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(never a) Wordless Wednesday: SSgt Daddy

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

(Does anybody remember this post from wayyy back in May of 2009, in which I mention Christopher testing to make Staff Sergeant? Or maybe this post, from last August, a whole year ago, in which he actually made it?)

(Well, today was the big day. He actually got to put on his new stripes, and he now proudly wears his hard earned new rank of SSgt.)

(And if you couldn't tell, by Eleanore's fit of shy laughter, we're all so very proud of him.)

(We weren't able to go to his promotion ceremony, so these are the only pictures I have. And it turns out there wasn't a photographer of any sort at the ceremony either, so, these are the only pictures that exist.)

(And just for fun. How do you think he got to the ceremony?)

(...he rode his motorcycle, haha.)

(While wearing his dress uniform.)

(In the rain.)

("But whats that paper for, Daddy?")

("Its my proof.")

("Oh Daddy, you're so funny! Tee hee, tee hee.")

(And just as I was in the middle of pressing my finger down on the trigger, clicking photo after photo-)

(I fell down, *smack*, straight onto my ass.)

(I quickly looked around to make sure none of the neighbors saw, because- have you ever seen an 8 month pregnant whale fall on her big floopy be-hind? Its not funny.)

(But it is.)

(But it isn't.)

(Christopher was a gentlemen, and stretched his arm out to help me up.)

(And now lets change the subject, shall we?)

(While we were out there, we made a friend...)

(I had to sneak up on him from behind, for fear of him hopping directly onto my face.)

(Isn't he gorgeous? In a totally weird I-hate-bugs-but-I-know-this-one-won't-hurt-me, sort of way?)

(Alright, new grasshopper friend, its starting to rain, and I just fell down in front of everyone on my street, who I know were all probably just standing around peeking out of their front windows, trying to catch a glimpse of my insanely sexy husband in his snazzy dress uniform, while I was trying to balance my enormous giant sea creature sized body in a squat position, but instead took an ass dive into the pavement. We'll leave you alone now. I'm sure you've got fun grasshopper things to do anyways...)

(Congratulations, Christopher!! I hope you like the celebration carrot cake that I baked for you)

(And um, honey? ...be ready to take me to the ER in the middle of the night if that fall did indeed break one of my internal organs. Dangit.)

Get To Know A Mama- The Q's have been A'd!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A little while back, I was asked by The Paper Mama , to kick start a new blog feature of hers called "Get To Know A Mama". She set up a cozy little suite for y'all to sit around and ask questions, and then when I had the chance (I made it a huge priority, like a great big dork), I sat down with my netbook after the kids had gone to bed, and started answering away. I think the only question that I didn't answer, which was really like 10 questions, were all of the wonderings about my Tattoos.

Its not that I don't want to answer your questions about all the artwork that is forever with me on my body, thats just a task thats a little too big for me to take on right now. Thats not to say that I'm never going to do it, because I am. I just can't promise when. Before Bean comes? I'll try to make a day of it.

Thank you everyone who headed over to Chelsey's blog for the asking party. I loved answering all of the questions that were submitted. I felt sort of like a blogging rockstar. For a few minutes at least, heh.

So. If you'd like to know the meanings behind the above pictures, and maybe get to know me just a little bit better (maybe someday I'll put together an "about me" section. But until-), then click on the button below, to Get To Know A Mama...

get to know a mama button

Manic Monday: An Unexpected Hard Day

Monday, June 28, 2010

I've really been wanting to participate in a "Manic Monday" for awhile now.

But every Monday comes and goes, and the space that I just know is meant for me over on the link-up, remains blank. Either I completely forget (spacey as an astronaut these days), or my camera is too full, or the battery is dead, or- this or that or this. I just can't seem to make it happen.

A lot of the blogs that I read (I've been spacey about keeping up with those as well, I'm so sorry, friends), host weekly meme's. I honestly don't even know what word "meme" mean-means (hah, see what I did just now? haha). To me, it means "a fun blog game that everyone plays, usually involving pictures". I could google the actual meaning, but- why waste the time, when theres something equally amusing on ebay I could be looking up instead, right?

And its not that I don't love all of your meme's, because I do. I love to read them. I love to watch everybody else play them. I just... can't really get into them myself. I crack under meme pressure, hah.

Sometimes, randomly, I'll get the urge to enter a few photo contests just for the heck of it, but I've never been steady with it.

I guess I prefer to blog on a whim?


Anyways. Today was just as my blogger friend Sarah's meme indicated it would be- it was a very Manic Monday.

Christopher and I woke up at the same time this morning, but with me waddling rather than walking, he made it down the stairs much faster than I did. When I finally made it to the bottom, he was sitting on the couch with Charlie in his lap, and Eleanore was laying on the mattress at the bottom of the stairs (don't ask).

"Mommy I have a boo boo under my panties".


I had just woken up, I had no idea what she was talking about. But, she was laying under a giant stuffed dog, not moving, when normally she'd be jumping up and down ready to pounce on me the second I closed the baby gate behind me.

"It hurts", she said.

"Show me", I demand. We went back and forth for a minute. I told her I didn't understand what she meant (partially because I had just woken up, and partially because shes not even four years old, and makes very little sense sometimes), and after she kept repeating the same nonsense about boo boo's and panties and it hurt while she slept but I couldn't see it- I threw my hands up into the air and walked away.

And then Christopher chimes in, and says ..."I think she might really be hurt though".

I stopped. I turned back around. I soaked up the guilt that I felt for having walked away frustrated in the first place, and then twisted it up and rang it out with an "ok Eleanore, you have to show me".

I promised her over and over again that I wouldn't touch it. I wouldn't put my hands anywhere near it, but that she had to show me. It took her 5 minutes to even stand up, and then another 5 minutes before she'd agree to show me. And even then, she didn't show me. She ended up showing her Daddy first, which made me feel like a failure as a Mother, but I sucked it up, and when she gave me my turn- nearly being held down by Christopher- I went into a complete and total panic.

Oh. My. God.

Not only was she not kidding, about having a boo boo under her panties, but- this poor girl had a massive infection that came literally out of nowhere, overnight, and she needed to be seen NOW. Right now. 5 minutes ago, NOW.

We call the doctor, we get her an appointment, and Christopher takes her.

For me, what happened next was- I sat on the couch playing trucks and doing a half ass job of reading airplane books to Charlie, while staring at my broken cell phone on the couch, waiting for it to light up with a text message (seriously, I need a working phone), giving me an update on what the heck was going on. I knew that no matter what happened, it was going to be awful for both her and Christopher, I hated myself for not being able to go (but I just couldn't put Charlie through seeing that, just like we couldn't put her through seeing his Swine Flu treatments or EEG), and ohmygod what was taking them so long?!

Finally, a text!! And it read "They're going to drain it with a needle".

What?! While shes awake? They're just going to... pin her down and drain it? Just like that?

Um. Did I happen to tell y'all where her "boo boo" was, exactly? Because-

...its where no female would ever ever ever want to have a boo boo. Imagine the absolute worst place to have an abscess. And thats where it is.

I started crying immediately. I imagined how things at the doctor's office must have been playing out, and it crushed me. Every time I started to get overwhelmed and thought I was going to hyperventilate, I tickled Charlie until I forgot about it. Poor guy, I think he choked on his own fit of giggles at least 3 times. And I kept reading him the airplane book. And we sang songs about ducks. Over, and over, and over again.

40 minutes later, they returned home. Eleanore- covered from head to toe in stickers, wearing a purple smiley face bracelet, ready to tell me aaaallllll about the giant needle and Dr. Scooby Doo (who apparently blew bubbles with nothing but his hands and the hand soap). Christopher- looking like he'd been run over by a truck.

The way that he described it to me, was that the doctor took one look at her boo boo, knew exactly his plan of action, and then together him and Christopher had to hold down all 47 pounds of my very strong kicking and screaming daughter- while the doctor punctured a small hole into her boo boo as quickly as he could.

Blood. Everywhere.

Her screams could be heard throughout the entire hospital.


I honestly don't know how they did it.

She was so traumatized by the whole thing, it took them 10 minutes to get her changed out of her teddy bear hospital gown, and back into her clothes. She didn't get cleaned up. She didn't get bandaged up. And she refused to let Daddy carry her. She walked all the way from the doctor's office, to the pharmacy- limping and lagging. A broken soul.

Because of her past battles with MRSA, shes been given a stronger antibiotic than they might normally prescribe, and we've been given the instructions of "give her these meds 3 times a day, give her a bath 2 times a day, and at the first sign of the infection getting any larger, take her straight to the ER, so they can sedate her and cut it open".

*silence. blinking. eyes filling with tears while I write this.*

She won't let us near it. Shes terrified. We've given her the meds twice today. Christopher has given her her baths (hes physically, and maybe mentally, stronger than I am.), and hes been the one thats had to pin her down on the ground to clean her wound and bandage it. She screams every time. We don't hurt her, but shes still so afraid.

Tonight will be the most critical. Either her infection will start to improve, seeing as how shes started her round of antibiotics (last time, she underwent 4 rounds of treatment), and her boo boo has been draining regularly. Or- overnight, it will get worse, and we'll have to take her to the ER in the morning, to have them step it up a notch.

Ladies, can you imagine? Can you imagine having an abscess, there? Right beside, there?

We don't know what caused it. An ant bite. A spider bite. Bacteria.
We won't have results until next week.

I snuck up to her room tonight, between sweeping and steam mopping, to give her another sippy of apple juice (she needs lots of fluids to go with her meds). I knew that she wasn't sleeping, I heard her up there reading to herself. When I asked her how she felt, she said "fine", as if she had no idea what I was talking about. When I asked her more specifically, she said it wasn't hurting her right now- which is the very best answer she could have possibly given me. At that point I knew I shouldn't linger, so I just left her alone with her drink and her Bible stories, and let her calmly read in peace.

And, I left her with the comforts of her favorite MeeMaw doll, of course.

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't worried about her, though. I'll be thinking about her all night. I'll have a hard time sleeping, waiting for morning to come. Waiting to see if its gotten better or worse.

As painful as I know it all has to be, I'd gladly switch places with her. I'm sure all of you Mama's would feel the same if it were your daughter.

So ...while I didn't exactly participate in Manic Monday the way that I had hoped to, my Monday was indeed, Manic.

Manic Monday Button

(click the above button to read more Manic Monday's, and maybe even play along)

Edit* Its Tuesday now, and when we checked Miss Eleanore this morning, things looked much much better. Thank, goodness. Thank you ALL for your good vibes, positive thoughts, and prayers. We so very much appreciate your being there for us.

How We Spent Our Saturday Afternoon

Sunday, June 27, 2010

The only way to play outside these days, is to play in the water. Charlie gets heat exhaustion within mere seconds of exposure to the sun, so unless a little black rain cloud is following him around dumping water on his head- I've got to do it.

So we set up the splash pad for the babies, squeezed the very last drops of sunblock out of the can, and then set ourselves up on our cushioned patio furniture under the shade of the porch.

In between yelling at the babies to stay in the water, and to stop playing with the ants at the base of the tree, and stop "riding" the velcro turtle around- the heat started hitting me hard. No matter how much I try to avoid admitting how hot 100 degrees really is, it still gets to me.

The longer I sat in the shade, the harder it was to keep my eyes open. I started drifting off into a faux heat coma, dreaming of swimming pools and ice cream cones (God, doesn't strawberry sound so good?). When I'd snap myself awake, I'd look over at Christopher, who was somehow wearing pants- and I'd instantly close my eyes again, because just the sight of his leg covering denim was making me even more uncomfortable.

But truthfully, this overheated Mama knows when to admit defeat.

"Go ahead honey, bring me the bucket of ice water", I miserably grumbled to Christopher, who had offered it several times before.

Yep. There I am... awkwardly dripping sweat, looking all sorts of clammy, soaking my giant walrus flippers in a big red wash bucket filled with quickly melting ice water.

And oh- how it felt so good.

"Bubbles, bubbles!", Charlie started shouting from the splash pad, and came running. See, this is the same bucket that we use when washing the car, so he assumed that it would be loaded with white frothy foam to cover his arms and legs in. He was sadly mistaken, but approached with a smile, dipped his hand into the cold clear water, and then started using it to paint all over my legs with.

So while there wasn't any soap in the bucket, like he had been hoping for, it was still loads of fun to get Mama all wet and watch her squirm.

And after sitting there with my cankles submerged in a slightly embarrassing pool of heaven- the world went from blurry, back to normal.

The view from where I was sitting, was quite nice.

Cooled off tootsies, clouds shaped like doughnuts, the babies playing together nicely in the water (without fighting over who gets the toy penguin), hubby reaching over and holding Bean, and ...heeeeeeeeeeeee. Well, there isn't really a description required for that one, is there, haha.

Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, Christopher goes inside to get us some glasses of water, and returns with homemade strawberry lemonade! I quickly gulped mine, leaving nothing but a ring of seeds around the edge.

While Christopher was trying to enjoy his, Miss Eleanore weasled her way into his arms, trying to sneak sips of what she knows shes allergic to.

Who can blame her for trying though, right? Its hard, especially on a hot summer day, to not want a tall glass filled with ice cold fruityness.

Towards the end of our lemonade though, just about the time that my feet had cooked the ice water into a pot of toe soup- it was time to pick up and go inside.

Put turtle and his friends away. Close up the garage. And lets go start thinking about what we're going to do for dinner...

Flashback Friday: A Set of Elie and Daddy

Thursday, June 24, 2010

This morning as I was re explaining to my oldest (because I have to remind her in one way or another, at least 10 times a day) how shes the "Big Sister", I started thinking back to the days of when she was just, "the baby".

Christopher and I had no idea how to be parents. We had just moved away from our friends and family, from the pacific northwest, to a place in Texas that we didn't even know existed, to embark on his military career. We had a newborn. What do you even do with a newborn?

We were starting from scratch. We hadn't a clue in the world as to what ingredients to use, or how to combine them.

So like I said in the beginning of this post, today I was looking at my almost-4-year-old, being completely nostalgic about days gone by, trying to remember how it all started, just for the sake of remembering. Right now, both kids are upstairs in their beds, I've got complete silence throughout the house (Christopher works the swing shift now), and all the mom-freedom in the world (confined to the house, that is). I came to the computer, in search of older pictures, taken with our very first digital camera (a Walmart purchased Samsung, that matched our cell phones at the time), from Eleanore's baby days. I was overwhelmed with emotion (big surprise there) when I stopped to look through some of them.

When Elie was a baby, we didn't have the internet. I didn't blog. There was no social networking for us.

It was just us- Me and Christopher, living in an apartment, with our daughter.

So for the next couple of weeks, every Friday, rather than digging through the huggies diaper box that I keep to hold all of my old film photographs in- I'm going to be posting sets of pictures that are held on the computer, from Eleanore's baby days. The pictures that never made it to the big screen.

Starting with these ones...

Eleanore was 4 or 5 months old in those pictures. We were living in our first apartment complex (Timber Ridge) here in Abilene. Our first two bedroom place.

For the first time since meeting each other, we had cable tv. For the first time, we could afford to go out and buy groceries (the kind that you can actually make meals out of), we no longer had to rely on whatever my parents could pass our way when we drove out to their farm on the weekends to do our laundry (I swear they must have picked up extra things for us here and there, knowing we survived strictly on ramen).

I don't remember where that bug toy came from, but there was a string on its back that you pulled, and the bug's antennas would light up, and the whole thing would vibrate. She loved it. I'm pretty sure these pictures are the first time we presented it to her.

And this might be something silly to notice, but things have just changed so much since having our first baby- ...look at her cute little matching socks. They even have purple bows on them. Purple bows! Its rare, these days, that we find a matching pair of socks anywhere in our household. Especially the cute ones.

And look at her wrists! Look at the rolls!

Oh and in case you're wondering what I looked like, back then, in the winter of 2006, since you've seen both Eleanore and Christopher...

Turns out I took a "ooh lah lah- look at me" style picture, in between shots that I snapped of the hubs and baby. And I'm not going to lie, I'm totally embarrassed by the face that I'm making, I was obviously trying to look sexy, and now that I'm looking back at it- ...Lord *hangs head in hilarious shame*.

But, I had to share it with you guys anyways. It wouldn't be funny if I didn't.

*note to self: don't make stupid kissy/duck face in any pictures, ever again.

I can't wait to find another set of vintage Eleanore pictures to post next week.

Grab an old photo, write a little bit about it, and link up! We love love love to invade your personal polaroid history, so don't be shy, and expect a lot of comments starting with "awwwwww". Unless its a sad post, and then... well those might start with "awww" too. I swear, last week I cried at half of your flashbacks!! Anyways- don't forget to either text link back to this post, or grab one of our buttons from down below.

(never a) Wordless Wednesday: Pretty In Pink

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

(So by now you've probably noticed that my attempt at participating in the weekly meme, "Wordless Wednesday", had turned out to be a failure. Every Wednesday when it comes time to post, it ends up being quite the opposite. It appears that I end up having even more to say on hump day, than I do any other day of the week.)

(See I save my very best set of pictures for Wednesdays, and you know I can't just let them go unspoken for. Out of this, has evolved never a Wordless Wednesday.)

(So thats the explanation of that.)

(Something doesn't look quite right here, does it? Its almost as if... Miss Eleanore might be in need of a little bit of color, splashed into those blank fingers and toes?)

(Well that idea must have just tickled her, says the fit of blurry giggles.)

(Ok ok, now that all the sillys are out- lets get this show on the road.)

(Wait... what are we doing again?)

(Oh right. "Painting-my-nails-just-like-I-do-with-the-pretend-nail-polish-thats-in-my-dress-up-eeeeeeeee!!!!!!" says Eleanore.)

(When I was at Target over the weekend, I went in search of the most perfect fingernail polish they had. Not for me, but just for the little Miss. See, sometimes I forget what being a girl is all about. Its easy to do, when my hands are constantly submerged in bread dough and diapers, at separate times of course, but- one of the key ingredients to feeling pretty, when you're almost 4 years old, that is, has got to be having pretty painted fingernails. Shame on me for having forgotten that.)

(So I went up and down the aisles, cringing at the $6 bottles of color that I knew would most likely dry up and find their way into the garbage by this time next year. Just as I was about to give in and buy one, my hand literally hovering over the cart with it- I spotted a display of Hello Kitty cosmetics.)

(YES! Oh my gosh, yes! Thank you, yes.)

(... and yes.)

(I don't know Eleanore even knows who Hello Kitty is- who is she, by the way- but she loves her, and this would be perfect. The package contained 5 mini nail polishes, all in bright colors. She'd love love love it.)

(I put back the bottle of $6 trendy "radish", and into the cart went the $4.99 assortment of Hello Kitty colors.)

(As Eleanore sat there anxiously on her bed, leaning over the edge looking down at the mysterious bottles of paint that I had lined up on top of her drawer, Kitty came in for a visit.)

(Oh okay, Kitty. Theres always time for a little pet pet.)

("Bomber, Mommy is going to paint my fingernails now, so you have to go away, because you're a cat and you can't play, okay?" she says in her adult I'm-about-to-do-something-very-important, voice.)

(She was a little nervous, at first. Shes not the type of girl that likes to get dirty. Even something as simple as picking up a piece of pizza or a sandwich, disgusts her- she can't stand the feeling of anything on her skin.)

(I let her pick her color, and she chose "red".)

(I pulled the drawer out, since it seemed to be the perfect place for her to rest her feet, explained to her that she wouldn't feel a thing, but to hold very still- and then began dipping and painting.)

(And would you look at that! Within minutes, she had the pain free pretty pink tootsies of a princess.)

(Yes Miss Elie, you can still walk with your feet, the paint won't impair that, I promise. See- touch it, its all dry.)

(Now... lets do your fingers too.)

(Again, with the nervousness. Would it hurt? Would it feel differently on her fingers than it did on her toes? But, but, but...)

(But she held still like a big girl, and she let me do it.)

(She kept her fingers very stiff, at first. If she wiggled them too much, they might break, right?)

(And thats what the cat has to say about that.)

(Eventually, things started returning to normal. The feeling came back to her fingertips, and her toes touched the ground once again. I promised her, that the carpet wouldn't erase it, nor would the wind.)

(And that, my friends, is one happy little girl.)