Thursday, April 30, 2009

Last Day

Well, today is the last day of reporting month.  I hope it goes well.  I hope we get everything done.
I personally feel like Boo in this picture.  Exhausted and wanting a nap.  (This was from Sunday at Knoebels.)
George and Bill were going to pull an all-nighter to try and get everything resolved.  I could have easily stayed quite late as well to get things done.  (Especially since I have some West Coast cases and it was still early yet for them...)  Fortunately or unfortunately, I had to come home and get Boo.  This is one of those times that I don't think I'd be happy with my decision whichever I make.  I feel bad that I left so much work for George and Bill, but Gak can't get Boo until 7 and no one else has a baby car seat and I hadn't asked anyone earlier and hate springing stuff like this on people.  If I'd been able to say, I would have felt bad because I had gone in early (there by 7) and hadn't seen my boy awake in the morning and wouldn't see him awake in the evening.  The boy needs his Momma, at least for a little bit, each day.  Not to mention his Momma needs her boy at least a little bit each day.

Anyhow, the heat wave that hit us the end of last week finally broke yesterday.  There was a little rain overnight and we went from a really warm almost 90 to a quite comfortable 65.  Yes, it was almost a 30 degree change overnight.  Talk about a shock to the system.

Well, I'd better go get my butt in the shower.  There are a handful of pictures up on Flickr from the weekend.  Go, enjoy them.  It was an enjoyable day for us.  Maybe we'll go back near the end of the season if the weather cools off a bit.  I think Boo would enjoy it with fewer people in our group (so a tad less chaos) and a little cooler.  He loves watching people and there are a couple of little rides that I think he'd enjoy too. 

Off to hit the showers and get back to the battle lines.  No, it's not as dangerous to life and limb as what Steve does (who gets deployed back to Iraq later this summer/early fall for another year) but it's a battle in it's own rights.  And, I like to think I help protect us... from breathing nasty air if nothing else.

Peace to all and may your weekends be good and your work not feel like a battle.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Summer Preview?

Suddenly the East Coast has found itself in the middle of a summer heatwave.  Despite the fact that it's over 80 in the house at the moment with all the windows open and the fans going, I'm actually enjoying it.  That's because it's not raining.
Anyhow, I'm just going to skip last week other than to say that Boo is getting bigger and stronger by the minute.  He's crawling like a pro now.  Last Sunday we'd installed a gate across the hallway between the living room and the dinning room.  It is a nice one that stays up all the time and has a gate in it.  I guess you'd call it more of a fence rather than just a gate.
The real interesting part of the week was actually the weekend.  All I know is that they're waaaay too short.  There are too many fun things to do and no where near enough time.  Especially when you have an almost 11-month old (eep!) and my friends.  As Gak likes to say, if we ever got organized, God help the world.
Saturday was filled with laundry and errands and then we went over to Kat's house after Gak got off work.  Mel and Ant were visiting and Kat needed to get ready for Zoe's 8th (double eep!) birthday party the next day.  We hung out and got a few things together and talked.  We also had the first camp fire of the season.  That was great.  Boo got to have a real adventure and actually got to sit in the grass and fall asleep in his playpen under the stars.  I hope he gets to fall asleep under the stars many, many, many more times in the future.  It was a good evening overall.
Sunday was so much fun, even if it was a bit on the blindingly hot and sunny end of the scale.  We went up to Knoebels.  It was opening weekend and such a gorgeous weekend it was.  It was very crowded and that was nice to see.  I just wish the trees had a few more leaves on them.
I didn't get a chance to take Boo on any of the rides.  I wanted to go on the trains, but we ran out of time when Boo was awake and happy boy and the rides were open.  He did very well even if he was very warm.  He did spend about an hour happily sucking down an ice filled sippy cup with some juice in it and playing in the playpen in the shade.
Mind you, I already loved Knoebels before we went up there this time.  I now love them even more.  I've always said they're the most family friendly park I know and this proves it.  They actually have two or three different locations of Mother's Nursing Rooms throughout the park.  Boo and I took advantage of that twice yesterday.  They're very clean, nicely decorated, with a changing table and nice glider in a small individual room that closes and the door locks.  No sharing with a couple of moms all trying to get their kiddos clean and fed.  A little privacy, a little cool air and a comfortable place to boot.  I know you won't find that at most amusement parks I know of... other than Disney, but I've heard they aren't really all that convenient.
I do have a handful of pictures to post, but they're still on the camera and the camera is in the diaper bag.  The diaper bag happens to still be in the car and Gak has the car at Warhammer tonight.  Oh well... look for them soon.  My boy is getting way too big way too fast.  I just hope the weather is nice Friday (although it's not looking like it...) so we can get outdoor Dragon photos.
Anyhow, it's almost 9 and I'd better wrap this up.  I hope the rest of the week goes well, but I'm not holding my breath.

Peace to all and may your weekends be beautiful and full of friends and family and good times.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Rollercoaster Weekend

This was one rollercoaster of a weekend.  
It started out on a pretty low note, even though the weather was gorgeous!  At about 3am and then again at about 3:15 am, Boo's system decided that it didn't want anything to do with what was in his stomach.  So, 2 pairs of PJ's and 2 sheets and a mattress pad later, we all go back to sleep.  At 7:30 or so, within a minute or two of his morning nursing, he decides that would be better up than down, covering himself and his momma and the blanket that had escaped earlier in the night.  Into the tub he goes this time.
The rest of Saturday Boo was a bit off.  He slept a good bit, ate a very little bit (for him) and was just generally a little fussy.  He had no fever or anything and after the morning, nothing came up the system.  He did, however have two very nice blowouts from the other end.  One of which resulted in another bath.  Yep, the boy had 3 baths within 24 hours... or one bath and two rinses really.  Friday night was "normal" bath night.
I did laundry Saturday afternoon because Boo went back down for a nap right before we would have all left to take Gak to work and us to the laundry.  Oh well.  It was actually not very crowded while I was there.  That was nice.  I also got some other errands run while the laundry was going, which is difficult to do when I have Boo with me.

Sunday was a good day.  Boo and I went down to visit PopPop and GrammaSue.  As usual, Henry and family were out so we missed the opportunity to have a play date there.  That's OK.  Boo and PopPop had a good time together on the floor.  We all went for a little bit of a walk as well.  Not as long as Momma would have liked, but Boo was a little fussy so we kept it short.  Most of the afternoon was spent being very lazy.  GrammaSue napped to the Phillies game, PopPop played with his camera, Boo slept for about 2 hours and I half watched the game, half looked through the paper and checked on Boo.  I could have used a nap, but I knew that if I did take one, Boo would wake up screaming in about 5 minutes.  I had thought about taking my current crochet project with me, but I figured I probably wouldn't have time to work on anything, even with two other adults there to watch the boy.

Oh, and we also talked to Jon to wish him a happy birthday.  Yep, on Sunday my "little" brother turned 31.  It sounds like they all had a good evening and were having a good day.  That's the way birthdays should be.

In other Boo related news, the boy is officially a crawler.  It took him less than a week to go from being able to get into a sit on his own to full fledged crawling.  He is kinda funny though.  He crawls on hands, one knee and one foot.  It's cute.  I have some video of it.  No, I can't post it yet, it's still on the camera and it's in the car in the diaper bag.  I have a whole bunch of clips I need to do something with.

Anyhow, I'm not going to go into the work deal.  I'm tired and cranky and just don't want to deal with it.  So, therefore, I'm not.

Well, it's now almost 6:15 and I'd better get my butt in gear.  The boy is threatening to wake up again and I need to run through the shower and get ready to face the day.

Peace to all and may your weekends be good.

Friday, April 17, 2009


Where in the world has the week gone?  Last I knew it was still Monday, and here it is Friday again already.  Can I tell you how much I hate reporting month.
Work's been a bear.  All kinds of crap hitting the fan and tons and tons of work that needs to get done.  High stress situations all the way around.

And I can't focus.

Nope, I can't focus worth a damn since Wednesday or so.  It's like I used up my entire focus and drive for the entire reporting month by the 15th.  It sucks.  I have so much on my plate right now that I'm not sure which way is up.  Maybe that's the problem.  I'm feeling overwhelmed again, so I start to shut down.  I'd like to say it wasn't always that way, but, I think it has.  In the beginning days when this was all new and exciting and was comfortable with my knowledge level, I was driven to get everything done.  I didn't feel overwhelmed, just challenged and pushed to prove I was the best.  Now... well... I'm not feeling so sure about myself and I'm not so sure about my position and if I really want to be doing this... and I'm doubting myself and the job more and more, so yeah, I'm overwhelmed.  It really sucks, but there you go.
I really do need to dust off that resume and update it from the last 8.5 years.  Although, how do you say you've been working for the same company that entire time when you got bought out 1.5 years into it?  Hmmm...
And yes, I'm terrified of the prospect of trying to find a different job.  I think that's what's kept me here so long.  I've never actually done a formal job search.  Well, there was the job I had at the lab... but I'd only had my resume up on Monster for about a month when I got that.
Then there's the question of "what do you want to do when you grow up?"  I still don't know the answer to that one.  Although, there are days, more and more really, that I wish I'd actually done something with my degree.  That I'd tried to get a job in research or gone for my masters or even doctorate.  I miss the lab work.  I miss the puzzles, the big words, the problems.  Sure, I've got problems and puzzles all over the place here, but nothing "new" to be discovered.  And lets face it, not all of the customers I deal with are the brightest bulbs in the pack or the most stimulating to talk to.  I guess I'm feeling like there's just not that much mental stimulation in my work any more.  And in many ways there isn't.  Sure, there is always another reg to learn or process to look at, but there's only so much legal talk you can read before your braincells start dying from boredom and confusion.

Ah, this is no way to start a Friday!  The weekend is almost here.  I've got a 7-4 shift today.  The weather is beautiful and should be through the weekend.  I've got a family who loves me and who I love more than anything.  And I'd best get my butt out the door, it's almost 6:15 and I'm still here in my bath robe....

Peace to all and may life sometimes make sense and you have dreams that can fly free.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Weekend Wrapup

Well, it's been a weekend.  It was very nice to have a 3-day weekend.
Boo and I had a couple of nice adventures on Friday.  We started out mid-morning by going down to the "good" yarn store.  We spent a good bit of time wandering around an oogling all of the different  yarns that were there.  I had absolutely no projects in mind when I went there.  That may have been a good thing, because I wasn't shopping for something specific.  I did bring home a skein of Noro sock yarn in some beautiful colors.  Don't ask me what it will become, I haven't a clue.
After that little adventure we came back up home and stopped at Good Will.  I managed to find 3 shirts for me, 2 shirts (one a Phillies shirt, brand new with the MLB tag still attached!), 2 pair of shorts and a pair of short-alls for Boo for just under $25!  That was a nice find.  I wish I'd been able to find a few more shirts for the boy, but everything was either way too small or way too big.  Oh well.
Boo also surprised me Friday evening with a new trick he's learned.  He was a bit fussy around 5:30 or so, and so I put him into his bed for a short nap while I got his dinner ready.  Well, he never did quite fall asleep.  About a half hour later, when I went to get him, there he was, sitting in his bed playing with Trey.  Mind you, he's been sitting up on his own for ages, but Friday was the first time he managed to get there all on his own!  He managed to do this several more times over the weekend.  He even managed to then pull himself to standing once or twice as well.  The big problem is that he hasn't quite figured out how to lay back down, so he gets fussy when he wants to go to sleep but can't figure out how to lie down.  I'm waiting to find him asleep in his crib, sitting up with his head against the rails.  That would be too cute.
We didn't actually do anything for Easter.  I did laundry Saturday and we went to the Q-mart for entertainment.  Of course, I didn't think about it being Easter and not being able to go grocery shopping yesterday.  Oops.  Oh well, we won't starve.  I'll just stop on my way home this evening.  GrammaSue is watching Boo all day today because Gak has to open and close.  Then he's going to Warhammer tonight.  Talk about a long day!  Oh well, it doesn't happen often.

I'm still chugging away at work.  It's not very fun and I'm frustrated as all anything by a few things and people.  But, it's the middle of April, it should hopefully have a light at the end of the tunnel in just a few weeks.  (Either that or it's a train... *shrug*)

Well, I'd better get back to my work.  The picture at the top of this post is from yesterday.  Boo's schedule was all out of whack because he woke up late, didn't nap in the morning and was just off in general.  He was fighting his afternoon nap hard for about 2 hours.  I finally put him on my bed so I could put some laundry away.  He was quietly playing with Trey, so I left him there.  About 5 minutes later there wasn't any noise coming from the room and sure enough, here he was, sound asleep.  Cut, eh?

Peace to all and may your weekends be good.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Thursday Already??

So here it is, Thursday morning already.  I never did get back to that brain dump.  I think I said most of what I needed to anyhow.  Sure, there is always more on my mind, but it really was drivel.
I guess I should finally update about the rest of the weekend.... now that we're fast approaching a 3-day one again.  
Saturday was a lot of fun at the Nature Center.  It was great to see old friends and meet some of the new staff.  Mrs. Thompson, the one who was one of my Scout leaders and the one who told me to "call Lynn" when I had no idea what I wanted to do for Career Elective my senior year in high school was actually there.  It was very good to see her.  Boo seemed to have a good time, he was fascinated by the birds.  I'm hoping to take him to the aquarium sometime this summer (Baltimore preferably...) and I'm sure he'll enjoy that too.
Sunday was a busy errand day.  Breakfast at the dinner, Boo and Gak home for a nap (haha...) while I did laundry, a trip to BJ's and the Warhammer store, cook a good dinner of ham and macaroni and cheese and a walk to the park to play on the swings and the slide.  Boo actually laughed his head off a bit on the swings.  We had to use the older swing first, but had to stop.  It doesn't have a crotch strap, so I was terrified he'd go sliding right out if he stopped holding on.  I may have been able to put him in "backwards", but I wasn't so sure about that.  He didn't like the other swing as much because he kept hitting his head on the backrest.  Oh well.  We had fun for a bit.  He's not so sure about the slide, but he didn't scream his head off over it, just looked a little concerned.
This week at work has been long, tough and mentally draining.  I don't think I'll tell the story of the training fiasco last week and how I wanted to kill a coworker.  It has to do with broken promises and no support from above and a painful sales guy and mollifying an upset customer.  I'm still angry about the whole ordeal, but it worked out in the long run.

Anyhow, just wanted to let everyone know we're all still here and doing just fine.  I stumbled across a couple of blogs on "work life" balance as I wandered around some mommy blogs.  It's almost as bad as watching soap operas some days.... but there are many good ones out there.  One post I found was by Michelle Obama back in October.  The end of it is a campaign pitch, but I can hardly blame her.  Most of it is very good and makes me go "she really does get it... they really are a normal family in so many ways."  This one was interesting as well.  They both say much better than I can some of what I feel and what we all have to deal with, moms and dads alike.
This modern world is way too stressful.  Of course, I'm sure most eras had that to say, so it's nothing new.  Just the types of stress has changed.  I'd love to be able to live in today's world but without the need for so many material things.  I want good health care, safe food, the Internet but to not be the odd ball out when it comes to not wanting the million dollar house (I'd never be able to keep it presentable and it would fill to the rafters with junk just as easily as a smaller house...), not wanting the big fancy cars or closets overflowing with clothes or having the latest and greatest high-tech toys.  (That's a hard one though, I'd love a new HD TV, but it's not in the budget at all... and I don't even watch TV that much in the first place!)  I don't watch a million hours of TV or buy every new gadget.  I just want to be able to provide a nice, simple life for me and my boys and I don't want to feel guilty about spending time at work or time with my family and not needing it to take a minor miracle to pull it all off.
Ok, I'm beginning to rant again and just put myself into a cranky mood.
I'd better go hit the shower (a minor luxury I so enjoy) and get ready for work.  I promise to get the pictures off my camera and posted soon...

Peace to all and may you have a good weekend if I don't talk to you before then.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Brain Dump

First off, before I get into the post, Happy Birthday Michelle!!!  See, I remembered!

***Warning: This is going to be a very random post full of brain dumps and other drivel.  If you're scared to take a peak into my brain, it is perfectly acceptable to go running screaming to some other safer blog.  Try my brother's it's funnier than mine.***

Ok, now that the disclaimer is out of the way, I can get a few things off my mind and into writing.  But, first things first.  Isn't my boy totally adorable?  Hasn't he gotten way too big way too quickly?  I was hoping to get pictures outside this month, but the weather conspired against us.  Oh well, there's always May...

I think I'll save the work drama for the end.  It'll be the easiest to write about.

I've had rants and thoughts bumping about in my brain about several different things the last few months but just haven't had the time, energy or attention span to do anything about it.  Here's hoping I can finally get a lot of this onto "paper" so to say.
The one minor rant I have is about the love/hate relationship I have with my library.  I love that it's within walking distance.  I love that it's free.  I love that I can check my book due dates and reserve books all online and even reserve books online.  Sounds wonderful right?  Well, not so wonderful.  The selection in my library is laughable.  Maybe it's because the library where I spent most of my time growing up was huge compared to this one and was packed with books.  I think even my little library in Annville where I went to school has more books that what my library here has.  It's a beautiful new building.  (It's less than 10 years old, but more than 5.)  The organization leaves a bit to be desired.  Yes, they use the traditional Dewey Decimal system for the non fiction and alphabetize by author for fiction, but the two sections seem jumbled together.  And practically half the shelves are empty!  I haven't been able to find the periodicals yet and the reference section in the kids section at my old library was bigger than the reference section here.  So, it's a love hate relationship.  I wish I had all the perks of the online access and all that and the in-person selection of my old library.  Not much to ask really.  But, I guess the only solution would be to move back to Chester County.  (Even though PA is wonderful in the fact that since I have a card to a PA library system already, I can check books out at any library in PA that I go to.  I was so thrilled when they did that back when I was in Jr. High.)

The other thing that has been bugging me for... oh... most of the past year... is mommy websites.  I'm not talking about mommy blogs.  I actually read a couple of people that I don't even know and enjoy them.  No, I'm talking about places like Baby Center (the chat rooms), or Kelly Mom or any of the others that I have stumbled across, glanced at and run away from in disgust or anger.  There are some out there that seem to think the working mom (and yes, I'll use that term and not to say that mom's who are able to stay home with their kids don't work... I know they do!)  are scum of the earth, can't be good mommas and "could stay home if they really want to".  Well, I really want to, but can't.  No, I'm not a single mom.  Yes, my husband works.  But... I earn twice what he does.  Simple, unadulterated fact.  99 times out of 100 if you ask me if I'm OK with that, I say "heck yeah!".  Gak is happy doing what he does.  His job allows him to take care of our son in the mornings and still provide for the family.  Every once in a while though, I do wish he earned $100,000 a year and we'd be set.  But then reality kicks in and know that's not who Gak is or ever will be.  That's not who I want him to be either.  
They also all seem to be die-hard if you don't breastfeed you aren't a good momma and are actually causing harm to your child.  Now, I do breastfeed Boo.  I enjoy it for the most part.  I'm really beginning to hate the pump, but that's a whole other post.  If I wasn't able to or if things were different, I'd use formula.  I'd do whatever it takes to raise a healthy, happy kiddo.  If you can't/won't/don't breastfeed, that's OK too.  And what I don't get is why the adamant breast feeders are so adamant about not weaning your kid to anything until they're two or older.  While if I was a SAHM, or one who worked part time, I might consider this, I seriously doubt that'll be the case for me and Boo.  I'm not going to stop breastfeeding him on June 1st just because it's hist birthday, but I am going to start introducing him to drinking cow's milk instead.  He may take to it like a fish to water, or it may be 6 months or more before it's acceptable to him.  He'll let me know.
The few sites that do have "support" for working mom's assume that either I'm a high paid executive type with my own office, very supportive boss and lots of female coworkers of child bearing age who all are having babies or that I work in a retail type environment and don't breastfeed.  Well, I'm a cube-dwelling, well paid woman who is one of a dozen woman (max) total out of a 70-80 person office with only passing support from upper management and no privacy to speak of who does breastfeed her baby.  I'm also one of three women of child bearing age and the only one who has, or will have, a child in the near future.  One of the other two doesn't plan on having any of her own and the other is a 22-ish girl who I'm not sure if she even has a stable date, let alone plans for kids.  So, it's just me.  Fighting the fight all by myself to get support and understanding.  And a little privacy when I can.
I've tried looking for information about traveling mommas who breastfeed and how they handle traveling without their kids.  I'd love to know another mom with a child under the age of 5 who has to travel for work.  I'd love to know I'm not alone, that it can be done and what others do to survive.  I haven't had to travel for work yet, but I will.  The mere thought of it makes me ill.  All it makes me want to do is hug my boy that much closer and never let him, or his daddy, go.  There's all kinds of information out there about traveling with your baby.  But almost none about traveling without him.  Or, I'm guessing that they think if you travel without your baby you're a bad momma and that you don't breastfeed.  Look, I have enough trouble with guilt about being a bad momma already, I don't need others making me feel that way too.  I know in my heart I'm not a bad momma.  The look of pure joy that Boo gets on his face when I go to pick him up tells me I'm not a bad momma at all.

I do have som reassurances though.  Abi and I got to talking about kids a bit while she was here last weekend.  She said point blank "I'm not strong enough to do what you do; I don't know how you do it".  And she's right, I have no idea how I do it.  I just do what I've got to do to make sure that everyone, Gak, Boo and me, are as happy, healthy and provided for as I can.  Is it enough? Most would probably say yes, but I never will.  I can always make more time for Gak, be more involved with Boo, clean better around the house, cook (and eat) more nutritious meals... the list goes on and on.  I don't want to be "Super Mom", but I have to be.  My mom also said she has no idea how single mom's do it, because it's hard enough with two parents (and a gramma) these days.  She's right.  I don't know what I'd do without her some days.  I don't call on her often with baby issues, but I know she's there.  I try very hard not to take advantage of her watching Boo on Monday's, even though she volunteered before he was even born.  But without her support, emotional and otherwise, it would be just that much harder.
And, above all, I have Gak.  That man is way more forgiving and patient with me than he ever should have to be.  I will admit, I haven't been the best to him.  Nothing major, but lots of little things.  I don't make enough time for him, intimate or otherwise.  I don't support him enough in the things he's interested in.  I gripe and grouse for no reason just because I can't/don't gripe and grouse and the people or things that really are putting me in the bad moods.  I really, really, really must do better for him.  I must make time for him more than I have.

Well, the rest of the drivel that's floating around in my brain must wait.  I'm impressed if you've made it this far.  I have enough time to give a quick spell check before Boo will start complaining that he's awake and no one is paying attention to him.   We're going to the Nature Center later today for a pot-luck dinner for Lynne's 20th anniversary there.

Peace to all and may you have somewhere to dump the brain goo.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

10 months!

My baby boy is 10-months old today! Yes, this means new dragon pictures. This one is actually from yesterday, when he dressed up as a "level 1 human" for daycare. Thanks to his uncle Jon who got him this shirt when he was still a level 0 human pressing away at my ribs. I can't believe he's been here with us in person for 10 whole months now! The time is just flying by. I thought time had been getting faster and faster as I got older, but now I think it's approaching Ludicrous Speed. ("They've gone to plaid!")

On a side note, please forgive me if April posts are few and far between. There's no other way to put it, but work will be hell this month. This is the transition month for all those federal reports we work with. While, the contract customers who have been assigned to me and must be done by the 15th are all in good shape, we really have no idea what all the bumps in the road will be for the next 30 days.
Wish us all luck!

Peace to all and may time behave and work be easy.