Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A story about jeans

Once upon a time, Olea had a pair of jeans.
She liked them.
They were hand-me-downs.
They had a hole in the knee.
She couldn't wear them to school.
I cut a patch.

I used some thread.

I made them pretty.

Olea likes them.
Olea wears them to school.
The end.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Do you ever prepare yourself for the worst case scenario?
I'm 5 months pregnant. That's not really what I am talking about, but relevant to what I am talking about.

It's been a rough month and the idea of adding any other children under my care is daunting and scary. I feel seriously behind and incompetent. Gary and I both felt like our family has another boy, so if this growing being was a girl we were going to have to go for #5 at some point. I've never really looked ahead where having children is concerned, it's always been one baby at a time, till this one. So the idea that it might be a girl... and that 5 was destined to happen, I was scared for #4. So I kept telling myself it was a girl. Not that having a girl in itself was a bad thing, it's the only name we have at this point, but that way I could hopefully cope with the idea of 5 kids... at having 4 kids.

So Monday, we went in for a much anticipated ultrasound, other than the ultrasound I had at 6 weeks during my appendectomy I haven't seen this little bean and it's been driving me crazy.

They went straight for the gender and as sure as I was it was a girl (mental issues) I was thrilled to pieces that it was a boy. As with Nev, we'll keep the visual proof to ourselves but here's a few glances we got of the little guy.

Now, mentally I can handle four... maybe.

Olea of course was thrilled because now our family is a pattern: girl, boy, girl, boy.

The nameless little man is due Feb 15, 2011.

However, in the ultrasound they told me a bad thing, they said that he was measuring 8 days early. You don't tell a mother that, you just don't, it's already bad enough that I am anticipating having him 5 days early because my other three were 5-6 days early. Trying not to think of it.... trying.... hard.

So for the record: We are all thrilled, and to all the family we have "hid" the pregnancy from for the past months: I'm sorry. We're mean like that.

Monday, September 27, 2010

involuntary haircut

I mentioned that the two get into mischief?
ya, so today I was moving the laundry and come downstairs to this:

I'm not concerned with the shoes that are out... nope, the hair bits and the scissors are what bother me.
Isn't she cute?

I was bummed because just yesterday I discovered that I could get Nev's hair into piggy tales. Thankfully I got some pics, they aren't' the best, but she looked so cute.

Yup, Zurich had cut off Nev's lil curls. Stinker! He'd cut a few choice locks off of his own lil head too.
Nev after Zurich's work:

I didn't get a pic of Zurich before I cut his, but from last night here is a pic of him, he could have used a haircut anyway I guess:

So of course I figured just punishment would be to cut Zurich's hair. (he doesn't like hair cuts) He squirmed and fought the whole time. Nev however, sat and happily played with chapstick.
End result:

could have been worse, and I have to laugh, so I wasn't mad when Gary called while I was cutting Zurich's hair and he laughed when I told him.

my first 5k

Once upon a time I was a track star in High School. I started as a freshman and was varsity every year and qualified for the state meet every year. My senior year I actually even placed at State. Pretty awesome for someone like me and considering that I had been diagnosed with Asthma. Oh Asthma would have been nice, then I could have built up endurance like everyone told me I should be able to do. However, unbeknownst to everyone at the time I had a tumor growing in my throat, it was the real problem, blocking off my airway, no amount of asthma drugs was going to fix that.

So every year I ran it got harder and harder for me. After High School I took a college class that required us to run a mile 5x a week. Folks, I couldn't do it. I'm not a wuss, I knew when I was getting close to a RED asthma attack and quite frankly I couldn't afford to have one of those on the school track and wait for someone to come get me. Nor could I pay for an ER visit. It just wasn't prudent. So I remember calling my mother and telling her how I felt. I remember her telling me to run as much as I could and then walk the rest and call it good.

After Gary and I got married we did a few biopsies and the like on my thyroid with the tumors we could see. I was still having trouble and it didn't make sense that no matter what I did or how I used my inhalers I still couldn't go on a bike ride etc. I was also experiencing issues that I couldn't breathe when I turned my head to the side or got short of breath while eating, and I don't eat fast. So we fought for a referral to an Endocrinologist. The Doc we were seeing didn't want to refer us because he figured he could handle Thyroid issues just fine. Well, I was done being a guinea pig. The Endo got right down to business after waiting 3 months for our first visit in March of 2005. We took tests, checked for cancer and when the biopsy came back inconclusive but she could see I had plenty of tumors and cysts and a wicked history she recommended a total Thyroidectomy on June 10, 2005. Dr. Douglas Lichti was the surgeon and can I say, after 3 surgeries with 3 different surgeons (for other reasons) he is my favorite surgeon. His work was amazing and he has the best bedside manner.
My almost 1 year old Olea, me, my mother, who had a partial thyroidectomy and Surgery Monkey.

Folks, I can breathe. Gary and I both agree that surgery was one of the best things we have done, it's helped with my fritzed Thyroid and my "asthma." I know can build up endurance and do stuff like a normal humanoid. It's pretty dang awesome.

YA, I've had the thought, dang, I could have been so awesome if I didn't have that huge tumor in my throat!

So this year a friend invited me to go running with her doing the couch to 5k program. I had already been running about a mile off and on and figured it would be good to have company. By Sept 17th we had completed the program one way or another with our various schedules. We ran it using time as our measure and not distance so the last run I had calculated we ran 4.7k. I figured 5 wasn't that far off so I paid and signed up for a local 5k raising money for an elementary school library. It would have been nice to have someone to run with but the girls I run with were all off on other things that day. So I ran alone. Grandma got up early (thanks to Olea) and helped the kids make signs.
My little cheering squad

The starting line

The run with my cheering squad (Gary mans the camera)

Gary says, "there's DeeDee doing a fun run... ya, I agree, it's crazy, but good for her, and I will go eat a doughnut."

The end

This is no big deal for most people, I know. But for me it is. My time isn't anything to brag about, but I did it.

I did it 5 months pregnant. I wasn't the first, and I wasn't the last.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Alice in Spaced out land

So I watched Alice in Wonderland with Johnny Depp that came out a few months back.

I confess I love Tim Burton stuff. Loved it. I realized I had never read the book by Lewis Carroll. I consider myself to be a fairy tale fan and figured I owed it to myself to read the book. I went to my blessed library and reserved a copy. I think I have now renewed it at least 4 times. Yup, I've had it at least 9 weeks and probably 12 by now. Lucky me, the copy I got also had Through the Looking Glass. For those wondering, it's not long. The type is rather small in the copy that I have but there are only 253 pages. It's just that every time I sit down to read I feel like I am on drugs... not that I know what that feels like other than the stuff I've gotten in the hospital.

Anyway, point is:
It's a hard read, in that I get so confused every time I pick it up and try and read. And yet it is strangely enjoyable. And I do feel the need to finish it. Though I am sure the resolution of Through the Looking Glass will be as weird/ flat as the Alice in Wonderland. For something to ramble on and confuse me it's got to be going disjointed places because those who know me know I have a hard enough time keeping others on my train of thought and probably often confuse others.... oh dear I sound like the book.

In any case it's great if you need to get to sleep and can't, read some of the book, it'll tire your brain right out and you'll be able to take a nap no problem. You might even get to Wonderland yourself. Good luck with that.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Lilies and 28

This past spring I planted a Costco variety bag that had 16 bulbs of Lilies.
Look what finally bloomed.

Only 3-4 plants even grew of all the bulbs. The grasshoppers have been super bad this year and I'm not sure a good corner of the bed is even getting water. I have hope that they will emerge next year. Though I may not see them if we move before then. :( However, I hear that flowers grow great in Florida. But these two bloomed on my Birthday, Happy B-day to me!

Speaking of birthday, thanks to all those who assisted in the festivities:
Bombay House

(Yes, I need all three)
Elk Steak dinner with Kendra and Eric

My Key Lime Pie from the Dainty Dish which was totally 100% what I was craving

and for the record, I don't typically like pie.
Fish hatchery with friends and fam, they weren't as exciting as they were supposed to be, but the kids still got quite excited about it.

Nev almost dunked herself, but thanks to Kendra and Eric she only got hands and the top of her head wet.

Cheesecake with blackberry syrup: all home made, delicious. And when that many kids sing to you (most not even pictured) you really feel loved!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Firing fun

Back when I said this (last two paragraphs of the post)... I was ready to fire up the kiln that day, it didn't work out, time passed, I got unsure again... but I finally did the test fire on Sept 2. All seemed well so I painted the ceramic bisque pieces with the kids.

Zurich painted really fast and then took over painting my bowl. I get exhausted with him and gave in, I shouldn't have.

Olea utilized one of the black glazes that had gone dry and was thin, grey and watery (I'd added water and had been intermittently shaking it while fending Zurich off my bowl, but it still hadn't reconstituted) and used it to paint her castle brick. The kid is smart, she did her little castle all herself and it turned out lovely.

I fired it that afternoon with encouragement from a friend.
The pieces all looked pretty much the same after the first firing, except one of the glazes I had as a hand-me-down from my Mother in Law was a specialized glaze that actually glossed over. Good to know.
Gary got home and saw Zurich's work on my bowl and realized it was the one piece for myself and said, "Why did you do that? Don't let him take over." Ya, he's 2.5, I'm a wuss. So I took it outside and sanded it down with sand paper and steel-wool. I couldn't sand the parts that he'd glazed with the specialized glaze (which turned red and glossy).

So then I re-glazed the inside of the bowl with the specialized glaze and put another layer of black in the center and glazed the bottom of the bowl on the outside yellow.
I also added some detail to some of Zurich's pieces and Olea's sun. And re-fired the batch. Better results this time.

So I clear gloss glazed the batch and fired them again.

I think the bowl is usable, the variation in the red is kinda fun with the crisp black and yellow. The little shapes in the bowl are ceramic pieces I think I will try to make into earrings.
But I have learned my lesson. I paint my pieces, Zurich doesn't.
I also learned that I was putting my firing cones in a little wrong (it still worked, but...) so I corrected that on the last firing. I also think that I can do a the matte and the gloss firing in one step rather than two, so I will try that next time.

Here are the glossed pieces. (The random clock is a clock I made for Zurich, he loves clocks and he wanted it in the picture).

Olea's castle

Zurich was thrilled with his "dragon" and "frog" and "airplane" (which I couldn't see the lines on to salvage anything and just left it as he painted it, thankfully he remembers it is an airplane) and wanted to hang them up on his wall like a frog we have hanging in our bedroom. I was happy to help him with this since he wouldn't be carrying them around breaking them (since he'd already chipped the dragon a few times since it came out of the kiln yesterday). The pic of them on the wall are crappy, because I took them with my crappy camera.

So now, time to try some hand build, greenware firing and get some more glaze colors. Blue, pink, purple.... orange etc.

Tonight Gary is taking me to Bombay House to celebrate my birthday. If you've never had a Lassi, you need one. He got his elk yesterday in the archery elk hunt and so he's actually home for my b-day evening and I get elk steaks again. The best present ever, him being home, that is.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Mischief makers

The Nevenator and Zubber have proven to be quite a lethal combination with Olea in school. Nev naps a good portion of the day but the short time she is up the two of them get into lots of mischief together. I have learned to take the camera with me when I go hunting for them or if I hear their giggles, as the case with the clothing dumped out and Nev buried in it. I peeked first and saw Zurich rolling on Nev buried in her pile of clothes, the both of them giggling. I went for the camera and when I got back Zurich had disappeared behind the big chair.
Where is Nev? They totally dismantled her clean clothing bins and emptied the dirty laundry all into one pile.
Zurich comes out of hiding...
They were hiding in Olea's closet, coloring in Olea's notebooks.
How is it possible with such small kids?

Here is the best one though:
Nev says, "TaDa!" we made a mess with the crackers all over the floor.

P.s. anyone figured out how to handle the pictures in the "improved" blogger posting, I can't stand it. I can't control anything!