Mom, DON'T read this!

So, when I started this blog, I had said I was a lot of things wrapped up into one. A daughter, a mother, a wife, an employee, but that sometimes I miss knowing or being just “Lisa”. I do have a person inside there somewhere. I’m bound and determined to let that person come through more often.

And there has been something I have wanted to do for myself for a very long time. Actually two somethings. Not for anyone else, but me. To express who I am.

And the countdown has now become until I do those things. For my birthday next month, I am getting inked. I was supposed to do it for my 30th birthday, but ended up pregnant somehow (hmmm, Chuck’s birthday present has screwed up my birthday 3 times now!) I have researched and found what I want, but I need to draw it up and find out how much it’ll cost so Chuck can plan enough money for it since he’s getting it for me for my birthday present. Yes, he is. I told him so! I’m excited. I’m a little nervous too. I’ve watched 3 people now get inked and while it was very cool, it was THEM experiencing the pain. But I guess after having 3 kids, and one of them being au natural, I figure I could probably handle the pain.

As far as placement, I’m getting a tramp stamp. It’s perfect for me! I think that placement is super sexy and if I want to show someone I can pretty easily, but no one has to see it if I don’t want them to. It’ll be a celtic motherhood knot with an emerald heart to represent each child.

The other thing that I’m planning on getting done is something that no one else will probably ever see. And unlike the ink, I’m not necessarily planning on showing it off. I’m going to get a VCH piercing.

A what?

Vertical Clitoral Hood piercing. I was considering getting a clitoral piercing, but I think I’m just too chicken. Plus, everything I’ve read about it says that not everyone is anatomically suited for that type of piercing. So I think I’m going to do the VCH instead. I’m excited. I’m more than a little nervous about the pain, but it’s also something that isn’t exactly foreign to me, so I will probably do okay. I’m planning on getting that done the same night as I get my new ink. Probably afterwards, so that my endorphins are already flowing and I’m not quite as freaked out. ;)

So, yay! I’m doing something for myself. I realize a lot of moms probably go to a day at the spa for their personal time, but hey, I never claimed to be normal.


Where everybody knows your name....

Remember "Cheers"??? What a great show. The whole theme was to have a place that is yours. A place that upon walking in they yell "Norm!" or whatever your name happens to be. This place would be a haven from work, spouses, mothers and all your friends would be there to have a drink with.

I always wanted a place like that. But never in a million years did I think that place would be the emergency room.

And it looks as if we are well on our way to having that "LISA!" experience there; all thanks to Lucas. After one experience last Thursday and then the staples from 2 Christmases ago, this kid is going to put me in an early grave, I swear he will.

Chuck calls me at work at 8:20 or so last night. I wasn't at my desk, so my supervisor comes looking for me in the building as Chuck said it was an emergency. Great. Freak me out right away. So I call home and Lucas, instead of sleeping like he was supposed to be, decided it would be a great time to eat one of the Magnetix balls.

Yes, those little magnetic toys that had been recalled. I didn't worry about sending them in, or throwing them away, as my kids are almost 4 and 6....they know better than putting toys in their mouths.

I was apparently mistaken.

So, Chuck feels that it's probably best that we take Luke to the ER. As Chuck has to get up at 5 am and I'm used to working until 1 am, I take him. We had a wonderful time together. We colored. We cuddled. We watched t.v. We talked about whales and blow holes and how a whale would reach to the street if put in his school. At one point I asked Luke: "Are you doing stuff just soo that you can have alone time with mommy and daddy? Because, I'm really not hip on coming to the ER to do that." He replied: "Yup."

So, after an x-ray to confirm that there is truely only one in there and that it is indeed a round one, they basically sent us on our way with instructions to increase his liquids in an effort to help it through faster, watch for puking or severe abdominal pain, and follow up with an x-ray in 48 hours with our regular pediatrician. Check, check, check.


The Easter Bunny has come and gone

I love holidays. I love seeing the excitement of the boys and now Elizabeth. Because let me tell you what, she was excited when she found jelly bean shaped eggs that were meant for her left on the floor by the Easter Bunny.

Our festivities usually start on Saturday when we color our Easter eggs. This year, E was sleeping during it, so she'll get her first egg coloring session next year. Zachary shows his intensity while drawing on an egg before dipping it in colors.
Lucas studies his handwork.

Zachary is telling Lucas "You better not!!" This is just such a typical interchange between these two. I love this pic because of that. (And yes, those are still Christmas trees on our cupboard doors. Yes, I need to take them down.)
Our finished product. They were gorgeous colors this year after using neon gel food colors and 1 tsp of vinegar.
Easter Morning. Miss Elizabeth finds out that the eggs are filled with fruit puffs and she's hooked!
Zachary got excited over the jelly beans inside some of the eggs.
Lucas playing with his ferraris that were inside a couple of his eggs. (I just love his face in this pic...he always plays so intensely!)

The chocolate is already almost gone. But today the boys' decided that Daddy should have some Ferrero Rocheres since the Easter Bunny forgot him. So, it'll be a few more days until we're candy free again.


Walking, schooling and just plain adorable-ness

The last couple days has been so event filled, I don't know how I contain myself. And yet, my blog yesterday was about the bad thing that happened and not the several good things that happened! So I'm rectifying that today.

Elizabeth took her first unassisted steps yesterday!! Yippee!! I have a walker!

Wait. Why am I saying Yippee? Shouldn't I be filled with dread? I mean, I have 2 older kids and I remember what it means when they start walking. They start getting into more trouble. They can now get into things that were a little more off limits before. And walking leads to running. Running away from mommy in near-death experiences like the parking lot at Walmart. Okay, remind me again why I was so excited and encouraging this?

Oh yea. Because it's so cute to watch her take her first steps! It's amazing to see those "firsts" and watch them light up as they accomplish something new. So, I'll take those other things to watch that.

I also had Zachary's parent-teacher conferences yesterday. His teacher couldn't say enough about how much more mature Zachary is now than he was at the beginning of the year. She said she doesn't have to speak to him, well, ever now. He's on top of things and getting along with the other kids for the most part, so things are good in that area! Yay!!

However, they did do some testing for all the students. One of those tests was for word fluency (or something similar to that) which is basically sounding out 3 letter words. Zachary tested "at risk" in that category. So, even though he is at or above in every other category he has qualified for summer school. The teacher expressed her dismay at those scores because, in her words "he is definitely not near the bottom of the class". I explained how I have difficulty with him in that very skill. I believe that it's not that he can't do it...but instead won't. He is too impatient to figure it out, so he'll start guessing by using the context of the pictures, other words, what have you. I also let her know that I'm 100% not against year round schooling, especially for him. Routine is such a major component of his behavior that I've been concerned about him having 3 months off and how long it would take him to adjust (more than likely a month or more) just to turn around and go back to school, and adjust all over again (for a couple months, I'm sure!). So, we may be sending him to summer school and I consider that a good thing.

Lucas Michael. Oh, that boy is adorable. He's getting absolutely rave reviews from school. He's had a wonderful day every day this week and today the preschool teacher told me that they were impressed with how much knowledge he has and is retaining about the planets. It's no surprise to me...they've always interested him so he's spouting off something completely out of the blue all the time. Yesterday, we were sitting there watching t.v. and he looks at me and says "Pluto is the coldest of all the planets." It's like these facts are just swimming around in there, being brought up to the surface more often than not.

Today, however, he fell off a swing in the backyard and bit the skin under his bottom lip open. Chuck took him to ER (it was gaping...and in the spot its at, you can't easily use a butterfly bandage or anything) and they didn't feel it was necessary to put in stitches. But, if it's looking infected bring him back in. Wonderful. He won't leave it alone either so it keeps re-opening. He'll have a killer scar to show the chicks and impress them when he's a little older ;)


I should go to jail

According to all accounts from some mothers, I should be in jail for child endangerment.

This is all based on the assumption that these things are severely endangering your child:

1. Leaving your children in the car within sight a very short distance away for less then 5 minutes, locked, in a small sleepy town.

2. Allowing children to be babysat by a teenage couple.

3. Allow said teenage couple, or any teenager, or any person not the parents, to drive my children in a vehicle.

4. Allowing children to stay a 24 hour period with anyone other than mom or dad.

5. Allowing the older children to play outside, without the parent being there, in a sleepy little town, in a fenced in backyard.

6. Allowing the older children to cross our road (that like 2 cars an hour may go down) to get the mail. While being watched out the window or from the front yard.

7. Considering sending my children to camp overnight before they are 18.

8. Allowing the children to use the stove (supervised) or the microwave (unsupervised).

9. Allowing a young child to test their boundaries in a indoor playground by trying out the "big kid" tubes.

10. Allowing a toddler to walk down the steps by themselves without sitting on their butt.

But, sorry I don't feel that any of them are severely endangering my children. I think some of it is allowing them to grow up. I think some of them are teaching them how to be self-sufficient. I think some of them are giving them some respect for their abilities.

And to threaten to call the cops on me? And then suggest that I would leave a 3 and 5 year old ALONE at the house, for any amount of time, is offensive.

I love my children. I do what I feel is best for them in all circumstances. And I'm sorry you don't agree. But I don't agree with things in others lives, either.

So unless you see me beating my child down with a club, stay the hell out of how I raise my kids.


I'm no Martha Stewart...

But dang I like to create in the kitchen!!

It's Easter time and in my house that means chocolate. (Well, not just chocolate. It also means the Resurrection of Christ but considering this post is about me being in the kitchen I didn't feel that was relevant. Anyhoo....)

Growing up my parents didn't have a lot of money. So, my mom made all our Easter candy. She bought large bags of candy melts and used molds to create some fun looking yummy chocolate treasures for our Easter baskets on Easter morning. Not only did she make molded chocolate, but also birds' nests. (Chocolate melted with coconut and then jelly beans pressed in for eggs. Let cool and harden and voila! Birds nests!)

There are some things I look back fondly on in my childhood. Homemade Easter candy is definitely one of them. And when I got older and realized that the Easter bunny was actually my mom....I started helping make the candy. And eventually when Mom opened her store, I made all the candy for our families.

So, when Zachary was a baby my mom handed the Easter molds down to me. It has now become my family's tradition as well. Chuck never really looks forward to this time because I tend to wait till the last moment and then get bitchy stressed, but I really do enjoy it. I enjoy creating something and being able to give that to my loved ones. And carry on the tradition from my childhood that I loved so much.

Last year was the first year in a long time that our molds weren't put to use. Being pregnant with Elizabeth and being ready to die uncomfortable, Chuck and I both felt it wouldn't be a good year to try to keep up with the tradition. But, no worries, I'm back to it this year!

I already have 3 big bunnies done, some candies, and all my birds nests. Tomorrow I'm running to the store for some peanut butter and mint candy melts to make more little candies and then add some jelly beans to their baskets and the kids are done. With candy anyway. The Easter bunny also brings little trinkets as well.

I've also got a little creative for a couple of my friends' birthdays and created a Strawberry and Chocolate tart. It turned out beautifully and I was so proud of my creation. Not only did it look cool, but it tasted fantastic!! "And that's a good thing."


Zachary and Dentists and Doctors, OH MY!

1Yesterday was a very full day. Remember back a month ago, when I spoke of being the world's worst mother because of my son's totally decayed tooth? Well, yesterday was our appointment to fix said tooth. We went in a month ago and found out that it needed work on it (no shit, Sherlock!) and the dentist at that appointment had the worst chairside manner of any dentist I've ever seen. But I won't get into that because what's past is past. This dentist we saw yesterday was wonderful. He doted on Elizabeth (who tagged along with us for the ride), he was super gentle and patient with Zachary, and explained things to me. What more to ask for!?

So, after the filling is done the dentist explains that he had to drill into the baby root as well. The infection had spread that far. Yes, my poor boy had a root canal at 5 1/2. They put medicine in his tooth and then some more on a cotton ball and made him bite down for about 15 minutes to help kill off that nasty infection before packing the root and then eventually filling the tooth. Zachary was a trooper through the whole thing and only jumped and kinda protested while he was getting the novacaine shots in his gums. He was quite enthralled with the small amount of blood on his dental bib though!

After the dentist, we waited for daddy to get home from work then headed off to the psych appointment. We need to find a new psych before I stab this one in the eyes with a dull spoon. He is patronizing to the nth degree. Last appointment he was generally the same way, but I thought "hey, let's give him a shot...maybe I"m having a bad day". Well 2 strikes and you're out with me; especially when it involves my children and their care. Dr. would only half listen to my answers before making little comments to Chuck about "eh, that's just a mom right?" Um, excuse me? Are you trying to pit my husband against me? Maybe not that extreme but I do feel he was completely belittling me because I'm a woman. And that does not fly with me in any way, shape or form.

Dr. Moron then espoused his general disgust for the fact that Chuck and I work seperate shifts. His take on the whole thing...and I'm not necessarily begrudging him this because I do feel it would be best...is for Chuck and I be home together every night. It would be the best for Zachary's well-being to have our family together daily. So, after about 5 minutes of that I was getting a little heated and asked "so, would it be better for the children to be in daycare for 9 or 10 hours a day, or at least have one parent at home with them?" He quickly said "oh, well, you never want the children out of the house for more than 8 hours. And definitely a parent is always better for the child than a secondary caregiver." Okay. So let's backtrack. We're bad because we're not home together. But we'd be bad if we used daycare, too. Hmmm, that adds up to me that I should be in the house at all times. Isn't that what that sounds like? And while that would be ideal, it's not reality. So why does the dr. harp on it?

I also expressed some concern about Zachary's bed wetting. At 5 years old, he still bed wets almost nightly. Before the meds started in October, he was wetting nightly. He still wore overnights to bed. After he started the meds, that stopped and he was dry at night time for almost 2- 2 1/2 months. When we started seeing a downward trend in his behavior again, we also noticed the bed wetting coming back. I've been keeping a journal of all the days activities, how he behaves, what problems we have, and it seems that there is a connection between his bad days and his bed wetting. Dr. Moron states: "He's doing it intentionally. He should be able to not wet the bed at this age. You need to punish him". Eeek. PUNISH HIM? He said he can't seperate that it's a bad behavior if we don't punish him and make it known that it's not okay with us. Both Chuck and I were completely taken aback by this. Everything we've read says do not punish for potty accidents. So, Chuck asked if he was meaning something like changing his sheets. "yes! Changing his sheets is a good thing for him to do. It lets him know it's not okay. Or adding in extra chores."

Okay, this guy doesn't know us from Adam. But, I get that his assumption is that we allow Zachary to do whatever he wants, whenever he wants and isn't made to do anything. Um, no. Zachary does daily chores. He helps with laundry, he makes his bed, he changes his sheets, he cleans up his toys, he feeds the dog, he picks up the living room, takes out the trash. I'm sure I could go on. Is that an every day occurance? No, not neccessarily all of them, but he is asked and expected to do things around the house.

But, back on the topic of bed wetting. I bring up the fact that my younger brother wet the bed until 14 and so did 2 of my uncles and I had the understanding that it can also be genetic. He said "well, Zachary is just controlling you". Okay, at this point I was fuming and trying to talk myself out of gouging his eyes out with a spoon.

So, last night I did a little online research. Everything I read, from reputable sources like the American Academy of Physicians, says that children do not wet the bed intentionally or to anger their parents. Hmm. Wonder where this guy got his degree from.

He did bring up something interesting though. He asked if Zachary had been tested for Aspergers. This peaks my interest. It's always something I've been really curious about because from the reading I've done and the tests that I've been given, it seems a really likely diagnosis. But I don't know if the 1st dr. ever fully tested for that...if you can even. But then, Dr. Moron went on quickly to explain he doesn't change diagnoses anyways. Why bring it up if you're not willing to do something about it? Just one more strike in my book.

So, off to research new doctors. Again.


Camp has a part of my heart


Because there I met my husband. As well as a couple of the best friends that we have.

So it's no wonder I look back on camp with such fond memories.

I've been working on our scrapbook from the times when we were just dating (yes, I know...I'm a little late) and have been going through college and camp pics and feeling awful nostalgic. It was such a simpler time in my life. I lived to ride and have fun in all aspects. I was a lot skinnier, a lot (natural) blonder, a lot less burdened with responsibility.That place really did change my life. Not in that I turned around from a bad kid to a wonderful, caring person because I always was that way. Instead, I met my husband there and changed the course of my path from a career woman to a woman who was quite happy getting married and staying in the state. 3 kids later, I'm still here, sitting across the living room from that man who showed me love for the first time. So, while it's different than it was then, that's not necessarily bad either, is it? (this is a bad pic...it was stuck in my frame, so it's taken through glass)

Top Favorite Photo of Me

Gotta love that trip to Texas.


BlogHer...or BlogMe?

I've been thinking for a little while now about joining and actively working with the BlogHer community. One of my interesting daily (or often times bi-daily) reads is Angella who is part of the BlogHer community. I've read her blog for 2 years or so now and she's funny, smart, witty and just an all-around enjoyable writer to read. I feel like people can relate to her. I feel like people flock to her. And they do...she gets 20+ comments daily!!

How in the world could I be in a community like that? I started this blog to put my own feelings out there. To get them out of my head and onto a virtual piece of paper so that I could stop thinking about them, stop obsessing, or in some cases reflect and remember the good parts of being a mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend. But the blog has taken on so much more for me. It's taken on a creative license for me that I'm kinda missing in my life since becoming a mom. I don't have time to myself to do much of anything, nor do I have the space.

Did you know I used to paint watercolors? I loved it. Was never that great, but I loved it and it allowed me to be creative and accomplish something. But where do I have the space to set up all that? When do I have the time to haul it all out and put it all away, let alone paint?

I love to scrapbook. Again, same problem.

Sewing. Same thing. It takes me 25 minutes just to get the sewing machine set up and then it takes up my kitchen table until I'm finished with that project.

But this. This is something that I can have that takes me a short amount of time every day and requires virtually no space besides my laptop (btw, I love my laptop. I may never go back to a desktop again) This is something that IS me. It's from me. From my heart. I thrive on comments. I beam when someone leaves me one. Silly and immature? Probably. But hey I'm a mom to 3 who rarely spends a lot of time with her husband, sees her friends even less often, and works at a boring government job. Give me a break, m'kay?

So that brings me back to how could I be in that community? I'm not all that funny or witty (although I think I am...which is a sure sign I'm not.) I don't feel like I have all that much to say to contribute to a woman's blogging community. If I give it a shot and I fail (and in failing I'm referring to the commenter-ship that some of the other blogs have attained), what have I lost? Nothing, right? Except I don't fail well. Hell, most of the time I don't succeed well (ask Matt or Chuck. I'm always complaining about how my AFEL team should be performing better even though I'm undefeated!)

So that brings me around to should I keep my blog to myself as my creative outlet or try to open it up to the world and get more and more of that giddy "I got a new comment" feeling. Hmmm, the decisions for an incredibly indecisive person.

ETA: I know that the world can see this now. However, how many people really go out searching to read my blog? Not many, I can be pretty certain of that. But getting involved in a community would be opening myself up for potentially a lot more readers. That's all. :)


Spring is coming!!

There are finally signs that Spring is coming!

On Friday, the boys and I watched as 2 Chickadees started their nest building in our bird house. It was neat that we could watch this and I explained how even in the bird world, the mommy and daddy birds work together to build a home and protect and care for their babies. Speaking of birds, I saw a beautiful Blue Jay ths morning. Sure, he was hopping around on ice but it was still a Blue Jay. I'm sure we'll be seeing a Robin soon. See, in Michigan, anyway, seeing a Robin is supposedly the first sign of Spring.

It's raining today as well. While I'm not usually that excited for rain at least it's not snow. However, there is still a lot of snow and packed down snow on the ground which means it's icy. The boys and I basically skated all the way to the van this morning.

This weekend it was warm and sunny and just perfect for shoving encouraging the boys to play outside. On Saturday, they ended up playing in the back yard almost all day long, only coming in long enough to eat lunch and take bathroom breaks. When they finally did come in they were soaked to the bone since everything was melting but they were tired and happy. It was a very welcome change to the bitter cold weather we've had and was wonderful to have some quiet time and space in the house.

As I was sitting at the table eating lunch, I saw a shot I just had to get and of course that started a photo shoot of all the kids. As Spring approaches, my camera comes out more and more often.
Elizabeth checking out the sunshine and snow out the kitchen window.
Zachary working on his snow angels.

I turned around to come back into the house and this is the view awaiting me. I think Frodo and Elizabeth are going to grow up being best of friends.

I made a big pot of hot cocoa for everyone after coming in from the cold. Lucas loves his hot cocoa!

So, I'm off to open up some windows. Sure, it's not *that* warm yet but it'll do my heart good to get some fresh air in the house. Enjoy your spring day!


New Readers!!

Last weekend, I went to a party and met several other bloggers. I also met 2 people who stated that they read my blog consistently but never comment. So, score! 2 readers I never knew I had.

I cannot explain in words the delight I feel when learning I not only have a new reader, but, *gasp* a new commenter!! As I also found a new "friend" through Angella whose name is Ashley at Our Family Stone. It's a super cute blog and she's an awesome mommy writer! Ashley recently tagged me to do a "meme" in order to get newer readers to know me a little bit better. Wellll, by all means!

This meme is to do a post about old posts. I have to go through old posts and put a link to different posts I've done that are about the following.

1. A post about my family
2. A post about my friends
3. A post about myself
4. A post about something I love
5. A post about anything I want

Then I have to tag 5 other people, 2 of whom are new acquaintances so that we can get to know each other better.

Hmm, this could be interesting.

1. I would say about 75% of my posts are about my family. So, I've thought about what best defines me and my family. Zachary is my oldest child and here is some of the issues we have with him...that kind of run the family unit sometimes. Lucas is my middle child and he's quite the little boy with a lot of charisma. And he loves chocolate! Elizabeth is my baby girl and our very last child. This is when she turned 2 months old. Should I include my husband in links? Absolutely! (Yes, I know it said ONE but I have 4 people in my family!)

2. I actually have a post named Friends.

3. A post about myself. This one is really pretty recent but I feel it's one of my best written pieces about myself and about my feelings about being a mom. (and my husband's comment is the best!)

4. Something I love-I'm assuming it means something besides my friends and family! I had a hard time finding something for this one (I swear I'm not a wholly negative person!) but here's one.

5. Anything I want. Well, there are a few things I'm kinda passionate about and surprisingly enough they tend to revolve around children. This one is about breastfeeding and my response to Bill Maher's idiotic position on nursing in public.

So, there you are. A spattering of me in 5 (or a few more) posts. Enjoy the reading! Now, to tag others! I'd love to have Diana, MLA, and Theresa (at Quack This) take on this challenge. As for new acquaintances, if you are new to reading my blog and have one of your own, take this challenge and link back to me so I can read it!!!

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