summer...

Friday, July 5, 2013

Friday Fill In

Every Friday at www.feelingbeachie.com you can find 4 statements with blanks to post on your own blog. Send her your own statements and be a cohost like Susi at www.bocafrau.com who provided  two statements this week.

This week's statements:
1. I don't like ______
2. I have a difficult time using _____
3. I love _____ movies because _____
4. I prefer to read ____ because _____

My answers:
1. I don't like meat.
2. I have a difficult time using my work cell phone.
3. I love action movies because there's always excitement.
4. I prefer to read mysteries because I like them!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Harbinger

"It is beautiful... the most beautiful thing you could possibly find or ever know or ever have in your days on earth."

What is so beautiful? Well, you'll have to read "The Harbinger" to find out. 

An interesting read, hard to describe... A mystery of sorts. A foreshadowing of sorts.  Definitely thought provoking. 

Monday, June 24, 2013

My how things change

This week I will be preparing for another long weekend road trip with Punky. I think (THINK) the Huz will be coming too... Punky and I will most likely be leaving Thursday evening and the Huz will join us Friday evening. Regardless of the details, I will once again be traveling via car, just the Punkster and myself. At least the journey is half the distance of our previous solo road trips.

As I think about what I need to pack and when in the world I am going to have time to pack the things that need to go along, I also take a look around my surroundings. 


I inherited the clean-before-you-leave-so-you-come-home-to-a-nice-space gene. And the above do not show a clean or clutter-free environment!

As the Huz, champ that he is, worked on the final phase of Project Deck (staining- which I fully intended to help with, but the Punk would not allow) the house became a state of disarray. Oh, who am I kidding. It happened long before the deck, the deck just amplified it when we moved the grill into the kitchen!

I have decided that having children is one big, ongoing lesson in letting go. In this case, I need to let go of the idea that my house will ever be clean again (ha ha) or at least won't be clean when I return from this weekend away. And the things I am doing instead of cleaning are much more important. Besides, I can always dream about house elves stopping by to work their magic...

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Preview Day

I think the Huz and I got a small taste of what is in store of us. A glimpse of what is to come. A sneak preview of the terrible twos. 

Punky definitely has an independent streak. One in which SHE wants to choose which shoes she wears. And then take them off in the car. One in which she wants to take the pasta out of the lazy Susan even though she's been told three times to leave it alone. My little ODD (that's oppositional defiant disorder for you lay persons) wannabe looked me right in the eyes and said, "No!" when I told her to sit down in the couch. The same little girl who said yes she did need her diaper changed and the  proceeded to run away. 

Not to mention the "I'll do it myself" attitude when it comes to going up and down stairs, or putting on sunscreen.

And Miss I'm-getting-too-big-for-my-britches decided she's old enough to climb the ladder on the playset without a grown up standing by....

Miss I'll-talk-about-the-potty-all-day-but-I-won't-actually-GO-on-it. And I will ask for a "treat" after dinner, even if I didn't eat my dinner.

We just hit 19 months- and I hear sometimes three is worse than two. It's going to be a long couple years...

Looking all cute and innocent!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Working Mom

I'm having one of those days. Well, I guess since it isn't even 7:00 am, I should say one of those weeks. But it is only Tuesday, perhaps one of those months is more accurate. What do I mean, you ask. I will tell you.

I started a new job in February. And it is a good job. Provides a steady, predictable income for my family. And, when the Huz decided to change jobs himself last month, my job provided (for the first time in my career!) the health benefits for my family. The people I work with are nice and we get along. However, the job is stressful to me. Definitely a faster pace than I am used to, more procedures, protocols, paperwork, and deadlines. A social work job versus what I was used to in a counselor role.

And I find myself overwhelmed. I can't leave work at work as easily as I used to. My next deadline is never far from my thoughts. And then I feel what I guess is best described as a mix of guilt and envy. Guilt that I am working 40+ hours per week (usually the +). Guilt that when I get home there's typically only time for dinner, bath, bed. Guilty that I don't really have energy for more than that even if there was time. Guilt that my girl isn't feeling good and she has to not feel good for another couple of days until I can try to squeeze a doctor appointment into my schedule. And the  the envy. Envy of those mothers who do get to stay home more (I'm not even wanting to be a full-time stay at home mom, just a part time stay at home mom. Which I never thought I would want). Envy of the families who either make more or have somehow been smarter with their money than we have so they can stay home more. Or maybe I was just spoiled that first year, having a mid-week day off. Or maybe it was more okay because she was home with daddy a couple of days and now she spends 5 days a week with the sitter. 

I want to go to the zoo and the pool and story time without the weekend crowds. I want to curl up with my Punky on the couch and snuggle when she doesn't feel good. And get her into the doctor the first chance possible, not when more feasible with my schedule. I want to do all those crafts I pinned in Pinterest! And I know this is not in the cards right now.

The plight of the working mother.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Friday Fun on a Saturday?

I believe I missed last week, but I am on it this week! Hilary at Feeling Beachie list four statements each with that contain a blank for you to fill in on your own blog. Hilary LOVES to have people co-host the blog hop (just email her), and this week my Auntie at It's Just Life co-hosted by providing the last statement.

This week's statements:
1. Sometimes I wonder if I should ____ but I know I won't...
2. ____ is my favorite flavor of ____
3. The thing I remember most vividly about ____ is ____
4. When I am honest about it, I really _____

My answers:
1. Sometimes I wonder if I should get up earlier so I can exercise but I know I won't...

2. Bland is my favorite flavor of food.

3. The thing I remember most vividly about yesterday is the craziness.

4. When I am honest about it, I really do need to figure out what's going on with my body.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday Fill In

Every Friday, Hilary at feelingbeachie lists four statements with a blank to fill in on your own blog. You can even send her four statement's of your own and be a co-host! This week Tami from Empty Nest in IL co-hosted, providing the last statement.

This week’s statements:
1. If I don’t ___ then _____
2. I wish ______but then again _____
3. _______ is challenging for me.
4. I would say I am “computer ____” because ______

My answers:
1. If I don't sleep well then I feel "off."
2. I wish I had more free time but then again I would probably fill it with work instead of fun.
3. Math is challenging for me.
4. I would say I am "computer semi-literate" because I can do more than some and less than some.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

So now what?

I got it! My brand new, hot off the press DSM-5 (that's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition for all you lay persons). I'm paging through it, trying to familiarize myself with it- having flashbacks of sitting in the back of that classroom in the Learning Center (that's what it was called, right?) at Capital with Dr. Almos apologizing for the cost, but telling us the DSM-IV-TR was the BIBLE for counselors. Think of the hours I spent reading, actually reading that thing. I made flash cards for the different disorders! And I'm kinda wishing that 1) I had the time to sit and really read this thing and 2) Dr. Almos was here to teach me everything I need to know about this shiny new book. I know the changes can't possible be so great that I need an entire semester to learn them, but perhaps I should have taken a continuing education course on the matter.... Guess I'm going to be spending some time with the big blue book...

Saturday, May 25, 2013


I thought I was ready to say goodbye. I thought I had already grieved for my kitty. But as the Huz drove away with him for the last time, I immediately felt the sadness just as strong as when I found him hurting and didn't know what was wrong (not that we know now what happened to him- we don't). And in true Archdeacon fashion (or maybe it is a Brown trait) I got back to work. Cleaning. I'd been busy since I got up. Keep my mind off what was about to happen, I suppose. 

He was a bad cat, but he was our cat and provided love and entertainment. Sure, we had to hide all our bread and make sure no food whatsoever was left out. One time I caught him with his head inside a half-closed pizza box on the kitchen counter trying to lick the pizza... And I was in the same room! Another time I left butter on the counter to soften, only to find it on the floor in the dining room.... And we can't forget about the time when he was just a wee little kitten and I was sitting on the floor and pretty soon I had a perfect bloody paw-print shaped wound on my back from where he attacked my hair. But what I will miss most of all is our games of fetch. No more racing up and down the stairs with that little sock toy.

I'm going to miss you buddy!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Weekly Post

Seems that Fridays are the only day that I semi-consistently post. But better than never, right?

Each week Hilary at Feeling Beachie lists four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blog. You can even be a co-host by sending Hilary statements of your own! This week Beckey P.from The Really Really Real Housewives came up with the last statement!

This week's statements:
1. One of my best and worst traits is that I ________
2. If I could escape for a day, I'd ________
3. The best part of ____ is ______
4. When I was young I thought _____

My answers:
1. One of my best and worst traits is that I am stubborn.
2. If I could escape for a day, I'd be sipping lemonade on a beach with a good book.
3. The best part of waking up is Folgers in your cup.
3. The best part of Punky's bedtime routine is when she asks for me to sing her a lullaby.
4. When I was young I thought 30 was old.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Friday fun time

Time for the Friday Fill In hosted and posted by www.feelingbeachie.com. Check out the four full in the blank statements posted each Friday. This week Pickles from Purrfectly Pickles (www.purrfectlypickles.blogspot.com) co-hosted the hop by supplying the last two statements.

This week's statements:
1. I can really use ______ right now.
2. I like to _____ my ______.
3. The color of the sky right now is _____.
4. I get annoyed _____ because of ____.

My answers:
1. I can really use a hug right now. (At my old job, one of the other counselors made sure to give everyone a hug every day. I miss her for more than her hugs!)
2. I like to bake my cupcakes from scratch.
3. The color of the sky right now is dolphin gray.
4. I get annoyed while driving because of other drivers being rude.

And there you have it! Simple as one, two, three...four. Join in!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Role Playing

The Huz is currently winging his way across the country for some fun in the sun- fun the the great outdoors. The 4th annual guys only fishing trip with his dad and brothers. A much anticipated vacation before he starts his new job next  week. 

However, his being gone leaves me playing a role this week that I hope never becomes a permanent role: single parent. I like having a partner to share the joys and triumphs with, as well as the trials and tribulations. Punky has yet to realize that Daddy isn't coming home tonight. Or tomorrow night. Or the night after. And while she's a bit of a Momma's girl right now, she's bound to be in full on punk mode when she notices he isn't here to give hugs and kisses and tickles.

Of course I work six days this week too, as I have for the last two weeks, which means it'll be even harder to get things done at home. Which is why I am ever so grateful that the Huz went above and beyond what I'd asked him to do before he left. Not only did he do the dishes and move the laundry along, but he vacuumed and cleaned the bathrooms! I guess coming home to a clean house makes being a (temporarily) single parent easier to handle.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Friday Fun

Thanks to Feeling Beachie for the Friday Fill-In. This week’s co-host is UTLEY  from UTLEY’S TAKE– He came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1. If ___ then____
2. ____ is my ___ of the ____
3. Once, I was surprised to find myself __________________.
4. To keep from going crazy, I _________.

My answers:
1. If raindrops were lemon drops and gumdrop oh what a rain it would be. Wait...
1. (Take two) If  money and time were no object then I would go back to school today.
2.  Water is my drink of the day, week, month, year.
3. Once, I was surprised to find myself being asked for my business card.
4. To keep from going crazy, I read!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Another Round

Time for another round of complaints. About this stupid IBS. I try very hard to so the things the doctor recommended. And I'd say I do a pretty good job of following those instructions. I watch what I eat. I take the recommended over-the-counter tricks of the trade. I try to get enough sleep. I do my best to manage my stress and anxiety. But I still have flair ups. Episodes. Bad days. And it's frustrating. I remind myself it could be worse. I could have something life threatening. Someone I care about could have something life threatening. But in the midst of a rough morning (which I someone KNEW was going to happen), when I have lunches to pack and laundry to do and home visits to conduct, it doesn't work. I feel angry that I have to deal with this. I feel disappointed that my body is rebelling and out of my control. I feel worried that I've passed this along to my child. I wonder how awful a second pregnancy will be should I be fortunate enough to have one. With each episode I mourn all over again. I mourn the loss of my old body. The trusty body that could eat whatever whenever. The old body that I was (mostly) pleased with when I looked in the mirror. The old body that obeyed me. And it's not the food I miss, not really. I haven't had chocolate in over a year and I really don't even want it anymore. I'd be happy never eating it again if it meant no more IBS troubles. And I'll get used to the new physical body some day. But I'm not sure I'll ever be okay with always having to know where the nearest bathroom is. Or checking to make sure I have my Imodium with me, just in case, at all times. What say the doctor? Nothing. I'm following the recommendations. My level of issues is not concerning. Yes, I could get a second opinion. Perhaps I should. But talking to others with similar issues has been incredibly valuable. What I'm experiencing is following a similar path to their experiences. So second opinion? I'll get to it. But until I do, I'll do my best to take comfort in knowing I'm not the only one.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Not MY 110 week...

This is Feeling Beachie's 110th weekly Follow Friday Four Fill-in Fun Blog Hop where each week Hilary posts four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. This week’s co-host is my aunt from It's Just Life– She came up with the last two statements!

This week’s statements:
1. Sometimes I wonder _____ yet.
2. I try not to but I get___ very____
3. Today I promise that I will _____________ until I ____________________
4. In my dreams I ______________ and sometimes _____________.

My answers:
1. Sometimes I wonder why I haven't gone back to school yet.
2. I try not to but I get tired very early.
3. Today I promise that I will not go to bed until I get the clean clothes put away.
4. In my dreams I see lots of colors and sometimes smell things.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Survival of the Fittest


The next installment of Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series. I'll admit I had a hard time with this one. I don't know if it was the subject matter (eugenics) or if I didn't take a long enough break from Alex or if I need to get away from mysteries for a while. But whatever the reason, this one didn't fly by like most of this series has. It wasn't a "real page turner" for me.

At any rate, I finished it and am moving on. On to my challenge for myself. One book off my shelf for every two on my NOOK. I thought I needed to read these books and so it's time to actually do so instead of letting them continue to sit and pile up.

Up first is catching up in "What to Expect: The Toddler Years" and "The Harbinger" since I can't ever read just one book anymore!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Surprise! Or maybe not...

So I stole another blog idea. A personality test. I took it with curiousity, and skepticism.

"You Are Organized"

"You are driven by an acute sense of responsibility and conscientiousness. You are a firm believer in pullin gyour own weight. You like rules more than most people. Even if they're a pain to follow, you like to know where the boundaries are.
"You are analytical and cool headed. When confronted with a monumental problem, you're willing to go slow and take one step at a time. Een if you aren't a scientist, you have a lot of respect for the scientific method. You like to test out ideas and theories.
"You appreciate quality, and you have high standards for everything in your life. You always give others credit for a job well done. You have a head for facts. you are very precise and detail oriented. And you can't help but correct people when they are wrong."

And then I took it again, changing just the couple of questions on which I really had a hard time deciding which was more "me."

"You Are Grounded"

"If slow and steady wins the race, then you're going to be crowned grand champion. You are consistently consistent. You pride yourself on being dependable and reliable. You are a rock, and you are especially loyal to your friends and family.
"You're the kind of person who finds it hard to say no to someone in need, and why would you even want to? Helping out gives you a sense of purpose.You do well with a routine and consistency. You find 'boring' to be quite rich and deep. You enjoy perfecting your everyday tasks.
"You are agreeable whenever possible. Disagreeing stresses you out, so you only stand your ground when it's necessary. You are patient and very open to changing your mind. You are always willing to hear someone out, and you are a good mediator."

What do you think? Is either right? Neither? Both?

Find out about your own personality. But remember, you can't believe every quiz you find on the internet. What's your personality?

Friday, April 19, 2013

Reading Reading Reading

I have decided it is time to set another goal for myself. I have been having great fun playing with my new NOOKs... Which means I am, once again, ignoring the large quantity of "real" books sitting on my "to be read" shelf. So new goal: one book off my shelf for every two NOOK books. Starting as soon as I finish the library book I rented on my NOOK- I mean, I HAVE to finish it before it's due back!

All that being said I have recently completed The Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder which had bonus novella Candy for Christmas included at the end, both by Joanne Fluke. And I finally (FINALLY!!!) completed The Scarlett Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne (which did get better the further I got into it. And I am 99% sure I have read it before). Now it's back to Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series and then on to The Harbinger. After that, who knows! The possibilities are endless!!


Time for Hilary’s blog hop over at Feeling Beachie!! Join in the fun and answer the fill in the blanks!!! She is always looking for more statements so if you have any ideas let her know!!! But now….on with this week’s statements!

This week’s statements:

1. I hate __
2. I used to love playing _____ as a kid
3. Common sense says ______, but I tend to ____________
4. Once, I was surprised to find myself __________________.

1. I hate mustard. All condiments really, but mustard popped into my head for some reason...
2. I used to love playing dress up as a kid.
3. Common sense says not to use credit cards, but I tend to find them necessary at times.
4. Once, I was surprised to find myself not fainting at the sight of blood.

Phew! Those last two were kinda tough!

Monday, April 15, 2013

A Few Things You Probably Already Know

I like to steal blog prompts from other people. It's an easy way for me to get another blog post posted without having to use my noodle to brainstorm a topic myself. This one I stole from my Auntie at It's Just Life .

1. What were you doing 10 years ago?  Let's see, 10 years ago would make it April 2003, so I would have been finishing up my junior year at Capital University. I have a few months of ABA experience under my belt by this point. I was researching graduate schools in my spare time...

2. What 5 things are on your To-Do list?
          1. Empty dishwasher
          2. Clean house
          3. Return phone calls
          4. Organize basement storage area (again!)
          5. Clean up playset building project mess in garage

3.What are 5 snacks you enjoy?
          1. Cheezits
          2. Teddy Grahams
          3. Pretzels
          4. Fruit
          5. Granola Bars

4. Name some things you would do if you were a millionaire:   Pay off my student loans, mortgage, etc. Probably get new cars. Make a retirement fund. Pay off family and friends' debts. Give a bunch away.

5.Name some places you have lived.
          Shelby, Ohio
          Bexley, Ohio (Capital University- 3 different locations)
          Beach City, Ohio (Camp Wanake, I consider it living there for 2 summers)
          Columbus, Ohio
          Whitehall, Ohio
          Reynoldsburg, Ohio (2 locations)
          Blacklick, Ohio (2 locations)

I guess if you really wanted you could lump Bexley, Columbus, Whitehall, Reynoldsburg, and Blacklick all under the "Columbus" label since most people outside the Greater Columbus Area don't know the above as anything other than Columbus....

6. Name some bad habits you have. 
          Snacking all day instead of eating meals...
          Starting a new book before I've finished the old one...
          Spending too much time on Facebook...
          Not folding and putting away the laundry as soon as I take it out of the dryer...
          Letting my kid watch more TV than I said I would...

7.Name some jobs you have had. 
          Slave laborer         
          Babysitter Extraordinaire
          Custodial Aide
          Camp Counselor
          ABA Therapist
          Professional Counselor
          Foster Care Consultant

Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday Fun Fill-In

It is Friday and time to join Hilary over at Feeling Beachie for her fill in the blank blog hop! Join in the fun by going over and checking out her blog and signing up!!! Now on to the fun!

This week’s statements:

1. I don’t like to ____
2. I love to ___ in the morning
3. If I could change one thing in my life it would be _______
4. If I was better at _____, I would _____

My answers:

1. I don't like to be rushed.
2. I love to sleep in past 6:30 in the morning.
3. If I could change one thing in my life it would be our work hours so that we could spend more time together as a family.
4. If I was better at art, I would consider being an art therapist.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Price of a Pet

What does it cost to be a pet owner? Well, I suppose that depends on the type and number of pets. Food, bedding, entertainment, waste management, etc. All factors in pet ownership.

But there is a hidden cost. The price of affection. This is the price you learn of when your furry (or non furry) friend falls ill, is injured or missing. I'm not talking vet bills (though that is a HUGE cost!). I'm talking that sinking feeling that your four-legged (or two or no legged) friend is going to live on only in memory.

Sometimes the decision isn't ours. After a long, happy life, the pet says goodbye. Other times tragedy strikes. In some cases the decision is clear, merciful. In others, the pet owner struggles as to what is the right option. The animal is unable to communicate in a clear way what his/her desire from the pet owner would be. Sadly, the high cost of treatment is a limiting factor in the decision-making process.

I grew up in a rural area, where, for the most part, pets were just that- pets. Not members of the family. Not "children." I've loved and lost my share of animals. And I always understood that was the way things were.

When the huz and I adopted devil kitty, Jynx, we had a long conversation about him being a pet and not more. We were on the same page. And still are. But now we are the grown ups in charge of making the decisions about our pets. We've spent the last five years double checking to make sure all the food is put away, wearing socks for the sole purpose of protecting our delicate ankle skin, and never having an empty lap.

We know we can't do more for the patient than we have. What we don't know is if this treatment is working. What we don't know is if and how much pain he is in. He seems happy to see me- loves the attention, but then he always has been an attention hungry cat. He'll eat, but only a few bites and only if I'm sitting with him. With only a day and a half left of the steroid, I see no improvement in his gait, no feeling coming back in his tail...he just wants me to pet him. That's all he's ever wanted- aside from a piece of bread here and there and maybe to play fetch once in a while (yes, he is a cat...)

More updates on his condition over the next week and a half...

Please enjoy the following pictures: Jynx shortly after we got him, the day we introduced him to his younger "brother," and his most recent portrait after returning from the animal hospital.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

December Dread

Sigh. Once again I have fallen off the blogosphere. Seems I have so little free time these days! This new job definitely keeps me busy, then there is Punky, the huz, the house, chores- oh the laundry! never ending laundry! What little time I do have to myself I spend reading. Or trying to catch up on the DVRed shows! So the blog goes by the wayside. Not that any of my four followers are complaining! No one is pleading for more of my ever enticing and inspiring words. But it keeps me in the practice of writing (someday I will publish!) and is a therapeutic outlet for me.

So what does any of this have to do with the title of today's blog? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

December Dread was the latest installment of the murder-by-month novels I have been working my way through. Are these books literary masterpieces like Shakespeare? Well, no. But when I read non-scholastic material I look for likeable characters and a storyline that I can lose myself in. And Ms. Lourey has done that for me in Battle Lake with Mira and Mrs. Berns. And now I wait the painfully long time until January Thaw hits shelves- it's not even done being written yet! Though I imagine it'll be a little easier to wait for this than it was for the final Harry Potter...

Till then I have another Minnesota based mystery I borrowed on my NOOK and The Harbinger loaned to me by a family member to tackle! Not to mention getting caught up in "What to Expect: The Toddler Years," and finallllllly finishing "The Scarlet Letter" (why can't I get through the last bit?!)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Not for the faint of heart

Since taking this new job, I've been thrust into a world I knew existed, but that hadn't really collided with my world. In less than two months on the job, I have learned a great deal. And know there is SO much more to learn.

This week is my first week having to do on-call work. The call just as I was crawling into bed looking for a foster home for a three year old. The call at 3:30 in the morning (yes, I crawled out of bed and stumbled down the stairs so the huz could keep sleeping as I had the conversation) about an 11 year old needing a place to go... Certainly the stories will continue and probably becoming even more heart wrenching.

As part of my self-educating process, I Amazon wishlisted a few books. One I received as a birthday gift. Let me tell you, this book, like foster care itself, is not for the faint of heart. I don't mean to say it is pornographically graphic. It's not. But it is hauntingly moving. I fully admit to shedding tears while reading this one. And I'm sure it got to me more now, than say two years ago, before I became a mother. I definitely recommend it. But have something cheery and lighthearted to go with it!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Friday Fill-in

Yep! I remembered to visit feelingbeachie.com to join the Friday fill-in this week!

1. My first car was a _________.
2. My ______is so _________.
3. I would drop everything to ________.
4. I never tell people I once _________.

My answers:
1. My first car was a 1992 white Geo Tracker with a black convertible top.
2. My house is so dirty!
3. I would drop everything to go back to school?
4. I never tell people I once ate meat?

Those last two were tricky! Sorry for the lame-o answers...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

October November

Yes, I know it is March and spring is (supposedly) on the way. And I, for one, am glad. Spring is my favorite season. The smell of newness in the air. The grass greening up. The flowers blooming. The birds. Yadda yadda yadda. But did I mention I finished "October Fest" and have started "November Hunt"? Well it is true. I still think July was my favorite, but October was amusing. We got to know Mrs. Berns a little better. And in November it looks like Mira is going legit and is not just a nosy lady anymore... But I'm only a few chapters in so we shall see...

If you are just joining my sporadic blog, I am talking about Jess Lourey's Murder by Month series. I recommend them for a quick, easy, fun mystery adventure.