Saturday, May 31, 2008

PA or Bust!

Here we come!
We leave morning of Sunday, June 1st. Wish us luck!
We're almost done packing. We have yet to figure out what to wear to my brother's wedding. I think I gained any of the weight Nate just lost. I have no idea what fits and I'm scared to find out. Maybe if I put ribbons on my bathrobe and wear nice shoes with it...hmmm.

We got the car serviced and spent the better part of today cleaning it. It was amazing to see the pile of crud on the seat from where the car seat was installed. We moved it to the other side so Nate will have more leg room in the back for when he's back there. His doctor prescribed a non-narcotic pain medicine that he can take and be able to drive with so we're relieved about that. He's now driven a couple of times and he's a little more comfortable than he's been, so that's a good sign.

We're still plotting our route and we're not sure of where we're going to stop first. It will all depend of course on construction, weather, and Lucian's ability to keep content while strapped into the car seat. Poor little dude. I feel so sorry for him. We've packed several things to keep him entertained. We'll see how it goes.

We have a couple of family members and friends to stay with along the way. We have planned stops so far in Commerce, OK, Rosebud, MO, and Troy, OH before our final destination in West Lawn, PA.

I will try to blog about our experiences along the way if I can. I have no idea what kind of internet connection I'll get or when. This is the first time actually traveling this way with a laptop, so it should be interesting.

Well, we gotta get back to finish packing. That's all for now. Stay tuned!

P.S. If anyone has any suggestions about places to stop, good motels, hotels, etc. please leave me a comment. I will try to read them if I get connected. Thanks!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

It's Never Too Late for Mother's Day

Mother's Day should be every day!

It's been rough here for the past couple of weeks. The end of the school year is always the worst for Mr. Davis. I wish his kids knew just how much we all have to suffer for it!! So, between his back injury, not being able to drive (yes, I've been driving him to school in the mornings!), mounds of grading and end of the year stuff plus having to take an additional online course for NCLB, Mother's Day was a bit of a wash in the 'special time spent with Hubby and child' department. I have to say though, the man knows how to make up for it. This morning, he made me breakfast in bed and it was awesome! But that wasn't all. He and Lucian made me the coolest e-card! What better way to show how he feels about my abilities for mothering than in web 2.0 style! He said Lucian helped pick out the e-card too. Bonus points for working with the kidlet on the computer while I was sleeping to make me a cool e-card. Extra bonus points for picking something I could share with you on my blog!

Don't send a lame Mother's Day eCard.
Try JibJab Sendables!

I especially like the part where I overcame the Nazis. The best part is at the end where it says EU, Mommy. "EU" in Lucian language means "I love you."

Thanks boys! You're the best! EU!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Wii I Don't Work Out

CityMama is hosting a contest over on her blog and I want to win the prize because I believe working out should be fun and this sure does fit the profile! To enter the contest, she wants you to blog about your most embarrassing workout story of all time. For me, I have a hard time with that because I don't really "work out." I've never signed up for a gym membership. I too, like CityMama, took dance lessons from kindergarten through high school. I also did the Jazzercize thing when I was a kid. (The Mickey Mouse version, anyone?) I still have leg warmers in my lingerie drawer!

Don't ask me why I still keep leg warmers around, I just think they are still cool and maybe they'll make a comeback and then I'll be cool too. Hell, they probably already have but I'm so not hip enough to notice. I used to collect them along with leotards when I took dance lessons. Oh! and those parachute pants! Remember those?! (leotard — sounds like retard which is how I used to look in one.) Also don't ask me why I have said leg warmers in the same drawer as my lingerie. Maybe because I don't wear either? The lingerie drawer is where things go to die I suppose. Maybe I put them there because I was going to use them as lingerie at one point in time? Maybe I had some convoluted plan to seduce my husband by wearing just the leg warmers and nothing else? Maybe I was going to say something like, "Hey baby, wanna get physical?" ala Olivia Newton John-style. Rug-burn prevention? I haven't a clue. Parenting does that to you.

Anyhow, enough about my retarded legwarmers and my lacking need for lingerie. I want to win a Wii Fit because I need to get my sorry ass in shape. But, I can't really think of an extremely embarrassing workout moment. Something a little amusing does comes to mind though, so I'll give this a shot. The best way I can think of to explain it though is in true web 2.o style by embedding a YouTube video that illustrates my experience.

This sort of happened to me once while I was attempting to do some crunches on the floor. My son tried to nurse on me while I was doing it and it cracked me up because I couldn't work out with him pulling up my shirt trying to get at my boob. Watch this video because it's funnier than I can explain it in words. I hope it makes you laugh. More importantly, I hope it wins me a Wii Fit! Maybe I can "get physical" with my husband and put on those sexy leg warmers again!

(Thanks to the brave woman who put this video out there for everyone to chuckle at!)

Note: This video might not embed properly on my blog and you might have to click something special to see it because it contains a booby shot. When I viewed it, it asked me to confirm that I was 18+. Oooooooh, a booby shot! How exciting! We know how controversial functioning boobies are these days, so don't say I didn't tell you so and don't flame me for posting this on my blog either.

Here is the link in case it doesn't embed on my blog:

I must have boobs on the brain lately since my son is weaning, so there may be more boob-related posts to come. How many more times can I say the word boob? We shall see!

Good luck to all the other participants in the contest and thanks to CityMama for making it possible.

Wii Fit or Bust!
(pun intended)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Unofficial Sweetness

Michael Rose is such a sweetheart! I want to send a warm thank you out to TUAW for wishing me a Happy Mother's Day along with "all the Mac Mommies out there." It really warmed my heart to hear that on on The Unofficial Apple Weblog Talkcast from last Sunday, May 11th, Mother's Day. It was better than a card! :)

I missed participating in the episode since we were having a Mother's Day family dinner here. (3 hour time difference between here and my fellow EST comrades.) I was also contending with a migraine at the same time. :( I tried to sneak onto TalkShoe for a couple of minutes while awaiting dinner to arrive from our favorite takeout joint here, but unfortunately my eyes couldn't handle the light on the screen and I missed out on the warm little shout-out. The talkcast episode is finally available for download, so check it out here along with some previous episodes where I've participated.

Also of interest at TUAW, among all of the Apple and Mac news and sweetness, is the ongoing discussion for Mac moms and dads via the TUAW macparents PB Wiki. I've contributed some of my favorite educational links and information, so feel free to check it out and even make some contributions of your own!

This Sunday I'm looking forward to continuing Mother's Day, take 2. (since last Sunday was kinda crappy for me personally) Hubby says he is feeling up to it, so I'm looking forward to some sleeping in and some mommy geek time later today and hopefully I'll be able to participate in one of my new favorite hangouts over at TUAW!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Tagged for a 5x5 Meme

My cousin Jenny tagged me mind as well have hit me over the head with a 2x4 to do a 5x5 meme and, since I haven't posted in so long, I guess I'm trying to make up for lost time so here goes:
5 Things in my bag:
(I can't remember when I last carried, dare I say, a purse. Not sure if it's such a great idea to post exactly the contents, hello stalkers, but everyone carries their stuff with them and it's all pretty much the same right? My backpack is my mobile home office as well as a diaper bag at times, so I've got lots of things in there, including gum and hand sanitizer, but I guess these are the top 5 things that are essential that warrant carrying a bag at all. I guess I could still work with dirty hands and stinky breath, but I wouldn't be real happy about it.)
1. Cell Phone
2. Laptop
3. Digital Camera
4. iPod
5. Wads of various cables

5 Favorite Things in my Room:
(Which room would this be? My bedroom? I'm beginning to think this meme was created by a 14-year old.)
1. Our bed - I love the comforter set on it and I love to sleep in on Sundays
2. My 2 new pillows - I just love them. Why did I wait so long to get new pillows?
3. Recliner chair with body massage mat - slow, medium and beat me lightly settings
4. TV - hanging from dangerous looking jury-rigged thing my F-I-L put up for Hubby (don't ask)
5. My nightstand - and the things it contains: lotions, lip balm, spare change, and other things I dare not mention here (which could be another 5 favorite things that are probably on someone else's blog, so go read theirs, mine's only PG-13-rated here)

5 Things I Have Always Wanted to Do:
There are a lot of things I've already accomplished, now that I look at this list, so these are things I'd still like to do.
1. Travel outside the US
2. Remodel our bathroom & other parts of the house
3. Grow a vegetable garden and eat from it
4. Wear a bikini in public
5. Meet someone famous in person

5 Things I Am Currently Into:
1. Attachment parenting
2. Starting a small business (here come the marketers, hello, pay me, thanks)
3. Social Media (blogging, website design, video)
4. Health and fitness
5. Podcasting

5 People I Want to Tag:
Just because it's stimulating, fun and I'm curious to know some of the answers. But, know that I think there could have been better questions in this meme, so feel free to alter it if you wish.)
1. Tony
2. Emily
3. Melissa
4. Lucretia
5. Sarah

What's Goin On

Dear Blog & Interwebs,
It's been so long since I've written anything personal here. Sorry if I alienated some friends and family with all of the really geeky stuff, but that's me: Person with Blog, Mom, Nerd. I try to achieve a balance of geeky stuff mixed in with all the mommy stuff and the I'm-so-sick-of-being-fat-and-tired and the my-mother-didn't-let-me-shave-till-I-was-twelve-so-I-need-therapy crap.

I've been busy. Sorry-ass excuses, but they are mine. (and it's my blog, dammit!) There is just not enough time in the day! If I could have maybe another 6 hours, that would be cool. If I didn't have to sleep, I could get so much more accomplished! (I still don't know if I'd use the extra 6 hours to sleep though.)

That's just the attitude that has been getting me into trouble though lately. I know I try to do too much, but I just can't seem to help myself. Literally. I have found myself several times now making a conscious effort to stop doing something for someone else and take more time for numero uno. It's a hard thing for me to do without the constant feeling of guilt or wondering what someone else will think.

I need to start drinking, I think. Everybody else is doin it. (Sometimes I just pour cranberry juice into a wine glass just for the hell of it. Makes me feel like I'm drinking wine like everyone else.)

Insomnia has become a bit of an issue for me. Now I've become preoccupied with trying to find ways to fit in sleep or make it happen a little more easily. Knock wood, but Lucian has been sleeping a bit more regularly lately, but it's still really, really hard for me to fall asleep naturally before 2 am. I try, but I just lay there and my brain won't shut off. I'm afraid of pills, but I've been trying to accept some help from tylenol PM and knock-off ambien when it gets really bad. Yes, I've tried meditation, hot showers, reading, listening to music....and....use your imagination, ahem. Ok, stop that! I take it back! (Just trying to be honest, sheesh!)

This problem has become exacerbated these past few weeks since my husband injured his back again. (more on that later, but first, me, me, me!) That's why I haven't been around on the blog lately. I partly blame Twitter. I don't really mean it that way though. It's just that Twitter is the only thing I've been able to squeeze in lately as far as posting goes. If you want to read my tweets without having to join Twitter, I think you might be able to accomplish that by checking out my Tumblr. Twitter is actually quite a lifesaver for me. I know it sounds really geeky, but being geeky is the only thing I really thoroughly enjoy doing for myself lately. I've been spending more and more little chunks of time becoming immersed in social media online like twitter, ustream, yahoolive, and stickam. It's just the kind of social life I can handle right now. I just have way too many interruptions to be able to commit to anything that requires a lot of focus. I can check in during the kidlet's naptime or late at night when none of my family and friends from back home are awake or conscious. I don't need to shave my legs, get dressed up or leave the house and, wouldn't you know, there are actually other Moms out there just like me with my late night time schedule! (even if they are in different time zones.)

I also like online social media because it keeps me from feeling like I'm holed up inside of a cave. I don't live in the same kind of neighborhood my mom lived in when she was raising me and my siblings. During that time, lots of mothers car pooled and kids had the run of the neighborhood up until the fireflies came out. We live in different times now. The neighborhood I live in is predominately 55 plus. It's nice and quiet, but not a lot of kids around. In order for me to go on play dates, we have to pack up and drive across town. There just aren't that many SAHMs here in my immediate area that I've gotten in touch with. With the price of fuel skyrocketing, it just makes staying home that much more attractive.

Cavewoman, See Me Dwell
I know I need to get outside more often and we do get out and about from time to time. We go outside for a little while almost every day. We have a yard, we just need to get some decent outside toys for him to play with. We used to keep up with our yard, but since having Lucian and now with Nate's back problems, the yard has slipped to the bottom of our priority list. It's a shame too because we're told we have fantastic soil plus we live in an irrigation district where the water bill is less expensive. One day I hope to get a nice garden going. It will have to be at a time when Lucian can help with it. It will be fun.

I can't talk on the phone much during the day because I'm just too busy with Lucian. I can not devote my attention to talking to someone on the phone and that's not fair to the person on the other end. He's very demanding of attention these days and craves constant interaction or play of some form. I don't like him to watch too much tv except for the few educational shows in the morning. The mini-meltdowns usually happen when I'm on the phone if he can't feel like he's participating which usually involves him hanging up on the person who has dared called me. (I have discovered that using 2 phones helps a little.)

Between being an M-O-M and a W-I-F-E, there's just not much time left to be M-E and sometimes I don't even know who M-E is anymore. I'd like to say I'm like Madonna and that I'm constantly reinventing myself, but I figure so long as I remember to put my underwear on the inside of my clothes, or hell, just put on any underwear at all, I'm doing ok! (Bras are totally for going out in public anymore these days.)

B & B (a different kind, sorta)
Speaking of bras and boobs, (no one ever accused me of a good segue or a whole lot of tact) mine are going through a sort of transition.

Lucian is weaning.

I'm not sure how I feel about it. Kind of relieved (he'll be terribly-two end of June for crying out loud) but kind of sad at the same time. It's bittersweet. It really is. I've actually tried to start wearing a regular non-nursing bra but it's just not the same. I actually like my nursing bras made by Medela. They are super-comfortable. Hard to explain unless you've tried them. I dread going bra shopping again to try and find something more suitable for my hood ornaments. I have no idea what I want. I don't even want to think about it. I don't even think my boobs qualify as hood ornaments once they've been functional for so long.

Sunday Weigh-In Day
I haven't exactly given up on blogging about my struggles with weight loss, but I haven't exactly posted about it either. For a while, the scale was starting to budge and I was getting excited, but now it's back up to where it's been for a while. I'm stuck at 192 lately. I had gotten down to 189 at one point and I was so excited to be so close to my pre-pregnancy weight. (not my goal weight by far, but baby steps! baby steps!) I've been trying to be really conscious about my diet. We don't keep any junk food in the house except for some dark chocolate and I only have one piece a day if any. I've been trying to ramp up on the protein and fiber and cut way down on the white wheat, sugars and pasta. I'm German, Italian and Irish, it's not the easiest thing to change. I still make pasta with homemade sauce once in a while and yes, I have tried the whole wheat pasta thing, but it's just not the same. We're on such a tight budget, so it's cheap and easy to make and that's hard to contend with.

Stress and lack of sleep have been my major issues. So have major allergy attacks for about 2 months. March and April were really shitty for me. I was barely functional for the most part. The vacuum cleaner just stared at me from the corner and I could not get the courage to sweep the floors or do much cleaning at all for fear of disturbing the dust particles. I could barely do much of anything without blowing my nose every 118 seconds. I'm still having episodes once in a while lately. I've been counting the days I have NOT been doped up on OTC allergy meds and the number is less than the times I've been ON the drugs. Since the drugs make me loopy, I don't drive unless I feel lucid enough or need to make a house call for some IT consulting.

If I could achieve the right balance of diet, stress and sleep then I would probably have more energy and motivation to exercise. It seems like as soon as things start looking up in life, I get motivated but then something negative impacts us or some other life event occurs and I stress out and gain the weight back.

I was doing really well last year but then my father-in-law moved in with us temporarily and the stress of Lucian sleeping in our room and not in his own just pushed me into a downward spiral of sleep deprivation and stress. Then my inlaws finally got a place here in Tucson and I was able to finally get Lucian into his own room. That took some transitioning which is still not complete. Lucian is now sleeping in the big bed which means he can climb out and come running into our bedroom at any given time. It's better than we having to hear him crying in his crib, but it still freaks me out sometimes when he comes right up to my head while I'm sleeping and I open my eyes to see this little kidlet staring at me begging to be picked up and put in between us. It's cute, but still very surreal.

When Nate's parent's moved here, he helped them move in and overdid it with his back. My hubby is so helpful, but sometimes so much to the point that he doesn't realize he's done too much. Since then, he's been in constant pain.

It got really bad and we had to take him to the urgent care where they prescribed pain killers, anti-inflamatories and muscle relaxants. He got well enough to manage going back to work although still in much pain. Then, he tripped over a student's backpack and really wrenched his back. Injury on top of injury and he just hasn't been able to bounce back like he has in the past. He was stuck flat on his back for over a week. We all felt pretty helpless as a family. His mom started coming over every day to help out. It got so bad we had to take him back to the urgent care and then to the ER a couple of days later. They prescribed different meds that he's somewhat responding to and now he's on a schedule so he can at least manage going back to work. He can't drive while on the meds plus we all drive stick shift out here and having to work the clutch is too painful for him yet.

Having my mother-in-law here has been great. She is awesome and I don't think I've ever met a more selfless woman than her. But, that alone has put some major performance pressure on me. I do it to myself and I can't help it. She has been nothing but great and I feel unworthy at times in her presence because she's such a kickass lady. She mostly helps to keep Lucian occupied and busy so I can take care of Nate and the house work and also do my freelancing. She's been taking care of my baby while I've been taking care of hers and it's really been a humbling experience. I can only hope she thinks I'm doing an ok job as a wife to her son. It's not like she doesn't support me or tell me, I just feel like I'm not good enough because she seems to give up so much more of herself than I do.

So, more stress. More insomnia. More worry about my broken husband sleeping on the floor while I sleep in our bed. Alone. For over a week. It's a constant struggle to keep Lucian from jumping on Daddy because he wants to play and doesn't understand why he can't play rough like he's used to.

Nate has been sleeping back in our bed lately, either in pain or doped up on pain killers. Not exactly romantic. Sometimes he still has to lay flat on the floor to get comfortable.

He got his MRI last Monday. His primary care physician said that the MRI report was "highly abnormal" and advised him to follow up directly with a neurosurgeon. So, that's what we've done and we're awaiting a call back this week to see what needs to happen next. I've been doing my best to be an bitch advocate for his health by keeping on top of the phone calls and follow ups and asking lots of questions. If you're not bitchy aggressive or proactive, nothing gets done, they won't call you back and you won't get an appointment in your lifetime. At least that's the way it feels anyhow. I'm a type A/control freak just trying to be helpful because I feel helpless for my husband who is in agony. It seems like the doctors and health care staff are clueless at his PCP's office. They have horrible call-in hold music and sometimes you wait and wait and then get disconnected. They say they will call you back but seldom do. Having been in the office I can see why; it's a friggin zoo in there. His health insurance is an HMO provided by the school district. I don't really need to go into further explanation about why that sucks, now do I?

Currently, he is taking it day by day and has been back at work for the past week. We've all been getting up at the crack of dawn each morning (after I've managed to pass out for a few hours) and I get us all packed up and drive all three of us to drop him off near his class room. Then we head over to his parents' place (which is 5 minutes away from his school) and hang out there for the remainder of the day till about 2:30 when I go pick him up while Oma watches if Lucian is still napping.

It's nice being at Oma & Opa's place because there is lots for Lucian to play with. They have a great back yard. For the time being, my sister-in-law's dog, a Siberian Husky, is living with them and Lucian just adores him. There is also lots of stuff he can get into trouble with though and since they just recently moved in, it's not exactly baby-proofed. Just recently I discovered that he knows how to lock the bathroom door (along with all of the other doors.) That's got to be baby-proofed because it's not a matter of if but when.

He gets lots of play time and attention from Oma and I take that opportunity to make business calls for my freelancing as well as calls to the doctors. I get some bits of geek time in, but it's usually spent trying to organize my hard drive, clean out my email, twitter and research information and learn new things about technology to stay current so I can help my clients when they need it.

Speaking of clients, I've also been busy making house calls, which is great. It's a bit of a seasonal job, so I have to take all the calls I can and of course, it all happened last week while Nate was at his worst. We got through it though and it was a nice break for me to get out of the house and go interact with other adults.

So, that's the latest. Now you are up to speed for the most part. Of course, the biggest stress for me now is the huge question mark hanging over our heads regarding our summer travel plans. Our original plan was to leave for PA on June 1st and stay out east with family and friends for the entire summer and return end of July. My little brother is getting married on 6/7/8 and since I missed my little sister's wedding while I was pregnant, I was hoping to not miss my brother's wedding also. Lucian turns 2 end of June so we were hoping to have a nice birthday party for him at my parents'. We had all but made up our minds to drive out so that we would have our own car to drive whenever/wherever we want. We were going to drive up to Boston to spend some time with Nate's brother and wife and we were even considering driving down to VA to see my college roomie.

All that is just up in the air until we know more about what the neurosurgeon might say and that's IF we can get an appointment or some answers in the near future. It also depends on how Nate feels about sitting in a car for prolonged periods of time. All in all, it's not looking really hopeful and we're just not sure what to do at this point. We don't know if he'll be a candidate for surgery or if he'll need to remain on the pain killers for a prolonged period of time. We just don't know and not knowing is really hard for Capricorns like us who like to plan and have goals to work towards.

I'll try to get back into blogging when I can. I'm also considering posting shorter but more frequent posts that are more stream of consciousness instead of these long diary-like passages. Something in between a tweet and a blog post. Since you can only type a maximum of 140 characters in Twitter, I'm really trying to train myself to write less. In order to write a blog post like this, sometimes it can take me days till I post it because it is so difficult to stay focused long enough. I have to keep leaving it in draft because there are constant interruptions and higher priorities. Sometimes I swear I'm going to break the hinges on my laptop for as much as I have to open and close the lid. I can not simply just leave it unprotected or else Lucian will mess with it. Ever since he spilled diluted apple juice on it, I've been even more guarded.

So, bear with me as I try to find more ways to get a little more me time worked in and hopefully I'll be able to get more content on here and out of my draft folder and notes section. I have many more topics planned for the very near future.