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2007 March

California is a siren

March 16, 2007

she sucks you in and won’t let you leave.

Last year when I was at Blogher in San Jose, I was awoken early in the morning by Kathryn, who discovered she had slept through her flight. I think I gave her the proper amount of empathy before rolling back over and grunting goodbye.

A few hours later, I would discover that ooops, I missed my flight too. Though I totally blame Mir.

Luckily, I had the lovely Grace to embrace me, feed me, and bring me to her home.

Rob just called me from the airport in San Francisco. No flights are currently landing at JFK. His flight is cancelled. Not postponed. CANCELLED. As in it sucks to be you right now, go wait in that huge line of similarly screwed people, where we will ignore you and let you languish in the airport to marinate in your own juices.

But not to worry. American got him on another flight.

Monday afternoon.

Posted by Chris @ 4:48 pm | 20 Comments  

Beware of the Ides of March

March 15, 2007

This is my public service announcement for today.

When the doctor’s office leaves you a message about some blood work that you had done and says that you should follow up with the office…

Do not consult Dr. google before you are able to get in touch with them and find out your exact results.

Otherwise you will spend your morning looking at your children wistfully, sad they they will be forced to grow up without a mother and mentally composing your obituary. Because you just know that you will have that very very rare disorder. I know I can’t be the only one with a flair for the dramatic and an overactive imagination. I am just happy my husband didn’t answer his cell phone when I called to tell him farewell.

Then when you finally get in touch with the doctor’s office and they tell you that your blood sugar was just slighly low and you should have the test redone when you get your thyroid checked again in two months…

that they aren’t worried but thought I should follow up with any one of the many doctors that I seem to have now that I am an old fart who requires a day-of-the-week pill container.

Well, when that happens you will feel stupid.

And then you will write in run-on sentences and switch your pronouns so fast you can’t really be sure if you are even talking about yourself any longer.

Then you (I) will need to go to the pantry to eat more Swedish fish. It is medically neccessary now I (you) think.

Posted by Chris @ 12:47 pm | 25 Comments  

Dear Ann Taylor,

March 14, 2007

This afternoon I was perusing your store online, which is what I do instead of doing any of the hundred constructive things I could be doing. Also because I need some new clothes to go with my new shoes.

I have always loved your store because it isn’t trendy and the clothing is well made. It covered the bits it is supposed to cover and lasts forever. I never come across something that made me gasp in horror or laugh out loud.

So imagine my surprise when I came across this:

cropped trench

I don’t understand this item of clothing. Is it a jacket? Is it to draw attention to mid-sections and highlight the muffin top? Are muffin tops the shoulder pads of this year? Because I could get behind a fashion trend that emphasizes muffin tops and large asses.

Though this “jacket” in particular looks uncomfortable even on the rail thin model. I am feeling constricted just looking at this photo.

And then I saw this:

oh god NOOOOO

I am sorry. If you keep this up we may have to break up.

Chris

Posted by Chris @ 5:29 pm | 47 Comments  

Swedish fish: the new xanax

Sometimes I fear that this is turning into a bitching blog. That all I do is complain about people, things, products that bother me. I am not nearly so annoying in real life. Or maybe I am, but it is broken up by periods of non bitching. I worry, slightly, that I have a low tolerance for people in general.

So when I was sitting here thinking about what to write I thought…hey, I’ll write about how my wood burning stove that is not working yet again. But really there is nothing more to write about it other than that. And to highlight the fact that it is no longer under warranty.

Then I thought… hey, I could write about the inept pharmacists at my local CVS store. And how I want to jump over the counter and throttle them. Especially the one who is always eating while working. Yesterday he was eating what appeared to be a slice of pizza while looking up my prescription on the computer. And that is just disgusting.

Or maybe it isn’t and is just a sign of him working hard and multi-tasking. Look at me, I am being positive! It’s hard!

“Self,” I said, “no complaining today.” And then I sat here watching American Idol with my children, laptop open, and realized without complaining I have nothing.

But then a commercial came on the television that referenced someone being gay.

6 yr old: What does gay mean?

7yr old: It means you love guys and want to marry them.

6 yr old: So, like, Mom is gay?

Then I realized I am nothing without my children and their funny quips.

*****

Chris: i feel nauseous,
Chris: i just finished an entire bag of swedish fish
Mir: ROFL
Chris: I am out of control when Rob isn’t here to witness it
Chris: i am watching one of those HGTV house shows
Chris: and the woman just said she needs AT LEAST two sinks in her bathroom
Chris: doesn’t that imply she would actually like more than two?
Mir: Maybe 3 or 4!
Chris: like a public restroom
Mir: hahaha
Mir: I would like a stall door
Mir: and a case for my toilet seat covers
Chris: and one of those little garbage cans
Chris: but I would store candy in it
Chris: I just discovered a fish I dropped
Chris: so i have to eat it
Chris: in spite of the nausea
Mir: of course

I will miss Mir once she gets married and has a husband that she wants to spend time with every night. What about meeeeeeee?

But don’t you have a husband too, Chris? Why yes, yes I do. My husband works late and travels and likes to watch Seinfeld on television at night. Which is a great show and I used to like it way back in the early 90’s (or was it late 80’s?), but after watching each episode at least ten times I am sort of over it. I assure you that I didn’t kill him and bury him out in the frozen tundra that is my backyard.

Posted by Chris @ 9:16 am | 26 Comments  

How to age ten years in a single morning

March 13, 2007

Right after I hit publish on my previous post, Miles fell off of his stool at the kitchen table onto the hard tile floor. I was sitting less than 10ft away from him and saw him fall and land on his head with a loud thud.

He was silent and his little body limp. And I screamed and ran to him. Picked him up, ran in circles for a few seconds before sitting down. At that point he threw up, mostly milk and a bit of cereal he had been eating. Then he started moaning and crying, holding his little head.

And I freaked out some more. Demanding he open his eyes and look at me. It was like his eye lids were too heavy. He couldn’t or wouldn’t open his eyes and look at me.

I called Rob and he agreed that I should bring him in to the emergency room to be checked out.

I have to say that we are not the sort of parents who freak out needlessly. We have seven kids, not too much really phases us and in all honesty we probably usually are more calm than what we should be.

At this point he was saying his head hurt and pointing to his forehead and one eye. He kept rubbing his head. “Owie,owie.” he said.

I put him in the car and drove my non-bra wearing, non-brushed hair, no make-up self the the emergency room with him. He kept trying to fall asleep during the drive and I kept reaching my arm back to shake his leg.

We went in and sat in the waiting room for an hour while he sat on my lap, clinging to me, face nuzzled into my shoulder. Clearly not acting like any normal two year old. Because we all know that two year olds would rather be stabbed with hot pokers than sit still for any length of time.

I am not sure how to t alk about the rest of the ER visit, other than to say the dr completely dismissed everything I said. Proclaimed him perfectly fine and sent us on our way with instructions to call him if I felt there were any changes.

There isn’t much I hate more than being patronized and have my concerns not taken seriously.

I already knew that there was nothing that could be done for a concussion, thanks to my husband’s highschool and college football glory days. But for the dr to tell me that he could not have possibly lost conciousness. Um, I was there.

That he didn’t hit his head hard enough to break the skin and therefore had no concussion. Um, never heard this before.

That he was acting clingy and lethargic because I had scared him with my over reacting. Um, if I knew my freaking out, which was mild by anyone’s standards, would make my children tired I would do it every night at bedtime. Thanks for helping me improve my night time routine around here!

Miles, emergency room

Here is the obligatory photo. Albeit a crappy one from my cellphone. Complete with my thumb in the bottom corner.

He is acting fine now. In fact he is playing with playdoh and trying to lick it when he thinks I am not looking. So back to normal.

Me? I have aged 10 years and am badly in need of a mid-morning cocktail.

Posted by Chris @ 1:41 pm | 86 Comments  

Where did my baby go?

Where did my baby go?

He is still completely and totally obsessed with baseball, or as he calls it buh-buh-ball. He was thrilled to go outside yesterday and hit his ball around and chase it. The weather warmed up and felt positively balmy, in spite of the fact that the thermometer only read 48 degrees.

When I put him to bed last night, as he settled in under the covers, or more accurately as I repeatedly put the covers over him and he repeatedly kicked them off, I noticed how huge he looks in the cage crib.

I stroked his little hair back with my free hand, my other hand trying to hold him down on the mattress, in a loving way of course. He looked at me with his big brown eyes and with a deep sigh said, “My love buh-buh ball.”

I imagine I have lots of years of Little League left.

Posted by Chris @ 8:33 am | 14 Comments  

In which I don’t mention shoes at all

March 12, 2007

Nothing says I am rapidly approaching middle age like back to back to back doctor appointments.

Friday I have my first ever mammogram. I am not certain how they deal with people who are not endowed in the breastular region. I fear I will have to lie prone on the machine and have them squish my body back to front.

Or else they will laugh and tell me that if I had a tumor it would be visible to the naked eye since there is nothing for it to hide behind.

Also, on Friday, I get to have an ultrasound for the thyroid tumor that I have. It was biopsied a few years back and came back benign, so I am not particularly worried about this ultrasound. If it has grown considerably in size then my thyroid will have to be removed. But looking on the bright side I can tell people I got the scar in a knife fight. And then add, “You should see the other person.” Thus furthering the illusion that I am tough and to be feared.

*****

Last week my daughter wanted slip-slops.*

Yesterday she said she needed a bounce-aline.**

Today she informed me that for Halloween she was going to be Legoless in water wings.

“Water wings?”

“Yes”

“Why? Does he swim?”

“No. He shoots people with his bow and arrows.”

“Then why does he need water wings?”

“That is the NAME OF THE MOVIE. Wah-dah Wings***.”

God, I love this age.

For those uneducated in toddler-ease, *flip-flops, **trampoline, ***Lord of the Rings.

Posted by Chris @ 9:08 pm | 32 Comments  

still talking about shoes

March 10, 2007

A couple of weeks ago my oldest son complained to me that his feet were hurting.

“Hurting how?” asked I.

“I don’t know.” answered he.

“Are your shoes too small?” I asked.

“I don’t think so.” he answered.

“Are your snow boots too small?” I asked.

“I don’t think so.” he answered.

“Well, that’s odd” I said.

He shrugged.

I shrugged.

And I promptly forgot all about it.

*****

Fast forward to last week.

“My feet are still hurting.” he said.

“What?” I asked.

“My feet. They are still hurting.” he said.

“Why?”

“I don’t know.”

“I feel like we have been through this already.” I said.

“Yeah.” he answered.

He shrugged.

I shrugged.

And being the good mother I am, I ignored him.

*****

Fast forward to yesterday morning.

“My feet are really hurting this morning.” he said.

“Okay, we need to get to the bottom of this. Are your sneakers too small?” I asked.

“No.” he answered, “I don’t thinks so.”

“Well we were hiking yesterday and you were wearing your sneakers. Did your feet hurt then?” I asked.

“A little.” he answered.

“Okay, how about you put on your sneakers and let me check them.” I said.

He got his sneakers on.

I felt the tips of his sneakers. His toes were all scrunched up like we were practicing Chinese foot binding. And, given how fast my boys grow out of their sneakers, is a practice I might just put into effect.

First thing this morning I brought him to the store for new sneakers. He need them two full sizes larger than the ones he had been wearing. TWO FULL SIZES. I had to suppress the urge to shout, “Are you stupid?”

Just to make sure we don’t have a repeat of this scenario, I bought all the boys new sneakers.

And my daughter four pair of new shoes, though I have no doubt in my mind at all that she would let me know the moment she felt the slightest twinge of discomfort.

If I am not buying shoes for myself, I am buying them for other people.

Posted by Chris @ 11:49 pm | 25 Comments  

Where is my Larry???

March 9, 2007

A little over a year ago, I replaced my Dell laptop with a new and better! Dell laptop, because one of my children, who shall remain nameless, dropped the old laptop on a tile floor and the repair was going to cost over $400.

It had something to do with the place where the power cord plugs into the computer not connecting properly, or something like that. I don’t know. I feel like I am in a Charlie Brown cartoon and one of the grown ups is talking whenever technical things are discussed. It was almost 2 years old and the warranty had expired. It seemed like a good idea at the time, upgrade to a new and better! laptop rather than throw money at something older.

My old laptop had been good to me. Never gave me any real problems. At least none that I couldn’t resolve. So why not get another Dell?

My first encounter with techs from Dell was here. I resolved this issue by buying a new router. Even though all the other computers in the house were able to connect wirelessly but mine, I was told it was a router issue not a problem with my computer.

Okay then. Early in November I purchased two additional Dell laptops for my two oldest sons as Christmas presents. A move I would come to question as my own laptop woes grew.

Then there was this.

And then this

Then the battery died after nine months, which seems like an exceedingly short battery life. ANd hey, what do you know NOT covered by warranty.

And then
this.

Then we gave it an IT guy to look at because I felt sure it must have caught the computer version of syphillis, or the clap. Oh yeah and turning it on and off while counting to 30 did nothing to resolve the problem.


Then
I told everyone why they shouldn’t buy a Dell. And I was accused of hating Indian people, which is ludicrous. I just want good and efficient help, which in this case requires a good working knowledge of the nuances of the English language.

And so here I am today. I have the cds in hand to reformat my computer, or whatever the correct terminology is that will erase every single thing off of it so I can begin anew. I have little confidence that this will actually resolve the problem. And just create more.

The last night I was reading Belinda’s blog. She has the identical Dell laptop that I have. And guess what? She has had trouble with hers also. But she had a Dell person, named Larry, contact her and resolve the issue. Which of course leaves me asking, WHERE IS MY LARRY???

Also, leaves me wondering if he has plunger ears.

Posted by Chris @ 1:37 pm | 24 Comments  

Is someone trying to tell me something?

March 8, 2007

Last night I was in bed reading this book by Jaquelyn Mitchard. I am only about 100 pages into the book, when I came across this passage between a husband and wife that, in light of my last post, made me laugh out loud.

“…You realize that most people who work at home don’t need twenty pairs of shoes, nine of which–”

“Are black, right…”

Fortunately my husband likes shoes as much as I do. He can say nothing about my obsession when he owns at least 10 pair of brown shoes that look practically identical, though he assures me they are not.

I was telling Mir, the shoe pimp, today that I really need a job.

Not neccessarily to fund my shoe habit, since I rarely buy anything not on sale, but to have a place to wear all my shoes on a more regular basis. I think my Steve Madden leopard print pumps would like to venture farther than the children’s room at the library and the post office.

Posted by Chris @ 4:17 pm | 21 Comments