Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Yes, back to the hospital again

Confession: I secretly hope they do institute a punch card at our local ER. Something along the lines of "your 10th visit free."

I know you're thinking HOW can anything else happen to this poor family??

Seriously, you can't even make this stuff up.

We're finally settling down and getting everyone tucked in to bed when I hear "MOMMMY!!!!!!!!! Danger Girl's BLEEDING!"

and then I heard this blood curdling scream.

By the time I got back to the girls' room, D was there carrying Danger Girlout with blood dripping down her foot.

We call her Danger Girl for a reason. She's had more ER visits for injuries than all the other kids combined. She jumped off her dresser and landed on a cone shaped piece of plastic used to decorate cookies. The terrorist had been playing "baker" again and got in to my kitchen goodies.

So off we went to the ER for stitches.

When a child comes in, the child and parent are both given patient wristbands. As we were checking in, I realized I still had on my wristband from Little Miss' hospital stay. You know, the one we were finally released from a mere 7 hours earlier.

We waved to the nurses we recognized and they asked how Little Miss was doing, which was nice.

Danger Girl was a trooper. She wants to be a vet when she grows up. She squeezed my hand but did not cry when she got her stitches. When The Boy got his stitches, it took five grown men to hold him down.

I asked Danger Girl if she learned her lesson. Would she be jumping off her dresser again?

"Well, mama," she said in her slight southern drawl, "I think I need to move everything out of the way first."

Lesson not learned.

And there are still five weeks left of summer vacation.

Life comes to a screeching halt

It's sort of surreal when your life is going along swimmingly, then you suddenly you find yourself chanting like Dori from Finding Nemo..."Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming"

In the space of the last 10 days, my refrigerator died. Then the washer went out. Then, our neighbors decided to "teach us a lesson" and had someone back out of their driveway so fast, it buckled in the door on D's car...and of course they took off. UGH Mean people. So I called the city on them for parking in the yard. I plan to call the city on them every few days til they get the hint. And, I plan on calling the cops on them if they decide to let off fireworks. I'm not a happy camper.

As if that wasn't enough to make someone curl up in a ball and cry, Little Miss got sick. Not just a little sick. She got the worst case of Hand Foot and Mouth our dr had ever seen. She was admitted to the hospital Monday. We were finally released today. She's still not really taking fluids or eating much. She'll drink with a syringe. But she's hydrated and she's home.

Meanwhile, I'm having surgery on Tuesday. I'll be offline while I'm recovering in the hospital for a couple days.

Heaven help me with what the house is going to look like! Yikes!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Scheduling Craziness

It takes a special kind of crazy to be the mother of six kids. For the most part, it isn't any more difficult to mother six children, but it is definitely noisier! The noise level in our house is usually over the top. I kick the kids outside just to hear myself think and will hide in the laundry room if I need to make a phone call.

The difficulty of having a large family is catching up with us this year. Little B had been attending the same academic magnet Leelee and Danger Girl attend. It's an incredibly rigorous school and not for every child. It wasn't for Little B. We were all pretty miserable. The children work a grade level ahead and Little B was admitted only a few days before school started last year. He essentially skipped a year in school and wasn't able to make the leap. Today, we received a call that there was an opening at another magnet school and Little B was offered the spot! Naturally we snatched it up!

This means that we will have four children in four different schools in the fall! Not only are they in four different parts of town, they start at different times. Little B and Danger Girl will catch a bus, and Leelee could, too, but her school starts at 715! That's crazy early for a kid who struggled to get UP at 715 during the school year with an 8 p.m. bedtime.

We now have to juggle four different activity places, teacher meetings, field trips, PTAs, fund raisers, uniforms, and everything else that goes with it. Not to mention D's school related activities.

My head is already spinning with the stress of it all. If I thought my ADD was bad before, it's going to be worse once school starts.

My plan to deal with this? Stick my head in the ground and pretend it isn't happening I'm making a flip chart detailing everything from daily cleaning schedules to chores to who is allowed to do what and when. The Boy still needs a basic hygiene flip chart *roll eyes* Part of me wishes he would discover girls soon so I wouldn't have to remind him about things!

I'm really looking for excellent family organization tips now! HELP!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

HUGE watermelon


Those other objects are for size comparison.

That's a 64 oz bottle of juice and a regular sized orange next to the watermelon. And it takes up half my table across.

Paid $9 at the farmer's market!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Toy Story 3!

It was good day around our house today. D and The Boy are still at camp. The Boy has decided to trade his love of guns in for a love of archery. I understand the archery. I discovered the sport when I was about his age, too. Funny thing is, I never mentioned this to my husband. We've been married 16 years and he just found out I used to have a bow and arrow and you know, use it.

For the last few weeks, I've been collection codes off of cereal and pop tarts so we could see a movie. Last time I took everyone to see a movie, we saw Wall-E and it cost us $84 after we got snacks. As much as I love a good Disney movie, Wall-E wasn't worth $84. That's usually the standard I use for it we see a movie in the theater: Am I going to think "man, I could have spent that on a week's worth of groceries?" or am I not going to care we're going to go without food for a week? Very few movies make the cut of skipping out on groceries.

I begged codes off of everyone I could find and we managed to get enough codes for 5 tickets (this included the free tickets we got for upgrading to Toy Story on BluRay) and $15 in concession cash. Absolutely no guilt or going without groceries to see Toy Story 3! If we had to pay, the movie itself would have cost us around $50 plus snacks. ouch. It was a great movie, but NOT worth $50. If we hadn't had the codes, I wouldn't have been counting down the days to it coming out on BluRay, either. It was great, but it's certainly not Harry Potter. Now there is a movie I will starve my children save my money in order to see on opening day, midnight showing in costume.

The kids filled up on popcorn and soda. It was a total junk food free-for-all. I purchased the large/large combo and apparently, it has free refills. And we definitely got our money's worth! Danger girl literally ate herself sick. The terrorist drank so much soda that i think I spent most of the movie with her in the bathroom.

By the time we got home from the theater and a quick stop at the store, it was already 5:30! Dinner ended up being blueberry pancakes. Danger girl was not interested in eating. She already ate two whole meals today, so dinner would be a third and well...if she actually ate life as we know it might come to a screeching halt. Better yet, she might actually gain enough weight to be out of her carseat by the time she's in high school!

The only reason Leelee ate dinner was because I dangled our good friends Ben & Jerry in front of her. Not just any variety...creme brulee. I've never actually had creme brulee but if it tastes anything like the ice cream, it is my all time favorite dessert. Custard and caramelized sugar. It's crunchy, sweet and slightly salty just the way all good desserts should be.

Yes, today was a very good day around here.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Menu Plan Monday--June 14...Camp Week!

I'm so excited for this week to finally be here. I love my kids dearly, but I love them even more when they get to go to camp for a week! I love D more when he goes with The Boy to camp! It's not that I want them gone...it's just when they are gone, I get to cook all the foods those two picky eaters don't like to eat.

Oh yes, this week is carb and veggie fest!

Monday: "It's tooo hot to cook" crockpot BBQ chicken
Tuesday: Let's Try this Pizza on the Grill
Wednesday: We're in a Hurry, so let's have PANCAKES
Thursday: Mama's feeling lazy: Veggies, meats, cheeses and crackers...and a movie.
Friday: Spaghetti
Saturday: Pizza again!
Sunday: Mango Baked Chicken...publix apron meal

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Sexism

I have never been so livid in my entire life.

I took my vehicle in for repair at a certain dealership in town. The repair was part of a recall and we'd been experiencing problems associated with the part actually being broken already and not just having a patch done to it.

I pride myself on researching issues before taking things in to be repaired. An educated consumer is a consumer who is well protected.

Anyway, I went to the mechanic and outlined the issues we were having as it related to the recall and he completely blew me off. And it wasn't just a "yeah we'll see" kind of blow off. I was speaking to him and as soon as D stepped out of the van, the mechanic walked over to HIM and started asking him questions. I was mid-sentence when he did this!

To make matters worse, this jerk asked D the same questions I had just answered. D said *verbatim* what I did regarding the issues. The mechanic, instead of smiling and nodding that he did with me (and told me outright that the recall probably wouldn't address these things) told D that well most certainly if the faulty part were leaking, then it would cause the whole list of problems we were having!

I turned about 50 shades of red and D ushered me out of there. His thought being we better get the car fixed before I go ballistic on them.

On some level I knew that sexism still existed, but I'd never experienced to that degree until today. I still can't even totally believe it happened. I've worked in plenty of male dominated fields and have always been able to hold my own. I've always had the respect of my peers. It makes me angry...really really angry. There are many things I do love about living in the south, but this isn't one of them. The sexism and racism still run rampant down here. And people tell me it's improved. If this is better, it sickens me to think of how bad it was 50 years ago!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Good times

This week is the week I can finally get a few things accomplished around here!

I got a crazy deal on an inflatable pool for the kids and now they are out of the house almost all day. The Boy leaves for summer camp Monday. D is heading out with him for three days, too!

I have so much planned for while they are gone. I'm almost giddy about it.

So much sewing to get done. And cooking all the foods those two hate.

My surgery is in a little less than a month, so I also have to get some major cleaning done. I'm wondering if D will miss clothes if I clean out his closet?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Where to draw the line?

I took D along with me grocery shopping today. I wanted him to experience first hand the three ring circus it has become since I started couponing.

The older four kids stayed home and promised not to burn the house down. We also made them promise not to kill each other and not to call unless there was an actual medical emergency. No blood? No problem!

Once we hit the store, the terrorist was on her normal behavior which meant we had a complete hissy fit less than 30 seconds in to to store. I left D to handle it and I pretended the family wasn't mine. If those girls didn't look so much like me, I just might have been able to pull it off! The terrorist even got under the skin of the cookie lady who made her promise to stop screaming if she gave her a cookie. While I generally refuse to negotiate with terrorists, I'll let the cookie lady do the negotiating and enjoy the benefits for the 10 minutes it lasts.

I made D promise to stick to the list and hold the coupons. Holding the coupons is one of the biggest reasons shopping has turned in to such a circus. I can't manage the coupons, the terrorist climbing out the cart, little miss standing up IN the cart even though I've belted her in, and get all the groceries on the list. I always forget something in my efforts to keep kids out of the emergency room.

This week was a big week of stockpiling. I bought 4-5 of everything on my list. D looked at me and asked "is this all really necessary?" The cart was full. As in I really should have gotten a second cart full. It took us a full 20 minutes to check out with all the coupons. I spent $50 and saved $75 (that's after taxes!)

Once we got home, the kids started unloading the groceries and putting them away. That's when it really hit me...I didn't have room for all the things I had purchased. I have a floor to ceiling pantry and it is packed mainly with food (there are a few kitchen items in it).

I had to make a run to another store and they had some crazy markdowns, as in 5 lb bags of potatoes for 97 cents. I couldn't stop myself. I had to buy a few bags.

When I got home again with more groceries, Leelee looked at me and said, "Mom, we have no more room for food! LOOK at the refrigerator!"

She was right. There was absolutely no more room. We have probably enough food in our house for our family of eight for at least 10 days, maybe more. That may not seem like a lot, but that's basically enough for a normal mom, dad and 2.5 kids for about a month!

It hit me right between the eyes that I've transferred my hoarding again. Before, it was crafting supplies. Then it was sewing and fabrics. I thought I was doing better. I really did. My house is clean and organized. But I'm still hoarding.

The good news: I can see it. The better news: I'm not able to hoard long term. I have a teenager who is depleting the supplies as fast as I can buy them. This leads to the bad news: That teenager is essentially masking my hoarding and enabling me.

I'm just not sure what to do about this. It's only recently since watching that blasted show on cable, that I began to recognize my hoarding tendencies. At this moment, it's not hurting anyone. But, at what point will it hurt? At what point does it take over? Where do I draw the line?