Wednesday, February 24, 2010


If we tell our friends we are about to make a purchase, be it a camera or a car, that is probably the first word that comes to mind. Silas and I have a reputation for researching everything we buy to the point of obsession. It takes us forever to make a purchase. Well, except for that one time we went to Best Buy, saw a TV, walked over to the Don Pablos and had some margaritas, then walked back to Best Buy and bought it. (It still works, 7 years later, though now it's the laughing stock of all other TVs, but it doesn't matter because as I mentioned before IT STILL WORKS.)

Anyway, I broke our coffee maker carafe about 2 weeks ago and we still haven't replaced it. We've had this coffee maker for less than a year, and lots of research went into buying it...and, well, it's a Black and Decker 5 cup coffee maker that cost less than $20. I could explain to you all of the reasons why, after weeks of research, we ended up with that particular coffee maker, but I won't bore you with the details. Last night we were at Kohl's and Silas walked over to the cart with a coffee maker in his hands and asked me what I thought. I looked at him like he was from another planet and asked him if he knew anything about that particular coffee maker and he replied, rather sheepishly, "No. We should put this back and go home and look it up online, shouldn't we?" So, we came home and found out that lots of people didn't like it. And we're still using the aeropress to make coffee. Which is, quite frankly, getting to be too much work every morning.

Now we need a new camera. Oh, yea, you can just imagine how, if we research a coffee maker that much, we're going to research plunking down the cash for a camera. We have a deadline, too. We're leaving for Florida March 15th, so we need this camera by then. Bonus points if we figure out how to use it before we leave.

We're probably going to be buying a new car in the next 1-2 years, too. Stay tuned for the production that will be.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Who needs television?

I love that Alison says things like "We come here often" instead of "We come here a lot". Or "What should I illustrate next?" instead of "What should I draw next?".

I find it amusing that Oliver looked at me this morning while he was painting and said "I think I going to get sick, mama". When I asked why, he said "Because I just ate paint".

I also love it when Alison has the day off of school and the two of them spend half an hour running around the house buck naked, acting like maniacs, before they manage to get dressed for the day. Or the fact that it takes us forever to eat breakfast because Oliver keeps making Alison laugh. I didn't even mind when Oliver looked like he had bathed in yogurt instead of just eaten it.

Me: "Oliver, how did you get yogurt in your hair?"
Alison: ***dies laughing***

I think I love Alison's days off more than she does.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Seriously, every time Si leaves for more than a day something bad happens.

Alternate title: She didn't feel warm until we were on our way to the doctor. For Real.

Yesterday Alison went to school and then on a field trip. With a perforated ear drum. Oh, yes, she did. There goes that mom of the year award. Although, I probably kissed that goodbye when I started pantsing my kids for fun, but whatever.

So, yea. I feel kinda' bad. Wednesday morning started like it usually does. Alarm went off, I worked out, took a shower, and woke up the kids to get ready to take Ali to school.

The day would end with Alison, Oliver and I looking pathetic, sitting on the benches by the pharmacy at Target, waiting for a very expensive antibiotic. None of us had eaten, it was getting late, and one of us had liquid coming out of one ear.

In between there was a call from school, a few episodes of crying and whimpering, a trip to the doctor, and a near car disaster.

To be fair, and make me look even worse, I should tell you that Alison was awake at 3 and then again at 3:30 Wednesday morning. However, she never felt warm, and also-she's only had 1 or 2 ear infections in her whole life before this, all before the age of 2. When I woke them up at the normal time Wednesday morning she was her usual talkative, happy self. I asked her if her ear hurt, and she said no. She did! I swear!!

Anyway, after dropping Ali off and eating breakfast, Oliver and I went to Target. The plan was to pick up some lunch and head over to a fellow VA worker's house where I would leave Oliver and go on Ali's field trip. As Oliver and I were waiting for our sandwiches my phone rang. It was Ali's teacher, telling me Alison had been crying off and on for 20 minutes. Alison only cries at home. I mean, really. One time her teacher asked me if she ever showed any extremes of emotion, because at school she's always very stoic. The answer to that question is a resounding Yes, Alison does show extremes of emotion. Here in the comfort of her home where she knows that she can freak out and we will still love her.

The plan was for me to come to school early, with ibuprofen, and assess the situation. When I showed up at school Alison was in the office drawing pictures. Her eyes were red-rimmed and she was very pale. The second she saw me tears started streaming down her face. I gave her some ibuprofen and took her over to her classroom. Her class was in the library for spanish, but her teacher was there. Within 5 minutes Ali was acting normal again, talking and making jokes. Except for being pale, she seemed fine. We made the decision that since she wasn't contagious (no liquids oozing out of her-yet!, no throwing up, no coughing or sneezing) and I was going on the field trip to just go with the plan.

Half-way through the 2 hour field trip it was obvious that Alison was very tired and didn't feel all that great, but she still wasn't complaining about her ear. We got back to school and as her classmates were putting on their snow stuff to go outside I collected Alison's things and told her teacher we were just going to go home.

Here's where the fun starts. As we were talking down the sidewalk to the car, Alison started crying because her ear hurt. I managed to get an appointment at our usual clinic, but not with our normal pediatrician, at 4:20. By the time I stopped to stock up on tylenol and ibuprofen and picked up Oliver it was 10 to 4. Alison is alternately whimpering and sleeping in the back seat, and Oliver is asking for snacks. I'm driving down a street in our fair city when the car starts making a bad sound. It's coming from the front passenger side, by the tire, and it's rhythmic. I'm thinking that maybe, just maybe, I have a big slush puppy pressing on the tire, but when I get out to check I don't see anything. I also don't see any parts obviously missing or hanging out the bottom of the car. Going back home to get the other car would make us WAY too late. I say a lot of bad words inside of my head, along with a prayer that we'll at least make it to the doctor's office. About 5 minutes later the sound stopped. I think I might have had some ice jammed up somewhere, but quite honestly, I don't care. When I realized the car stopped making that sound I experienced relief much like I imagine prisoners feel when they realize they've been pardoned a half an hour before their appointment with the electric chair.

At the doctor Ali was pressing her ear against my body for counter pressure, which must have been offering some relief from the pain. She was trying so hard not to cry, but when we finally got into a room and the doctor started even thinking about poking around in there she couldn't stop the tears. Since I had already given her ibuprofen they gave her a dose of tylenol. The doctor (nurse practitioner, actually, but doctor is much easier and faster to type) told me she couldn't really visualize Ali's ear drum, it was so wet in there. She was assuming it was perforated, though, because Alison had been complaining of popping and crackling sounds, and when she would hiccup or cough she would start crying from the pain. So, a scrip for antibiotics was faxed to the Target by our house. The same Target I had spent an hour in with Oliver earlier that day, buying things one buys at Target. Which means I had nothing else I needed to buy at Target. Except antibiotics, I guess.

We finally made it home at quarter to six, with McDonald's that we picked up on our way. Alison has had 3 doses of antibiotics (we’re healthy, we should get the high deductible plan! We never need prescriptions!) so far, and still needs some medicine when she first lays down to help a bit with the pain, but she is doing much, MUCH better. Her ear, quite frankly, is gross. It has had some nice, pinkish/yellowish/whitish discharge oozing out of it, which is lovely. Today is the first day she hasn't been leaving little marks behind on the pillow when she lays down. She spent all day yesterday writing out valentines, so she really wanted to go to school today. However, within 5 minutes of walking into the lunchroom at school she had tears streaming down her face from the noise. She also says some things sound "echo-y". She really did a bang-up job on that ear.

Silas comes home tonight. I'm assuming she'll be 100% tomorrow.