Friday, September 22, 2006

Update on the Crazy Life of Me

I don't know if this picture quite conveys the level of chaos and frustration of this week. It's just been crazy. I've always heard and believed the saying that the Lord will only give you as much as you can handle. Well I think I'm to that point. I have cried many tears. Some are of sadness and some are of frustration and anger.

Alexandra damaged her eardrum enough that she will need surgery. First we have to get a hearing test done and make sure she hasn't lost the hearing in that ear. I think she has a degree of hearing loss in that ear but not completely. She told me the other night that she had "ghosts" in her ear. Maybe she was hearing an echo. I don't know.

Lucianna had her MRI on Wednesday. It was completely normal. This ruled out any tumors in the brain or any injury or growths on her spinal cord. It looks like this is a birth defect. The pediatric neurologist said it is most likely an underdeveloped perineal nerve. Only time will tell. I am going to take her to Upstate Medical in Syracuse for a second opinion just to be safe. I was not feeling completely comfortable with the doctor saying that only time will tell.

We still have a move date of October 1st. I cannot wait to get to my new house. This is by far the craziest time I've ever had in my life. Between doctors, testing, moving and staying in a hotel during the week, I feel like a gypsy.

Monica is doing well in school. She has decided she does want to learn to play an instrument and has chosen the saxophone. I think it's a good choice. She loves jazz and blues music.

I realize that my posts are sparce and not as funny and witty as usual. To tell the truth, I'm not feeling very humorous of late. This too shall pass.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

When It Rains, It Pours

Today I had had some time to myself because Chris took the girls to a movie and the baby took a nap. It was nice. When they got home we ate lunch and then I was going to take Alexandra to the salon to have her hair trimmed because it is getting in her eyes.

I called Alex who had gone to the bathroom (I think I can safely say she is completely potty trained) she came bounding out and, running as fast as she could, threw herself on the couch head first. The next thing I knew there was screaming and uncontrollable crying. When I looked at her I couldn't believe what I saw. She had Q-tips sticking out of each ear. She must have climbed up on the sink and gotten them (they were on the top shelf). Her right ear immediately started bleeding. I knew I had to take her to the hospital.

I don't know about you, but I remember my mom and grandmother telling me not to play with Q-tips because "you could really hurt yourself." I never thought it would happen to me but I listened. I've always told my daughters not to put Q-tips in their ears except for light cleaning. When they ask why, I say the same thing, "because you could really hurt yourself."

I waited a ridiculous time period at the emergency room. I hate the hospital that is "in the network" for my insurance plan. My daughter's ear was bleeding and we had to wait 3 1/2 hours before it was looked at. I was livid, to say the least.

The doctor at the emergency room said that her eardrum is ruptured it is imperative that she sees an ear, nose & throat specialist on Monday. He said that it's a big hole and she may possibly need reconstructive surgery for the eardrum and the bones around it. He also said that if I don't do this that it could affect her hearing in that ear.

This all comes during a week when I am already nervous. I take the baby to get her brain and lumbar MRI on Wednesday and then take the films to the pediatric neurologist to determine why she has paralyzed muscles in one leg (which is already not growing at the same rate as the other one) and if it is an injury or a birth defect and if it can be repaired.

Although this is a lot of stress, I would like to say that, regardless of the outcome, I still feel that God has blessed me with beautiful perfect children. They are the light of my life. If Alex has problems hearing out of one ear, we will get through it. If Lucianna has a permanent neurological problem, we will do whatever it takes to make her life as normal and happy as the other girls.

Whatever happens, happens for a reason. I will trust God, pray and have faith.

Horrified By Primetime's Cruel Intentions

I watched Primetime on Thursday night. I never watch this show but it was about preteen and teen girls. It was about the cruel, backstabbing way that girls treat each other and how computers, blogs, cellphones etc make this process more appealing to girls that normally wouldn't ever bully anyone else.

I was horrified to say the least. At first I was saying to myself "how will I protect my babies from monsters like this?" By the end of the show I was asking myself, "how will I prevent my babies from becoming monsters like this?"

I think I'm raising them right. I hope I can find the church in our new town that is going to keep their interest in activities. I hope they respect the Christian morals that I think I am teaching them.

Watching this report was an eye opener. These girls were not uneducated or horribly behaved children. They were the smart ones. "Girls who cyberbully are girls who are very invested, do well in school, have friends, want to go to college. They believe that it's sort of fun and they'll never be caught." I don't know about you but this could be my daughter.

As hard as it was to watch, I'm so glad I did. I believe it's best to be informed so that I can teach my children about the world and how to deal with it. Because of this report, we made a few life decisions (and rules) for the girls and how we parent them.

1. There will NEVER ever be a computer in the privacy of one of the girls' bedroom.

2. Church, Bible study and prayer are going to be a larger part of our lives together.

3. Monica is extremely bored at school. Since this school doesn't have an enrichment program for the gifted children, we will create our own. I am currently researching homeschooling curriculum's to supplement her public school education. Please comment with any recommendations homeschooling moms!

4. Myspace has no space in my daughters' space. I wish I could keep them from even knowing it exists. I'm sure there will be something new by the time the youngest girls grow older. I feel as if I am in a race to keep up with this garbage.

5. I'm going to have to teach my daughters how to keep themselves covered in locker rooms because some mean and nasty girls think it's fun to take pictures of girls they want to cyberbully and post on the Internet. If that ever happened to my daughter I would cry so hard and be so mad. She hates to undress in front of me.

6. Did I mention that computers will only be used by children in the common areas of the house?

This report brought back all the horrible memories of middle school. I never ate my lunch. I was too nervous for fear of what would come next. I wasn't picked on a lot but I saw it happen to others. Now it's so much worse. Arrrrgh!

Well, I think I have a few years to prepare my oldest for battle. That's what it is too. A battle.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Thursday Thirteen 5

Thirteen Things about Kim, myself (that I like)

Okay so it's late. Sorry. But I did take the challenge to find 13 things about me that are good or I like about little old me.

1 I have red hair

2 I have 3 beautiful daughters

3 I have a strong personality but can easily adapt to my surroundings

4 I believe myself to be a decent amateur photographer

5 I like to read

6 I like to crochet (and feel that I'm good at it) and would like to teach myself how to knit

7 I like to be very involved with my daughter's school through PTA and volunteering (wait til her new school gets a load of me!)

8 I make sure that I keep communication lines open between myself and my older daughter. When I ask what she did in school today and I get the famous "nothing" answer I keep asking questions until I get more detailed answers.

9 I think I'm a decent wife. I'm loyal and faithful and I love my husband very much.

10 I absolutely love blogging. I can't even begin to explain how much. Of course, if you are reading this, there is a good chance you feel the same so I don't have to explain.

11 I love going to a good church that lets me get involved. I have been know to throw myself into volunteering (although time has not been on my side lately). I cannot wait to get settled in my new home so that I can start that part of my life again.

12 I'm strong in troubled situations. Once, 5 years ago, my oldest daughter got herself caught in a babydoll highchair so that she was choking and couldn't breathe. It was the only time I ever saw him do it, but my husband froze in fear. I mustered up some adrenaline strength and pulled the well built highchair apart.

13 I'm pretty handy around the house. Maybe I hate cleaning but I love painting and tiling. I taught myself how to use a miter saw two weeks ago. It's not the actual act of doing the project, it's the pride in the finished product.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

More Moving Chaos

I love the late summer flowers. Sunflowers and blackeyed susans are by far my favorites.

We are back at the house for the weekend. We still have a ton of packing to do. I set the tile on the kitchen counter and backsplash two weeks ago. I still have to grout. I could've done it last weekend, but that would have meant I would have actually finished a job in a reasonable amount of time. I have this nasty habit of getting board with a project halfway into it. Well, it has to be done before we close on the house. It was a contingincy in the contract.

Still looking at October 1st as the date we close on our new house. I will have a new appreciation for space once we are not living in a hotel 5 days a week anymore.

Monica likes her new school and is making friends. We were fearful at first because there have been a lot of tears and meltdowns at the end of last week and the beginning of this week. I think she is adjusting well though considering all the chaos of this move.

Well I miss you all and hopefully I will be posting more regularly next week.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Still Stuck in a Hotel Room With All Three Children

Arrrrggggghhhhh! That about sums it up. This is crazy. I will be able to post more next week because my husband will be back from a business trip. Still only have one laptop.

I don't like leaving the children in the room by themselves to go down and use the lobby computer (even though Monica is very capable of supervising for 30 minutes or so).

I also don't like having to race to the computer to beat out other patrons for time to blog. I'm sure they think that their business is much more important. Actually, they are so wrong. This little bit of time on the computer is what enables me to keep my sanity. That's much more important than the little tidbit of business they are trying to take care of.

Hopefully, I will be moving into my new house soon. Unfortunately, it looks like October 1st is the new date. How will I live through this?

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Food 4 Thought

I read this in a church newsletter:

What would happen if we treated our Bible like we treat our cell phone?

What if:

We carried it around in our pockets or purses.
We turned back to get it if we forgot it.
We flipped through it several times a day.
We used it to receive messages through the text.
We treated it like we could not live without it.
We gave it to our children as a gift.
We used it as we traveled.
We used it in case of an emergency.
We upgraded it regularly to get the latest version.

But unlike our cell phone, we don't ever have to worry about our Bible being disconnected because Jesus already paid the bill.

I thought it was worth passing on.

Friday, September 08, 2006

In Search of .... a Church

In September of 2001 we moved to Kingston, NY. It was a transfer for my husband that we could not pass up because it came with a substantial pay raise. I still remember that morning on the 11th. I was in the hotel room with my Monica, 4 years old at the time (we had not yet found an apartment) and my soon to be mother in law called and told me to turn on the TV. (It was the only time she ever told me she loved me. Tragedy makes you say crazy things I guess.)

I took it all in for a little while and turned it off. I really couldn't handle it and we had an appointment to look at an apartment that day. As we were walking out a man in his car rolled down the window and stopped to tell the apartment manager that he was going to get his children out of school. That the towers fell. We were being attacked.

Everyone dealt with this day differently. I personally had so many emotions rolling through my body, fear, anger, confusion, pride, and sadness to name a few. This all happened less than an hour drive from where I was. I did not know how I was going to get through it. I was glued to the TV for the next few weeks. Watching the people work tirelessly in hopes of finding a sign of life among the debris. It was like a tragic movie on a loop that I could not stop watching day after day.

I don't think I knew anyone personally that lost their life that day but I do know a lot of people who knew people in that building. I did have a friend who was fired from his job in the towers the previous week. He answered his telephone for a week by saying "I'm alive!"

A few life changing things happened over the next few months.

My husband and I got married October 16, 2001. I woke up that morning, rolled over and this is the way the conversation went.

Me: Let's get married today.
Him: Let's wait until next Wednesday. I have another day off then.
Me: No way. What makes you think I'm gonna fall for that?
Him: Well, you fell for it the last seven years!

We got up. Called the Justice of the Peace and got married.

I drove past a church in town a lot.

Everytime I drove by it was like the building was calling my name. I hadn't been to church in many years. A lot of people came away from September 11th with the clear thought that they had to go back to church. I didn't. It took me until the end of December to realize that that is what I needed to do. It was the Sunday between Christmas and New Year's Day. I got my daughter dressed and we ventured to the church that had called my name so many times (now I know that it was God directing me where he wanted me to go).

There wasn't Sunday School that morning. I was going to walk back out the door because the service didn't start for an hour and fifteen minutes. A man named Harold, who is the building manager but I think he is the best greeter/evangelist I've ever met, did not let me walk back out that door. He talked to me and introduced me to others until the service was about to start. He knew, as did I, that if I left, I probably wouldn't come back.

It was the beginning of my journey back to God. I grew in that church. I attended every class I could. I studied my Bible at home. I lead the Adult Sunday School for a while. I was blessed in that church. I grew in that church. I had a new family in that church.

I had to leave early in 2003, when we moved for my husbands career again. I still miss the people who showed me so much love. It broke my heart but I knew it's what I had to do.

Now I find myself moving yet one more time. I am again in search of a church. I can only hope that the one that I find is modeled like St. James United Methodist Church in Kingston, NY.

Waking Up in A Hotel Every Morning Stinks

Well, we will finally be closing on our house by the end of next week. This should have been done a month ago, but that would have been easy and chaotic free.

We have been living in a hotel in the town where our new house is located so that Monica could start school on the first day of school. This was a non negotiable since she has been through this too many times already. She hates being the "new kid." I wanted her to start fresh just like everyone else. She loves her new teacher and she has many new friends.

Living in the hotel stinks. Literally. It has an indoor swimming pool, which the kids love. The amount of chlorine they use in that pool is enough to sterilize the Atlantic Ocean, I'm sure of it. We got there on Tuesday and by Wednesday my head felt like an overfilled balloon. The smell of chlorine permeated the whole hotel. I felt as if I was sleeping right next to the pool.

The stay went fairly well considering the fact that our family of 5 was living in a small room. It was kind of like being locked in a big cage with a wild animal.

We ate out way too much. Thank God for Holiday Inn's "Kids Eat Free." We are going to call the hotel on Sunday before we go back up. If they don't have a room with a microwave then we will take our own. I just cannot eat carry out food, expensive restaurant food or fast food any more.

Coming home was bittersweet. We really want to be in our new house. Our lives will be so much easier. We were glad to get out of the hotel but not happy to travel back to the house that we should have been moved out of by now.

Now it's back to packing. We are going to go through the garage this weekend. Anything we do not absolutely need is going to the curb. I'm sick of taking all this stuff with me everytime we move. We have to do this whirlwind packing now because we have to be back up to the new hometown on Sunday night so Monica can be at school on Monday morning.

With any luck at all, this will be the last week of living in limbo. Our lives will hopefully change back to our normal level of chaos rather than this extreme unbalanced chaos that we have been forced to live lately.

Monday, September 04, 2006

CHAOS Level At An All Time High

It's been quite a few crazy days since I've been able to blog. So much has happened, I don't know where to begin.

The chaos level is out of control as we get somewhat closer to moving. Here's a quick rundown.

We listed our house for sale, got calls to show it one hour later. We showed it the next day to three parties. We had a contract on it for the asking price the next day. That was a true blessing.

The same day I took my baby to an orthopedic specialist. Our primary care physician was concerned that her foot isn't growing correctly. Come to find out, she has a paralyzed muscle in one leg that prevents her from flexing her foot. Now we must go to a pediatric neurologist and find out the cause of this (injury or birth defect) and see if there is anything that can be done to correct this. What a bittersweet day.

The order for an appraisal on the house we are buying was lost (or it was never ordered) and we are still in limbo without a closing date. In the meantime, school starts on Wednesday. I refuse to have Monica start school here only to transfer in a week so we will be getting a hotel room on school nights and traveling back and forth to pack.

School shopping is done (THANK YOU GOD). With my husband gone and me having to take all three girls to the mall, I came home a mama with a migraine that day. There were probably a few people who thought I was a verbally abusive parent too. I couldn't keep Alexandra in one place. She doesn't listen. She figured out how to take the wrist leash off. I'm so afraid I'm going to lose her one of these days. I never thought I'd ever do it (and a HUGE apology goes out to anyone doing it that I've ever given a dirty look too) but I may have to resort to putting the harness type leash on my daughter when I'm out with all three girls by myself.

My husband is back home from his business trip and I went out by myself today. I bought some things for the girls and got my hair cut. No more SAHM hairdo for me. It looks great.

It's great to be back!