Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Things I NEVER Imagined I'd Hear.....

We were having a discussion about Hannah's clothing choices this morning, as we do EVERY morning of school, and she really didn't want to wear a skort (skirt/shorts combo) because some of the kids think that it's just a skirt and think she's showing her underwear.

Then I heard the words I never expected to hear my kids say: "Yeah Mom, we have a RULE at school that says you can't share your underwear."

Huh? I'm not sure I hear that right..... You can't SHARE your UNDERWEAR? Yeah, I heard it right. You need a RULE for this??

Yes, it means you can't show your panties to other people. So you can't just lift your dress up like this (Hannah demonstrates with her nightgown).

I see, because what, without the rule all the girls would just lift up their dresses and show off their panties?

Well, the boys can't share their underwear either.

At least the rule is fair. But seriously, what does this say about us as a society? We really NEED a rule to tell us not to show our panties to other people? I remember back in the old days before electricity was discovered when I went to school--after walking uphill in the snow for 5 miles without any shoes--that I lived in mortal fear of someone else seeing my panties, so I'd wear shorts under my dresses just in case. Now we need a rule.

Sometimes I wish the adults who wear the mini skirts or droopy drawers had the same rule.....

Monday, August 24, 2009

Paralyzed with indecision

One of my favorite blogs to read is "The Meanest Mom." She's freakin' hilarious! I love the way that she takes everyday happenings and looks at them through the eyes of humor, reminding me that we don't have to be so serious.

So Meanest Mom is having a contest. When she was questioned about her claim that Chrohn's Disease is the sexiest autoimmune diseases, she opened up a contest of a different kind--the Ms. Chronic Disease of America e-Pageant. How creative!

Only I couldn't enter the contest--because which disease would I choose?! Instead, I did the noble thing by not entering, thus making the contest more fair for others who are less fortunate than I am. Because really, Ms. Asthmatic PCOS Fibromyalgia has quite a ring! Can't you just see that on a sash!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

School has STARTED!

Today is the day that many mothers look forward to more than Christmas--because it is like Christmas for us. It's the day that school starts again.

I know, I was SOOOO excited for school to be OVER in June. I couldn't wait for summer vacation. Then I realized something. I'm used to my kids being gone all day. They create a LOT of noise--I mean a LOT. And they're not used to being together all day, every day. So it was kind of a relief for school to start again today. I'm not excited about early mornings and I'm not excited about homework, but it will be good to have the structure back and get into some kind of routine.

The kids were kind of taken aback this morning when I was rushing them to take a picture before school--this is a tradition! I *need* a picture of each child at the beginning of the school year. So they appeased me and posed. Another tradition we have at the beginning of the school year is new shoes. Each kid gets a new pair of sneakers--look at their new shoes!

I think Hannah has kind of a Punky Brewster look--remember Punky Brewster? Well, Hannah loves to wear fun socks (that don't necessarily "go with" the outfit) and now she's got high top sneakers. She'd love to have pig tails again, and has asked me to put her hair in low pig tails just last week. And she's got a style that's completely unique. It was freaking hilarious to watch her walk onto campus this morning too. She was SOOOOO excited to go back to school. Social creature that she is, hanging out with just the 4 of us was not stimulating enough. But she walked around, flicking her hair with her hand, and showing people her new backpack--it's pink and it has a monkey on it. You'd have thought that she had a gold brick! I just love this girl!

Toph is trying to be more independent. He's in THIRD grade, after all. He found his line and walked to class on his own, but he also looked glad to see me when I found his classroom. Toph is getting bigger--as is evidenced by the size of his shoe! He's growing up, but I hope he always loves his cuddle time with Mom. He had a hard time sleeping last night, so I had to wake him up this morning. We didn't have that 15 minutes of cuddle time, so I hope his day wasn't completely "off."

Both kids are going to like their teachers, I think. Both teachers seem very nice and structured. Hannah was just anxious to go back. I think she likes the work of school, the challenge, and the social aspects. She definitely likes the playground and will be happy to get to play on the playground every day. I think Toph is going to like his teacher too. He's very structured and strict--but kind too. I know that Toph isn't necessarily looking forward to the work aspect of school, but he's missed his friends and is looking forward to renewing his friendships. I think this will be a good year for the Nickel Family.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Last Fling of Summer 2009

We had a WONDERFUL day today! Robert stayed home from work. We slept in. We had a lazy morning. And then we took the kids on a surprise. They knew we were going for a 1-day trip, but we wouldn't tell them where. As we drove up to the Discovery Science Center, they knew. We've been there before--this time there weren't any cousins waiting though.

Topher took a quick nap on a bed of nails.

Hannah hung out in a tent and climbed through a log.

Toph climbed a climbing wall and Hannah shot some hockey goals.

Toph hung out with a Robot.

Their feature exhibit right now is on ROBOTS--so much fun! We got to touch and build and play--had a great time! The kids got to make "jitterbugs" out of foam, a battery, and a motor. When constructed and connected, it "walked" or "jumped" around. LOVED it! We learned about solar energy. The kids stood in a hurricane simulation tube--Hannah did NOT love it--or even like it. We looked at an ant colony. We did all kinds of stuff.

When we were finished, we went to the Olive Garden for dinner. I'm telling you, that was the BEST OG experience I've ever had. The breadsticks were extra garlicky. Our waiter kept our drinks full to the top. The food was supreme, and the service could NOT have been better. I get to do a satisfaction survey, and I'll have nothing but good to say. We stuffed ourselves, and then shared a dessert. DELICIOUS--can't remember the name, but it was a chocolate cheese cake with a vanilla custard layer and then covered in dark chocolate--YUM!!! And I'm glad the 4 of us shared it. Big thanks to Mom Nickel for giving Robert the gift card for Father's Day--he was kind enough to share!

We finished off the day at the school, looking at the lists to see who was going to teach our kids. We don't know the teachers, but it's going to be a great year.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Last Saturday of Summer.....

We have had an awesome summer vacation. We went on vacation to Fresno for our visit week and played with cousins and a couple of friends. PERFECT!

Toph and Hannah both enjoyed jumping into the pool at the Ward's.
They were doing "canyonballs" but it looked more like a frog jumping into the water.

We helped some friends move....sad, but at least they're still in driving distance for another year. Better than the alternative! I don't like being so far away, because our families love to get together, but we CAN still see them often.

We went to the library a few times and checked out books--YAY! I need to find the #1 book for a series I'm planning on starting tomorrow. It's at a different branch. We had some playdates with friends--YIPPEE!!!

We got to go swimming at friends' houses a few times--YIPPEE!! My kids LOVE to swim--especially my little fish, Hannah. Last week Toph got brave and went down the slide at one house--for almost the entire time. And, of course, I didn't have my camera!

Best for last: We got to go to the beach several times. Toph isn't as "into" boogie boarding as he was last year, due to a wreck early in the summer. That's a bummer, but we'll keep working on it, because he DOES love to do it. We (the kids and Dad, mostly) played in the waves, did a little boogie boarding, built sand castles and sculptures, and had a great time. Mom observed all of these activities and was "in heaven on earth" just watching the family and the waves. I think that's perfection. I did take a few pictures yesterday. We were playing with our good friends, the Gibb family. Carmen took some of the pictures too. It was an absolutely PERFECT way to spend the last Saturday of summer vacation. Her kids start back to school tomorrow; ours start on Thursday (weird, I know).

Hannah's favorite beach activity: posing and sand sculptures.

Dustin and his oldest sister, Jessica breaking in their boogie boards.

This is just the boys playing. The one on the left is Dustin; my two are on the right.

These kids were mining for sea shells for a LONG time! Good buddies!

We have ONE more fling for our family on Tuesday--but I won't post about it now or it will not be a surprise to our kids. Stay tuned for more summer adventure tales later.

I totally couldn't resist posting this photo of my Honey with "after beach hair."

Friday, August 7, 2009

Fibro Update

So, I went to see my fibro doctor yesterday, and it was GREAT! I was anxious because I wanted to see some progress, and I was nervous because I was afraid that he'd want to increase my meds--and I was unsure that I could survive that right now.

Well, the first thing is that I've lost a FEW pounds--nothing noteworthy. Then when he came in I asked if I'd ever feel energy again--and he hugged me and said that I'd have so much energy that people wouldn't recognize me. That was music to my ears. Then he did the body map and compared it to the one from the previous month. OHMYGOSH!!! I felt a tremendous relief! All of the lumps in my thighs were gone. All of the bumps along my clavicles were gone. I'd cleared many of my lumps and bumps. I was SO encouraged! He asked me if I'd had a good day yet--and I had had ONE. He asked what I did on my good day, and I said, "probably cleaned my house."

Dr. St. Amand cautioned me to pace myself. He said that I probably ended up doing too much on my good day and then spent most of the next 2 in bed--and he was right. I told him that our psychologist wanted me to start an exercise routine--but Dr. St. A said I wasn't quite ready for rigorous exercise just yet. And he didn't adjust my meds. He wants me to have some good days before we go to the next level of hell. I don't have to go back until November, and I'm excited. I'm excited because I know the guai is working. I'm excited because I know it's not going to get worse right now. And I'm excited because I know I'm going to get better. It's funny, the psychologist asked why I'd drive to Marina del Rey to see an endocrinologist when we have many excellent ones here. Why? Because he's lived with the disease for more than 50 years and can offer me HOPE. If we had local doctors who could do the same, I'd certainly see someone closer. But a 2-hour drive isn't that far, considering the patients before me that day were from Virginia, South Carolina, and AUSTRAILIA! I mean really! A 2-hour drive isn't THAT long--even in rush hour traffic!

There are so many things I want to be able to do! I want to go on bike rides with my family. I want to be able to work on the roses in my yard. I want to go on long walks. I want to be able to do all of my house cleaning chores in ONE day. And I'll be able to! Just like the FlyLady says, it's baby steps.

So, for now, I'm going to be happy to baby step my way to a more normal life. I'm going to look forward to more good days. I'm going to learn how to pace myself. I'm going to take my meds at a time that will allow me to wake up easier in the morning. I'm going to walk the kids to and from school as often as possible and take short walks with the family after dinner--baby steps. And I'm going to enjoy every second of every good day.

Locked and loaded...well, locked anyway!

Well, I had something really creepy and scary happen this evening. I had JUST finished chatting with Robert on the computer when my outer front door opened and someone tried to WALK INTO MY HOME! Then they knocked on the door. Now, if I hadn't just gotten off of the computer with my Honey, I'd have thought it was him. Since I knew it WASN'T, I was a little scared--who was trying to walk in and why? I looked out the peep hole and it was some guys I don't know. Between the two of them, they had 3 big boxes of beer and a large bottle of clear liquor. I cautiously opened the door and they said, "Oh, sorry. I got the wrong house." YOU THINK? I am SO glad I lock the door by habit. People may think I'm over-protective, but that's not a scare I'd like to encounter.

They had enough booze for a small army, but I'd have had to ID them to make sure they were old enough. Does the fact that 20-year-old guys look 14 make me old?

I'm starting to re-think my position on guns. Make no mistake, I'm all for the right to bear arms, but I've never been a fan of having arms in my own home. And I wouldn't have shot these buys, but I felt VERY vulnerable. Hurry home, Robert! And make sure you lock your doors!