Showing posts from May, 2009

The story of Zip

This is Zip. We call her Zippy-Doo. She was brought into the animal shelter on April 28th on the end of the dog warden's pole. She had a rope tied around her neck.

For the first two weeks she was at the shelter, nobody could get close enough to even tell that she was, in fact, a she. She would growl and snarl and snap if you even looked at her. But the animal welfare director wanted to give her a chance because, what you can't tell from a picture, is that Zip is actually a very small dog. She is what I imagine happens when you put a German Shepherd on high/hot tumble dry. She just shrunk right on down. She so small, I could carry her out in my shoulder bag...if she would let me.

I was introduced to Zip Friday, May 15th. What follows are my entries from each day.

Friday, May 15
I overheard Sue talking about how she tried to get this dog out of the cage for a walk. It was apparently quite the ordeal. Everything she described about this dog, Zip, reminds me of our Milo. He was once…

#22 way to change the world

I've been saving both of these foot-related charities for Barefoot Week, which is June 1-7! I personally love being barefoot. But I am very lucky and have a choice.

Soles 4 Souls
"We want to invite people to join hundreds of thousands of Soles4Souls supporters around the world in participating in Barefoot Week," said Wayne Elsey, Founder & CEO of Nashville-based Soles4Souls. "Anyone can make an important difference to someone in need by starting their own shoe drive, cleaning out their closet, sending us a new pair of shoes or making a simple cash donation. Our charity thrives on the active involvement of everyday people making the decision to step up and help less fortunate people, both here in the United States and around the world," he said.

Celebrities are also lending their support of Barefoot Week in hopes of encouraging more participation with the charity's programs. Scarlett Johansson, who previously donated 2000 pairs of new shoes from her own li…


Steve and I were married for not quite seven years when he was born.

Today he is seven years old.


Happy Birthday Sam-a-lama!


(Please accept my apologies for the extreme pasty whiteness of my fat leg.)

#21 way to change the world

First we begin with a sincere “thank you” for your support of Noah’s Wish, we truly appreciate your help; without your on-going assistance, we would find it difficult to help animals affected by disasters.

Given the current economic climate, we know that everyone is looking for the best bargain or some fun and/or entertainment when they spend. With that in mind, we have several innovative fundraising events scheduled for this spring and summer that you may find of interest:

Starting today, May 22, 2009, the Noah’s Wish Art and Book auction begins on eBay. There will be 60 items available to the highest bidder. We have a number of original pieces of artwork and author autographed books that will be sold to the highest bidders.

The auction runs from May 22 through May 31st, take a look at what’s available and bid on those that strike your fancy!

In addition, we will conduct our annual Pet Photo Contest beginning in August. This is where you enter your favorite pet photo for a nominal ent…

Miscellaneous thoughts

Kate asked...
Let’s toss aside the solemnity commanded by the economic shitstorm. Tell me what you lust for. What indulgences, little or big, do you refuse to give up against all good advice? What ridiculous or otherwise wildly irrational object would make your life complete?

I refuse to give up against all good advice... new camera (I will share photos some day, I promise)
...the wii we are saving up for
...havarti cheese jewelry (not real expensive stuff)

I'm a simple girl, really. But I have to say, I think my life would be complete if I could afford a minivan with all the fancy schmancy features (mine has crank windows as if I'm living in a 1970s movie). I KNOW my life would be complete with a new Jeep Wrangler (I miss my Jeep...gave it up for a "family car").
My job title should be Assistant Prosecutor/Guidance Counselor. I swear half the problems I deal wit…

The un-funny joke

Coworker #1:
Yeah, I saw the public defender, Joe, in the hallway. He commented, "I haven't seen you in a while, I take it you had the child then?" I should have looked down and my belly and said, "Oh my gosh...where did it go?"

Coworker #2:
No, if you really wanted to screw with him, you should have told him you lost the baby.

(long seconds of uncomfortable silence)

Coworker #2: (looking at me quickly and saying, very quietly)
Just kidding.

I know I've done a good job assimilating myself into this new life. I've tried to make my story conversational so that people don't get weird and uncomfortable around me. I still can imagine no realm of existence where THAT would have even been considered funny. Even before, I would not have found that funny...nor would I have expected anyone else to think that was funny.

I'm beginning to think some of the people I work with are just missing critical strands of DNA or something.

She's lost her mind

I'm doing something my mother doesn't really approve of. But I've waited a reasonable amount of time to make sure I'm not making a spur-of-the-moment decision and, even though I'm nervous, I think I'm ready.

I'm getting a tattoo. Friday.

Now here's my dilemma...the design. Here are my options at this point...
I won't tell you which is my favorite because I want an impartial opinion from the internets. So...which do you like?

They can all be altered, so feel free to make suggestions. I want it to be pretty small...but not tiny. Maybe two or three inches across at the biggest point. I also want to work in the colors of the boys' birthstones (or rather, birthstones for Sam & Myles, and what-should-have-been-birthstones for Alex and May, June, September, and November).

I toyed with the idea of a celtic heart, but I used that on Alex's headstone and...well...I'm not sure I want the same thing on my person. I want a visible reminde…

Where reality and fantasy collide

Does anyone watch Fringe? He DIED when he was six?!?!
Sam: Sometimes the mommy cow feeds her baby and then has extra milk, so the farmer takes the extra.

Me: That's not true.

Sam: Yes it is.

Me: Well, most of the time, they only produce extra because the farmer gives them medicines that make them make extra milk. And a lot of people think that might not be such a good thing for people to be drinking.

How is this an education? Rainbows and unicorns is not reality. Why aren't they teaching my kid about real life? Is this why I'm so woefully prepared for my own adulthood?
Sam: Mommy, wouldn't it be nice if there were no laws?

Me (the lawyer):

Sam: But then we wouldn't have to stop at stop lights like on Paradise City.(cousin's xBox360)

Me: Do you know what would happen in real life if you drove like on Paradise City? People would die. We have laws to keep peop…

Frugal Friday

9lb bag Kingsford charcoal
Watch battery
A&W root beer
FREE! (paid with rebate gift card)
Plus savings of $0.60 for the vacation fund

Three 14kt bead spacers
Spent $10.86
Saved $23.80

Spur of the moment stop in for dinner stuff and a few other grocery items.
2liter Diet Pepsi
2liter Diet Dr. Pepper
Goldfish crackers
Fruit snacks
3 boxes Honey Nut Cheerios
Ground Beef
2 bags hamburger buns
Spent $28.02
Saved $5.00

Giant Eagle
Another spur of the moment trip. These kinds of trips will kill the budget if I'm not careful.
12pk Killians
Havarti cheese
Oliver Soft Red wine
Mikes Hard Berry
Double Stuff Oreos
Spent $40.24
Saved $0.39

1 Schick Quattro trimmer
6-pack Gatorade Orange
6-pack Gatorade Fruit Punch
Bag Doritos
CVS Kids sunscreen (no-rub spray)
Spent $9.76
Saved $29.85
Received $4 ECB back

I want to make a special note of these purchases because they will be tax deduct…

#20 way to change the world

Bid on a celebrity-designed baby blanket at the Bundled In Hope auction on ebay and help provide blankets for babies in need.

A partnership of Toys R Us (our favorite store) and Save the Children (one of our favorite charities).

All cash donated at Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us stores nationwide, online at, and through our baby registry fundraising program, along with 100% of all winning bids from the auction of blankets designed by celebrity moms, will be directed to Save the Children as part of the Bundled in Hope campaign.

Save the Children will use funds to purchase baby blankets for children in the most impoverished parts of the United States – such as Appalachia, the Mississippi River Delta, the Gulf Coast, and California’s Central Valley – and provide ongoing support in these regions through a comprehensive early childhood development program.

The program kicked off in conjunction with Mother’s Day and continues through July 11.

No, really, that's ok

Steve walks into the bathroom at the office. He notices there are two water bottles sitting on the counter. He also notices the cleaning person is working in the bathroom.

Steve enters a stall and hears his co-worker, D, emerge from a neighboring stall and ask the cleaning person what happened to his water bottles. The cleaning person apologizes and says he thought they had been left there. The cleaning person then proceeds to reach into the trash and hand the water bottles back to D...who accepts them and leaves the bathroom.

Remind me never ever EVER to shake hands with D should I meet him.

Moving on

It's always weird the day after the anniversary of the worst day of our lives.

Back to a too-early alarm clock...I'm sooooo tired.

Back to work...
Today's work project is to determine who is responsible for paying for autopsies done in a neighboring county, our coroner's office (out of their budget) or our commissioners (out of the county general fund).

Back to blogging...
Thank you for all your kindness during this past week. Hell...thank you for all your kindness always. It seems impossible that anyone would want to read what I have to write for one day, let alone four years. But I have met some of the most amazing people through this blog and I consider you friends. I celebrate your victories and mourn your tragedies with you. And I am forever grateful that you share your words with me. I'm quite sure I would not have survived the past four years without you.

Like I's weird. Part Oscar-acceptance speech, part lets-pretend-yesterday-was-just-another-day…

Alex Gerard


Happy Mother's Day

I hope this day is filled with love for everyone.

If you are missing a child (or children) today, I hope this day is gentle on you.

To my own mom...I love you.

Mother's Day memories

I'm trying very hard to hold on here.

But I remember that Mother's Day four years ago so clearly. Mama Roberto's Italian Restaurant. The pink t-shirt I was wearing. Excusing myself from dinner to go stand outside because I started coughing and couldn't stop. Is that when it happened? Or did he die while I was enjoying my chicken parmigiana? I still can't set foot in that place...and I doubt I ever will be able to again.

I want so much to replay the happy times. But the happy times seem so far away and fuzzy around the edges. Like a dream that you know was good...but you just can't remember the details.

The details of the bad, however, are crystal clear. Why is that?

I look at my beautiful boys here with me and I try not to think of that other life...the one we could have had. It's just too painful. Because the razor sharp images of all that went wrong spring to the front and center and demand attention...when all I really want is one or two good memories of w…

Miscellaneous thoughts

I absolutely LOVE Secret Spineless whines...especially when relevant to my life.

Can I copy this one and hang it on the bulletin board at my office?
Nearly one in five of the uninsured – 8.5 million people – live in rural areas.
Rural residents pay on average for 40% of their health care costs out of their own pocket, compared with the urban share of one-third.
In a multi-state survey, one in five insured farmers had medical debt.
Hard Times in the Heartland; Health Care in Rural America

I find this interesting given the popular representation of those needing help with medical care as typically being the urban poor.
I have spent this past week catching up on blogs I haven't read in weeks, months, and (in some cases) years. In fact, I completely forgot I subscribed to Google Reader for a while and there are a whole bunch of blogs I just don't read anymore. I…

#19 way to change the world I'm not about ONE charity. Today I'm all about Mom. is hosting a "Mom Knows Best" celebration.
Show her what you learned by supporting a mom-approved project, and share a lesson you learned from her.A list of Mom-approved projects can be found here.

Pick any little as $10 can make a big difference somewhere in this world.

Make a donation.

Make Mom proud.

Travis Leo


Don't touch me

I feel it sidling up to me...

The red in my underwear mocks me for all my failings and I want to lay down and weep on the floor of the bathroom.

whispering in my ear...

My coworker is back from maternity leave with tales of her non-sleeping baby.

slipping an arm around my shoulders...

My other coworker asks me how much water you're supposed to drink before an ultrasound.

drawing me close...

I go back through my blog archives as though I'm massaging an scar on my flesh that still aches when the weather is just right.

waiting for me to break down...

Last year I would have closed my office door and let the tears come.

but I am stronger now...

I hope to find distraction in other things.

I think I can plug the holes and dam the tide for now...

I mess up the RSVP details on one of Sam's 7th birthday party invitations when my mind wanders to what kind of flowers I should plant at the cemetery this year.

I don't want to cry...I've wasted enough time on that sort of nonsense...

There are…

Happy Birthday to my Dad!

I often do shout-outs to my Mom because I know she reads here occasionally. But it seems Dad doesn't get nearly the mention Mom does. I think today is a perfect opportunity (albeit late in the day) to rectify my oversight.

Today is my Dad's birthday. Help me with some birthday wishes, will ya?

Happy Birthday Dad! We love you!

Are you kidding me?!?!

Sam's t-ball coach from last year is an assistant coach this year. He and his wife have four beautiful kids...three boys and one girl. They are lovely people and we really like them (we really should invite them over to dinner or something...but with four kids, they rarely have any free time).


At the first baseball game of the season, while sitting innocently in the stands minding my own business, I overheard someone ask how old the daughter was.

She'll be four on May 11th.

F*** you too, universe!

I guess that'll teach me to eavesdrop.

#18 way to change the world

The mission of Dress for Success is to promote the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support and the career development tools to help women thrive in work and in life.
Something I only recently learned about Dress for Success...
To meet the need for services that would help women both find and keep jobs, we established the Professional Women's Group (PWG) program, which offers women ongoing support as they successfully transition into the workforce, build thriving careers and prosper in the mainstream workplace. Once a woman joins the PWG she is a member for life, able to attend meetings at any affiliate throughout the world, and can benefit from additional employment retention and mentoring programs.

Dress for Success also has developed Career Center, an initiative that promotes confidence and professionalism by providing women career guidance, the chance to acquire technology skills and assistance in their job searches.


Miscellaneous thoughts

The Fisher Price Stride to Ride Walker I bought Sam in 2002 was discontinued in 2006 and is now considered collectible. WTF?!?!

I just need some replacement balls for the darn thing (the dog ate ours). I'm afraid ping pong balls will be too small.
Congratulations to Shutter Sisters for winning the Dream Photography Assignment contest. Hope IS more than wishful thinking.
It's a simple thing really...squirt some Windex on the windows and wipe. So why am I the only one who seems able to do it? Do I live with idiots? (Don't answer that.)
For anyone who wonders what celebrities and Twitter are good for...look at this.

And on Twitter...Hugh Jackman took "favorite charity" suggestions and as a result is donating $50,000 to Charity:Water and $50,000 to Operation of Hope.'s good for something mo…