Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My Top Ten List

I'm totally uninspired to blog today. We had a GREAT weekend with family in town and an early Thanksgiving, but I can't come up with anything to say about it, except....we had a great weekend with family in town and an early Thanksgiving.

So I'm going to be lazy and just steal someone else's idea:) Laura recently posted about her Top Ten things she wants to do before she dies, and encouraged other bloggers to come up with their own list, so here's mine.

The Top Ten Things I Want to Do Before I Die:
(in no particular order)

1. Go on an African safari.

2. Open my own veterinary clinic.

3. Go on a honeymoon (that's right, we never had a honeymoon).

4. Learn to scuba dive, and then visit the Great Barrier Reef.

5. Travel to all of my favorite ancient history sites: Greece, Rome, and Egypt.

6. See my child(ren) grow up and become parents.

7. Perform a stand-up comedy routine in front of a paying audience...and actually make them laugh.

8. Be completely debt-free: No credit card debt, no student loans, no car loans, live in a house that is completely paid off.

9. Go to Disneyworld.

10. Open a coffee shop.

It looks like I have a lot to accomplish LOL. Hopefully I'll be blessed with another 50 years to do it all, right?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I forgot to read this chapter in the mom handbook.

So last night J was a very restless sleeper, waking up a few times for no apparent reason and then going right back to sleep. Finally around 4:45am he woke up crying, looking for some Hot Wheels car (his new obsession) that he took to bed with him and was now of course not in his hand. I could hear him wailing, "Where my car? Where my caaaarrr?" from down the hall, and that quickly turned into "Mommy! Mommmmyyyyyy!" Of course no yelling for Daddy. After a few minutes with a pillow over my head I got him and brought him into our bed. I knew this was a big mistake before I did it but like a rookie I was praying he'd just go to sleep.

I have to add here that although I know alot of people co-sleep well past this age, it has never worked for us. J has been in his own bed since he was about 9 weeks old, and it is RARE for him to sleep in bed with us. I'm sure he loves it but I can't take all the jumping, kicking, and constant "Turn the TV on! Pweeeese? Turn the TV on! Let's watch Dora! Pweeese?" In general if I'm bringing J into our bed it's out of sleep-deprived desperation, and it usually doesn't work. So I knew my chances of failure were high, but I had to try - it was still dark outside for pete's sake.

At that point J was up for the day, a fact that he knew before he ever got in our bed but that it took me, oh, 30 minutes to figure out. 30 minutes of:

J: Turn the TV on!

Me: Be quiet and lay down.

J: (whispering) Turn the TV on!

Me: Stop talking.

J: (standing up) I jumping! Uh-oh, I falling down the stairs, aaaah! (giggling).

Me: (quiet trying to ignore him).

J: Mommy? Mommy? Mommy?.....Mommy? Mommy? Mommy? Mommy? Mommy?


J: Ok, I'm sleeping now. (10 seconds later) Mommy? Mommy? Mommy? What are you doing? Mommy? I want juice! Juuuuuuuice. Juuuuuuice.

Me: I'm asleep. It's still night time. Lay. Down. And. Go. To. Sleep.

J: It's dark in here. Turn the light on! It's dark.

Me: That's right, it's dark because IT'S STILL NIGHTTIME. For the love of God, please lay down and be quiet for 15 minutes. Just 15 minutes. Is that so much to ask? 15 minutes of rest? And why are you way over here on top of me? Daddy's laying right there, why don't you lay sideways with your feet propped up on him? As a matter of fact, why don't you ask Daddy to get up and turn the light and TV on and get you some juice??

J: (looks over at TH and then whispers) Mommy....shhhh....Daddy's sleeping.

Me: (Unable to speak because I'm gritting my teeth so hard.)

TH: (snickers, apparently he's heard this whole exchange) What can I say....you're the Mommy.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Maybe we should just dig up the floor and put a big ball pit at the bottom.

Well, it finally happened. J fell down the stairs last night. This has been one of my biggest fears ever since we moved into this house 7 months ago. We used to live in a 3-story townhouse, so J learned to use stairs pretty much as soon as he could crawl. The big difference between this house and that one, though, is that there we had short staircases with switchbacks and landings halfway up. Here we have one extra-long (17 steps!) staircase leading straight up. The stairs are carpeted, but the floor at the bottom is ceramic tile.

J is good at going up and down the stairs by himself, but we're so paranoid about it that we usually walk in front of him when he's going down. Adding to our paranoia is his new "game" of shouting "1-2-3 JUMP!" at the top of the stairs so we've been even more nervous than usual. Last night I was putting J's clothes away in his room while he played with his cars on the floor. As many a parent has said over the years, I only looked away for a moment. One minute he was sitting next to me, the next minute I heard a horrifying thumping sound and TH yelling "Oh Jesus!! He's falling!" It seemed like my feet were moving in slow motion as I started running out of the room, and my heart was racing as I waited to hear a little skull hit the ground. Luckily he stopped falling just short of the last step, and by the time I made it downstairs TH was already holding J, who was screaming bloody murder.

Thankfully he wasn't hurt. Of course TH and I were shaking like leaves and it took all I had to hold it together while we looked him over for injuries. Later TH told me, "When I looked up he was UPSIDE DOWN like he was in a handstand with his head on the step and his body tumbling." Shudder. I still feel sick when I think about that. When J came into our room this morning he happily asked me, "Amember when I fell down the stairs? And it was scary? Amember?" and started giggling. What, this is funny to you, kid? Yeesh. I'm not sure if he learned the hard way about jumping on the stairs, or if now he'll start doing it on purpose. At this rate my hair will definitely be gray by the time I'm 35.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Update on our little rodent friend.

Post-op tumor removal...look at that pretty incision

The rat is fine. Doing great, actually. The tumor turned out to be a malignant fibrosarcoma, "completely excised with little risk of reoccurrence" (patting myself on the back). The owners, who had become quite attached to this rat, were very happy that surgery was successful and the rat didn't "die on the table," which is what they were sure was going to happen. The mom had called the school last week to tell them about the rat's problem (we have year-round school here and the rat was home with them on a 4-week break). She talked to the teacher and gave her the estimate for surgery and histopathology, about $250 total for everything, really not that bad considering. Of course the school didn't pay for the surgery...they just got a new rat. Not sure about the ethics of that school, but whatever.

Surgery to remove a huge tumor from a rat: $250

Cost of replacing said rat with a newer, better model: Maybe $10.

The look on the family's face when I brought the rat out from surgery minus a 5cm diameter tumor, running around acting like nothing even happened: Priceless.

Note to parents: Rats are great pets, for some people there is too much of an ick factor but believe it or not they are usually pretty nice, rarely bite, and easy to take care of. The downside? They are TUMOR FACTORIES as Joanna pointed out.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Why you should read the fine print when your kid volunteers for something at school.

Voiceover: Dr. E before a major surgery. Look how serious and determined she is as she prepares to put her extraordinary surgery skills to use yet again. Note the extreme concentration as she plans and maps out her best approach to removing a lemon-sized tumor from...a rat. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, a rat. This veterinarian does not discriminate against our rodent friends, believing that they, too should get quality veterinary care. Will she be successful? Will the rat survive? Will little Bobby's parents regret letting their kid "foster" the class pet this semester hence becoming responsible for its veterinary bills? We'll find out soon...

Monday, November 10, 2008

An easy way to tell if the lady in the car next to you has a toddler.

Scene before having a kid: I'm driving down the street in my beat-up old Corolla, windows down, bopping my head with music blasting loudly. Depending on the day, it may be R&B, rock music, or rap. If I'm with TH? Probably Tupac. I finally notice people in cars around me rolling their eyes so I turn the music down until I get to the highway.

Scene now that I have a toddler: I'm driving down the street in my midsize-SUV-one-step- away-from-a-minivan Hyundai Santa Fe, windows down, bopping my head with music blasting loudly, and occasionally singing out loud. I finally notice people in cars around me either rolling their eyes at the volume or snickering...and I realize that after dropping J off at daycare I was so into his music selection (Dora's Around the World Adventure -- actually a pretty decent CD of world music for kids) that I never turned it off. In fact, when it got to my favorite song (that's right, I have a favorite on the Dora CD) I actually TURNED IT UP. As I pull away from the light I sheepishly switch to the local hip-hop radio station.

Friday, November 7, 2008

It's a little better than the green ones you get on field day when you come in last...

(And trust me, I know all about green ribbons on field day.) I got this little token at my WW meeting last night. Actually the tally is 11.6 pounds to be exact. In one month! I guess I'll stick with it after all :P

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

God Bless America

I'm not going to go into detail about my feelings on this election. I know what Obama winning the election means to me, and what it means to people like me. It's a big deal now -- A BIG DEAL -- but I only hope that by the time J is my age, no one will really understand why this was such a big deal. I hope by then it won't be a revolutionary idea that J--a black person, descended from people who came to this country not as immigrants but as cargo--could become president. I hope by then we will have had a female president, and that it won't be a novelty and cause for weeks and months and years of debates whenever someone "different" is on the ticket. I hope it will be as commonplace for black people to run for president as it is for them to play professional sports. That's my dream for the future.

But last night, and today? That I will remember for the rest of my life. Yes we can, indeed.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The weekend vacation in pictures.

We had a blast this weekend. I really couldn't have asked for a better 3-day trip. The highlights: Great weather in San Diego. J behaving incredibly well (for the most part, anyway) with staying in the hotel, 5-hour car trips each way, and really random schedules and food. Meeting Rita. That's right -- Rita and I met each other!! She was awesome, as expected, graciously inviting us to her parents' house on Halloween for dinner and trick-or-treating. Trick-or-treating with J, X, and Q (Rita's 2 kids - seriously cute BTW). A gorgeous, picture-perfect day at the San Diego Zoo. J seeing the ocean for the first time. A great conference where I learned a lot. 4 days off of work and not a single call from the clinic. And a good portion of the costs covered by my job, always a bonus! Anyway rather than rehashing all the details, here's a few of my favorite pics from the weekend...