Another pee story

Because you can’t really hear enough about pee, right?

There was an accident in the dining room today, as the 3 year old was playing hide and seek with her brother. A pee accident. Because she couldn’t come out of her hiding spot, so what was a girl to do?

After a tearful (on her part) and somewhat angry (on my part) discussion on the merits of peeing when you need to go vs “holding it”…. we came to an agreement. We agreed to still love each other even when one of us decides to pee our pants, and even if the other person is not very happy about it. And also that we really should take time to stop playing and go pee before it decides to make a grand entrance on a very expensive rug that your father may have a stroke over if he ever found out. She missed the rug…but it was close. Too close.

But as my husband hears the story, he seems so shocked….why did she do it?

Oh, I know.

And now for my next pee story.

I was somewhere around 5 or 6 years old. Playing at the neighbors house, and at some point realized I needed to pee. I think I was in a battle with my bladder, not wanting to allow it any power over me. I would be the one to choose my place and time of elimination, thank you very much! Not some brainless, hollow organ that can’t even stretch enough to let me finish playing a summer afternoon game of hide and seek.

At some point the urge grew from nagging to alarming. I crouched down, begging my body to just HOLD IT IN! I was doing fine, until I lost my balance, fell over and released Hoover Dam.

I then stood, and took stock of what I had to work with. Warm sunny day, very wet pants. Can’t blame it on falling in a puddle….. but I COULD blame it on falling in a puddle of BUBBLES! Of course, I would tell my parents we were playing with a lake of bubbles and silly me fell in. Surely they would buy it!

I still remember crying, insisting it was BUBBLES and not pee!!!  Isn’t it funny how indignant we get when someone doesn’t believe our perfectly plausible lie?

So I get it. I get that I will have to expect these moments here and there, and remind the youngest to pee sometimes when she’s doing her best to avoid it. And I’ll tell her all the stuff, like I did today, about how it’s bad to hold it in, and not good for your body etc….

What I won’t tell her is that I’ve just gotten sooooo much better at holding it. That’s right, pee, I’m totally the boss of you.


Sunshine blogger award

So I was just nominated by Amanda at Just in Queso for the sunshine blogger award 🙂 🙂

I totally accept and also urge you all to check out her blog, it’s pretty irresistible…. kind of like a yummy, melty, cheesy slightly sarcastic but always in good taste bowl of queso.

So here are the rules for this award:

  1. Answer the 11 questions from the person nominating you.
  2. Nominate 11 other awesome bloggers, and give the 11 questions to answer.

Not too bad, right?

Here are my assigned questions:

1.What is your favorite snack?

So this is actually a really hard question for me to answer… because I am a shameless snacker and I don’t want any of my favorites to feel left out. Let’s say popcorn mixed with jelly beans or sour patch kids is pretty  high up there. All things chocolate of course, and homemade banana splits with plenty of m&m’s, hot fudge, strawberry sauce, peanuts, and whipped cream…. and a brownie… a brownie on the bottom.

2. Where is your happy place?

In my imagination…. it always beats reality.

3. What is a sound you enjoy hearing?

Am I too cheesy if I say something like “the sound of my kids laughter”? Also silence… I like the sound of silence a whole lot.

4. Tell us something weird/interesting about you.

Hmmmmm. In elementary school I once taped a cotton ball over my eye and kept it on all day to garner sympathy and attention from my classmates. Current weird problem is that I can’t stop swallowing my gum.

5. What is one thing you would change about yourself?

Probably my desire to change things about myself…

6. What is one of your strengths?

I’m going to say multi-tasking, and organization. God, that sounds horribly boring and depressing.

7. How is May going for you so far?

I feel pretty good about May so far…. it has seen my lose 3 lbs and let’s hope it doesn’t see me put it and more back on 🙂

8. What is your favorite thing to do with close friends?

Well this is definitely a “what if” question, as I never actually get to see my close friends. Last time I saw my best friend, we met up in the Starbucks parking lot so I could grab my girl scout cookies from her and then drive away, each on to our next duty. On the rare occasion our schedules line up… we usually spend the time asking each other what we want to do, until time is almost up and then we just go eat somewhere close and lament out inability to make decisions.

9. What’s the last movie you saw? What did you think of it?

The jungle book, I took the 2 youngest with me to see it. I liked it! Extra points for the movie popcorn mixed with sour patch kids and reclining theater seats.

10. What is your least favorite “adulting” task?

Waking up early, after I’ve stayed up reading far too late. And all the driving around crap….hate that too.

11. Tell us about a scar you have and how you got it.

Once I was riding my bike home from a friends house, maybe 10 years old. I had my bathing suit in a plastic bag on my handle bars. The bag got pulled between the fender and the wheel and instead of stopping, I tried to untangle it while I kept riding. Drifted to the side, and ran right into the back of a parked car. It’s a little hazy, but I ended up on my back with my chin bleeding. Had to ride home with a wonky front tire and blood running down my neck. I ended up with stitches, and a nice scar under my chin.

Here are my nominees, if they so choose to participate:

  1. parental ramblings
  2. single family asylum
  3. the shameful sheep
  4. the euphoric Iraqi single mom
  5. passports and pigtails

And the questions below 🙂

1.What is your first memory?

2. Who would you never share a fork with?

3. Are you a dog or cat person?

4. Biggest mistake you’ve made (yet)?

5. What have you done to get rid of the hiccups?

6. What’s your favorite joke?

7. What did you want to be when you grew/grow up?

8. What color do you look best in?

9. Best (untrue) excuse you’ve used to get out of something?

10. Would you ever look in the mirror and say “candyman” three times??? HAVE you??

11. Do you believe in psychics?

Ok guys… I’m looking forward to these responses if you find the time or interest to play along 🙂   Thanks again, Amanda from Just in Queso, an awesome blogger and cheese aficionado!






Dell hates me

I bought a new laptop recently, from Dell.  Had it less than a month. Realized something was very wrong with it…..tried to return it.

This was yesterday, as I started my 2.5 hour drive to pick up my daughter from college, I also dialed the phone. It took the entire ride……

I spoke with about 6 people, in various departments and countries. I learned that tech support lives in India, but the returns department might be in Brazil.

They also don’t speak to each other. Maybe they are not allowed to interact, on penalty of death.

There is also a man, in the return department, who is under the impression that he is The Master Of Returns… and he takes that role very seriously. He told me my computer had to be returned by the day before, since that was the 30th day from the invoice date. I scoffed initially, one day??! Give me a break, you guys weren’t working at 10pm when I realized finally the problem was you, and not me…. and I actually DID try to return it online and print out the label, but since the computer itself is doing weird things, it doesn’t let me fill in things like my zip code and so I couldn’t complete the return online.

He thought that was very unfortunate for me.

I spent 35 minutes alone with just him on the phone. It was like banging my head into a wall. He could not, would not escalate my complaint. It is NOT POSSIBLE…. because he is the master, and no one else in the world of Dell will speak to me, a mere customer. There is no headquarters, there is no corporate office, there is NO one to make a policy exception, or even consider it. There is just…..him.

I tried to explain I want buy something BETTER….from them. Give them more money!!  I just don’t want THIS particular, defective from the start computer. I begged him to check my account, my years of loyal history with Dell, including the last laptop I bought, also defective, that they finally did replace with the wrong computer, twice…. and I still came back.

I have never been reduced to tears of frustration, but at the end of my call with him I was crying. I hated him. Before we hung up, because he threatened to disconnect me anyway…. I came very close to saying something personal to him. Like, I hate you. You are a horrible horrible man. I think you must be compensating for something……..

But I didn’t….

I kept trying… calling after I got home, and I think my grand total of Dell employees spoken to was about 14 by the end of the day.

2 people in the “complaint department” told me that the computer was actually shipped to me on the day AFTER the invoice date, so I actually COULD return the computer….but all they did was reconnect me to the department under the reign of the Bastard of Returns, and all employees there were quick to tell me to stop calling, they weren’t helping.

I spent a good 30 minutes being transferred back and forth from them, back to customer service/complaints… only to be told “oh hey, no I’ll talk to them and they’ll return it…” and switched back to be told “NO!”

Finally I talked to tech support, who I was avoiding…. because I had been through that in the past and I didn’t want to fix it, I just wanted a computer that worked. From the start. For once.

Well, the guy was nice. He read the miles of notes on my account. He did some stuff, maybe it worked, I don’t know yet… because the problems weren’t something you could reproduce…. you just have to wait and see if it happens….

4.5 hours of my day.

some off those hours crying.

I am a broken person.

Dell… you have no soul.


A beautiful story


I’ve been thinking about this couple…wondering how they are doing, and hoping they are still together and enjoying each other. I love their story…. a perfect memory for Valentine’s day. 🙂



I worked today, checking on some patients in the hospital.

There was a lady there, age 83, I had to see her before she could go home. It really could have been a 5 minute visit, I already had looked up her lab and imaging studies before knocking on her door. I knew she didn’t need anything from my group at the moment.

I walked out of that room an hour later, feeling a little lighter around my heart.

Her husband was in there, and although 86, he was still fit and handsome. My patient also looked much younger than her age. I watched how they interacted with each other as I asked her some basic questions. Teasing each other, winking at me as though I was in on the joke.  They were so proud to bring up how they had been married almost 60 years.

I don’t know exactly how it happened, but somehow after talking about her medical issues, we just kept talking.

The husband had an iPad. I thought it was surprising and adorable. As we spoke about different things, where we all grew up, the job he retired from, the fact that the wife could barely walk anymore without help….. his fingers were skimming over images. He was so ready to share, I could tell he brought that thing with him everywhere.

He had retired over 20 years ago, he was an attorney. He had photos of newspaper clippings that he’d saved about trials he was involved in. I loved it. He’d met some celebrities, had some great stories to tell.

I asked him if he had a wedding picture on that iPad, from his own wedding.

He didn’t.

But as they told me “their” story, I got to see something even better.

They met, over 60 years ago, at the Jersey Shore. He was from Ohio, she was a Jersey native. They were both on vacation. She started telling me the story….”and can you believe it, this guy says he knows who he’s going to marry….the first DAY we meet! I thought he was crazy!” And he smiles as he takes over, “but look who was right and who was wrong, huh?”

So they had a few days together, getting to know each other before he went back to Ohio with his family.

And then HIS mom calls HER mom. I’m told because that’s how things were done back then. He was 26, she was 23. the moms plan together for her to come to Ohio to visit. She stays with the family. She comes again. Then he goes to Jersey.

He took her to a jewelry store to pick out a ring on her second visit.

She told me that she counted the actual days they spent together before getting married.


15 days of face time before walking down the aisle.

Then she moved to Ohio. In with his family, his parents, his sister, him. “We had a grand time!” Then they moved out… door.

I heard about their three daughters, and now their grandkids. All daughters are married to good guys, thank God. I saw pictures of their Florida home, on a golf course…. I see his eyes look a little wistful when he talks about it and then asks “do you play golf?”  He misses it.

They built a home in the city I live in now. I saw pictures of this too. I’ve driven past this house.

They had to sell it. They are moving into assisted living together, because she can’t be alone safely. He does not leave her side. And this is when they look at each other with so much love, and she jokes how this is payback for all the years she took care of him. And he tells me she is the best mother and best wife anyone could have. They invited me to come visit them. Because somehow we have become friends in this short time.

And then he took out the iPad one last time.

And showed me a picture, black and white. Three young people on a beach, sitting on a blanket and squinting at the camera.

It’s him and her, with a friend. The DAY they met. Because he knew……

And THAT is a beautiful story.


5 year old angst

A bull in a China shop

courtesy of

The 5 year old has been sick for…..6 days now. However, he seems to be feeling better and is again showing signs of life.

I came home from work today and sat next to him on the couch after the babysitter left.

He’s not happy.

Seems he keeps wanting to do things that the sitter doesn’t want him to do.

It happened a lot today.

This bothers him.

“Mom, it’s not like I’m trying to be bad. I mean, I know sometimes I am, but I can’t help it….I’m just trying to have fun with my life!”

With this serious look on his face.

I think it’s a reasonable expectation for him to have….

But out of curiosity…. I ask him what kind of things was he doing?

At first he doesn’t remember. Then he wants to show me. Walks over to one of our living room chairs, proceeds to summersault onto the chair, head down, legs up in the air…. and knocks over a picture from the table next to him.

He’s mortified.

I think we may have realized why she was saying no….. maybe.

sick eggs and magical elixer


Magical elixir… cures all sickness….unfortunately does nothing for wrinkles…..



We are sick over here. Of COURSE we are, because children live here…and children are germy little creatures.

It starts with Sammy usually, coughing, mucous, sneezing, fever, red nose, misery….. all the usual symptoms.

Last night we went to bed with Jenna feeling fine, and she woke up a few hours later barking like a seal.

Honestly, there is no point in trying to separate them when one gets sick…. you just have to wait for the inevitable to happen.

When the sickness hits, there are things we do. Routines we have. Requirements for the very survival of the sick person. These things include a liberal rubbing of Vicks onto the chest and back of the victim. Big vaporizer going full blast near the bed. Pillow to prop the head so there is less gurgly breathing as mucous pools during the night. Puke bucket always handy. Of course the necessary sick couch time, spent lounging in glassy-eyed misery, huddled under the special green blanket, cold rag on the head, watching movies on demand all day long.

Sprite, a.k.a. “Magical Elixer” is called for in mass quantities. Sick eggs and toast, without which, survival would be impossible.

So this is what we are having for breakfast today. Sick eggs, toast, sprite. Taking bites between blowing noses and discussing our percentage of feeling better. (Sammy reports 65 percent today….)


Sick eggs and toast. guaranteed to keep you alive another day.


Breakfast surprise


It was Saturday morning around 8am, and I heard chairs moving around downstairs in the kitchen, cabinets being opened, bags rustling.

Although it was a lot more commotion that it usually takes for the hubby to make his morning coffee, it just didn’t register to me that anything else might be going on.

I head downstairs with the three year old hanging on my back, and I get stopped at the bottom of the stairs. Husband is being used as a guard, I’m not allowed in the kitchen yet. Ok, I’ll go with it.

Sammy calls out finally, “don’t look!”

He comes and takes my hand, I must keep my eyes closed, and guides me to the kitchen. Being 5, he doesn’t take into account the various walls I might walk in to, but I only shoulder check one because I promise not to cheat and peek.


Sammy made us breakfast!


A feast, of green bean crisps, pretzels, peanuts, pita chips, trail mix….oh, and those cute little cheese sandwich crackers from Trader Joe’s. Pretty much cleaned out the snacks…. We all got a heaping plate, and even a nice big glass (Oh geez, REAL glass!) of deliciously gritty iced tea, made with love and LOTS of powdered mix.

All of our places were set, and he waited indulgently for us to sit. Of course it was the most amazing breakfast ever!!

Me, Sammy, Jenna, and the hubby got the same thing. For some reason though, his big brother Jake got the supreme version full of whole granola bars, some fudge dipped, and LOTS of trail mix.


breakfast of champions


Of course, we didn’t want to disappoint him, so I munched on that “breakfast” all day, and tossed what I could when he wasn’t looking. I did realize what a good amount of crap food we have….. and also how much I love pita chips….but mostly how much I love that little guy.


Taco salad can predict the future


I want a taco salad.

I don’t want to make one, I want one from taco bell. I don’t eat these very often, but today I want one.

I resisted the urge all day, but tonight it’s calling to me from across the road as I stir this delicious dinner of vegetables with green curry. I’m not being sarcastic here, it’s really good.

But it’s not a taco salad and so is not going to satisfy me.

I couldn’t get one for myself.  I was rushing with the kids to get them home and in bed, having just brought soup to my own mom who isn’t feeling well. She told me not to come, but I knew she would eat the soup… ended up driving home later than I thought, and although I pass taco bell, I just couldn’t justify wasting the time for myself.

Running upstairs to get them to bed, see the oldest sitting on her bed, hasn’t gone out with her friends yet. PERFECT.

“Please, can you get me a taco salad?”

I get a stare.

“You don’t need a taco salad. I’m doing you a favor”

I throw out another please but don’t have time to grovel as I start the bed time ritual for the two little ones.

Soon after, I hear her leave the house. I begin to think along the lines of “wow, she’s really getting it for me…. awwww, she didn’t have to, that’s so nice.”

But time passes, and she doesn’t come back. I notice a text on my phone. It’s from her, she’s going out with her friends. I’ve lost hope.

After this revelation… a little passive aggressive texting back and forth, me trying to ensure she feels guilty and suddenly realizes how much she loves and appreciates me, and how much I DO FOR HER… her focusing more on the fact that I seem to be upset about a taco salad, and not the meaning BEHIND IT….

Because this obviously means that I will end up in “a home”. Alone. Discarded as soon as I am no longer useful.

Currently working on a way of avoiding this, while also ensuring all remaining children find it impossible to say no to me for any reason.