Wednesday, August 26, 2009


• Bud’s surgery went amazingly well yesterday. Better than I could have imagined. For one, they only had to take out the extra tooth, when they planned on taking his 2 front teeth along with it. For another, they just yanked it out. Like, with pliers. I couldn’t watch. So, he is on a diet of soft foods until Saturday while he heels, but he is really no worse for the wear. I took before and after shots, but there are at home. Here is a picture of the actual tooth, which I guess was the rarest kind they usually see. The pointed part is the root. Creepy, right? I’m just glad it’s out of there.

• In other dental news, Bud has his first loose tooth, AND we can see his 2 bottom permanent teeth on the way. I can’t believe it!
• We have a kindergarten orientation picnic on Friday and Bud officially goes to school next Thursday. The bus stopped by the other day mapping out it’s route. I can’t say for certain that we will let him take the bus on the very first day. How will he know where to go? This is very stressful from a parent’s perspective. I feel like I am sending my boy out on his own or something. At least when Lucy goes next year, she’ll have Bud to show her the way.
• Speaking of Lucy, she turned 4 last week and I’m sorry to say that there was no change in her behavior as she changed from 3 to 4. She is, perhaps, more dramatic. We bought her Hello Kitty rain boots that she refuses, I mean REFUSES to take off. I would not allow her to wear them to the county fair last Thursday because it was 95 humid degrees outside and she pouted most of the day. We were caught in a rain storm on our way out of the fairgrounds. After finally making it to the truck, she cried indignantly “See Mom! I told you I should have worn my RAIN BOOTS!” Yes, I suppose she should have.

• We went to the library Saturday, where Bud got his library card and we took out our first chapter book, which we’ve been reading at bed time. Liv had a great time too.

• We went on a picnic Saturday, just on a whim, and I threw the kids’ water shoes in the car because there is a rocky brook at the park, where Hub and I used to wander when we camped. After lunch, all 3 of the kids took to the water. Imagine my surprise when Liv was the most enthusiastic of all of them. She was genuinely pissed when I made her hold my hand as she navigated the rocks and water. She is a dare devil, that is for sure.
• Finally, I will leave you with some photos from the girls’ big birthday bash. We had a great day, and the only glitch was trying to facilitate the opening of gifts between both girls. Next year, I will definitely ask for a second set of hands. (contrary to popular belief, Bud was at the party. He was just off with his cousins all day, and not in any photos)

Monday, August 10, 2009

Happy (belated) Birthday, Baby!

In all the chaos of the last few weeks, I neglected to mention that my Liv, celebrated her 1st birthday on July 29th. A year! Can you even believe it? The time has gone so fast, and yet, it seems like she’s been with us forever. Indeed, she was a good addition to our family.

She is a little spitfire too. She, who was smaller than my other children at birth, is now a 23lb tyrant. She is a big girl, and she thinks she is even bigger, since she follows her older siblings around everywhere. She runs, not walks, everywhere, and is insistent to climb everything, including our gate. She adores her big brother, and well, she tolerates her big sister. She makes her opinions known whether you are listening or not; there is no question as to what she wants at any given time.

And the talking, my God, the talking. When she was about 6 months old, she started saying kitty cat (teee tat!!) over and over again. We thought that it might be the only word she ever spoke. Slowly, more words came. Eddie, Daddy, Caitlyn. Mama……but only when she is very upset. Now she speaks too many words to count. She loves to say “Hi!” and will usually say “Hi kitty!” or “Hi Daddy!” The latest is “kitty cat moooooow” (kitty cat meow) and boy does she love to say “uh oh!!”. My favorite though, might be “night night”….or maybe “cheese” (seeeeessse) when she sees the camera.

The look on her face last week, when we all sang happy birthday, was priceless. She loves singing regardless, but when she realized we were all singing, only to her, it was pretty great.

And for all she’s accomplished, she has not learned to sleep. Nope. There is too much going on! Too much to do! She wakes up shrieking in the middle of the night, only to settle right back down as soon as she can burrow in to my shoulder. This is bad; I know. I should leave her alone. But she is my baby girl. Maybe my last.

On Saturday, she’ll have her very first birthday party, shared with her big sister, who’ll be 4 next week. She’ll be the life of the party, I’m sure. She always is.

Happy Birthday, baby. Mommy loves you to the moon!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

On Grief

We sat drinking coffee on the porch last night, on the outdoor wicker furniture that used to be in my mother-in-law’s living room. It wasn’t that she didn’t want or couldn’t afford regular furniture. She just really had a thing for wicker.

She’s been gone for 11 days.

In the past, grief has been 100% personal for me. How was it affecting ME. What was I going to do from here. This time though, it’s different.

Yes, I’ve lost my mother-in-law, really, my second mother for the last 15 years, and it is incredibly hard. She drove me absolutely crazy. But everything I have ever said about her here or elsewhere, I could—and did-- say to her face. We laughed about her putting ketchup on everything I cooked. We laughed about her needing coffee so bad that she had me get up and make a pot THE DAY I brought Liv home from the hospital. She was easy like that. I miss her so so much. And it’s so not even real, though I saw her with my own eyes dead in the hospital, and then again in her casket last Friday. It was much too soon; I had spoken to her (as best as she could—but she was awake and alert) just a few hours before. How could she possibly be gone?

I don’t feel like it is fair for me to be this upset though. At least not openly. My husband has lost his mother, for crying out loud. I can’t think of anything that could possibly hurt more. His mother. Gone. Forever. And he’s doing ok, really. It’s hard on him; he spent a ridiculous amount of time with her. He was working on getting her an apartment close to us. If he didn’t see her, he spoke to her at least once a day on the phone. I don’t know how, but he is getting through.

And the kids? Well, they’re ok. When we told Lucy last Sunday, she cried like she never has before. A cry that would break a stranger’s heart. And again, at the funeral home, when she saw her—heartbreaking sobs, and all that I could do was hold her and sob right along with her. Bud is handling it differently—very bluntly as a matter of fact—telling everyone that his grandma has DIED. From SMOKING. And we will NEVER! SEE! HER! AGAIN!

It’s crazy like you would not even believe. I’m sad for me, losing my MIL and friend, for Hub who has lost his mother, and for the kids who have lost their grandma. I think that it’s harder for me because I am shouldering their grief as well. Gah. I don’t even want to talk about it anymore.

And so, I am here, but not really here. Dealing with things in my way. And hoping that somehow, we all come out of it.