Saturday, August 27, 2011

Friday, August 19, 2011


This is about 20 minutes from my home.  When I say I live in the middle of nowhere, this is what I mean.
It's a Joshua Tree, in case you were wondering.  They are protected.  If one were to suddenly pop up in our yard, we would have to keep it.  To me, they are straight out of Dr. Seuss.

 These hills and trees are a memory from my childhood.

My parents had a motorhome.  My sister and I got the bunk beds in the back.  Sometimes I would wake up in the morning, look out the window and see these deep green trees and the wheat-colored grass.  It was when I fell in love with the earth.

This is the face of a bribed child.  She did not scream or otherwise cause complete strangers to come to her rescue at any of the restroom breaks.
The same could not be said two days earlier at a potty pit stop (her first time using a public toilet) at my office. 

Making time to meet up with a friend and her family in Monterey?  Freaking brilliant.  (I mean my friend, Bridgie, is brilliant.  I haven't asked if I can post photos of B and her gorgeous family, so you'll have to imagine the cutest baby girl with a round, barely blonde head, deliciously full cheekies and big blue eyes.  Look where she had us meet her!)
Clear and total resemblance.

Fynnie's interpretation of the sign and her sister.   
Or pretend sharing.  You know she doesn't really intend for you to take it, right?  Whew! 

This slide is about two stories high.

 The best way to work off an eight hours car ride.

 Again, Fynnie's version.
The outfit, in case you are wondering, consisted of a sunsuit that was perfect for the 96 degree weather we'd enjoyed earlier in the day.  Completely mismatched pants and sweater?  Mama's last minute "what if" pieces that came in handy for the 64 degree afternoon in Monterey.  Too bad it wasn't "What if Fynnie would like to have stylish photos of her infancy?" 

Somebody get this girl a teddy bear!

Doing her best Sheena Easton (seriously, is that how you remember her?).

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Stupid Things I Say

Me:  "I want to be Hasidic and grow those curly things." *making curlicue gestures near the sides of my face*
Tom:  "I could grow a beard."
Me:  "With the change of life coming my way, so could I.  It's gonna be great!"
Tom: *nervous laughter and quick glances between the road and me*


Me to me:  "Note to self:  Dipshit, not shithead.  Wait!  Calling your beloved niece either one of those to her mom isn't going to be better, even if there was an ultimately eloquent point you were trying to make."

Friday, August 12, 2011

Have You Been Sitting on the Edge of Your Seat, Too?

Last week Mad had her EEG.  The instructions were clear and simple:  Wake her up no later than 6:00 A.M. and bring her with clean hair.

Madelyn is a morning person.  Six o'clock would be like getting up 15-30 minutes earlier than she does on her own.

We kept her up about 90 minutes later than usual and then woke her up around 3:45 to go with Daddy to Grandma's.  (Hey, it said she had to get up early, not me!)  And right after Tom called to say he would grab Madelyn before her appointment (I was running late... it was a crazier morning with just one than with two!), I called Margaret and asked her to please wash Mad's hair.

Once upon a time, my life was under control.

Only one parent was allowed in for the procedure, which would have been nice to know since Tom took half a day off work to be there.  The tech instructed that it should be the parent who could be the firmest.  I waited for Tom to grandly acknowledge my rightful position, but he just looked at me blankly.  I said, very tactfully (for once), "I think that's probably me."  He nodded.  I went.

The technician, Mary, and her trainee were gentle and friendly, lovely.  I was given a mirror to hold so Madelyn could watch all the scalp cleaning, followed by gooping her up, adding electrodes and covering them with gauze.

Mary praised Mad's ability to follow directions at such a young age and talked soothingly to Mad and me about relaxing.  I wonder how many more times in her life I'll get to watch her fall asleep.  Not many, probably.  It was beautiful and fast and completely unlike trying to get her to nap today.  Within five minutes of the test starting, Mad was out.  Just in time, because my arm was starting to tingle from holding her hands (both a soothing and a don't-touch-that technique).

I watched the screen the same way expectant fathers watch contraction monitors.  I saw the standard brainwaves and I saw some enormous spikes.  Once I saw very low waves.

Mary occasionally made marks on the screen that I couldn't read even with glasses.  Sometimes for the large spikes, but occasionally for what seemed like time intervals.  (There wasn't a clock in the room, so this is just a guess.)  As the 20 minute test was wrapping up, she remarked that our doctor is highly skilled and efficient, and the only person to read ped results.  I was pretty sure it was her secret code for telling me we'd be coming back to see him (instead of getting a call or email).  Not too soon, though, because he was on vacation until the 15th.  She suggested I call or email him to let him know the test had been done anyway.

Not seeing the rush, I waited to send my email until Wednesday morning.

I received a reply a few hours later.  From the doctor.  Who was "stuck in London," but promised to read the report right away upon his return.

Dude, I think tears welled up in my eyes again just from the memory.

This morning I opened my email to find another e-missive.  The results.  Three days before he returns from his vacation.  Yes, I wonder how long it would have taken to get results if we hadn't switched insurance companies, too.

Yes, she had spikes.  If Mad ever does have a seizure, or unprovoked fainting spell we'll need to medicate.

I responded right away to clarify... and yes, the over-excitement and cold ice cream combo counts as a provocation that negates the need for medication at this time.

It's not exactly the clean bill of health we would have loved to get, but it's enough for now.

Tom and I figured these brain spikes could be a factor in Mad's brilliance.  And then we turned relief into ridiculous by arguing about discussing which one of us might have contributed this awesome brain activity.

Monday, August 08, 2011

Happy Birthday, Fynnie Fynn

For the big things and the little
For the laughter and tears
For the love and the heartache
For the long nights and short mornings
For the whole year through
I Love You

~ Mama

Friday, August 05, 2011

Translation, Please!

We have been enjoying the company of two very lovely young ladies from China for the past few days.  They arrived Tuesday evening.  It has been fun, and kind of nerve-wracking, to watch them experience our foods for the first time (nerve-wracking because of the vastly different cultural approaches to eating and to being a guest or host.  I want them to like everything or feel free to say they don't.).  It's not often someone will say to you, "I have never seen anything like this" and be talking about cheddar cheese. 

Wednesday night was their welcome party.  Our girls, as I've taken to calling them, were surprised to find that the party was going to be at a park.  The evening was full of cooler weather and minimal wind (double hooray!), good food and fun games.  During a rare quiet moment, Katrina smiled at me and said words no one wants to hear.  Ever.

"Your husband must have been very handsome when he was much younger."

Okay, I might have giggled a little when I agreed that he was very handsome when he was much younger, but she continued.

"You too. I saw pictures of you on the wall and you were very beautiful when you were younger."

At least she recognized that it's me in those photos.  When we pulled them out, Mad looked at them and pointed out her daddy.  I pointed at my own picture and asked her, "Who's that?"
"Um, a friend."

Thursday, August 04, 2011

I Feel So Popular!

Emms over at 3hearts2hold1love invited me to participate in the 7 Links challenge.

To unite bloggers (from all sectors) in a joint endeavor to share lessons learned and create a bank of long gone, but not forgotten blog posts that deserve to see the light of day again.

1) Blogger is nominated to take part.

2) Blogger publishes his/her 7 links on his/her blog – 1 link for each category.

3) Blogger nominates up to 5 more bloggers to take part.  (I will just say straight out that Bossy Betty would be on my list of nominees, but she refuses to participate in such frivolity.  I, on the other hand started smiling and waving to the crowd Mad and Fynn as though I just won Miss America as soon as I saw that Emms nominated me.  I would also include Heather at The Baby Sucks, but her blogs is mainly in pictures, not words.)

4) These bloggers publish their 7 links and nominate another 5 more bloggers.

5) And so it goes on!

6) We’ll be sharing the best posts from participating bloggers on our blog and everyday on Facebook and Twitter at #My7Links

Most Beautiful 
Although I'm still slightly irked at how some of the photos look washed out on this post, I love it.  It's my first and still only Christmas Letter.
Most Popular 
Fynn's Birth Story, As Told By Mama   
Most Controversial
This post didn't inspire any negative remarks, but it certainly could have.  It was just over two years later that I really did reach "done."  The eight months since then have been many things, most recently they've been exceedingly painful, sad and aggravating.  So, not exactly onward and upward, but continuing.  
Most Helpful 
I participated in The Mother Letter Project.  This is what I wrote.  Who knows if it was helpful for anyone else, but it helped me to put these things down, and to grieve for the differences between Corey and Madelyn.  
Surprise Success 
This has been hanging around (*sigh*, bad puns suck) my popular posts for quite some time now.  
Not Enough Attention 
This was the second post I made after a five year hiatus from blogging (after the obligatory, "gee, guess I'd better get back to this" drivel... I find those posts annoying, frankly, because so few people stick with it after such an announcement).  So my zero followers never read way too much about my nipples, but now you can.  Yes, I'm a giver.  You're welcome. 
Most Proud 
It's long, but it makes the point I was aiming for, and it inspired the longest single comment in the history of my blog.  I thought maybe I was the only one to write short response novels, but apparently not.
I nominate: 
Beth at Anti-Supermom
Noelle at Because Nice Matters  (I figure it may take a moment for her to get to this since she is off having her daughter AS I TYPE.)
Janelle at Renegade Mothering
And Amy Sue at MyHappyCrazyLife
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