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Showing posts from November, 2006

I tried to post pictures

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But Blogger would only allow me this one. So this is the only one I'll post for now.

Sam's Cars border is up along the top. I LIKE it. I think with the other decorations the red paint disaster won't be so noticeable.

And even more importantly, Sam danced around in there and said, "It looks so cool Mom!" Never mind that my baby boy is saying these things and growing up too fast...but I'm thrilled that he likes it.

**No, he's not sleeping in there yet. In fact, he tried to pull out the old, "I might not be able to sleep in here because I might see a monster." I told him all the cars stuff would keep any monsters away. Plus, his Daddy (being the quick-thinking genius he is) told him that Shamus the cat would most likely sleep with him...and maybe one of the dogs too...so he would be perfectly safe. He seemed somewhat convinced....especially when we told him that he could always come to our room as long as he TRIED to sleep in his room. Here's hop…

What it's like to be me

I got a great deal on a Christmas gift for my sister during my post-Thanksgiving shopping trip. I was so happy to have the "perfect gift" all set to give her.

So how does my happy story end?

I accidentally threw the "perfect gift" in the trash...and only realized it today when my mom asked me if I had a receipt for something else.

Crap.

Will I ever get it together again? Will my brain ever recover and function in any sort of normal manner? Ever?

I'm fine...no...I'm not fine at all

I have, in a lot of ways, let people off the hook. I turned this blog into a place to air my deepest darkest feelings because I didn't want to inconvenience anyone by having to listen to it. So I have only myself to blame when people want to talk at me instead of listening to me. I see the fear enter their eyes if/when my true feelings come to the forefront. They don't want to hear me...they're afraid that I'll cry...and they certainly don't want me to challenge the beliefs they have about their own lives. So if the subjects aren't avoided completely, I often find myself sitting quietly while someone pontificates on how sad THEY are, how THEY feel about grief/loss, or what THEIR beliefs in God are about. I often hear, "I can't possibly know how you feel but...(here is what I think anyway)."

I have done a good job making everyone else comfortable. I have hidden myself away and made everyone believe that I'm "ok." I've kept the ang…

In the Wiggles' World

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November 29, 2006 - 2:41PM

Popular children's entertainers The Wiggles will announce changes to their line-up tomorrow amid growing concerns over the health of Yellow Wiggle Greg Page.

The Wiggles have scheduled a ''major announcement'' in Perth tomorrow ahead of the start of their new national tour.

The announcement relates to ''members of the group'', said Australia's highest-earning entertainers, comprising Page, Jeff Fatt, Anthony Field and Murray Cook.

It follows reports of a mystery illness suffered by Page, 34, who has been undergoing medical examinations since June after experiencing bouts of fainting and lethargy.

Since a double hernia operation in December last year, Page has often been absent from the veteran children's supergroup, handing yellow skivvy-wearing duties to understudy Sam Moran....

The complete article can be read here.

I feel like I felt when Sesame Street's Mr. Hooper died. Of course, Greg hasn't died and could al…

A coffee maker has been found!

My hunter-gatherer husband has successfully completed his mission to pick up a coffee maker for my office. $14.99 for a $34.99 coffee maker. Good deal. And the caffeine consumption continues without interruption. Dodged a bullet on that one.

***update***
It makes damn good coffee! Good morning!

Not going to be a Christmas Hymn, that's for sure (in which I drop the f-word multiple times)

Steve asked me the other day, "Why is it that Christmas music makes me feel angry?"

Good question. I don't have the answer, but I feel it too. Visceral anger.

Not just at Christmas music either.

I'm angry. No...I'm f***ing angry.

At everyone and everything. But most especially at God.

You've got a plan? Well I think it f***ing sucks.

You took my babies...Or...You let my babies die.

F*** you. I don't have any use for you.

Have faith? F*** you again.

Faith for what? Eternity with a creator who would kill? or turn a blind eye when someone is dying?

I didn't learn any lesson but how to hate you.

I want to thank you for my Samuel. I want to curse you for my Alex and my Travis.

I want to smash all the pretty little things I see at Christmas into a million pieces. Like my heart.

Some plan.

I bet this isn't the kind of prayer you were hoping for.

But you must exist for me to hate you. So that's something...right?

Merry Christmas.

I'm stumped

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I simply cannot find a light fixture to hang over my staircase.

So out of desperation, I just bought this one...not sure I like it though.

Wikipedian philosophy lessons

Philosophical paradoxes of prayer

There are a number of philosophical paradoxes involving prayer to an omnipotent God, namely:
* If a person deserves God to give him the thing he prays for, why doesn't God give it to him, even without prayer? And if a person is not deserving of it, then even if that person does pray and request it, should it be given just because of his prayer?
* Is it necessary to pray with speech? Doesn't God know the thoughts of all people?
* If God is all-knowing, then doesn't God already know what we are going to ask for before we pray?
In Christianity, this paradox is acknowledged in the discourse on ostentation, which forms part of the Sermon on the Mount.
* Do human beings actually have the ability to praise an omniscient and omnipotent God? Praising God is difficult to do without describing God, yet how can a person know anything about God's ultimate nature? This question was the subject of heated debate among many religious …

Long live the coffee maker

The office coffee maker has given up the ghost. Actually, it won't turn off. So for safety sake, I am throwing it in the trash (I guess it is technically a coffee maker mercy killing).

And of course all the good sales are over. *sigh*

Rest in peace little $10 coffee maker from 2003. You had a good run.

Christmas shopping, grief edition

"Two and a half months." She said it with a wide smile. She was, quite literally, glowing over the tiny little one in the baby carrier as she made the introduction to an old friend she obviously had not seen in a while. Two and a half months. My brain took off before I could even consider putting a stop to it...

Two and a half months. September. I wonder if that baby would have been born on the same day as Travis. Sweet little Travis...who only made it to May. How big would he be? He would probably already be out of his infant carrier...not tiny like that baby.

And then there was the mother at the register with three boys. The oldest was probably about four. The middle boy was probably three. And there was the baby in the infant carrier. Three boys. I smiled at the baby.

My mom asked if it still hurt. What could I say?

"Yes. It doesn't just go away or get better."

I've already gone overboard for this Christmas. Why? Because Sam has had another crappy year and…

Bah Humbug - Or - I Have Now Seen It All

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Yes, in between the giant inflatable Santa Clauses, who appear to be signalling touchdowns, there is a giant inflatable nativity. There is nothing about the Christmas holiday that says faith better than a giant inflatable balloon in your snow covered front lawn, doncha think? Hell, there's nothing that says Christmas more than a giant inflatable penguin/reindeer/who-the-heck-knows-what-else on a giant inflatable merry-go-round...or a giant inflatable Santa hanging in a hammock in between two giant inflatable palm trees...or a giant inflatable snowman family in a giant inflatable snow globe. I mean, that's the stuff that magical holiday memories are made of! No? I'm wondering if this phenomenon has reached everywhere or if this is just a weird new local tradition? I'd really like to think that it's limited to just my redneck area, but I suspect the world has just gone bat-shit crazy(to borrow one of my new favorite phrases from a fellow blogger).

Speaking of strange …

Black Friday

Whoa boy! What a day!

It started off with a fabulous gingerbread latte from Dunkin Donuts.

Sam maintained a good mood while standing in line for AN HOUR at Circuit City.

Steve got an LCD TV and an iPod alarm clock for Christmas.

I got a new camera for Christmas. :o)

Steve and I both agree that the sparkly maternity shirt that says, "I've got the perfect gift," with an arrow pointing to the belly, is tacky even outside of our circumstance.

I left a "Merry Christmas" note on the window of the SUV that almost hit me because the driver couldn't wait five freakin seconds for me to buckle my child into his car seat. (It said, "Merry Christmas. The girl you almost hit." I hope he feels the appropriate Christmas guilt.)

We bought a curtain rod to match the two I bought the other day...and promptly walked out of the store without it.

Sam had a forty-minute temper tantrum until I screamed at him to shut up. Stellar parenting right there.

The laundry room now has vi…

New Holiday Tradition

Last year I was up and at Walmart at 8:30. Today I'm striving to beat that record by about an hour and a half. Yes, I'm up...WE'RE up...and we're going shopping! And there is this strange feeling surrounding the whole pending adventure. Something that hasn't visited here for a long while.

I think we're going to...dare I say it...?

Have fun?!?!

There is no sense of pending doom or disaster...no feeling like this is a chore and the holidays are something to just "get through." There is a little guilt lying in there somewhere. Like maybe I haven't given Travis appropriate respect. But I'm going to leave that for another day and go spend some money on some Christmas gifts.

Have fun today wherever you are!

Time to be thankful

I am thankful for...

~My family. Without Steve, Sam, and our menagerie I would be nothing.

~My friends...without whom I would not have survived the past (two) year(s).

~My health. I'm feeling pretty good right now...no bacteria/viruses or broken bones.

~My job. It's not glamorous and it's not going to make me rich...but I like the work and I'm good at it even when I can hardly concentrate.

~My beautiful home...that grows more beautiful with each passing day (they tell me it's only a couple more weeks...yay!).

~Thanksgiving Day parades on TV...a holiday tradition.

~Christmas shopping. I'm not too much into "the true meaning of Christmas" these days. But shopping is always welcome.

There...I did it.

Happy Thanksgiving.

The day that Sam decides he doesn't need his thumbs

I knew by the tone of his voice when he said, "Ouchie...oooh...ouchie..." that something was very wrong. I flew around the back end of the van as fast as my flip flops would carry me. What I saw...his poor little left thumb closed in the closed van door...him pulling trying to get it out. I switched into emergency mode. I'm always good in emergency mode.

I opened the door ever so slightly to release his thumb but make sure not to slide the door back over his hand or any of his other fingers (that thankfully all still remain attached). It was bent, but not at any sort of unnatural angle or anything. He cried and whimpered, "Ouchie...it hurts...it hurts...it hurts." I ushered him into the house, wrapped his thumb in ice, and administered grape flavored tylenol and the Wiggles on television (not sure, but I think the Wiggles was probably the most helpful medicine).

And now, two hours later, I feel it coming...The nervous breakdown.

It's lurking and waiting to ta…

Time capsule

Greetings from your past. In the fall of 2005, you agreed to receive this message, which has been preserved for a year in the Forbes.com E-Mail Time Capsule. For more details, visit http://www.forbes.com/capsule

Here is the text of your message:

Steve:

I'm sending this on November 21, 2005...during the worst year of our lives. I wanted to memorialize this year somehow...while letting it go at the same time. Does that make sense?

During this year, we have been at the happiest and the saddest we have ever been. I'm so grateful to you for both. It is always a pleasure to share the happy times with you. To smile and laugh and love as though the world is perfect. And without you, I never would have had Sam or Alex to love. You have given me the greatest gift that anyone could ever have given me. You love me...and I love you and our boys.

But during the darkest hours, I am even more grateful that you are by my side. Without you I could never have made it through losing Alex. You stood by…

I win, I win, I win!

My email to customer service:

Back in August, I ordered and received a tub/shower faucet. My contractor cannot use it in my home addition because it is not anti-scald. Can I return it? If so, what mailing address do I ship it to?
Keep smilin'
Catherine

Customer service reponse:

Hi,

Im sorry, Return and/or exchange of merchandise must take place within 7 days of receipt of product.

My return email:

I understand that is your standard policy. However, it is in an unopened box (still even has the plastic seal on the outside) and I would think that you wouldn't have sold me something that didn't comply with building regulations. Yet, you did. I would expect you to accept return of a part that is, in essence, useless under state law.

Catherine

I win, I win, I win!

Hi,
Please ship it back to us:

Please include the packing slip and the RMA # this will ensure proper credit.

Sometimes people are so kind

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A coworker of Steve's gave this to him today. She shopped for us specifically and found this statue of five people interwoven together. In the card she wrote how this is how she thinks of us...Steve, Me, Samuel, Alex, and Travis...one family.


While I don't know her but to say hello in passing, she apparently talks to Steve quite a bit (which finds him alternating between feeling the love and feeling irritated with her intrusion...he's not always in a talkative mood). She really touched both our hearts with this very thoughtful gift.

I am always amazed at the depths of good and bad that are revealed during the darkest times in our lives.

We have progress!

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Window trim is up...

Tile is on the bathroom floors...

Tile is in the shower...(isn't it pretty?)

Closet doors are up on the two smaller closets...

And there is actually one bedroom door hung!

Small steps...but we're getting there. Think we'll get it all done by Christmas? I hope so, but I'm doubtful. They've still got to build a staircase, repair the ceilings that caved in, and replace the trim for the doors and windows they installed on the first floor.

Dare I say it? I'm starting to see a light at the end of this tunnel!

Miscellaneous Thoughts

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The bank called. I forgot to pay the mortgage this month. I feel like a chastised child. Really. Like I committed some sort of crime. Life happens folks. Paying bills isn't necessarily the most important thing going on. You're just gonna have to deal with that.
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An actual sign outside a hotel in town:

God Bless America
Free high speed DSL
Jacuzzi

Steve and I both laughed and laughed.
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Memorable quotes from this weekend:

Sam, as he was readying himself to drop his drawers, "Prepare to be amazed."
(I think a lesson in context is necessary sooner rather than later)

Me, as we approach WalMart, "I'm as f***ing ready for Christmas as I'll ever be."
(Real nice, huh?)
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My email to customer service:

Back in August, I ordered and received a tub/shower faucet. My contractor cannot use it in my home additio…

I'm a knitter!

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I have completed one scarf and started another. Nothing spectacular. But I'm learning how to use knitting needles without hurting myself or tying my hands into knots...so that's something.


And just look how happy Sam is...that's something too.
This one will be for me. I got Paton's Divine on sale at AC Moore yesterday. I just love the color and think it will go with my winter coat pretty well. Plus it's so soft, it's pet-able.

Some days you just don't feel like a party...some days you do

I owe Steve big for today. I did the virtually unthinkable. I sent him to a five-year-old birthday party with Sam...without me. But I had to. I just couldn't take it. Not today. Some days I just can't deal.

We went to a birthday party for one of Sam's little girlfriends about a month ago. It was like a three hour root canal. Not because I didn't like the kids. Not because I didn't like the adults (though I did have high school flashbacks when only one other mother actually talked to me during the entire three hours...but that's a whole other bitch entirely). It's just because I just don't FEEL it. Happy Birthday to you. I just can't say it with any sense of meaning anymore. Birthdays are a miracle and I'm glad you were born...really...congratulations on getting your miracle. I want to vomit. And I don't say that in a sarcastic way. I say that in the literal, the idea of celebrating birthdays sometimes makes me feel physically ill, sort of way…

Holiday preparations, Mom style

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Sam brought home his first Thanksgiving turkey art project yesterday and I darn near cried. I call this one his first because his actual first was a printed page from a coloring book with some purple crayon squiggles all over it (and I do mean ALL OVER it). His second was made of all the right colors of construction paper and was clearly the work of one of his teachers. But this one, this one has his personality stamped all over it. Blue and red paints. Feathers stuck haphazardly here and there. Crinkled up from being clutched in his fist for the ride home to proudly show me his creation.

What is is about our kids artwork that makes us mothers all googly?

I love it.
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A toy catalog came in the mail the other day and Samuel has since been carrying it around with him wherever he goes. He has his Christmas wish list all picked out and a toy tool bench is the highest priority for Santa Claus. The more difficult decision is whether he wants the small po…

Age and weight

I Google "stillbirth study" at least once a week. And something that continues to shock me is the incredible LACK of any sort of studies about women in my situation...women who contract bacterial and/or viral infections that result in the death of their unborn baby.

Even more disturbing are the dozens of articles I find on the relationship between age and weight and stillbirth.

Risk of stillbirth doubles in mothers over 35

Pregnancy pounds may harm newborn

Too much weight gain in pregnancy raises risks

Modest weight gain makes for a riskier second pregnancy

Weight gain between pregnancies dangerous

Weight Gain May Endanger Pregnancy

Now, I'm the first to cheer on any effort to reduce the number of stillbirths in this world. If women can effectively eliminate risk factors and take home a living baby as a result, so much the better.

BUT...

I was overweight. I am overweight. I got the disapproving looks and the lectures. My weight wasn't responsible for the death of my babies. …

Interesting

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In legend, the dragonfly was a real dragon who offended the gods and was turned into an insect. Despite this apparent setback, the dragonfly transformed herself into a gorgeous and highly capable creature. She is the only flying insect that can hover and make rapid sharp angle turns. Thus, she has become a symbol of tenacity and beauty.

How many Davids do you know?

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HowManyOfMe.comThere are:
6
people with my name
in the U.S.A.
How many have your name?

Thank you Laura!

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Would you look at the beautiful purse Laura made me?!?!


THANK YOU LAURA!

whoa

Sometimes I find myself writing things to people and I realize that what I'm actually writing is what I needed to hear...I post it here for those people who always wonder what they can possibly say to me.

I remember telling someone who son had died upon delivery that she was strong and I admired her. She looked me in the eye and said, "We have no choice."

We have no choice. You have no choice __________. Time will keep ticking and life will drag you along, kicking and screaming if need be.

It sucks and it's ugly and it makes me sad and angry for every single woman who has to go through it. It makes me sad and angry for you. But it is what it is. You can let it destroy you or you can move on with life. It's not that moving on is a bad thing...it's that you just want some time to feel this grief and process it...and you want someone to acknowledge that you have the right to decide how to process it. Yes, eventually, you will move on. You won't ever forget, but…

Madame Ziska goes to work

So many dreams disappear without being fully realized. All around us. Everyday.

I sat across a table from three men who had spent their whole lives building something. Something good. A few bad decisions and it was all gone forever...out of their control. This was not the way they expected it to end.

I walked past the old woman in the wheelchair in the hall. Her son can no longer care for her properly. I'm sure this was not how she imagined her life. I'm sure this was not her dream.

I painted that room a neutral color and hung a cheery ceiling fan. I don't want to have to repaint, but a ceiling fan is easy enough to remove. Next will come the question of furniture. Do we buy a guest bed even though no guests ever come to visit? Do we put up the crib even though we know no baby may ever sleep there?

I am having a hard time filtering things right now. It's the fertile time of the month and there's nothing like announcing to the internet blogosphere that you intend NOT to…

Thank you to my secret pal!

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I spent, literally, the entire day in a mediation that exhausted me. The good news is, it looks like there will be a resulting settlement and I was inspired by a couple of things that I hope to write about here in the next couple of days. But I am beat. And I came home to this from my secret pal...a whole crochet kit!
~Four skeins of Red Heart Foxy yarn, Majesty color, two skeins of coordinating Red Heart Super Saver in Sierra color, and a pattern sheet with patterns for a scarf, shawl, poncho or shrug. I just may have to try my first shrug...it's so fun looking.
~One skein of Red Heart Super Saver in Lime. No idea what I'll do with it...it is so bright.
~Two No. 13 yarn needles
~One size L Crystalite crochet hook from Red Heart.

I love everything and I can't thank my secret pal enough for brightening my day. I actually have been working on my knitting for the past couple of days...so I'll have to finish up my first knitted project (a scarf my son has already claimed) and…

My white whale...the red room

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Thank you all for the painting advice. We're doing ok with every single room...except the red room. We now have three coats up and I'm debating bothering with another. If I can disguise enough with borders, wallies, signs, posters and curtains then the streaky effect might add to the juvenile feel to the room. I hope. But then again, it might just be my albatross...driving me crazy every single day when I walk into that room. Hard to tell.

This is not our first adventure in interior painting. And we have pretty much broken every rule there is out there...learning by trial and error, you might say. I wish someone had been around when we first bought this house to tell me I would NOT be happy with paint over wallpaper, no matter how lazy I might be. eeks! That room will be getting a re-do...no doubt about it. lol

We are using semi-gloss because we have six dogs and matte finish paint just doesn't hold up well to the dirt and grime. Semi-gloss looks a little shiny for my taste …

Yes, red paint is a pain in the ass

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So you know what you do? Wallpaper border!

Along the top...5 inches tall...


Along the bottom...12 inches tall...

Now I'm looking at fan pulls...

And lamps...

And curtains...


Too much?

busy, busy, busy

Woke up this morning (always a good thing).
Did the mountain of dishes in the sink.
Got a Toys R Us coupon via email for a great toy for Sam for Christmas (a practically life-sized remote control crane)
Did one load of laundry.
Paid bills online.
Sent flowers to a friend in the hospital.
Ordered a gift for my secret pal (I know I just sent one...but I'm planning ahead...hehehe).
Met with the carpet installers.
Took Sam to lunch at McDonalds.
Sam told me I was getting on his nerves at McDonalds and made me cry.
Kissed and made up with Sam.
Went to Home Depot.
Bought a five gallon rose, regular price $20, for FIVE DOLLARS.
Sam expressed an interest in a basketball pull chain for his new ceiling fan (a great Christmas stocking stuffer idea).
Went to Walmart and bought a bunch of stuff, including new boots, a plastic storage tub, Christmas cards, and Disney's Cars.
Came home and put the groceries away.
De-cluttered the top of the refrigerator by organizing all four years worth of Sam's artwor…

And a good time was had by all

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I forgot my camera so we are going to have to make do with a cellphone camera picture.

On the way there, Sam was acting like a little prince and saying, "Take me to the Wiggles!" It was hilariously cute.

We all had a great time at the show. I cried, of course, just like I cried at the circus a couple weeks ago. It was right in the beginning of each show, when the expectation was finally realized and I felt that inevitable pang of two missing boys. But I was able to disguise it quickly and I don't think Sam even noticed. Hell, looking at his smiling face and watching him sing and dance nearly erased the sadness completely for that hour and a half of Wiggle magic.

And for the first time ever, Sam offered his unsolicited opinion on the way home, "Mommy, I had a great time tonight." I think he was particularly impressed by the fact that Greg's substitute as the yellow Wiggle was named Sam. Dreams of growing up and being a Wiggle danced in his head...and it made …

crafts and construction

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I logged onto etsy.com this morning, and I was faced with a whole page of crow-related merchandise on the front page. Weird.

And then I ordered my secret pal a present (shhhh...it's a surprise).

Speaking of crafty things...I finished the baby gift for my friend's baby girl. It is a shawl/cloak/wrap thing for babies. I modified it a bit in the pattern...and I put three buttons to close it, rather than a ribbon. The buttons make the it a bit more secure (and warm, I think). You'll have to pardon the model...it's the best I've got at my house these days.

I've picked up the knitting needles again and am giving it another try (after my stunning defeat last year). I was watching a television show about knitting the other day and realized I was holding the needles all wrong and making it way harder than it had to be. I'll let you know how it goes.

I sent out a pile of mother's bracelets. I love and hate them all at the same time.

I went to Lowe's last night to…

Moments of kindness we would never wish for

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On the day we said goodbye to Alex the workmen stood silently by during the service, waiting to bury our boy.

A couple days later we stopped by on our first official visit to our son's grave. The workmen were actually pouring the concrete for headers and footers on that day, including the header for Alex's stone. We didn't want to disturb them...and I think we were a little bit afraid of what we would see in our son's final resting place...so we stayed a good distance away. It was as we turned to leave that we met Dan.

Dan literally came running over to us to check with us and make sure the proper preparations were being made for our baby's grave...the correct header for our son's headstone. He seemed a bit uncomfortable. Then he revealed that he too had lost a baby boy, and we realized that we had found a friendly soul who truly understood our pain. Dan told us how he struggled for many years before he was able to even talk to God again. I instantaneously love…

Yay Democrats!

Welcome back to Ohio...we've missed you.

Now get busy...you've got a lot of work to do to turn this place around.

Edited to add:
Rumsfeld resigns...this is a pretty good day.

Maybe I deserve it

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In those early days after losing Alex, I thought I dealt with the idea that God was punishing me for something. Over the course of the year, I thought I dealt with my anger over the idea that my child had to lose his life over some "plan" that I just wasn't going to understand until I died. I have wiggled and folded and pressed and reshaped my way of thinking about this over and over and over...all in the hopes that I will someday make enough sense out of it that I will feel some sense of peace. But today while reading through my archives I realized just how little sense it all makes. Unless...

Unless there is something to the idea that God is a punishing God.

Maybe I do deserve it. Maybe my babies deserved it. Maybe I should have known better than to accept that made-for-tv bullshit that God loves me. Maybe God is just really pissed at me for something.

I have spent so much energy clinging to this idea that God wouldn't do this to my babies just because he was angry …

Seriously?

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Dear _________________________:

While we appreciate your offer, we already have a copy of the book and
have read it through at least once cover to cover.

Thank you for your consideration.

Catherine & Stephen
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Dear Stephen & Catherine,

Thank you for considering ____________________ as your adoption professional.
Blessings to you as you seek adoption opportunities.

Warm Regards,
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Yeah...I'm not holding my breath for that "we'll keep you on file" opportunity to actually happen.
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In a refreshing moment of honesty last night, my sweet husband answered, "yes," without hesitation, when asked if he wanted to try to have another baby.

But that was where the refreshing part of it ended.

Me: "So does that mean you don't want to adopt?"

Him: "Why can't we do both?&qu…

We tried to adopt a baby but all we got was this lousy coupon

OK...I'm calm....maybe not calm...but willing to laugh...ok...maybe not laugh...willing to roll my eyes and sigh...at the latest turn of events. Really...a coupon? We won't help you realize your dream of adding to your family...but buy our book? Many words come to mind (several of which are quite profane)...unprofessional...callous...ridiculous.

Steve and I know exactly why this organization would not contract with us. We actually knew the minute we sent the application. There are serious religious undertones to this particular group...and...well...we were honest when asked about our religious affiliations. Some might say we should have just lied. But here's the thing...now that we think about it, we're not entirely comfortable with the ideas they subscribe to. They have a "foundation" which professes to help birthmothers. I poked around on their website. I really have to wonder about the whole thing. I can just hear it now...

See the error of your evil ways.
Be…

Maybe the answer is NO

Dear Stephen & Catherine,

Thank you for your interest in _______________’s adoption program. Based on the limited openings available in our program, we regret we are unable to contract with you at this time.

We receive and review over 250 adoptive family applications each month. We must logically weigh our ability to help each family, based on their adoption preferences, the preferences of our current families and current birthmother requests. Because of our program limitations openings at this time, it would not be fair to accept your contract fee when we would be concerned that you may not be matched with a birthmother within our two year contract term.

However, our experience has shown that opportunities can become available. With your permission, we would like to keep your application and information on file for three to six months, to see if these opportunities arise and then we can help you on a formal basis.

I would like to recommend a helpful adoption book that will provide …

pssst...

Go over to Kate's blog and wish her some good wishes.

Small crises

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We're going to see the Wiggles next week. But they will be the Wiggles without Greg.

I have explained life and death to my son. Surely I can explain this. Right?

Cross your fingers that there will be no temper tantrum once he hears the news.

(Personally, I'm a bit disappointed. I must admit to having a little mom crush on Greg. After all, he clearly is the brains of that crew.)
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I did not get my new perennials planted. Now they are sitting in the little shipment pots under a couple inches of snow. What do I do with them? Dust them off and plant them in pots for the winter? Dig a hole, plant them, and hope for the best? Help!
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I need brown shoes. I have big feet, I'm cheap, and I can't find any styles I like that are well-suited for the snowbelt (and the enormous amount of salt that gets thrown around up here). Ideas?
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What happens when you invite amazing people to exchange socks

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Thank you Shanna! I don't know what to say. The socks made me giggle. The quilt made me cry. It is beautiful and will fit in with our new bedroom decor perfectly. Thank you. You are an amazing woman and I am so lucky to be able to call you my friend.





No, the quilt didn't sprout legs and fingers...that's my darling husband standing behind there being oh-so-helpful.

Travis Leo - May 8, 2006

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We love you sweet baby boy.

Thank you again Dana.

(Happy Dance)

It's snowing! It's snowing! It's snowing!

Painting...painting...and more painting

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My arms ache and I need to buy more paint to complete the job.

Halloween is over. Sam was the only trick-or-treater in my parents' neighborhood (my mom says she saw others, but I question her sanity. Sam went to five houses...he counted them. At each house he announced, "Trick-or-Treat. I'm Sam!" I love that kid!

I saw my first Christmas commercial. Crest White Strips...with, "I'll Be Home for Christmas," as the music track. Crest White Strips will make my Christmas better...happier. Maybe I'll buy some.

And now...photos...because I'm too tired for anything else...

Siding almost complete (color = cypress green)

The purple bathroom (color = twinkle toes)...