Just Call Me Sally Fields

Doin’ a little jig- dancin’ a little rag. In the tiny little microcosm of my world, things are very good! The very first site for mamas that I ever found and loved was MMW, and they are still my favorite, so when your fav decides to ask you to join the staff, what do you do? You dance a crazy little dance, swallow your fear of large audiences and say…”ok”!

Heather O and The Wiz have invited me to be a regular contributor to MMW, and I think my first post over there might be on Monday. How cool is that? Little pregnant, nauseated fish in a big ol’ pool. Well, Heather keeps telling me it’s not so big, but it feels pretty stinkin’ big to me! This will still be my main outlet- I can’t hog over there and post all the time about whatever is on my mind, but once a week or so, I will. How cool is that? Four months ago I thought a blog was a big plop of mud!

Also, the kids have been awesome, my husband got a fat promotion at work (the only drawback I see so far is he gets home later), and I got several orders for my designs from new companies this week. Big orders. Which means next week I have to be disciplined and actually stick to a schedule and work. Sticking to a schedule and defeating the whimsy-pig inside of me is always a personal challenge, but one of these is a really big order, going to Manhattan- can you believe that? What one solitary mama makes in her spare bedroom might be going national… Good grief, life is so amazing!

And we are having a maybe-girl. The chicken-little in me is now going start looking for falling pieces of sky…Happy New Year everyone!

Harmony Abounds

No kids for sale today… sorry! My kids were awsome- it was one of those rare days where no one fought, no one got hurt, we were all happy, and I had superhuman patience. Maybe that’s the real key, eh? The superhuman patience part? Nah, can’t be that simple.

What we did do was move Eric and Jeffrey into the same room, and while I was anticipating disaster, I was pleasantly disappointed. They are thrilled, and completely happy with the arangement. If anything, they are sleeping better together, waking up less, and happier now than they were alone. And, DFM and I got a kick out of listening to them giggle and whisper the first night- is there anything sweeter than your babies loving each other?

The move was initially to make space for the new baby enough in advance that Eric doesn’t feel kicked out of his room. We only have three bedrooms upstairs, so someone had to share- I’m not ready to have anyone downstairs where I can’t hear them- no way. Now, I just need to get over my ghastly fear of Eric jumping off the bunk beds. He is lithe and spry and afraid of nothing, and I know he is going to be the one who sends me batty.

Now, I need to find a two-year-old-proof crib, somthing that he cannot destroy or climb into, so the new baby will be safe too. The old crib, after two of our babies, had been repaired so many times it is beyond all hope and is going where all good cribs go to die- behind the garage, I guess.

On to tackling the intermitable pile of baby clothes spilling out of bags and boxes in every downstairs closet- how do such tiny duds take up so much space and time?

My “Drug” Problem

This morning I geeked out at the OB. It was my five-month check-up, ( lost 2 lbs, but that’s what barfing every day will do) and my doctor was not available today, so I saw the nurse practitioner. I am sure she is a very nice woman, and I generally don’t mind seeing RCNP, but this visit just went all haywire. Maybe I’m just oversensitive and emotional- most likely, actually.

The backstory is- no pun intended- that I have had chronic back pain for years. Last October, I had breast-reduction surgery that all but eradicated the pain. Marvelous thing, for me. But, now that my belly is beginning to get big, the back spasms have started up again, and yesterday I picked Eric up and tweaked something. So last night I was in so much pain I was physically ill, something that used to happen often before the surgery. My OB knows about my history, (actaully helped me get the surgery) and four months ago prescribed a muscle relaxer and pain killer to use only when needed, which isn’t often. He gave me 20 pills, of which I had taken six.

Backstory #2 is that my dear husband needs a root canal, and our dental coverage for the year is all used up, so he has an appointment in January, which, thank heavens, is next week. But, he has been taking my pain pills, instead of taking 20 Advil a day. So last night when I went to take a pill, they were all gone. I told him to take them, especially since I have needed them so seldom and he was in pain.

So back to today… I don’t really want to tell this nurse that my husband took my pills- I’m not sure why, but I felt the judgment would be forthcoming and I didn’t want to deal. So I just asked her if I could please have something for back pain. To which she told me that I really should see a chiropractor, get physical therapy, and do exercises for my back. I agree that all of these are good things. She then lectures me that pain killers do nothing towards a solution only mask the problem. To which I also agree, but try to get in a word about my history. She overrides me, and again begins to talk about her chiropractor and the miracles he works, and how I really need to address my pain issues. Now I feel like crying. After this baby is born, my back problems will be gone again, and I know this. I just want something to keep my from kneeling on the floor and throwing up from the spasms! So I tell her this. Again, she started in on the chiropractor- now I believe in chiropractors, we have one, and he is good. But he wants to see me twice a week for therapy, and it’s $30 each time I go- sorry, but our budget cannot handle that $240 a month. So I loose it and tell her all this. She just stares me, like the crazy woman I am.

Ultimately, she claims she cannot give me any medication, and I am fighting back tears now, putting my things on with all the dignity a half-naked, emotional train-wreck, pained pregnant woman can muster. I must have looked pretty pathetic, because she paused in her diatribe and said maybe she could see what my doctor had given me and refill it. She left the tiny, cold room and told me to wait. By this point, I was so upset all I wanted to do was leave, medication or no.

Grabbing my purse, I intended to just go, but she caught me in the hallway and was just as nice as she could be. What happened? All of the sudden the lecture was over, the poor pregnant woman was leaving in tears and the torture session was complete? She was quiet and sweet as she asked me about my next appointment and slipped the prescription in my hand.

Should I have just said, “Hey, my husband swiped all my drugs, gimme some more!”?- With the browbeating I got just for asking for painkillers, I can only imagine what she would have said to that! My instinct for not telling her that little factoid was right on.

We never even talked about my baby, which is why I was there in the first place.


This time of year, every year, I go a little bonkers. Christmas is over, and when I say over, I mean over. On the 26th, the tree comes down, all the decorations (such as they were this year) are boxed and shelved, and the cleaning frenzy begins. Holiday decorations after the fact are kind of like waiting for more puny fireworks after the grand finale on the Fourth of July. Take it down, get it out, move on!

My husband calls this uncontrollable, unstoppable urge to clean “gweekazao” which I think is kind of cute, but that’s besides the point. It happens with the season, and can be timed to the nadir of the year, and heaven help anyone who gets in my way. Nothing and no one is immune. All the closets are tackled, the kitchen cabinets, the storage, toys, and clothes. If it has not been used or needed in the seeable past, it’s gone! By nature, I am a thrower-away-er, and I hate piles of crap lying around, even though I have my share of them. It is probably in reaction to my mother’s penchant for collecting crap, but I cannot stand clutter and mess. To be sure, most of the year, my house can be found in the messy state all houses with little kids are in, but once a year, watch out!

The thrift stores and local charities make out from me this time of year. Do I really need Christmas dishes? Out they go! Am I really ever going to get in those jeans again? Gone! Is that toy ever actually going to get fixed? Uh, no- trash it! I am merciless, and unilateral in my swath. My things are culled even more so than my family’s things, but does my husband really need 19 baseball caps? Kiss them goodbye! Most of the things I have gotten rid of over the years no one has even noticed are gone. My one mistake was 86-ing a bunch of coffee mugs that DFM had saved over the years- (because we drink so much coffee?)- those he did notice, and while I had just initially boxed them and put them in the garage, they disappeared after that. Oops.

So once the whole house is purged and everything has a place and is in it, I feel SO good! Then I begin to clean, and I think there is a bit of “nesting” going on, even though it’s early. For a week or two, each year, my house is marvelous. Then, I fall into a big heap, and don’t do the dishes for a week, the laundry begins to creep up the basement stairs, and the cycle begins anew. But for a few short days, the smell of bleach wafts from the baths, cedar from the closets, and lemon from the kitchen and life is marvelous! Mama nirvana.

A Brief Pity Party

The little girl in me (not the one in my womb, the one in my psyche) really wants to go home now. I am fighting with my natural tendency to be too introspective and wallow in my emotions, and the more mature feelings I have about thankfulness, love for my little family and what I can give them, and deep gratitude for what Christmas actually is.

Perhaps it’s because Christmas has almost always been an exemplary time in my family- and I know what we are missing being up in the frozen (but beginning to thaw) northwest. Already I waxed on about what the holidays are like at my family’s, and I don’t need to do it again, but facing Christmas Eve with the same group that we had Thanksgiving with leaves me feeling a little morose. Oh, I know I need to pull myself up by my bootstraps and count my blessings, and I intend to do just that, as soon as I cry a little bit.

One of my dearest friends is in the same little boat with me right now. She is in Colorado with only her fiance for company, which is not bad, but she loves her extended family as much as I do; in fact our parents are very close friends. When you have had the wonderful warm-fuzzy Christmas and grew up thinking that was the norm, being far away can be especially lonesome. I know, I know- Whaaah. Poor me.

It’s just that I miss my mom. Do you ever get over that? Are you ever too old or too jaded by life to stop wanting your mom? I’m not, and I am not ashamed to admit it.

Right now I wish my kids were asleep in the guest bedroom in my mom’s house, that my dear husband was snoozing in the family room with my step-dad while they pretend to watch old re-runs on Nick at Night, and my brothers and I were lounging around the living room with my mom, staring at the hypnotically spinning Christmas tree in the front window. Something about the spinning tree draws people in, and we always end up in there talking, with only the lights of the tree on. It is the closeness with the people who are dearest to me that I cherish the most. Taking on the phone, taking video and mailing packages cannot replace the intimacy and tenderness of shared time and proximity. This is what I miss most.

So really, things are great. My family is close, we are all basically healthy, and we have many rich and varied blessing to be grateful for. The Plan in for us to be there next year, and that is something to look forward to. My job, in the here and now, is to help my children feel the Spirit of Christmas, to know how much they are loved, and to cherish my role in being their mom.

And it’s ok that I miss my mom.

One for the Books

For any LDS readers out there who have not checked out Nate Oman’s post over at Times & Seasons, I highly recommend doing so. He more clearly describes my experience of the Savior than I have been able to do. Nate likes six-penny words, but persevere and you might be glad you did.

For Sale, One MIL- I’ll Pay YOU!

Right now I am struggling with being charitable and behaving how I think I should (and am eternally expected to) and wanting to just scream with frustration at the woman. Who? My mother-in-law. I know all the jokes about MIL’s and all the stereotypes, but mine? She takes the cake. Everyone who knows her tells me they’re glad she is mine, and no one will trade me, under any conditions.

Before DFM and I married, he told me what to expect, and I just could not believe any woman could be that bad. He is not close to his mother, and has not been for years, and after six and a half years of trying to be patient, look for the good, and like the woman, I give up. She really is that bad.

Some examples:

  • When we got married, she complained the photographer did not take enough pictures of her, while there was not one picture of me with my mother. (she paid for the photographer)
  • She invited herself to stay at our home while we were on our honeymoon, then she was still there and did not leave when we got back.
  • The one time we went to her house to visit her when we moved to the northwest, she entertained us in her bedroom, wearing her underpants. We have not gone back.
  • She makes sideways comments about my parents divorce status, and frequently badmouths her terminally ill husband.
  • She lies about weird things, like her daughter leaving her (Hispanic) husband, how her camera broke at the wedding of her grandson (to an Asian woman), and how the camera also malfunctioned at the wedding of her granddaughter (to a black man), taking only pictures where the groom was absent.
  • When she comes over, she insists on folding my laundry, but she buries things in the layers, like my underpants in with the kids jammies and the dishtowels, so I have to go through the entire basket to find things. It does not matter that I ask her not to fold it.
  • In her house hang framed “glamour shots” of herself, and no pictures of her grandkids.
  • Her voice and mannerisms change based on who is around and how well they know her.
  • Everytime she comes over, she brings groceries, always commenting how she never knows what I will have to eat for the kids. As if I don’t take care of my kids? We have a years’ supply of everything in the basement, duh?
  • She calls me “Girl”, and even Jeffrey has told her not too.
  • If I leave her at our house for any time at all, there is always something laying on my scriptures when I return. A phone, a pencil, a tablet, a towel, a toy, a pillow…
  • She thinks all Mormons are going to hell, and we know she will tell our kids this when given the chance.

I could go on and on, but you get the picture. The very worse thing for me is that you cannot pin her down on anything. Generally I am very straight forward, and if I see or hear something that troubles me, I talk about it, openly. You cannot do that with this woman- ever. She will deny, evade, lie, anything she has to do to avoid confrontation or real honesty. DFM likens dealing with her to ‘nailing jello to the wall”, and wishes me luck.

So what do I do? As my husbands mother and my children’s grandmother, she is entitled to a certain amount of respect, but even that is becoming difficult for me to dish out. All the pretending is making me want to put my head through the drywall. And even though I refuse to pretend around her, and I insist on talking about the elephant in the room, she just continues on her merry way, as though the windshield wipers of her mind wiped everything anyone else says away. AND, she is not crazy or getting dementia- this is all calculated.

In closing, I want to apologize to my dear husband, for doubting him and his assessment of the relationship. She is one wacky woman.

For Sale, Redheaded Boy, Cheap!

We are all sick. Eric woke up this morning with crusty eyeballs that needed a warm washcloth to unglue (ewww!) and Jeffrey started complaining about his ears. Greeeeaat! You know what the means… Pediatrician, here we come.

The doctor only had an opening for one kid, so I figured I would just take both and then beg her to look in Jeffrey’s ears while we were in the room. It worked. Eric has pink eye, and Jeffrey has an ear infection. Whoopee! At least it is now, and not on Saturday.

So I go to the drivethru pharmacy at Walgreens (gotta love that!) and get the antibiotics, and $60 later, head home. Eric takes the eyedrops with only minimal fussing, and then promptly goes to sleep. What a sweet boy! But Jeffrey, well, that’s another story.

Right now, he is up in his room, whimpering and moaning. I am so stinking mad at him, I don’t want to go in there until I cool off, so thus I write. Jeffrey HATES to take medicine, any medicine, all medicine. I told the doctor this, so she gave him a really strong antibiotic that he only has to take for 5 days, thinking that would make it easier. HA! Even after the doctors warnings to him and my pleading, he would not open his mouth. I was stern, I pleaded, I offered mixing it with 7up, I threatened, all to no avail. Finally, out of frustration (and disgust with myself for begging a four-year old to do something that he really HAS to do), I opened his mouth and poured the medicine down his throat. Which he promptly spit out at me, then barfed. Oh, yes, he did. It is a little trick of his, he is able to barf at will- always has been. So the medicine, day one of only 5 days’ worth, is all in my lap. To say that I am now steaming is mild. I want to mop the floor with four-year-old, so for his own well-being and mine, he is in his room until the doctor call us back.

What do you do with a kid like this? I am at a total loss, let alone that I have to go buy more ridiculously expensive antibiotics now. Anyone have kid with a will of iron and a trick stomach? Any ideas? These are the days that I miss having a paying career- no day at any company I worked for was as crummy or nasty as this!


(tiny little whisper) I bought something pink yesterday. A little knitted baby bonnet with a tiny little ribbon rosebud on it. It’s soooo tiny and cute and pale pink! Shhhhh…don’t tell anyone!