Monday, April 30, 2007

It's a date!

We've got a date for the embryo transfer! I'll start my injectable medications on May 20th and then the transfer will be June 7th (give or take a few days). Now it's really, really for real.


I deserve it

The pills are continuing to make a giant crabby crab. There have been a couple of positives over the past few days.

1. I managed to complete 30/30 (even though I failed to blog about it). I actually managed to do a deed every single day of April so I feel pretty good about that. I'm not even going to feel bad about not blogging about it because the important part was really doing the deeds in the first place.

2. I got the sweetest emails in the world from J (one of my IFs). He said, in part, "Most of all, we are incredibly grateful to you. We can't believe what a wonderful thing you are doing for us. So, thank you, again and again." Awwww, that feels nice. Everyone likes to feel appreciated once in a while and that felt really good.

3. Yesterday we were in Target I found a dress on clearance that I thought was really cute. I can never buy dresses because in order for them to fit on top they have to be 2 sizes larger than I need on the bottom. Because of that everthing hangs off me and looks like a circus tent. But I still like the idea of dresses so every so often I try one on just in case. I was standing there looking at this one I found and Joseph said "You should buy that Mommy! It would be good for you to have a party dress. You deserve to have nice things!" Oh my god. He kills me dead sometimes. He can be so wild and crazy sometimes but he's got this gentle and loving little heart and when it comes out like that I just melt. Oh, and the icing on the cake was that the dress fit and it was super cute and it cost me less than $10. It was a good day.

4. Today I'm not sending Joseph to school and I'm taking him and Ell to the Science Museum with my parents instead. That should be fun, I always like doing stuff like that with the kids. Joseph is worried about bringing Elle though because he's pretty sure she's going to do something like "knock over some old bones" or "wake up a mummy and make him curse us". My boy is always thinking.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Mmmmm, brains

I don't know what's wrong with me. I think it's a combination of PMS and my body dealing with the influx of hormones from the new birth control pills I have to take. I have several emails to answer, I'm waaay behind on 30/30, I have 8 billion ebay things to do and all I can think about is this throbbing sensation behind my left eye. Right now the only thing in the world that would make me happier than ripping someone's head off would be ripping someone's head off and discovering that instead of brains, their skull was filled with chocolate brownies.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


If putting both kids in the crib is wrong so that you can get the bathroom clean then I don't want to be right.

Mama's little whore

This is a really great article on on some of the dangerous messages that we (as a society) are sending our little girls through the clothes that we buy them and the toys that they play with.

I liked this quote a lot: "We used to worry about Barbie, with her improbable proportions and dismal math skills. Now we long for Barbie. Not the new Bling Bling Barbie, but the old one with the job. At least she tried to do math."

For the record, there will never be a Bratz doll anywhere in my house. Not a MyScene Barbie either for that matter. Even if I didn't find them massivly offensive I would still think they were creepy as all get out. What's with the giant alien eyes? When did that become "cute"?

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I don't have it in me

Monday Night Class only has three sessions left. It's a good thing too because after the one we had last night I just don't know if I have the desire to attend any more of those things. See, on one hand this year's night classes have been really good. There's been a lot of helpful information, some good ideas, some theraputic venting and some really enjoyable moments. On the other hand, there's been Vincent. (Not his real name but for some reason that's what I always think it is.)

Vincent is a blowhard. Vincent likes to wait for someone to make a point or ask a question and then sit back and spend about 10 minutes dispensing some of his folksy, "golly gee, I'm just a simple man and what do I know" wisdom. He talks with long pauses and thoughful faces and dramatic hand gestures. To really understand how annoying this guy is there are two things you need to know about old Vinny.

1. He always seems to think he knows what's best even though he really doesn't seem to know diddily crap. Casually mention that you've had a rough week and he'll go on a long tangnet about how you should take up building birdhouses as a hobby and you can include your kid and that will cure all your problems. Vent about your child having a major meltdown in the middle of your best friend's wedding and he'll school you for 5 minutes on how giving your child a peppermint patty when they're feeling bad will solve everything. Ask him what his own child's official dianosis is? He won't know. Ask him if his son goes to physical therapy? He can't tell you. Mr KnowItAllAndJustGottaShareItWithYou doesn't even know enough about his own damned child to say if he's in therapy or not. He must know that his son has a special need because he comes to this class but he can't even tell you what that need is. But he can cure everyone else's problems

2. His advice is always a little bit insulting. Sometimes it's the look he gives you when he says something. Sometimes it's the way he seems to be insinuating that if you were any kind of a parent at all you would already know the answer to whatever question you asked. Sometimes it's just the fact that he seems to think that we're all just standing around scratching our butts and waiting for someone to enlighten us all about the best way to raise a child with special needs. If I talked to Vincent the way he talked to other people here are a couple of things I might say to him: "Gee Vincent. I don't know a whole lot about nothing but it seems to me that you might want to cut little Bobo's hair. I'm just a simple gal but it seems to me that little Bobo looks a lot like Holly Hobby. Not a good look for a boy! And have you ever heard of a comb Vincent? There's no reason to style the kid's hair with an egg beater, heh heh heh heh." or "You know Vincent ..... (long pause as I stare up at the ceiling and bask in my own amazingness) ..... I've always found that people seem to like it when you don't act like a giant know it all asshole towards them. Of course, I don't know much and maybe I'm wrong and certainly don't mean to offend anyone and I know we're all on the same side here but it just seems to me like you're acting wrong here."

So last night, Vincent really crossed the line with me. I don't know why. He's certainly made me the focus of his down-home wisdome before. I don't know why last night it touched such a nerve in me. I probably have to examine that and see what it is about it all that pissed me off so much but in the meantime, here's what happened.

One woman in the group mentioned that her 6 year old will be playing t-ball this summer. She said she was worried that he would go out there and not participate and would just end up off in his own little world. I mentioned that we had a person from Arise (a local service that helps kids with special needs take part in sports and other non-school related activities) come out and help Joseph out when he played soccer last summer. I said I thought it was great because his Arise person was really good about making sure that Joseph got everything he could out of his time in soccer. I could already see Vincent puffing himself up in preperation for a big speech so I went on to further explain what I meant.

I said that I really didn't care how well Joseph played soccer, I just wanted it to be a positive thing for Joseph. I explained that Joseph's Arise person had helped him enjoy soccer more because she helped him with everything from better understanding the practice drills they were doing to jumping in when she saw him get picked on by an older kid to reassuring him when he was unsure about being able to do something. All of that helped Joseph to enjoy the experience more and he was pleased with how much better he got at the game. Again I said that his soccer ability was not what mattered to me.

I hardly even had lst word out of my mouth before Vinny jumped in. I'm paraphrsing here but not exaggerating.

"You know Jen, I think you ...... and by you I mean society as a whole ....... might be focusing a little too much on things that don't really matter. I know that when they gave us little Bobo's diagnosis they told us-"

I jumped in here to ask him to remind me what little Bobo's diagnosis was again.

"Hmmm.... well, um, heh, well I ....... You know, I can't really....that is to say .... heh heh. Anyway, when they gave us the diagnosis they told us that he probably wouldn't ever be the best football player or the most popular kid in school or the smartest or whatever but you know, I just don't care about that. It seems to me like when you put that kind of pressure on Joseph then you might be showing him that you care more about that stuff then you say you do. You say you don't care about that kid of stuff but the truth is, we all do. I mean, I don't but I think most people do. You just might need to accept that Joseph might not every be the best soccer player. That's just how it seems to me but I'm not really an expert on these types of things."

I didn't even really respond. I knew he would just use anything I said as an excuse to further school me on why he is awesome and I am not. In my head though I was just raging.

"How dare you! How. Dare. You. I have sat here in this room and expressed over and over and over again how amazed I am with Joseph's wonderful wit, loving personality and kind heart. I have marveled at how smart he is and overflowed with pride in his accomplishments. I have made clear that what matters to me is that he's happy and healthy and safe. I could make a list of 100 things that I hope Joseph is good at in his life and you wouldn't find soccer or any other sport anywhere on that list. I don't care about sports more than I care about my child so haw dare you say those things to me."

Logically I know why he said that stuff though. He said it because he listens to about 1/10 of what people say and he uses that as a jumping off point for one of his lectures. He cares so little about anything other than what he has to say that he doesn't even bother to notice all the other little details. Even if those other details are things like other people's feelings or his own child's diagnosis. And that's just sad for him.

You know, I started this post really angry. I didn't know why it set me off so much and I guess I still don't but I have realized something. Vincent is sad. And when Monday Night Class is done he won't have a captive audience to share his "wisdom" with. He won't have gotten anything out of the group. He'll have wasted his time there because he was so determined to prove how smart he was about everthing.

I'll have gotten some good information, some contact numbers, some helpful ideas and some laughs. If I find myself getting pissed off at Vincent during the final three groups I'll just have to sit back and let him babble on, knowing who's really coming out ahead in this situation.

Monday, April 23, 2007

A big step forward

I just got a call from a nurse at the clinic where I'll be having my transfer. They need me to call them when I get my period so that they can start me on birth control to synch me up with the egg donor. I'm going to take that as a sign the the donor got her medical clearance.

The really good news is that I should be getting my period in the next couple of days so I'll be able to start on the next step even before the donor has her contracts done. This is the first time that timing has really worked in our favor in this whole thing. Exciting!

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 22

My deed for this day was another one that just kind of fell into my lap. On our way back home from our hotel Jesse and I stopped in at the Old Navy Outlet store. While we were there I helped a woman in a wheelchair to reach several things that she was trying to get that were laying out on a table.

I had seen her stuggling out of the corner of my eye. I had also seen several other people stand right by her and not offer to help. I think sometimes people don't offer to help someone because they don't want to offend them. I admit that I hesitated at first too because I didn't want this woman to think I was saying "Here, I know you can't do it. Let me and my capable body take care of it for you." She seemed glad I offered though and accepted my help. I think it's ok to offer someone help. I hope.

You know, I'm nearly 6 feet tall and even I had to strain to reach some of the things in the middle of the table. I don't know how they expected everyone else to be able to reach that stuff. Dear Old Navy Outlet store, maybe giant 12x8 tables are not the best place to display your tank tops.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 21

On this day I honestly forgot to do a good deed. Luckily fate reminded me of what I needed to do.

Jesse and I went to see Easter Parade at the Chanhassed Dinner Theater. After the play was over one of the actresses told the audience that they would be collecting money for Broadway Cares campaign to fight AIDS and support those living with it.

It was not my most planned out deed but I did drop some cash into their collection basket so as of yet I have not missed a day!

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 20

My birthday! I wanted to do something special for my birthday deed so I made a donation to this group: Minnesota Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. Who knew such a group even existed? I really liked their stance on a lot of things and what really moved me to want to donate was what their website says about their "Peaceful Presence" program. From the site:
"We stand in non-confrontational and pastoral Peaceful Presence outside reproductive health clinics in support of their work, their staff, and their patients to demonstrate in non-violent ways that people of faith support access to safe, legal abortions. Peaceful Presence is a strategy of silent witnessing and non-engagement. Supporters (clergy and lay people) silently hold signs with our message “Pro Family, Pro Faith, Pro Choice.” "

Now that's religious activism that I can get behind!

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 19

Ack! I've fallen behind here. Let's see if I can think back and remember what I've done every day.

Ok, the deed for this day was that I wrote a long, suportive email to someone I know through a message board who's going through a really tough time right now. She responded and thanked me for my kind words so I hope that it was somewhat helpful to her. I frequently have a hard time finding the right words when reaching out to someone like that so more often than not I just say nothing at all. This deed was tough because I was afraid I would say the wrong thing and make things worse but I think in the end it went ok.

Friday, April 20, 2007

I'm big in Canada

Those crazy kids love me up there. Here's proof. I'm so very, very frightened.

Happy Birthday to me!

It's my 30th birthday today. So far it's been good. Joseph, Elle and Jesse got me a book I wanted and an expansion pack for the Sims and one for Zoo Tycoon. They know me so well. Jesse also told me that on Saturday night the kids will be spending the night at my parents house and he and I will be going to see a show at the Chanhassen dinner theater and then staying at a nice hotel in Chanhassen. Fun! (And a far cry better than last year when his big present to me was finding and pulling out my fist gray hair.)

Tonight we'll go over to my parents house for dinner where my mom is making her world famous, tastes-so-good-but-it's-so-bad-for-you-that-you-can-only-have-it-once-a-year fettucinni. Yum!

Looks like it's going to be a fine day indeed! Hey, why not help my ego out a little bit and click this button for me?
I'm a Top Mommma!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

And what have we learned here class?

Oh Elle. You sure do look cute wearing that pair of SpongeBob underwear on your head like a hat. Hey, where did you get tho..........oh dear.

And what have we learned today? Not to leave the basket of clean and folded laundry out where the baby can get into it. (You can't see it from this picture but there are several pairs of my underwear in the recycling bin.)

Jelly Belly Elle

I stuffed Elle full of jelly beans today. It's all part of my plan to potty train her. No, really. Stick with me here.

See, I didn't potty train Joseph. My mom did it. For a long time Joseph had no interest whatsoever in being potty trained. Then one weekend he came home from an overnighter with my parents and he was totally potty trained. I don't know how she did it but I suppose the fact that he was nearly 4 at the time didn't hurt her efforts at all.

I was glad my mom was able to potty train Joseph but at the same time there was a little part of me that thought "How come she can do it and I can't?" I mean, what kind of a mom can't potty train their own kid? And if I don't figure it out then how will I be able to potty train my granchildren when my own children come to me someday and say "I just can't do this!"?

So, come hell or high water, this one is all mine. I am going to potty train this child matter what it takes. And that's where the jelly beans come in.

First off, I'm pretty sure that Elle is ready to start trying. Lately when she poops (or pees or even toots) she comes to me with a very distressed look on her face and says "I poopy!". If I don't change her fast enough she'll start trying to take her own diaper off. So while she seems so young to be potty trained she is giving me some signs that she's ready.

Second, there's really no hurry here. I've read some things about how you can potty train your child in a weekend or a day or 6 seconds or whatever but those seem to high pressure to me. My plan is just to have Elle sit on the potty a couple of times a day and try to catch her at just the right time.

"Good god woman!" you're not doubt saying by now. "What about the jelly beans?" Well, I am not above rewarding Elle for productive potty sessions. So today I let her get a taste for them. From here on out she'll get one whenever she uses the potty. Now some things I've read say that you should never, ever bribe your child with treats when potty training. Some things say it's a-ok. I guess it's just one of those times when you have to take everything you know and then decide what seems right to you. And if you could see Elle's face when she's eating a jelly bean then you would know that this is right.

And anyway, if all else fails I have always have my mom potty train her.

Oh, and on a totally unrelated note - I will be going to a Trader Joe's for the very first time ever on Monday. Can anyone reccomend some absolute must-haves from Trader Joes? I hear they have good snacks and I want to know what to be on the look out for.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 18

Yesterday's deed kind of happened just by chance. As Joseph, Elle and I were leaving speech therapy yesterday I noticed an older lady wandering around the parking lot looking lost. The building we were at is large and has several small parking lots and it's pretty easy to go get turned around and go out the wrong door. After I got the kids in the car I called over to the lady and asked if she was looking for her car. She explained that she thought maybe she came out the wrong door. I told her I had done that myself before and asked her if she would like me to drive her around the lot so that she could find her car.

She got in my car and described to me where she thought she had parked. I spend a lot of time at that building and recignized right away where she was desciribing. I drove her over and we found her car right away. She said that probably would have been the last lot she checked because that was the one lot she was pretty sure wasn't where she had parked.

Of course after she was out of the car I had to have a big talk with Joseph about letting people you don't know into your car and how normally we wouldn't do that but that we were doing it to be helpful. He said "I guess that's a good deed for the day!" And he was right.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 17

My good deed for yesterday was to write an email to several members of state and local government asking them to support increased funding for education with an emphisis on early childhood servies and special education.

Special education services are going to be taking a big hit here in Minnesota in the upcoming school year. Joseph's school district alone will have to cut 17 special ed provider positions. We still don't know if Joseph's wonderful IEP case manager will have a job next year. It's really sad that the kids who need the most help are the most likely to suffer when there are budget cutbacks because the services they need are often the most expensive.

This is such an important issue to me, I wish that there was more that I could do.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

It's the little things

Today when I went to get Joseph from school there was a huge commotion in his classroom. All the kids were walking around and playing with these noise makers they had just finished making. I searched for Joseph as among all the kids. He's always so hard to see because in spite of his recent growth spurt he's still the shortest kid in class.

I looked at his desk and saw his noise maker sitting there. And where was Joseph? I spotted him wandering around the tables in the classroom. He was weaving in between kids and running his hands over the top of the tables. Every so often he would stop and pick at something on the table. Then he would go right back to running his hands over the table. He didn't really noticeif he ran into someone or if someone set off their noisemaker right by him. He just kept wandering and picking.

Even after the teacher called for the kids to sit in their seats and all the kids had sat down he kept up with it. He never even looked up or seemed to notice that he was the only one walking around. His teacher directed him back to his seat and once he got there he seemed to a little more "with it". I won't lie though, it was hard watching him act like that. All zoned out, there but not there. It's a little thing, I know. But it hurt.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 16

For yesterday's good deed I made a donation to our local library. The kids get so much out of the library so I don't mind throwing a little their way. Of course, that's in addition to the massive late fees we always end up paying.

Monday, April 16, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 15

For yesterday's deed I picked up some more stuff for the local food shelf. I hadn't planned on doing it again so soon but since we were at the grocery store I went ahead and did it. I was thinking that every time I go to the store for a big shopping trip I could just add $5 worth of stuff into our cart for the food shelf. $5 can go a long way if you use coupons and sales and buy the store brand of stuff. It's just a little thing but it might be a good habit to get into.


I am up at 7:30 this morning and I already have a huge knot in my stomach. Today is the day. The day I go and meet other moms for a book club meeting/playdate for out kids. I was a wreck. It probably doesn't help that I had finished the book at about 1:30 last night.

I don't know what to wear. I assumed a shirt of some sort would be ok but maybe not. I haven't really been in a setting like this in a while, maybe the hip thing to do is to go topless? Maybe I should show up topless and see what the general reaction is? No, a shirt is the way to go. Maybe the one I own that didn't come off the clearance rack at Target? Yes, that's the one.

I brush my teeth twice. Once before I eat and once after. I don't eat too much though in case there's food there. I don't want to offend anyone by not taking what they eat. I debate for a long time about exactly how much to have for breakfast.

What should Elle wear? She's lucky. She looks cute in everything. She screams at me while I srpay her head to get it wet and make all her curls pop up. I wish it was warmer so that I could put her in one of her new sundresses. Crap. Well, she still looks cute in her jeans and new t-shirt. The curls help.

I leave the house a little later than I wanted to. I've remembered everything. That never happens. I feel good. Shit. I forgot the piece of paper that had the address I'm going to on it. It's ok, I've been there twice before, I should be able to find it again.

I'm only a minute late. There are 3 large SUVs in the driveway of the house. I'm suddenly, painfully aware that my car needs to be washed and has crackers ground into the seats and floor. I check myself out one final time in the rear view mirror. I have a giant boogie in my left nostril. How did I not feel that in there?

We walk in the door, everyone looks friendly. They're all wearing shirts (phew, I made a good choice) and shoes as white as snow. My shoes are brown. I kick them off by the door to hide them. I remember that my socks don't match. No one's looking at my feet anyway. They're all watching Elle shriek in terror. I don't know why she's screaming and when I try to comfort her she wipes thick, yellow snot all over my shoulder and in my hair.

Everyone at the get together has matching 3 year old boys and matching white shoes and matching hairdos. Half up, half down. I worry that my hair (down for once) looks frizzy and stupid. I worry that I look stupid with my snotty shirt and my mismatched socks. Everyone is very nice and comments on how cute Elle is. They're being very kind. Elle has a red face, a snotty nose and weepy eyes. Even I don't think she looks cute.

Elle calms down. The boys play upstairs and Elle wanders around the living room chirping happily to herself. She's being very good now. I don't feel so stupid now because just being around her turns me into Proud Mom.

We discuss the book a little bit but mostly the women gossip about their lives and the lives of some of the other mommy-groupers that aren't there that day. I realize that at some point I've put my hair up. Half up, half down. I don't even remember doing it. I glance over to where my shoes are to see if they're still brown. I have a cookie.

Elle finds a crayon and draws on the kitchen floor. I'm embarassed that Elle has singlehandedly caused more damage to the house than the entire herd of matching boys. The hostess laughs and says "It's ok, this is a kid-friendly house." She gets Elle some colored paper. If coloring on the floor makes a house kid friendly then my house is the friendliest son of a bitch you've ever seen. (Note Elle's artwork from our living room floor.)

I'm a little let down that after staying up so late to finish the book we don't even discuss it for 10 minutes. The matching boys all want to go outside to play. Out we go. I can't get Dick in a Box out of my head.

The moms all stand around in a group and chat. They are all wearing matching sunglasses and matching coats. I didn't bring a coat for myself. It's not really cold anyway. The boys play happily while the moms talk. I can't really join in because I have to follow Elle around make sure she doesn't get hurt. The backyard is great, with a big sandbox and swingset and creek running along the edge. Wonderful for a herd of matching boys. Not so great for a toddling girl with hair that glows like fire when she's out in the sun.

One mom leaves because her older son's adnoid surgery is in an hour. (Why was she at a playdate when her kid was getting prepped for adnoid surgery?) I take that as a chance to leave too. Elle is covered in sand and has gone down the slide 8001 times and she needs a nap.

I tell everyone it was nice to meet them. I don't remember any of their names. I'm somehwat relieved to drive away but I know that I'll come again if I'm invited. I need to know more moms.

Mommy-groups? Not for sissies.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 14

For various reasons I don't want to say to much about what yesterday's deed was. I didn't actually do anything, it was more about not doing something. It was tough and, without a doubt the toughest deed I've done so far. I have the satisfaction though of knowing that it was important and impactful. So. Yeah. That's all there is about that.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 13

Yesterday was Firday the 13th so I'm going to mark that up as the cause for me forgetting to post my deed, several of my favorite bloggers packing it up and throwing it in, a large segment of the internet turning getting a case of the raging assholes and my own husband somehow getting infected with the aformentioned malady.

Yesterday I took a bag of groceries over to the local food shelf. And not just stuff like creamed corn and pumpkin pie filling. I'll probably donate more later this month because I think this is a good cause. In the past my family has had to use thefood shelf a couple of times to kind of help us out of a tight spot. Since we're no longer in a position where we need that help it seems only right to try to pay back some of the goodwill.

So even though I don't support the orgaization that runs the place I made the donation to I know that doesn't really matter to the people who will be getting the food.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Fragina Monologues

This post by one of my new favorite bloggers made me laugh out loud and made me recall two conversations Joseph and I have had about vaginas. That's right, vaginas. You need to use the right words with kids, don't dumb it down for them. Just use the real term, even if it is a gross and hairy sounding word. And I say that as a woman who once used the word "whoo-ha" when talking to her gynecologist. Anyway, on with the show.

Conversation with 3 year old Joseph who just saw me get out of the shower
Joseph: Mommy! Your penis fell off!
Me: I don't have a penis honey. Mommy is a girl and girls have a vagina.
Joseph: Fragina, fragina, fragina, fragina..... (as he walks out of the room)

Conversation with 6 year old Joseph who's watching me change Elle's diaper
Joseph: When will Elle get her penis?
Me: She won't get a penis buddy. Remember? Boys have a penis and girls have a....?
Joseph: A ...... fragile? (pronounced like the dad in A Christmas Story who thinks "fragile" is Italian.)
Me: Close, girls have a vagina.
Joseph: Right, a fragina.
Me: Not a fragina, a ..... ah forget it. That's close enough.

He's going to be saying "fragina" until he's 20 and someday people are going to laugh at him. I'll consider it payback for the time I had him in a busy public restroom with me and he loudly announced "Gosh Mommy, you have a really hairy fragina!"

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Easter Carnage

My mom made some bunny shaped Easter cookies for the kids. Joseph's had frosting all over it but Elle's only had frosting where the bunny's eyes, ears and tail were. Elle discovered very quickly that her favorite parts of the cookie were the frosted part. Today she ate one of the cookies and this is what was lef when she was done.

Poor little bunny. He was powerless against Elle's sweet tooth.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 12

Ok, I'm done with my pity party. My good deed for the day was to donate the payment for one of my Pay Per Posts to the Red Cross.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 11

I forgot to post yesterday's deed again. Maybe it's because right now I'm sort of involved in some stupid internet drama crap that's so middle school I can't even believe it. I've been both the hurter and the hurtee in this whole thing and right now it's eating up a lot of my time and energy and goodwill. So I feel stupid talking about some dumb little thing I did to try to improve things when I feel like I'm really just making things worse.

To be honest I'm also more than a little let down by how this whole campaign is going. I know there are a few people out there doing but no one is leaving comments like I had hoped they would. The mom-oriented website that was going to help me promote this seemed to kind of never get around to it. Frankly, this whole thing has just become one giant buzzkill for me. I don't even want to log in and update my blog because it just makes me feel sort of sad.

Am I done with 30/30? I don't know. I guess it probably doesn't matter that much one way or the other. In case I decide not to stop I'll just go ahead and talk about yesterday's deed. While Joseph was having OT yesterday I tracked down all the various therapists that he's worked with and thanked them for all the hard work that they had done with them. I told them how much of a difference that they made with him and how much I appreciated their dedication and compassion and their ability to kick Joseph's butt and make him learn the skills that he needed in order to move forward. And I meant it all too. We've been very lucky in that Joseph has always had great people working with him.

So maybe I'll update later with today's deed. Maybe not. Maybe I'll just throw the computer away and never use the internet again.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 10

I just realized I forgot to post my deed for yesterday. Maybe that's because the only good deed I can think of is that I was especially nice to a cashier at Target that was really rude to me. It's not much but it's the best I can do. It's hard to be nice for 30 days in a row.

Monday, April 09, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 9

An actual conversation I had with Joseph 2 minutes ago:
Joseph: Mommy, can you open this toy for me?
Me: Not right this second. Wait a couple of minutes.
Joseph: Whhhhhhhhh-yyyyyyyyy do I have to waaaaaaa-aaait?
Me: Stop whining Joseph. I have to update my blog with my deed for the day.
Joseph: I know a good deed you can do.
Me: What's that?
Joseph: Open this toy for me and don't make me wait for it all day.

That's my boy. My deed for the day is to make cookies for Jesse to take in to work for a couple of his co-workers. It's part of my extended thank you for them talking Jesse into buying me a KitchenAid mixer. (You don't even want to know what I'll do for the pasta maker attatchment.)

I also want to point out this because it's for a good cause and one that I'm a big supporter of. It's also a way to do a good deed and do something nice for yourself in the process.

Google scares me

I know I do this a lot but I the search terms that bring people to this blog never cease to amaze and amuse me. Here's a couple of the recent ones:
what do bras do - I can't decide if this is hilarious or sad. Maybe a little bit of both.

oogles of boobies - What do you suppose this person was hoping to find?

wonderful boobs - Well thank you very much!

remove bra blogspot - What an oddly specific request. "I want to see someone remove their bra but I want to see it on blogspot only!"

examples of people great people who did great deeds - No, really. You're too kind.

water coming out both nostrils the why - It's because you almost the drowned.

I don't have the link for this one anymore but a couple of days ago I got this one too: "what is a better way to snort drugs up your left or right nostril" Drugs are good for you as long as you remember to snort them on the right side and not the left.

So crabby

I'm crabby. I hope everyone had a good Easter and is feeling very happy and fine but I myself am crabby. I can't even think of anything vaugly amusing or smart to say right now because I'm to crabby. So I'm going to bed.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 8

My deed for today was pretty similar to what yesterday's was. I made a real effort to get along and have some positive interactions with someone that I have not always gotten along with in the past. I gave her a genuine compliment, I made conversation with her and showed an interest in some stuff that I knew was important to her.

Maybe it sounds kind of self-important to say "I'm so great because I was nice to someone!" but I know that this time when I was done dealing with this person I didn't find myself feeling yucky about the whole interaction. It was nice to find some common ground with someone I feel like I'm so different from.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 7

My good deed for the day was to get along with some people that I had to be with today that I frankly really can't stand. That might not seem like a big deal but trust me, for me to even be in the same room as a couple of these people was a struggle. I just stayed determined to put out good energy and it all turned out to be not as bad as I worried it was going to be.

Friday, April 06, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 6

My deed for the day was pretty simple. I mailed a "just because" present to a friend who's in need of a little pick me up. Easy-peasy.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Good school news

My big hope for school nest year is that we will be able to get a shared para for Joseph. That means there would be someone in the classroom with him at all times to help him in the areas he's having troube with (writing and social skills). Since it would be a shared para situation they would also be there to help out another student, probably a student with needs similar to Joseph's. I think this would be the ideal situation for Joseph.

Today when I went to pick him up I ran into his IEP case manager I told her that I was really hopeful that we would be able to get a shared para. She told me that earlier this afternoon she spoke to the autism specialist who assesed Joseph and that she (the specialist) was going to reccomend a shared para for next year. She also told me that this carries a lot of weight and will probably help us bypass some of the difficulties that people often face when trying to access the services of para.

So it's not a sure thing yet but it's looking good. I mean, it's a sure thing because I'll fight for it if I have to but right now it's looking like there might not have to be a fight. And just in case there is a fight, Joseph's teacher gave me a piece of advice on how to get what we want. (She's really not supposed to tell me what she did but needless to say it was much appreciated.) I've said it before and I'll say it again: We are so lucky to have such great people on Joseph's team. At times when I feel like I'm overwhelmed and not sure what to do I just need to remember that we have a lot of people who can help us out. We've got a lot of great resources for Joseph, I just need to remember that they're there!

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 5

When I was pregnant with Elle I signed up with every formula company out there for free samples and coupons. Then I sold them all on ebay. I still get stuff once in a while and last week I sold some coupons for $10 off formula. The person who won the auction wrote me and asked if it would be ok if there was a little delay in paying because she was finding herself a little short on money. I told her it was no biggie and to just pay me when she could. So today she paid me for the auction and wrote a nice note thanking me for being so nice.

I'm going to get her stuff ready to mail tonight and I'm going to include another $10 that I got in the mail yesterday. I know what it's like to be in a tight spot and I thought maybe that might help out a little bit. And, since I'm in such a good mood I won't even mention to her that she could be feeding her baby for free! (I know, I know. There might be a good reason she's not nursing. Don't bother to point it out to me.)

What did you do today?

Blogrolls are love

Thank you to the people who told me to get myself a reader. I love it. I want to add every blog I see to my reader just so that I'll always have a ton of stuff to read when I click on it. I love it so much that I have decided to get rid of my old, outdated blogroll and just add a list of recently read items from my blog reader. I like the way it looks and it gives people some new blogs to browse if they're so inclined.

I've had a lot of fun browsing other people's blog rolls in the past. I've discovered some real gems out there. I wish I had discovered hera long time ago. I love her thoughts on Gapmoms and I love this post for lots of reasons but mostly because it talks about the same thing I did here. I love it when people agree with me. (Ok, so she wrote hers first but I swear I wrote mine before reading hers.)

Anway, I'm loving the heck out of my blog reader. It really doesn't take much to make me happy.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

I'm laughing with him, not at him

Yesterday I had a meeting at school to go over the results of Joseph's assesments. It was really interesting to hear what everyone had to say about him. The things I found the most interesting were some of the things the school's autism expert had to say. (I respect her opinon a lot, she was the one who first assesed Joseph back when he was really little.) She talked about how during the observation she saw him walk around with his hands in front of him, with his fingertips touching. She also said she saw him cross and uncross his fingers a lot. Those are some little things that I a) don't know to look for and b) see him do so often that I don't even notice them anymore. She (and a couple of other people who observed him) also noticed a kind og sing-song pattern and tone to the way he talked. Again, I hear it all the time so I just sort of forget he does it.

A few things I was glad to hear them talk about were the way he has difficulty in establishing eye contact and how he seems to lack empathy. That makes him sound like a lost cause! It's really not as bad as it sounds because he really is a caring little boy. Hejust doesn't really seem to understand how his actions make other people feel. He's only able to understand how things make him feel. He's learning though but I was glad to hear the things that we have noticed about him be confirmed by someone who really knows what she's talking about.

When I got home from the meeting I read the entire write up of all the assesments and two things just made me laugh out loud. These might not be funny if you don't know Joseph but they're just so him.

"The teacher said it was time for questions for a student who was showing her violin and Joseph raised his hand. A student was called on who made a statment and Joseph commented aloud 'That is not a question.'"

"The teacher next stated that it was time to say the Pledge of Allegiance. Joseph stood up immediatly and the teacher praised him for being ready. However, he grabbed a tissue, dabbed his nose and threw the tissue away as the Pledge was being said."

Oh, my little boy.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 4

I had something special planned for today but I can't do it because Joseph and I are both sick and running fevers so we can't leave the house. Instead I made a donation to Habitat for Humanity. I have more hands-on type of deeds planned but I'll have to save those for a day when I don't feel like my head has been run over by a bus.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 3

Ok, Day 3. All I know for sure is that I am in a monstrously bad mood today. It might have something to do with the fact that the weather just said we could get up to 6 inches of snow today. Sometimes I hate Minnesota so much!

Joseph's school is taking part in in the American Heart Association's Jump rope for Heart. In Joseph's words "We have to raise money to give to 'hostiples' so they can buy new medicines." Isn't that a good cause? And yes, he still says "hostiples" and frankly I hope he never stops because I think it's so cute.

Anyway, I set up Joseph's on-line donation page (you can find it here) and for today's good deed I'll be donating money to that cause.

On a hilarious/sad note, Joseph told me that his school doesn't have any jump ropes so rather than do that, all the kids are just going to go in the gym and jump together.

I know there are a few people out there doing good deeds because I've seen my banner on a few sites. Leave me a comment about what you're doing, I would love to hear about it. Don't make me beg. More.

Monday, April 02, 2007

What's killing Jen today?

I have wrestled with a high chair. I have done battle with my neti pot. I have fought with fiber. I have come out on top every time. So what nearly killed me today? Gather round children and I'll tell you a story 'bout a gal named Jen, poor Minnesotan, trying not to get dead.

I was talking on the phone today and I noticed something itchy on the front of my right shoulder. I figured it was a crumb or something on my bra strap so I kind of pushed the strap aside and kept talking. I slowly started to notice that the itch wasn't going away. I kept talking on the phone but the itch was getting worse and worse. When I got off the phone I pulled my shirt aside and looked at my shoulder. The whole front and top my my shoulder was red. What the heck? I look my bra over and can't see anything on it that should be giving me problems so I put a little lotion on the red area, fix my stap and make another phone call.

This phone call was to the therapist at my surrogacy agency. I have to check in every week or so just so that they know I haven't gone crazy. Or something like that. Whatever the reason they want to talk to me is, I of course want to present my "best self" while speaking with them. Here's the thing though. It's hard to present your best self when your entire right shoulder feels like it's on fire.

Two minutes into the phone conversation and the itch starts back up again. Only now it's spreading to the back of my shoulder and down onto my chest. I can feel huge, painful welts rising up. I keep chatting with the therapist but what I really want to do is scream "MY BRA IS KILLING ME!" and run outside and roll in the mud topless. I try to keep a casual tone to my voice as I remove my bra while I chat.

I somehow manage to end the phone call without saying anything weird and I go to look in the mirror again. There is a huge red rash going all the way from the back of my right shoulder, over the top and front of my shoulder, down the front of my chest. The front of my shoulder has large, raised welts all over it.

I don't know what caused this. I never found anything wrong with my bra and eventually the rash went away. What could have caused this? Maybe I'll look online and see if I can find some all natural pill used to cure undergarment allergies. I just hope it doesn't have fiber in it.

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 2

I haven't done my deed yet today but I'm going to post about it now because I will be doing it this afternoon. I am going to drop off a bunch of stuff at Anna Marie's. I have some clothes and shoes and bath stuff from my MIL that I'm going to take over. I also have some baby clothes and toys that we no longer need here that I'm going to take over. I was going to save some of that stuff for a garage sale but I think I would rather see it go to someone who really needs it. I'm also going to get together some bathroom stuff to take over too since they're always in need of basics like shampoo and soap.

Anna Marie's is one of my pet causes and I take stuff over there several times a year. I wonder if I should look into doing some hands on volunteer work there? Can't wait to hear what your deed was for the day!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

30 Deeds for 30 Days - Day 1

I decided to go global for todays deed. I wanted to give this website I found a try. For my first deed I went to and donated some money. If you've never heard of Kiva it's acutally pretty cool. From the site: "Kiva lets you connect with and loan money to unique small businesses in the developing world. By choosing a business on, you can "sponsor a business" and help the world's working poor make great strides towards economic independence. Throughout the course of the loan (usually 6-12 months), you can receive email journal updates from the business you've sponsored. As loans are repaid, you get your loan money back."

The site is really easy to use and search so if you're so inclined, give it a look. Check out the profile of the person that I donated to here. You can see me listed on her page as a donor. Neat!

Leave me a comment! I can't wait to hear what you're doing!