Sunday, April 13, 2014

Bye Bye 1884 House

Yep, we're moving.  This 3.5 year adventure is coming to an end - kind of.  We're closing (fingers crossed) on a house 73 years younger at the end of this month. We are still keeping our 1884 house for the time being with the intent to rent or sell it... someday.  We're in no hurry, and we'll only be 8 blocks-or-so away.

And now that we've crossed 'fix up an old house' off the bucket list, I am ready to cross off another item: live in my own 1950's rambler.



I grew up in a rambler and after living in a story-and-a-half, I cannot wait to get back to single story living (with a functional basement). Because the higher up you are, the HOTTER it is in the summer.  No more stuffy attic heat for this girl! And I'll have CLOSETS again!!  And two bathrooms!!! (can you tell I am excited?)

It's is nothing special, not a sprawling ranch house or mid-century modern gem designed by some famous architectural visionary. Just your average 1957 rambler with good bones and solid construction. She still has her original front door and a wall of floor to ceiling windows in the living room. She sits on a double lot. Lots of room to run and play. Her current owners have been there for the last 20-odd years and have taken very good care of her. My only house projects will be purely aesthetic. The pics below are full of the current owner's things. I will have to decountrify and fill her up with mid-century goodness!

classic 1950's/1960's front door

coved ceilings and old people furniture...AND THE WINDOWS!

room for my dining room table, but the buffet might have to rest in the living room
Can you picture it?! This furniture in the new house? My mod set has been waiting for a rambler  :)

I'm excited to make it our own. Fill it with our family and our things and lots of love & laughs. I can already picture Jack and June drawing on the walls    tracking in mud   dropping food on the carpet  running circles inside it...

Leaving our old house is bittersweet - we have made lots of memories here. But we have outgrown it. Time to move on!



Saturday, March 8, 2014

Camp Honeybelle Wearables?!

Why buy teeshirts that EVERYONE ELSE ON THE PLANET has when you can wear something unique? Something special. Something from someone that you know and love. Or don't know and stalk. Either way, check out my latest endeaver - a tee-shirt for Camp Honeybelle.

But the deal is 24 people need to order them in order to kick the printing into gear. If I can't get that many takers, the deal is off! So order away, this is a time-limited offer  :)   www.teespring.com/camphoneybelletee




Thursday, February 27, 2014

Someday I'll miss the poop stories, right?

It hasn't been an ordinary morning.

I'm home (not usual for a Thursday), Jack's preschool was cancelled (too cold outside), and we slept in a little late.

I went into Jack's room to greet him with 'Good Morning' and was overcome with a smell so distinct that my greeting was replaced with 'Aww, Jack - you pooped in your pants. Get out of bed right now and go straight to the bathroom, we need to get you cleaned up.'

And so another Morning of Motherhood begins...

I pre-clean Jack as best I can while trying to discuss the event with a five year old. 'Jack, can't you tell when you have to go to the bathroom? Don't you wake up?' And he replies, 'No mom, it just comes out.' I start the bath water, add plenty of sweet-smelling baby soap and he climbs in.

Of course June doesn't allow ANYONE to take a bath privately, so she whines and takes her clothes off and jumps in too. Bath time is mostly uneventful, full of giggles and splashing. Jack declares that he has turned into a raisin and gets out. I help him dry off and get into clothes, 2 ft from the tub, while it is draining and June is still splashing around.

As I'm holding underwear for Jack to step into, I see something fly past in my peripheral vision. And again, several somethings.

I look at my dear daughter, with another fistful of her poop balls ready to go, and scream 'Nooooo June! Nooooo!!!!!'

We were under assault, from a tiny terror, of the worst, stinky kind.

Needless to say, my clean-up effort started all over again. And it's not even 7am yet.

*sigh*

Monday, October 21, 2013

A Tale to Tell

Looks like I am long overdue for a blog entry. Guess I've been waiting for something newsworthy.

I went back to work at the end of August. Everything was going fine. The kids were adjusting well to their new schedule, pre-school started, the leaves began to turn.

My only complaint during this time was a personal one - and many of my local friends and close family heard about it. For months I had felt like something was off with my body. I described it as feeling pregnant. Crabby, bloated, constipated, tired. Over the summer I began tracking my cycles - trying to figure out what was going on. My google history would tell the tale of a woman researching perimenopause, hypothyroidism, adrenal stress and hormonal imbalances.

In July I even took a pregnancy test, despite having an IUD. It was negative and I decided not to waste money on more tests, unless I was really late. My August cycle arrived on time and seemed pretty regular. And then it came again, one day in September. And it just kept going. My lower back hurt. I felt old and achy. Was this just middle age? Being 35?

Around day 15 of my period I decided to see my Dr. (because bleeding this long can't be normal). My appointment was on September 30th, day 20 of what I refer to as The Longest Period Ever.

I brought with all the important dates, cycles starts and stops, the day I took the pregnancy test, anything I thought could be pertinent to this never ending cycle. We talked about hormones and thyroid activity. She ordered labs to test my thyroid. I opted to have my IUD removed, just in case it was causing the extra long cycle.  She was reluctant 'since it was working' but removed it anyways because I wanted her to. I asked 'what's next? what if this doesn't stop?' She said that if it doesn't stop in another few days, or if my next cycle is still bizarre, she would refer me to the resident OB/GYN for further testing.

I left with no answers but at least hopeful something would turn up with the thyroid test. By day 23, my period had stopped and the tests came back normal. And I recorded 'really bad cramp on left side' on day 22 in my calendar. I attributed that to possible ovulation pain. I figured that my period would start again just as it should on day 28.

On October 8th (day 26 of that cycle) I started to have cramping pain at work. I ended up leaving my pants unbuttoned to give my bloated abdomen some more room. I drove the hour home at 6pm, got the kids to bed, took ibuprofen and curled into a ball on my bed. I awoke several times that night with painful cramps. I thought 'WOW this is the worst pre-menstual cramping I can ever remember'. I wondered if all my cycles from here on out were to be so painful. The alarm went off at 5am Wednesday morning. I woke up and took Pamprin. None of my pants fit. I pulled on a pair of maternity pants. I walked around slightly hunched over to accommodate the waves of cramping. June woke up and at one point she kicked my belly while I was holding her and it was like I received a prize fighter's punch.

Tom told me to go to the ER. I was hesitant. They'd probably tell me it was nothing. My sister says I'm a baby when it comes to pain. As I grabbed my purse and head out to my car, I decided to call my Mom. Moms always have the best advice. As soon as I heard her voice I started crying, 'Mom, something is really wrong. I've got cramps so bad I can barely stand straight'. She told me to go in RIGHT NOW.

And I did.

I cried the whole 8 blocks to the ER, wondering what was wrong with me. Ovarian cyst? Endometriosis? I KNEW that it had something to do with my woman parts. The ER staff took my vitals and had me give a urine sample. They administered morphine  - it didn't do a damn thing. I just kept holding my gut and rocking and swearing. 'Oh shit' escaped every time another wave would pass. I described it as painful as labor - the same feeling I had when I'd be dilated to a 4 or 5 and under inducement meds. They gave me a dose of Toradol and it took the edge off.

No one was more surprised than I when the Dr. came back to tell me I was pregnant. Another 'Oh shit' escaped. And then the pace picked up. Ectopic pregnancy was suspected. An ultrasound was ordered immediately. The nurses were wonderful and supportive.

My ultrasounds (both external and trans vaginal) were so hazy from all the fluid in my abdomen (which was actually blood) that they couldn't determine if the pregnancy was in a tube or not. Or maybe the pregnancy was so young that it didn't show up in my uterus yet. After consulting with the OB, I was informed that I would be prepped for emergency exploratory surgery. He said that he would not do anything via my uterus, just in case there was a viable pregnancy there. He would try a laparoscopy and only do a laparotomy if necessary.

I passed out as the nurses drew more blood for an HCG test. My hemoglobin level was dropping and so was my blood pressure. As the operating Dr. came to talk to me one last time about what was going on I could barely keep my eyes open. They wheeled me into the OR, slid me onto the table and forced me to lay flat, at which point I sat up in the worst pain EVER. Apparently there is a galley that runs up your right side, and when your abdomen fills with air or blood or whatever, the excess goes wherever it can fit - up that side to your shoulder. Two nurses were trying to hold me down while another was pushing a mask on my face and telling me to breath. Those were probably the most traumatic moments. I shudder as I think about it. Luckily the anesthetic worked fast and I was out cold quickly.

My first memory after surgery is in my hospital room. I was tired and sore and disoriented; I thought it was all a dream. The pain, the pregnancy, the ER visit. It was surreal.

I had two incisions. One from the laparoscopy near my belly button and one larger incision from the laparotomy. 17 staples across my lower abdomen. They told me my left fallopian tube had burst and had to be removed. I had lost quite a bit of blood and received 2 units (unsure of size) the next day. The hospital kept me three nights.

Since I've been home recovering and unable to do much of anything, I've been researching ectopic pregnancies. An IUD increases your chance of an ectopic pregnancy, maybe. There are conflicting reports. Most ruptured tubes happen around 6-10 weeks, with an average of 8 weeks gestation. HCG blood levels have little correlation to how far along you are with these types of pregnancies. All the gunk and debris they removed from me was sent out for pathology. I have a follow-up appointment today. Maybe they will be able to tell with certainty how far along I was. I'm not even sure why it matters, but I feel like I need to know. It would certainly explain all the weird things going on for the past few months. Or maybe I just want to know about this little baby that never had a chance.

Well I think that's enough for now. I'll save the post-laparotomy recovery entry for another day.



Sunday, August 18, 2013

Going Back to Work

I'm turning in my apron.  Throwing in the dish-towel.  Turning off the oven. AND GOING BACK TO WORK.



 FULL TIME. Plus a commute.




Am I crazy? Possibly. Probably. Is this right for my family? My kids? Me? ARGHHHH!  The position I left when we moved out here opened up. They called me. After a little negotiating and I decided to sign on, again.

I'm excited and a little fearful. Excited for change, excited for the income, excited for the fast-paced environment. But of course, I already feel guilty for abandoning my babies and my sleepy little town job and I haven't even started the new job yet.

It'll be an interesting transition, hopefully a positive one. And a busy one. If all goes well, this is just the beginning. We want to move about 20 miles east, too.

(PS, I'm not really throwing in the dish-towl. I still have to do the damn dishes.)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

8 new babies coming tomorrow

Tom and Jack are ready for the baby chicks!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Being 35 and Mugventure Update

Thirty five.  I have my feet planted firmly in middle age now. And along with it, maybe some sort of mini mid-life crisis? Since Tom's accident I have been plagued with thoughts about my current lifestyle choices; living far from family, not working to my full potential, how in the heck will we ever be able to save for retirement, kid's college, a house with two bathrooms.... I just want to be better prepared, I guess. Monetarily speaking, at least. It was a hard lesson learned- trying to survive off one income that suddenly disappeared when tragedy struck.

And just as my mind was hashing over the Stay At Home Mom/Career Mom dilemma, I received an offer. I can't say much about it now but will fill you in soon. The winds of change are beginning to stir. Well, more than stir. It's like a gust. Or maybe a tornado!

But enough about that. I'm sure you're dying to hear about my Mugventure.

I'm not getting rich quick.

During this first week I have sold 7 mugs, grossing 84.99. After shipping, ebay & paypal fees, I am left with $45.19.  Here are some pics of what went.








I have about a dozen more listed and a dozen more to take pictures of. I've unloaded 9 boxes of the unwanted mugs so far between the thrift store, a friends garage sale, and a free pile at the end of our yard. I still have about 5 boxes left to dump. Remind me NEVER TO BUY ANOTHER MUG AGAIN!  

I'm going to try and sell the mid century chair. I've noticed that it's giving my living room a distinct Old People House Smell. Am I still shooting for that $300 sale mark? Yes. Will I make it? Doubtful. But so far I've turned my $17 in $45. That's better than nothing!

I'll leave you with this odd little gem 'For a Liberated Mom'.  You know, if your mom doesn't wear a bra?!!


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