Wednesday, September 30, 2009


My muses are currently on strike, or something...I don't feel one teeny little smidge of creativity right now, so excuse me, while I regurgitate something back to you, that I posted awhile ago.

Hopefully, you'll enjoy this little bout of reflux! ;)


Original post:

My Grandpa and the Pot Plant:

Yes, my friends, you read that right...the pot plant, not the plant pot. Pot, as in cannabis, marijuana, weed...uh huh, that kind of pot!


Is my Grandpa!

He looks kinda grumpy here, but really he's not! This man will do anything for a loved one...he'd drive through three states just to change a tire for you (and bitch about it the whole way, but be darned mad if you called anyone else!!), he even once brought me my purse when I was shopping 45 minutes away...just 'cuz I was air-brained enough to leave it at home! He doesn't drink, doesn't smoke, is nearly 80 years old and is healthier than most 40 year olds. That's Grandpa!

So, anywho, Good Ol' Gramps has this eclectic friend, whom we'll call Crazy Z. Well, Crazy Z knows everything about everything and doesn't hesitate to share his knowledge (drives my grandma crazy! "Z says we should do this!" or "Z says hemorrhoids are caused from a hangnail" or "Z says when the wind is blowing from the NW...blah, blah, blah", ah, you get the picture), oh, so where were we? Oh, yeah...Crazy Z knows everything!

I was at Gram and Gramps house the other day with all the kiddos when I spied a suspicious looking plant in cup outside their home. I said, "What's that?"

Gram: "Oh, Crazy Z gave it Grandpa."

Me: "Huh, 'cuz it looks like a marijuana plant to me."

She: "No, I think that has three leaves."

Me: "No, that's poison ivy. I'm pretty sure marijuana has five leaves and looks, well, exactly like that."

(much inspection by the grandfolks ensued, I loaded my gaggle of children in the van and forgot about the suspicious greens in my grandparents possession, until...)

The next morning:

*Ring, Ring*

Gram: whispering "Hi, it's me, I destroyed it."

Me: "Uh, destroyed what?"

She: "That plant! It was marijuana (no longer whispering), I'm sure of it! That Z is crazy! He told Grandpa, 'It's a sweet plant'. I think he does it, too!" (Z, not Grandpa)

Me: "Dang, Gram! You should've smoked it!" (Kidding!! Kidding...I didn't say that, nor do I approve of illegal drug doing...)

So, yes, my grandfather was in possession of an illegal drug...apparently Z is the Drug Lord for octogenarians! Oh, I can just hear it:

Crazy Z: "Hey guys, the first one's free."

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Too Good Not to Share!

For anyone who has ever had or will have a mammogram, you have GOT to read this hilarious story. You'll thank me later!

Well, really, I can't take the credit for finding it, it was Lucy and Ethel that did, so, you can probably just skip me and thank them!

But, in any case, you're welcome! Oh, and if you go check it out, will you come back and tell me if you found it as funny as I did, or was I just in a weird mood?!

Now, it's my turn...thank you!


Why does hindsight have to be 20/20? I really wish, I mean really, really wish, that foresight could be 20/ know?

I've been doin' a lot of thinkin' lately. And I've decided...I wish I had educated myself more.

For my children's sake.

Rather than just taking "their" word for it.

Not that I don't trust "their" word...I just think "they" need to getcha while they have you.

Know what I'm talking about?

Why, it's the Great Debate, of course!! "Childhood Vaccinations".

I still haven't educated myself entirely on it...I'm of the mindset, now, that "what's done, is done" babe's 18 months old...nearly done with her shots...well, actually, we may have just finished them...till kindergarten, anyway. And, Little A. just received his Kindergarten shots today.

I know, without a doubt, that I would still have chosen to vaccinate my kids fully...being a nurse and all, I know I would feel that that's what I "need to" do.

But, I wish I would have done it differently. I wish someone would have told me, back when I was a sweet young mother (versus a grumpy old hag) that I have options. That my kiddos don't have to be slammed with 5 vaccines in one day. I honestly didn't realize, that there were "alternative schedules".

I wish in hindsight, that my foresight could have been 20/20. You know?

I wish I would have read books about alternative schedules for vaccines...that I would have researched and educated myself 'bout these shots and their "schedules".

But, such is life. And we cannot turn back time. And my kiddos are healthy and none the wiser for their mama's ignorance.

And ignorance, my friends, is not bliss.

But, 20/20 foresight would be!! ;)

Monday, September 28, 2009

Who Left the Kids at the Pool

And other fun kid stuff:

Miss E. at Big A.'s football game, "Mom, is there a confession stand here?"


Conversation between Miss E. and E.W.:

"We know two cows in heaven." says E.W.

(Mr. Wonderful and his brother have a beef cattle hobby, a calf died this summer, and recently, they had to "put down" a cow who's back had been broken by a bull...poor thing.)

"Uh, uh." says Miss E. "We know one cow in heaven, and one cow in here (patting her tummy)."


Big A., coming upon a toilet, that had yet to be flushed, "Ugh...who left the kids at the pool?"

Mission: Hot Mom Hair...Accomplished!

I was in a frump. That's the physical version of the emotional, funk.

Yes, atop my head, used to reside a tired bunch of overgrown highlights, split ends and shaggy "nothingness".
But not any more!!

I am now, sportin' "Hot Mom Hair"...and I feel fabulastic, today! Tomorrow (when I'm left to my own styling devices) who knows, but today...look out world!

Mr. Wonderful even came home on his lunch break to take some photos...okay, I'm totally lying...he came home to eat lunch, I bombarded him at the door, shoved the camera in his hands, and dragged him outside...where he made me pretend I was a model ("show me whatcha got, give it to me baby, pout, oh yeah..." and so on and so forth...)

And this, is what I have to show you!

My sorry attempt at the "model pout" (it's okay to laugh, I nearly peed my pants when I saw this one!):

"Oh thank you, Lord, for 'Hot Mom Hair'!!"

Sassy, side view:

And, just plain, ol' me:

Oh, and a side note by me...that cyclops lookin' thing between my eyes? That is the direct result of taking a tweezers to a deep little pimple...think I would've been better off with the tiny little zit, but now I'm stuck with this monster scab. Lesson learned.


Not Me! Monday!

It's that time again! Time to purge yourself of all the things you didn't do this week! Head over to MckMama's and see what other's "haven't" been up to!

I have not been tempted to declare my home a "natural disaster". I mean, you know, if I had the power to make such declarations. And, to be completely honest, it's not so much my home as it is my children's rooms. They are not so beyond the point of no return that the only thing that could save them at this point is a backhoe and a landfill. I do not feel the need to don a life preserver before entering their way!!! Not Me!!

I have not been living in a "sick house"...with a white flag flying outside my home, to announce to mail man, the milk man, the peeping Tom, that is suspected that the H1N1 virus has entered our home. I'm not suspicious that it actually wasn't the swine flu...sigh...and here I thought we were just gonna get it over with. But, no, I wouldn't hope for illness!! Not Me!!

I am not on a mission. I am not, such, a woman on a mission for "Hot Mom Hair" and stylish jeans that I ventured out of quarantine on a quest to find (insert echo-ey voice here): "Hot Mom Hair" that I nearly broke down in tears when every. single. stinkin'. salon wouldn't rearrange their schedules for me on Saturday. I mean, gosh...for some reason "a bride" with a pre-booked appointment took precedence over my whim. No, I am not an unorganized, woman on a mission...uh, uh! Not Me!!

I was not utterly annoyed at my children this morning. My E.W. spent the majority of the morning crying...first he didn't want to wear his Spiderman shirt, "'cuz the sleeves are too puffy (huh? puffy Spidey sleeves? Whoever heard of such a thing?), then, his big bro "took too much" cereal (sheesh, who died and made him the cereal police??), then he found out Miss E. had a tummy ache and was gonna stay home to see what transpires, and you'd've thought we just ripped his arm off. And, Big A., in all his teenage angst, "I don't have anything to wear!" (um, what's that you're wearing, right now?) "I need a home lunch!" (since when do you not like tacos?)...what ever happened to a nice, "I wuv you Mom!" But, no, I do not ever get annoyed with my kiddos! Not Me!

Well, hope you enjoy your week! It's definitely looking to be a chilly one here (today's high's? Not even 50!!!)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The TreeHouse Chronicles--Day 49

Last week I left you with this:

And this week I leave you with this:

Unfortunately, progress has been slow on The TreeHouse this week...okay, not slow...non-existent. Well, unless you count moving the remaining rafters from the garage down to The TreeHouse.

If that's progress, then, by gum, we've had some!

So, while I was hoping to see a TreeHouse with a roof, I'll just settle for gazing upon Mr. Wonderful flexing for the off.

My guess, is that by the next installment of The TreeHouse Chronicles, we'll be seeing a bit more roof action!


Fun stuff!! I'm gonna be sportin' some "Hot Mom Hair" by lunchtime tomorrow!! (Well, I'm not sure where YOU are, so, it might be breakfast or tea time for you, I can't be sure...)

I'm so excited to get rid of this drab, awful length (you know, when it gets to that point where you can't do anything to make it look good?) mop on my head.

Yesterday, whilst on a quest for A. Hot Mom Hair (Failed) and/or B. Hot Mom Jeans (Failed) I was being escorted to a dressing room by a perfectly coiffed, ringlet-ed she doll. I complained, " first mission was to get some cute hair, and that didn't work out!"

She, with a slightly fearful look on her face, eyeing up my disgusting mess of over grown, tired, bedhead, "Um...did...well, um...did you just come from there?"

HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!!!!!! Oh, sweet child..."No, I couldn't get in."


Wise words from Mama M.:

If one decides to wage a d-CON war against the critters in the walls, be prepared for mysterious smells emanating from some non-definable source.

Until tomorrow, my friends...


Fall is in the Air

It's official...

Fall is here!!!

The air is crisp and cool, the leaves are starting to fall (and I hope they take it slow this year, maybe we'll be able to keep up that way!), the sun is shining and the trees are changing colors!

It is one heckuva beautiful day in Minnesota!

What's it like where YOU are?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

My Foray into Canning

I'm a converted city chick...or would it be converted country chick? Well, whatevah...point is, I live in the country and I love it! But I grew up "in town"...hence, "the conversion".

We had a bountiful least in my eyes! We had tomato plants dripping with red fruit, and Mr. Wonderful said, "Let's can it!"

Well...lemme tell ya 'bout canning.

I figure it's like one hates knitting but still does it to put clothes on their back (anymore), right?

Yeah, well, I figure no one hates canning but still does it to put food on their table.

So, our tomatoes that we had "comin' out of the wazoo"...after blanching, cooling, peeling, seeding, quartering...we've got like...a jar. (And, I found out that someone we knew planted 120 tomato plants...we had much for that "wazoo"!)

27 hours after we started (ok, so maybe I'm exaggerating) we've got enough for one meal. Maybe. If we're lucky.

Seriously? Isn't time money? I told my hubby, "This one jar of 'tomato something' is worth like, a hundred bucks at this point, dontchathink?"

Sheesh, I can go to the store, buy myself a nice jar of Prego, come home and whip up a tasty batch of spaghetti in less time and for less money than our one jar of "tomato surprise".


And to think I could've continued on my quest to find a rockin' pair of jeans...or some stylin' Naughty Monkey's.

It's official...I'm not a canner.

Flu Mist vs. Shot

Okay, so I had a couple questions about the swine flu and flu vaccines, and you know...I aim to please...and crazy enough, my bestest, most respected, very own pediatrician was on call last night, and moi?

I picked her brain.

For all y'all. (Sorry, again...I know I'm from MinneSOOOOta, but sometimes I like to pretend I'm a Southern Lady.)

Okay, so my take on the vaccination debate: (and please, please remember, I am just one lowly old mom, who's a nurse...and this is just my lowly old opinion...not advice--geez, always gotta CMA, even when I'm not at work! That CMA bit was for nurses...anyone else know what it means??!!)

Anywho, back to the issue at hand.

Swine flu vaccine, first...jury's out for me still. As far as my fam? Definite no. The only reason I am considering it, is I work with a high risk population...meaning, A. I don't want to infect anybody, and B. I don't want to bring anything home to my fam. Honestly, though? I'm leaning toward not...but we'll see, when it actually comes right down to it.

Pediatrician says (sounds like Family Feud here, "Survey Says!"), basically the same. She says "I'm not always for the latest and greatest." But she's considering it more for herself, since, you know...she works with grimey, germy kiddos all. stinkin'. day.

Wow. Imagine her immune system!

She also said, it's not even certain that there will be enough of the vax for everyone to get it, but that, definitely, high-risk people should get it. And high-risk is mostly anyone with an underlying medical problem, espeically neurologically impaired patients with a decreased ability to cough.

Whew!!! (*Wipes sweat from forehead*) So, there's my thoughts on the H1N1 vax, in a nutshell!

Seasonal flu vax? Yup, gonna do it.

More specifically, I was asked about the "Flu Mist". Here are the thoughts from Mama Flu-ster:

Last year was our first "encounter" with the Flu Mist. Our Miss E. is a medical freakazoid. And I mean that with a capital, FREAKAZOID!!! She was so worked up about a shot I practically had to peel her off the ceiling. Crazy kid, sheesh, you'd think her mom wasn't a nurse or something.

So, we discussed the Flu-Mist...she was a little weirded out about the whole "up your nose" gig, but, in the end...was all, "I'm gonna do that all the time, mama!! Yeah, I'm gonna do that!! That was soooo easy!"

Piece of, I thought, "heck, I'll save the others the shot strife, too"!! Well, Big A. opted to go for the shot (what the!!!) and regretted it, wished he'd gone for the mist, E.W. took the mist like a man and didn't say boo about it.

Little A. and Tiny Girl were too...well, little and tiny to get the mist...well, that's not entirely accurate...we were advised that "the little kids tolerate the shot better, they get a little weirded out by the squirt up the nose" we listened and "shotted" Little A., but, Tiny Girl really was too little to get it (don't quote me, but I think the "required" age is over 2...or maybe 3?)

This year? Flu Mist all around ('cept T.G., who's still too tiny).

Pediatrician's take on it? She herself doesn't appreciate the squirt up the nose, so she's goin' the shot route, but takes the Mist home for her fam.


She says that there are some studies that show your protection from the Mist is greater...since it is a live virus.

Now, the "live virus" deal creeps some people out.

But, it's a weakened live virus, some people get mild flu-like symptoms from it, others feel nothing at all. My kids? Not a prob, never knew anything happened to ' sore arm to complain of and no crummy side effects.

A co-worker said she had a bit of a runny nose, but that's it.

Me? After a nerve in my arm complained loud and clear last year that it didn't appreciate someone coming so close to it with a needle (and, let me remind you...I'm no wimp!! I've birthed five babe's au naturale, so I know what "real" pain is!!! And dagnabit, that hurt!)...I'm definitely gonna go for the Mist...and, tell you what...

I'm gonna try to get it the next time I'm at work, then, I can give you all an update on what:
A. It feels like
B. What my side effects are

I'll volunteer myself to be your own personal little Flu Mist Guinea pig. How's that? Sheesh, sometimes, my generosity overwhelms even me. So, I'll update you on what's goin' down in Flu Mist-ville...that is, if I remember to get it before my next shift (I'll try my hardest, I promise!)!!

And, since I'm honestly a wee bit tuckered out from all the swine flu for the updates to come via Twitter (but it won't be for sure until Wed!!)!

And, since I had this all tappity tapped out prior to the whole "suspected" H1N1 case in my home, here's an update on Little A...if this is H1N1 (I'm no longer convinced it is) it sure is mild...he's already better!! That's why I'm not conviced...he should be "sicker" than running around and complaining "but, I'm sick!!" when he's asked to put the clean silverware away! Just sayin'.

Signing out,

Your Flu Mist Lab specimen,

Friday, September 25, 2009

Five Question Friday!

TGIF!!! And here in MinneSOOOTA, it looks like a beautiful one!

Quick run down of the rules...copy and paste the following questions to your blog, answer them, grab the MckLinky BlogHop code and link up! I'd also be very grateful, appreciative, forever indebted, honored, etc...if you'd link back to me, Mama M.! Oh, and if you don't have a blog, but want to join in, just leave me your answers in my comments!

September 25th Questions: Thanks to Keely for inspiration and Liz...I really wanted to use a question Amanda suggested...but decided it was a little too risque!

1. What celebrity have you been told you look like?

2. What is your all time favorite movie, any special reason why?

3. Since we're talkin' movies...Popcorn: overrated, underrated, or 'bout right?

4. Are you a glass half empty or half full kinda person?

5. What perfume/cologne do you wear?


1. What celebrity have you been told you look like?

Oh, I always get mistaken for either, Heidi Klum or Giselle Bundchen...always. Okay, yeah, right!! It'd be more like Roseann Barr or Rosie O'Dell (but much sweeter!), in reality, I've been told I look like Reece Witherspoon (don't see it, but thank you!), Darryl Hannah (again, don't see it, but thank you!) and Kristen Chenowith (sp??)...but was told by that person, I more "remind" her of Kristen she knew her in person or something!

2. What is your all time favorite movie, any special reason why?

Well, my all time favorite movie is probably Hope Floats...the story behind it reminds me of my hubby and I: city girl meets country boy and they fall happily, madly, deeply in love. *Sigh*

Remember the Last Boy Scout? With Bruce Willis and Damon Wayans (or one of his bros, can't really remember)...that was my favorite for many, many years...I think I watched it somewhere around 25-30 times. Weird, I know.

3. Since we're talkin' movies...Popcorn: overrated, underrated, or 'bout right?

Hmmmm...overall, I'd say it's overrated. The only popcorn I really like is Orville Redenbacher's Tender White. Everything else is too artificially buttery for my sensitive taste buds!

4. Are you a glass half empty or half full kinda person?

In general, I'd say I'm definitely a half full gal! I am optimistic and I always try to see the best (try is the key word) in people or situations! However...I've always wondered about that question, "Well, did someone just drink it? (Half empty) or Did someone just pour it? (Half full)" Noone ever answers that question for me!

5. What perfume/cologne do you wear?

I am a Lovely girl! I love Lovely (SJP's perfume), but I don't really feel it's mine, per bestie, Tara, introduced me to it, and I've always felt I'm wearing her perfume when I have it on. I also like Vera Wang's Princess or Rock Princess, but I don't own any! Gotta use up my Lovely, first!

Now, it's time for you to link up!

MckLinky Blog Hop

Thursday, September 24, 2009

More on the Swine Flu

Think that, maybe, I shoulda wished for a million dollars, instead of an early(ish) case of the swine flu.

It appears as tho' my swine flu wish has been granted...not that I really wanted my kiddos to get sick, in actuality, I was just hopin' to sail through the flu season without a scratch...or a sneeze, actually.

Literally, just a couple of hours after I picked our pediatrician's brain at work (she happened to be on call), I came home to discover Little A. had a bit of a cough.

Didn't really think much of it, until this morning, when he climbed in bed with us...burning hot.

When we woke for the day, I took his temp...102.4. Hmmm..."Little A., do you hurt anywhere?"

Little A., "No...but my face hurts", as he's rubbing his forehead. "And my tummy hurts, and my legs hurt." So much for the "confirmative" no, he first gave me.

A call to the clinic, a visit with our "swine flu guru" (luck of the draw...we just happened to get to see him!!)...and, we came away with a diagnosis of "suspected H1N1".

His influenza swab came back negative...which, as you know from this post, is only 50% accurate...i.e. the influenza swab has a 50% false negative rate for diagnosing H1N1.

He met the criteria of the CDC and MDH (MN Dept. of Health) for treatment...he had all of the symptoms and was less than 5 years of age, and so he gets the coveted TamiFlu.

I did get some great info from Dr. Swine Flu Guru (I did refer to him as that...he smiled...), and now, I will share it with you. (Aside by me...I was advised to put a disclaimer on my blog about medical information vs. medical advice...please see my left sidebar!!)

So, pandemic. H1N1 got the label because of the speed with which it spread throughout the world and, also, because it "didn't act like a typical virus"...i.e, it didn't go away. There were H1N1 cases throughout the summer, when, typically the flu virus goes away. In the past (and I forget which year Dr. Guru told me the last flu pandemic was) when a virus made it around the world and back, it was usually much stronger than when it had started, and herein lies the "fear" of the H1N1.

Dr. Guru told me that "they" are finding that it is a much more mild virus than what "they" were originally expecting, phew!! But, there is still a big risk for people with underlying medical conditions.

My opinion about "getting it now, and getting it over" was supported by him...he verified that since Little A. has it now, he will have good immunity to it, should it strengthen. That made me feel a little less guilty for my wishful thinking yesterday.

Here I was, all prepared to post on my opinion of the flu vaccines, when this happened! I will still post that one, but thought I'd give you a little update, disease-wise!

I leave you now, to go encourage fluids to a certain little man I know...

The Piggy 500

All the talk about swine, reminded me of something...

Ever wonder what we, permafrosted, people up here in MinneSOOOOta do for fun? I mean, you know, when we aren't cooking hot dishes and saying things like "dontchaknow" and "ya, sure, youbetcha"?

You're gonna be so envious when I tell you about our fun, that MinneSOOOOta just might see an influx of new residents.


Okay, (sheesh, I sound like a cheerleader, "Ready? Okay!!"...) so, we head up to this teeny, tiny town called Leader (seriously, teeny itsy bitsy)...a town so small you could easily drive right past, none the wiser, never knowing you're missing out on gobs of fun.


And, well, I'm being slightly sarcastic...'cuz, it turns out, for all of my eye rolling, scoffing, and joke making, I really did enjoy myself!

It's the Leader Pig Races!!

Please, PETA, please...calm down. I promise, the pigs are treated very well. We cheer really loudly for them and they get donuts when they finish and sometimes they even get a little of the MC's Gatorade. The MC who channels Garth Brooks, what with his dancing around and singing along to the country music. (That's the MC in the bottom right, in case you were dying to know.)

Sometimes, I even get out my lighter and throw out a "I LOVE YOU MC"!!! Ahem...not really.

Turns out, it's more about the "intermissions" of the pig races that are the most fun. Kids scrambling for cash (see above photo), hoola hoop contests, lot's of bead throwing (and, no...that's not how you get them...I totally know what you are thinking!), grown men racing on bouncy horses. It's a blast. A humiliating, jokefest of a blast!

Here's Mr. Wonderful beginning a bouncy horse race...and he won!! (And isn't he a doll with that backwards hat? Needed to be backwards...aerodynamics, dontchaknow. But, nonetheless, it sets my heart all a flutter. *Sigh*...mmmmm, I love that guy!)

Oh, and a sack race for the kiddos!! All replete with prizes! And when I say replete, I could mean complete...I can't be sure.

It's hog heaven, I tell ya...hog heaven!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sweet Reminder

You know what?

I really love my mama.

I was talking to her on the phone today, when I (frustratedly) said, "*sigh*, I've gotta go." I was holding a melting baby, the older boys were supposed to be cleaning their room, but appeared to be engaged in WW III, instead.

And my mama says, "I just heard something that I thought was nice...'When you have small children, the days may seem long...but the years go fast'."

Excuse me now, while I go hug my babies and dry my eyes.

Swine Flu--My Take

Nurses are germophobes, right?

Nope, not me.

I tend to be "mellowdramatic" (and yes, I meant to spell it that way!!) as opposed to "uberdramatic"...which is, perhaps, why I'm takin' this whole "swine flu" thing with a grain of salt.

Want my opinion?

Hmmm...well, if you don' not proceed!! Do not pass Go!!

So, the swine flu...medically, officially, known as the "H1N1" virus. Know what I think? I think it should be called the "bullcrap" virus.

'Cuz that's what I think it is.

Remember the Lyme's Disease scare? Overrated.

Remember the West Nile, mosquito bite encephalitis scare? Overrated.

Remember the Bird Flu scare? Really overrated.

Did you know that approximately 36,000 people die from the regular old seasonal flu every year?

Know how many have died from the swine flu? 477, according to this site.

I talk with the doctors at work, asking their opinion of the swine flu, know what they say? Well, actually, they don't say much, other than, "It's the flu!!" accompanied by a *scoff* and an eye roll.

Now, I'm not much of a conspiracy theorist, but rumor has it that the media is making more of this flu due to our national healthcare debate (remember this post?) there's somethin' to chew on!

I am curious, tho', why the heck this darn flu is getting so much dang attention? A pandemic, they say? Versus an epidemic?

Well, correct me if I'm wrong, but the seasonal flu isn't limited to the US or a small geographical region or population, is it? Perhaps I'm mistaken, but I believe the seasonal flu is world wide, no?

And, yet, the seasonal flu is referred to as an "epidemic", while the swine flu is a "pandemic"...I don't get it.

However, now...with all of that said...will I get the H1N1 vaccine? I dunno. I'm torn, 'cuz at work it is "highly recommended"...but out of principle of how I feel about the H1N1 flu, I don't really want to. We are not a "high risk" family, no one pregnant (phew!!), no children with underlying medical/neurological conditions, no one with a chronic illness...our Tiny Girl falls into a high risk category because of her age, but even with that, I feel that her risk is minimal...she goes to a small daycare (and by small, I mean a family friend watches our kids along with hers...that's it).

Honestly? The regular flu scares me more than the H1N1, and for that, we are in the process of getting vaccinated.

And know what else? I think my E.W. had it, as in the swine flu, this summer! Remember his illness? (Check it out here, here, or here if you'd like...)...all the symptoms, 'cept way back then, they ruled it out with a negative influenza A. Turns out, now, that may not have been entirely accurate with that assumption!

Our healthsystem's pediatrician "swine flu guru" recently returned from the CDC in Atlanta...newest news? A negative influenza A is only 50% accurate for diagnosing H1N1!

Confused? Well, as early as this summer, if you were tested for influenza A and B, and A came back positive, they would sent it to the CDC for further culturing for the H1N1, a negative influenza A was considered to also be a negative H1N1...but now that's only been found to be 50% accurate.

Yeah, I totally think he had it! (Interestingly enough, one of the pediatricians who treated him, told me later that there were "several" cases similar to his in the following couple of weeks...interesting.) "So, why didn't everyone else get it?" is what dear old Gram asked, "you know, since it's so contagious."

Well, maybe, perhaps, it's not as contagious as it is portrayed to be. And that is totally, hypothetically, completely my opinion. Entirely. And, please, don't take me for an expert!

I'm just one mama, who happens to be a nurse, who happens to be a bit of a skeptic about the bullcrap virus swine flu.

And, that, my friends, is "My Take" on the swine flu!

Stay healthy, wash your hands, cover your mouth and stay home if you think you have it. Unless, of course:

A. You can't breathe
B. You can't breathe

In which case, you have my permission to go to the ER!! ;)

So, what's YOUR take on the swine flu?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Mr. Wonderful often comes home with uber exciting stories (aside by me...I really wish I could put those two cute little dots above the u in uber, you know?)...exciting stories, that he, inadvertently leaves me hanging with!

You know, he is a huge Rocky fan, and Sylvester Stallone (who, by the way, I'm kinda sorta, maybe a little bit, distantly related to by marriage...really!!) stars in Cliffhanger, so maybe the Mister is trying to channel a bit of old Sly...*snort*...or not.

First, it was this story,

His brother and sister-in-law took their 6 children and teenage niece to our state fair. Teenage niece got separated with the three youngest children, one of whom is, um, well...let's just call him, intense. BIL went one way, SIL went another and things went down hill from there.

Intense was not quite acting, well, as intensely as he usually does, the baby was freaking out, and teenage niece was desperate for some parental help. Finally found my SIL who, (and now I will use quotes from Mr. Wonderful), "realized Intense was almost having a seizure" (um...huh?)..."so they took him to the First Aid booth where they said he needed to go to the hospital. But they had to go without BIL, 'cuz they couldn't find him and they only, finally, got ahold of him after they had been at the hospital for awhile!"

Me, "Ohmygosh!!! Is he okay? What was wrong with him? Did he have a seizure? Did he have to stay in the hospital?"

The Mister, "Um, I dunno."

Me, "WHAT!!! Well, didn't you ask questions? What the heck!!!"

He, "Um, I dunno?"

Sheesh...never did find out the ending to that one.

Next story,

Different brother and SIL of The Mister's had a preemie this summer. 31 weeker, did great, home by about 5 weeks. Gettin' a bit of a funky head, tho'.

My MIL nominated herself to break the news to the blissful new parents, and, here is the story I was told,

"So, mom starts out by telling a story, to break the ice a bit, about so and so's baby and it's crooked head." SIL listens intently, asking questions about so and so's baby, when BIL interjects, "WAIT!!! Stop...go back! What the matter with Preemie?"

You see, he's onto his mom by this point and sees right through her icebreaker story.

The Mister, "So, SIL has an appointment and she calls to get Preemie seen at the same time, to make sure there's no pressure on his brain, or anything."

...(silence, crickets chirping...)...Me, "Um, so what'd the doctor say?"

The Mister, "Um, I dunno."

Me, "WHAT!!!!???? Well, didn't you ask? Does he hafta see a plastic surgeon?"

The Mister, "Um, they have to see a plastic surgeon?"

Me, "I dunno!!! You're the one telling the story!"

You see?

He always leaves me hangin'! Pushes me up the cliff, huffin' and puffin', carabiners, rock pickers (or whatever rockclimbers use) then just leaves me dangle!

From now on, when he starts, I think I'm gonna ask,

"Does this story have an ending?"

A Lesson in Tie-Dying

Howdy! Well, I survived the tie-dying party, and after asking around for tips, I thought I'd throw out my, that is.

First things first, never, ever throw a tie-dye party for 7 eight year old girls, plus two little tag-along boys all by yourself. Ever.

Case in point:

"How do we...", "But how will it...", "Mama, can you put...", "I wanna go first...", "No I wanna go first...", "Mama can you put this...", "I'm gonna have the prettiest one...", "No, mine's gonna be the best...", "Mama can you put this on..." and so on and so forth (and, poor Little A., he finally just gave up with trying to get his "safety shirt" on...threw his arms up in the air and said, "the hell with it"...well, not really, but I know that's what he was thinkin'.).

Okay, back to business...Step #1, The Supplies:
Go to your nearest (large) craft store and buy yourself a "high quality" tie-dye was recommended to me to use Jacquard (this kit has everything in it...'cept enough gloves). Then go out and buy a bazillion more gloves. And a big bucket. And don't forget the shirts or the pillowcases or the underwear you plan to tie-dye. Set it up all nice and neat and pretty, so the ungrateful little snits the little darlings will appreciate it more.

Step #2, The Support:
Take a little nip of this:

Step #3, The Process:
Soak the shirts in soda ash for at least 20 minutes, this does something or other to the shirts to help set the dye. (And this is where your big bucket comes into play)

While the shirts soak, put on your best teacher voice and instruct the kids on tie-dying technique (explained in aforementioned kit), emphasizing the fact that the dye is in never coming out...put the fear of God in them if you have to (I worked)...and tell them they must put on a safety shirt and there is no...and I mean NO squirting the dye anywhere but on their shirt to die.

Step #4, Further Support:
Repeat Step #2

Step #5, More of the Process:
Please, don't forget to impress upon the children that it is imperative to "stay within the rubberband boundaries"...lest they get a brownish blackish oddly hued shirt, not that, you know, I'd forget to tell them that. I'm just sayin', is all. Ahem...

Then, proceed to attempt to kind of, in some sort of way, pay attention to the going on's around you...which is why I have no photos of the actual dying. Of the shirts. No one died, although, I kinda wanted to...

Step #6, Stress Relief:
Repeat Step #2, again...optional.

Step #7, The End:
After shirts are sufficiently soaked, drenched, annihilated, throw 'em all in plastic bags to "soak" for 24 hours.

Step #8, The Mess:
I had already begun a weary clean-up when I finally thought to take a picture, so this is what you get:
In reality, it looked like a tornado had passed through, gloves, rubber bands, dye bottles all strewn haphazardly about...sigh...makes me tired just thinkin' about it.

Step #9, The Next Day:
Take a few ibuprofen to get rid of your throbbing headache (from the booze or the party, who can be sure?)...then, rinse the soaked shirts in cold water, until the water runs clear.

Then, hang 'em up to air dry, and wash (with darks or alone in cold water)...and voila...a masterpiece (and one heck of a hangover!!)!

The end.

Okay, I'm totally really wasn't that bad! At all! And, honestly, I would do it again, 'cept this time, I'd have one more adult, and I wouldn't forget to tell them to "stay within the rubber bands" willy nilly color meshing allowed...or something.

Nor did I drink tequila, you see, me and Jose don't get along well, so I don't really recommend it!

Tie-dying was a great time killer! After we finished, I felt like we had to hurry up to fit everything else in that I had planned.

Like the pinata:

And the presents:

And the cake:

And then? It was time to go.

Buh-bye little eight year old girls...buh-bye.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Loser Me...

Ugh...I'm such a loser. A while back (probably like, 12 years ago) Keely gifted me with an Honest Scrap award...and I, the ungrateful little ninny that I am, have forgotten and forgotten and then remembered at the most inopportune times (like when I'm getting my teeth cleaned) that I have yet to thank her! I'm sorry. Please forgive me!!

Thank You, Keely!!!!! I appreciate you thinkin' I'm "honestly scrappy" enough to deserve an award!! (P.S--I love this award...think it's pretty hilarious, what with it's clever play on words!!)

I was awared this by Lucy and Ethel a while back, and like the slacker I am, I only sorta completed my "requirements", so I guess I'll finish my 10 honest things about myself (I originally did 5) they are:

1. I hate black olives...but have discovered a fabulous new use for their disgustingness...they make fabulastic (that's my new word) fruit fly bait! You're welcome.

2. I hate cleaning floors, but I love clean floors...and therein lies my problem.

3. I drive a minivan...and I love it!!! I couldn't see any other mode of transportation for myself...minivans are HOT!!

4. I have a canker sore, and it's making me cranky...I can't eat my body weight in candy anymore 'cuz it makes it hurt. Oh, woe is me.

5. I'm feeling domestic, and the Mr. and I are gonna try to can some tomatoes. Wish us luck, I've never canned anything in my life...ever. Much less more tomatoes than I've ever, ever seen...they're coming out of the wa-zoo!!!

Thanks again, Keely!

Not Me! Monday

I've been on a Not Me! Monday hiatus...a sabbatical. But, I'm back in the saddle today! Check it out, over at MckMama's place, and find some more Not Me! Mondayers!!

I did not lose my mind...certifiably, or uncertifiably, and decide to have a "tie-dye" birthday party for my eight year old daughter. Miss E. and her 6 friends did not nearly drive me to the nut house...nearly. Tie-dye? Great fun...but 7 eight year old girls? I did not find myself utterly annoyed with the majority of the children in attendance...oh, no, Not Me! Miss Patience herself!

I did not whip up a batch of salsa so yummy, I impressed even myself! Our garden is not overflowing with tomatoes, and I am so unsure of what to do with said tomatoes that I just did not throw it together. Me, Martha Stewart? No, not me!!

Tiny girl enjoys asserting her independence, verbally and physically. She roams the house like it's nobody's business. I did not, find myself asking Mr. Wonderful many times over the weekend, "Where's Tiny Girl?"...only to find her gazing out the door in the shop, or in her room, or in her brother's room, or in our room...uh, uh...I always know where my children are...every. single. minute.

Happy Not Me! Monday, friends! Hope you enjoy!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

The TreeHouse Chronicles--Day 42

Wait no longer, breathe a sigh of relief...ahhhhhhhh...this week's "The TreeHouse Chronicles" is here! (I know, you've been waiting, and waiting...haven't you? Ahem.)

This week's progress saw more action on the ground than up in Treeville. Mr. Wonderful, ignoring my advice to "just slap two pieces of wood together" for the rafters, built his own dang rafters. From scratch. No help. No fancy mathematical equations. But something 'bout "Plumb Bob"...who the heck is "Plumb Bob" and why does he get such a fun name?
If I'm to be totally honest with you, I have to say I'm quite impressed...I didn't know my man had it in him to be so crafty and handy. And now that I know...he can rest assured that I've got gobs of jobs he could cupboards, kitchen remodel...that picnic table I've been wanting for three Mother's Days now. Oh, yeah...he's proven himself.

And Big A.? He's a darn good rafter holder hammerer nailer. Darn good. Although, he looks pretty chilaxed in this next pic, dontcha think?

Well, anywho...two rafters up, square, level, plumb (thanks to that darn Bob), flush, and "right on the nuts", I'm sure!

Will we see a roof next week? I sure hope so, not quite sure who's gonna shingle it tho, what with it's nearly 90 degree peak...think we'll draw straws for that one.


In other, yummy news...Miss E. had her second (and final) birthday celebration tonight.

Her meal choice? Tacos.

Our garden? Abundant with tomatoes that I really don't know what to do with.

So, I made salsa.

And, I hafta turned out yummo!! Want the recipe?

Oh, you don't?

Sorry, I'm giving it to you anyway...and just so you know...I am a quick and easy kinda girl (ummmm...that didn't sound quite right)...what I mean is, I love to cook, but it's gotta be quick, and it's gotta be easy...'cuz I hate "putzy"!!

Mama M's Salsa:

5-8 small-large tomatoes (sorry, no exact measurements here! And, please forgive the poor, flashy photo...natural light is hard to comeby in our kitchen. And, just so you started out "pico-ish" and as it, got juicier!)

1/2 large onion

3 small jalapenos

Very small dash of sugar

Couple pinches of kosher salt

A hearty handful of cilantro

Juice of 1/2 a lime

Seed and chop the tomatoes, and the jalapeno...dice the onion. Chop the cilantro (or dice or mince or whatever it is you do to herbs). Mix in a bowl. Add the salt and sugar and lime and a little love, too, if you wish. Serve with chips and enjoy!

It was a big hit...'specially with the Mister.


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