Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Just Call Me Rainbow Brite

Last weekend we went to Crocker Park. For those that don't know what Crocker Park is, think upscale-ish, outdoor shopping mall, with decent restaurants, in a nice area. We like to go there every so often. It's a small change of pace for us.

Being winter, I was quite bundled up. Being me, I was wearing brighter colors. To put it in perspective....I had my longer green wool coat on, my orange purse, multi-colored scarf, and a multicolored handmade hat from my grandma (that I love!) I didn't think much of my outfit. I liked it, it was "me," whatever.

But, no surprise, others didn't dig my style. Here's the story.......we're at Crocker Park, David and I separate from each other to shop, I see him a bit later, and try to catch up to him with a slight jog. In the process I pass two high school age boys. They bust out laughing and start making rude comments basically on the lines of my brightness and color coordination. What?! This is the shit I dealt with all through my school days. Are we still in high school? Oh wait! Yes, they still are in high school school. It took a lot in my to not stop and say something. But wanting to meet up with David I passed on the opportunity.

However, if I could/would have said something I would have said, "You can walk your little hoity toity punk ass selves into your cookie cutter Abercrombie where YOU don't choose what to wear....They do. Go ahead. Don't be an individual. Just be a number, like everyone else."

How I'm perceived by others, whether it's through my fashion, or anything else, is a constant mental battle I've had my entire life. It can tear down your self esteem. I remember vividly walking home in the 5th grade being made fun of by a 4th and 2nd grader for wearing a beret. They were younger than me but I was crushed. Later in junior high, although I was part of the "in" crowd, someone from the "in" crowd called me weird. I still had my circle of friends, but I can say that was the point where my alienation from the "in" crowd began. Not only was I hurt, but I found that I didn't need them. It's not that I strive to be different than others. I'm just "me" and it just happens, more times than not, that I'm different than those around me.

You know what? I don't have much fashion sense. However, I do know that I have always been, and will always be my own personal self. No one will take that away from me.

As for those high school kids at Crocker Park. All I'll say is, "Karma's a bitch."

Monday, December 28, 2009

Memory Lane

Mom's Christmas gift to family members

Memory Lane from Heidi Henry on Vimeo.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Tortoise Table Revealed

The majority of the holidays are over (other than New Years) and as expected, I've survived. Actually the holidays went VERY well and were quite enjoyable. In addition to that, my mind and body have calmed since my last post. Whew. After talking to David we brainstormed and compromised on a setup for our "cat room" (I think it's about time we changed the name, eh?) AKA pet room. The tortoise table has been revamped to be higher sided and Elwood's (the frog) enclosure is now located within the tortoise table. I knew it would all work out, but man, this this is quite awesome.

Basically, it was a table that was previously used for displays. Unfortunately (or fortunately for us) it was no longer being used. David spoke with a few people and bada boom, bada bing, it was ours. It has a steel base that's almost desk-like that has adjustable feet....excellent for on uneven hardwood floors. It's solidly built with wooden bottom and sides. Then, within that there's thick, sealed plexiglass. As I stated, David attached additional wood and added fence to the top for a "lid." It's just about done. I'd like to paint it at some point, but not right now....maybe a spring project. So without further ado, here are a few pictures.....

The table as it came to us....
This plexiglass within the table....
Built up sides....
A look inside....
David watching the tortoises....

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sensory Overload

I'm worried I'm in sensory overload and the holiday festivities haven't really even started.

Yesterday was a long day at work. Not busy long, but cleaning long. I was on my hands and knees almost all day dusting, vacuuming, cleaning closets, scrubbing baseboards.....the list goes on. I then went on the clean the 'rents bathrooms out of love. By the time I got home at 7:45pm I was tired. Then I started receiving some texts requesting my presence at a family get together. I figured, "why not?" I did a quick change of clothes and took off. I had a good time and enjoyed the company of my extended family. With that being said, it was a loud atmosphere and I left with a scratchy throat. My senses were heightened, but I was ok.

I then arrived home to big changes at our house. David had been eyeing a table at work that would work as an excellent tortoise table. He saw that it wasn't being used, asked around, and found that it could be ours. He was thrilled. I was thrilled. Until I saw it. It's huge. Ultimately it will be excellent for our tortoises (Yes, we now have two. There's more to that story. Too much to discuss here.) It's well built, probably worth more than we know and we'll save time and money by reusing it in some other way than it was originally meant for. However, it screws with the dynamic of our Bright Cat Room we recently remodeled this summer. I'm not necessarily into feng shui, but if I was, this isn't jiving. My surrounding have to feel "right." After my senses were already heightened, they elevated many more notches.

As time went on I could feel my anxiety rise. I tried to take a step back, get it in check. Unfortunately, I'm not always that good. I can't describe the experience I go through when this happens. My normal emotions usually go something like this.....I want to scream, then cry, then vomit, then clean, and then purge stuff from my surroundings. I've found that if I don't feel I have control over a situation, I gain control through cleaning. I basically feel like a cat with FIC right now. Yes, the disorder our cat has. When they stress out, they manifest their stress in the bladder, feeling like they constantly have to urinate. Obviously, I don't feel like I have to urinate, but I sympathize with the guy when he has an episode of FIC. Let's hope this table doesn't set off an episode for him!

So, David was expecting to share his joy with me and what he got was a buzzkill. Sometimes I suck. We sat and discussed for a good hour or so how we're going to make this new setup work. Or better yet, work the tortoise table into the room, making a new setup, that will work. More than likely we won't be able to use some furniture pieces that we were using before. I do know this, over the past year I've tried to de-clutter the house. And I'm going to try my hardest to keep it that way. It's going to take some innovation to make this room work. Obviously we went to bed with our house in disarray.

I went to bed exhausted but with my mind racing and my anxiety continued to my dreams. Dreaming about Dormitor/Torb combos (don't ask) for work, anesthetizing and performing glucose curves on animals, worrying that we're not going to make it to the family gathering because we're making an impromptu trip to Minnesota...all the while waking up every half hour, sweating my butt off. Needless to say I didn't wake up well rested. Not only that, but I woke up to a house in disarray. Why couldn't it all have been fixed while we slept overnight?

I'm excited about our family gathering today, but I can't help but think about the general stressors that come with times with family over the holidays. You know it's usually a good time, but you'll ultimately have those moments of stress.

Trying to put these feelings into words seemed impossible to me. I could see it in my head, but knew that it would translate different if I wrote it out. But I do know I feel better than you can imagine just sitting down to write it out. I'm thankful for that. Because, although I don't usually drink, at 5:30am and I was tempted to take a few sips to take that edge off. No joke. I think this was a better choice.

Hoping that my this sensory overload continues to ebb and that joy reigns over the next few days....

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Cassidy's Christmas Program

Earlier this week we attended Cassidy's 5th Grade Christmas Program. I have a few short videos of songs she sang. If you click on this link you can see the others, but here is one of them.

The Skinny

A couple months ago I broke down and got a couple "skinny" jeans. We all know these jeans don't make you skinny, they are just straight-legged. I didn't know if I could pull them off but figured that it's the way fashion is going. Not that I'm even close to being a fashionista, but I have to go with the flow given that the things I like won't always be around when fashion trends change.

I have always been a 100% cotton jean type of girl. They are comfy, super soft, and not too clingy. Well, when I took the skinny jean jump, I had to sacrifice my 100% cotton wants and give into the polyester, spandex, and other fabrics involved in the skinny jeans. I started wearing them and found that surprisingly, they were very comfortable. I couldn't believe it.

It's been weeks since I've worn "regular" jeans. I decided to go the more relaxed, sport look today and went back to the regular 100% cotton jeans. Yikes. I couldn't believe it. Could it be that my skinny jeans are more comfortable than my regulars? Mind you, I'm not as thin as I was a year or two ago, and the regulars are smaller in side, so I have to take that into consideration. However, with 100% cotton jeans, no matter how I wash the jeans, I would go through the stretch out phase. I'm sure everyone knows what I'm talking about. When you put them on you have to do a few squats and lunges to stretch them out, and by the end of the day they are oftentimes so loose they are falling off. I don't have that with my skinny jeans. I put them on and they are comfortable.

I'm glad I gave the skinny jeans a try. I don't know if my body was made for the skinny jean revolution, but they comfortable, and as long as I'm comfortable, I'm good to go.

To Blog Or Not To Blog

I know as time goes on I write on this blog less and less. What's the deal? Hmmm. In a nutshell, with the increase in Facebook usage, along with Twitter, there's almost no need. On the other hand I feel I have a lot to say, but dunno how to put it into words. That, or I'll have a post idea, and then forget about it when I sit down to write. Bah. So, in the end, my choice is to continue on this blog, but I can't guarantee how often I'll post.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Jax Likes The Christmas Creation

I was folding clothes a few minutes ago and I caught Jax out of the corner of my eye.....he was checking out the Christmas Creation. I shooed him away. Within a few minutes he was back by the Christmas Creation. This time, climbing in. Him, along with Lily have always loved laying under the Christmas tree. Now that we've taken away the tree, I guess he figures, "If I can't lay underneath it, I'll lay in it." I swear, if it's not one thing it's the other with these kids and their antics. Although, it was cute.
And a cute picture of Natchez

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Our Christmas Tree Creation

When we first got married we got excited for decorating for Christmas. We bought an artificial tree and hung my MANY collectible Hallmark ornaments on the tree yearly. We didn't have too many problems given Viking was the only pet. Although we did have an episode where an ornament hook was missing and I freaked out. Thankfully, I found the hook after searching. Year after year we'd put our tree addition, our family grew. The dogs tend to leave the tree alone. The cats, well that's another story. They don't want to climb the tree, they don't like to chew the cords, but they do like to chew on the branches, especially Natchez. We've never had any huge problems with her chewing on the tree, other than it making the tree have frayed edges.

When we moved back to our hometown we kicked up our decorating another notch. It was the first time we could really decorate outside, and we took advantage of it. We had big plans on adding more lights, etc. on a yearly basis. Unfortunately, or fortunately, our enthusiasm quickly burned out. Not wanting to hang lights in the frigid weather, trying to time them correctly, trying to find places to store everything, and just the idea of trying to simplify encouraged us to take a step back. Not only have we taken a step back with our decorating outside, but also inside.

We have continued to put up a tree, but decided to put up our pre-lit tree every year. No ornaments, no garland. We did the same this year, but Natchez decided to chew nonstop on the tree. Not only was she chewing, but also giving us many presents of vomit randomly around the house. Not cool. So the tree was evicted to our enclosed porch. But that left us without a tree and the grand idea of creating our own.

One thing David and I do, we have these excellent ideas in our head, that don't translate well in real life. This situation was no different. We purchased our supplies and dug in. Our idea was a tee pee type design. However, as I stated, if didn't work out very well. David was quoted saying, "Man, I give those Native Americans credit. I would've said, 'Screw this!'"After hours of hassle, we tabled the design last night. We woke up bright and early this morning and headed to the hardware store. We brainstormed a bit and ultimately ended up with the same type of design with minor tweaks and stronger materials. Thankfully, it worked! This is our result....

I know it may not be to everyone's taste, but we really like it. It's bright, it's different, it's what we wanted, it's Us.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

One Month On Phenobarb

Quick update on Spencer: He's been on the phenobarb one month. I must admit we were getting worried for a bit there. He couldn't make it up the steps on his own without falling, so David was having to carry him up to bed every night. Of course David can easily carry him, but at 83 pounds, that's a little rough on me. He was in a a generalized fog and would crash (as in sleep) one hour post pill. Thankfully, he's evened out and seems to be doing excellent. He's still on the medication but is back to his old self. Knock on wood, no seizures either.

Freeze, Burn, Scrape, Tape

Back in the day, we're talking elementary school-times, I suffered from warts on my hands. Those little boogers were on both hands, averaging one on a finger. Andrea also suffered from them. We went through every treatment out there. Compound W, freezing, burning, scraping and applying straight acid. You named it, we tried it. Then our doctor gave us the idea of taping my fingers. He had just gone to a seminar and that was the "newest treatment." At that point we figured, what the heck, we'd try it. So we taped, and taped, and taped. We just used medical tape and changed it daily or every other day. The tape would get wet, feel nasty, dry a bit, and still feel nasty. My fingers got pruny and smelly, whew, were they smelly. I can't remember how long we did it, but it worked!

Fast forward 15+ years....last year I noticed something popping up on my finger. I could only guess that it'd be a wart. I didn't worry about it, but then little accessory warts started to pop up. On top of that, the initial, largest wart was right on my knuckle and would crack if it would become too try. I tried the Compound W and as expected, it didn't work. Onto the tape. No go. I don't know if it was because it was a different tape or what. My finger reacted to the tape and started pulling off good skin. In addition, I was my hands much more than I did when I was a kid. That's rough on the tape. So I gave in a went to the dermatologist.

Yep, they're warts. So......we tried to freeze them today. The plan is that it should blister up then I'll go back for another round in 2 weeks. If that doesn't work then I'll have to go to having injections of yeast into the wart. Hopefully the freezing works this time since they injections will take much longer, I'm sure they're not all that pleasant, and can only guess they'll be expensive. No surprise, but my finger has been burning for he past 2 hours after the freezing. I'm really looking forward to the blister. She said it may even get big enough to pop! Yes!

Here's a pic of my present finger. Please excuse the quality. Try taking a picture, with your left hand, on a right-handed camera. Little hard. The focus isn't great, obviously, so it's hard to see them, but you get the gist

And just because my left hand felt left out since it didn't have it's picture taken, I took it's picture.
I think it's safe to say that I will never be a hand model. Like those 4 week old battle wound scars? I'm tough.