Tag Archives: ear infection

Recovered, part II

5 May

Whine: It’s May 5th in Texas–Cinco de Mayo– so that means it’s FIESTA time. Unfortunately, Brother Bear misunderstood. He thinks today is Stinko de Mayo. (Rimshot, please.)

Cheese: I’ve already got my fajita meat marinating to throw on the grill, it’s a perfect 79 degrees and it’s Thursday. I love Tejas.

Since I promised pictures in my last post, I’m not going to waste a lot of time writing words, etc, since it will take every last ounce of my brain power to post pictures without doing something dumb and blowing up my computer.

The following pictures are brought to you by  CNET who reviewed the photo-rescue software and decided it wouldn’t eat my hard drive, and by the kind folks at Easeus who offered said not-hard-drive-eating software for free.

Hard at work.

I love this picture of Big Sis writing Valentines in footie pajamas. She was getting discouraged about halfway through, as handwriting is her nemesis. But once I reminded her of the smiling friends who’d receive these, she got excited and powered on through the rest. Her tender heart makes me ooze happy feelings.

I cannot stand the handsomeness.

Mr. Dad and Brother Bear got extra-gussied one Sunday (very unusual for them). There were some serious double-takes as they walked through church. But once people regained their power of speech, they mostly made a lot of doppleganger-type comments.

I'm astounded they didn't get Royal Wedding invites.

After having attended their fair share of Princess Parties, the girls now assume that every party requires elegance and panache of the highest order. They wore these outfits to a birthday party, then came home and shoveled some dirt.

The red-haired pigtails kill me.

I brought cookies to Lil Sis and her preschool class. She lit up like Aurora Borealis when she saw the Hello Kitty balloon. It’s good to know that the little things like showing up with a balloon and some lame grocery store cookies can still make her day.

"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair. . ."

The cousins (Big Sis, Lil’ Sis, Aves and LizzyRabbit) at Lil’ Sis and Aves’ Rapunzel birthday party. The cake pictures I recovered were too damaged to use (sad face), so here’s one I managed to snap with my phone.

Rapunzel's Tower Cake

There was quite a lot of engineering involved with this cake. Basically, Mr. Dad drilled a giant hole into the base of the cake (and also my plate), then stuck a dowel rod through the middle. We stuck the tower (rice krispie treats and fondant) around the dowel rod. It worked pretty well until the rice krispie treats starting migrating south and left a solid 2″ of dowel rod showing. Mr. Dad tried unsuccessfully to refrain from saying “I told you so.” Mostly I think he was mad he didn’t get to use his circular saw and blowtorch on the thing.

I'll eat you up I love you so.

In case you don’t recognize it, this is a Max and Wild Things cake from Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. For some reason, the Max cake is one of my favorites of all time. I think it’s because it is one of the only cakes that when I finished I wouldn’t change a thing. There was a separate Wild Thing cake for Brother Bear to destroy, but it’s not worth posting until the After shot.

The After Shot

There are lots more pictures of this cuteness, including when cousin CharChar got in on the action and the inevitable bath that followed. If you really need more in-depth coverage of the event, you’ll have to wait until the album hits my Facebook page.

Ear Infection: 1, Aaron: 0

You might think this last picture would be after the cake extravaganza, but it’s not. Poor Brother Bear has bad baby ears and can’t seem to stop filling them with swamp water. When he cries a bunch and falls asleep on the floor, that’s my cue to go see the Dr.

Thanks for sticking around through the whole post, unless you skipped to the end. In which case I don’t blame you. I’m pretty glad we got our pictures back. And tune in next week, for the riveting third installment of the “Recovered” series. You won’t believe what I lost this time. (Unless you’ve already heard this story, and you probably have.)

Some People Never Learn, Part II

27 Jan

Whine: I took two crabby cats to my local superstore to get antibiotics for them both. After all the hassle of parking in another state and waddling a cart through the throngs of other cheapskates, all the way to the pharmacy, they had the nerve to look me in my tired eyes and tell me they didn’t have the medicine. Because ear infections are rare conditions and it must be hard to acquire the exotic medicine required to treat them, right?

Cheese: Don’t worry, though, I didn’t leave empty-handed. Luckily for me, the Girls Scouts were standing at the entrance selling their crack cookies. I felt it was my civic duty to buy at least a few boxes. I don’t want to be a jerk to the Girl Scouts, do I?

In a recent post I highlighted that I am a slow learner. I might learn your phone number the first time I hear it and remember it for the rest of my life, or learn the name of every designer on all seven season of Project Runway, but when it comes to things that are actually useful, I tend to require extreme remediation. As is evidenced by the fact that I have on more than one occasion let my children run amok with bare bottoms and then had to clean up the consequences. Here are a few more things I wish I had learned the first time instead of the second, third or fourth:

#1) Markers should be put away in a cabinet that is way up high and cannot be reached by four year olds who prefer to express themselves creatively with body art.

Side note. The other day, during supervised marker time (I’ve finally learned), I turned my back for all of thirty seconds and she wrote all over her legs (because of course she wasn’t wearing any pants, we clearly don’t believe in pants in this house). When I scolded her, she began crying and rubbed her eyes. Dark blue marker streamed down her face; she looked like she should be singing lead vocals on Karma Chameleon.

#2) Do not serve spaghetti on the same day in which you have mopped your kitchen floor. You are just setting yourself up for an extra dose of Futility Frustration (which is in high enough supply when you have small children). It’s kinda like getting your car washed when the forecast calls for rain. I suppose you could also solve this problem by never mopping your floor.

#3) Some things should be left for people with actual skill. Like predicting the weather, diagnosing my kids’ various illnesses (just say NO to Google MD), but especially sewing. Straightly sewn lines evade me like the Holy Grail evaded King Arthur and his knights. I would save a lot of swearing and frustration if I would remember this before embarking on a highly-complicated project like sewing a pillowcase or cutting fabric into straight lines.

#4) Sugar is not my friend. A box of Hot Tamales is not the solution to my droopy eyes, and in fact is the cause of the other parts of me that may or not be droopy. A better solution to my droopy eyes would be to stop playing solitare after the 50th game and get my droopy parts to bed.

#5) Pregnancy makes me extra tired. Extra hungry. Extra weepy. Extra large. I am surprised by this every time. You’d think I’d have this down by now. When I am pregnant, I should know better than to: stay up past 10pm, eat a salad for dinner, look at baby pictures of my kids, or walk any distance further than the couch to the refrigerator. Yet I try one or more of these things every day and am shocked when I’m exhausted, starving, sobbing and out of breath (usually at the same time).

And as an additional word of advice (this one’s a freebie) one should avoid watching Steel Magnolias (or A Baby Story or telethons of any kind) during this time. Ocean’s Eleven, however, is highly recommended, especially when in labor.

#6) Whatever it is, it won’t last forever.  Kids eventually learn to use the potty, to keep their food on the table intead of under it, and to do things all by themselves. So the sooner I learn to laugh it off, the more I can find the good parts of stuff. Like learning to find the humor in the fact that I have to get off the phone with my sister because Lil’ Sis won’t stop pulling down my pants (darn you, elastic waistband!).  Or enjoying getting to see Big Sis explore her “mad scientist” alter ego even though it always involves lots of yarn, at least one roll of tape and tons of clean up because soon she’ll be headed to school, and I won’t get a front row seat to the inner workings of her unusual little mind anymore.  

And clearly I’ll never learn, as typing that last paragraph is enough to send my tired, weepy self on the hunt for a box of tissues, or Hot Tamales, whatever’s closer.

The spider has caught a lil' fly in her web. She's a mad scientist, I tell you.

The Christmas Spirit

11 Dec

Whine: Has noone yet figured out how to clone mothers during the Christmas season? I’m not sure how anyone expects us to cram a week’s worth of cleaning/cooking/errands/parenting into each and every day this month. Really, it’s inhumane.

Cheese: I’ve been heavy on the cooking part of my list: double chocolate M&M cookies, caramel corn, chex mix, pesto and sun dried tomato cream cheese, and not so much on the other parts. Unfortunately you can tell this by looking at a) my hips or b) my kitchen floor, neither of which are faring so well this holiday season.

I spent most of my waking hours on Wednesday trapped in my local house of horrors (i.e., WalMart). It started innocently enough with a grocery run. Since I had somehow managed to run out of every necessity simultaneously, plus a few random items like cornstarch and sea salt, I knew it wouldn’t be a quick trip. Then I remembered that I still hadn’t purchased the gifts for my “angels“, which should have been delivered several days ago, so I added a few gifts to my list. Then I tallied up all the supplies I would need for my holiday baking extravaganza, remembered a few Christmas gifts I could grab there and I realized my list had grown from overwhelming to completely unmanageable.

By the time we checked out two hours (and lots of $$$s) later, Lil’ Sis and I had truly found the Christmas Spirit. If by Christmas Spirit you mean me stumbling through the check out, incoherent and dehydrated, and her whining, screeching like an angry little llama and eating the hot dog buns through the bag. Obviously I’m a terrible mother and never feed her.

Then we bundled up and braced ourselves for the trek to the car. (Seriously, down here we act like a day that’s 45 degrees is the dawn of the next ice age.) The wind was doing it’s thing, chapping our cheeks and smearing certain people’s runny noses all over, when I realized I hadn’t zipped my purse. And my receipt, filled with Christmas purchases (which are all the wrong size, I’m sure, and will need to be returned) grabbed a seat on the Windy Express and went flying upward. For a minute it flew so high, I thought it might land on the roof. Instead it caught a jetstream and went flying through six rows of the parking lot. Here I am, a lady with an awkwardly prodtruding belly pushing an angry toddler in a cart that needs a WIDE LOAD sign and flashing light, dejectedly watching it fly away. Crap.

And then something remarkable happened. Some nice man (were those angel wings peeking out from under his jacket?) took of running after that runaway receipt. Sprinting. Jumping. Through six rows of parked cars. And finally, from behind an old Chevy truck I saw him emerge, arms raised in victory. My hero. I didn’t have adequate words to thank him, so I did my best to sputter out my gratitude, then said a little prayer that there would be an extra little Christmas blessing for his family this year.

Crabby Cat and I got a nice lunch (which she didn’t eat, guess that plastic bag/hot dog bun filled her up) then headed to fetch Big Sis from school. Of course, Lil’ Sis took the four minutes it took to get to preschool to fall into a coma-like sleep in the back. Which meant that I would have to rouse her and drag her inside to get Big Sis. Which also meant that she probably would consider those four minutes to be her “afternoon nap.”  I pulled into a parking spot and prepared myself for some serious crabbiness.  Then, out of nowhere, the Mommy parked in the next space (were those angel wings on the hatch of her SUV?) rolled down her window and offered to stay with Lil’ Sis outside while I ran in. Obviously, she’s woken a sleeping toddler before.

I got my sweetie from her class, where her teacher reported that she had had a great day, but that she had played the role of  class plumber all day due to the droopiness of her adorable (and apparently ill-fitting) Gap jeans. I somehow made it home and got both babies into their beds, knowing they would have to wake up prematurely so we could make it to the last-minute dr. appt I had managed to get for Lil’ Sis and her chronic smoker’s cough. Then Kiki, one of our superhero grandmas, called and insisted that she come get Big Sis so I didn’t have to drag her unnecessarily to The Land of Inevitable Infection (i.e., local pediatrician’s office).

It was a good thing, too, since we waited there a really. long. time. We closed down the office. I felt bad because as soon as that receptionist finished checking us out, she grabbed her purse, turned off the lights and made a beeline for the door. But our friendly doctor is always worth the wait. He diagnosed- -double ear infection; prescribed – -antibiotics, ear numbing gel and Nicorette (for the Lil’ smoker);  and chatted- -about internet hysteria and the H1N1 vaccine.  

Again, the Christmas Spirit swelled up inside of me. If, by Christmas Spirit, you mean a constant worry about saving any amount of money by any means necessary. And by any means necessary, I mean a trip back to the local house of horrors along with the rest of SW Fort Worth at 7pm with a sick baby. Because their pharmacy is cheap. So we staggered around inside for another hour waiting for the magical pink medicine and went on a quest through each aisle (twice) for sun-dried tomatoes, which we never found.

As we went through the check-out, someone started falling apart. Lil’ Sis was pretty upset, too.

I guess the late-nighter I’d pulled the night before (I have no self-control when it comes to chatting with friends) and the fact that we weren’t going to get to get into the Christmas Spirit and make magical memories and get our Christmas tree that night, compounded by the fact that I hadn’t eaten any dinner, all brought me to a point teetering on teary exhaustion. And just as Lil’ Sis and her angry scowls and cries were about to push me right over the edge, she stopped fussing. I looked up from the small print on the credit card machine to see four frat boys (were those angel wings poking out from under their loud Christmas t-shirts?), waving their hands and dancing around for her personal amusement. And then she smiled.

I guess you really can find the Christmas Spirit at WalMart. If, by Christmas Spirit, you mean people imitating the originator of the Christmas Spirit and showing spontaneous and sacrificial love and generosity to someone pitiful and generally undeserving. 

Merry Christmas season, friends, I hope you find some Christmas Spirit this month, even if you have to brave WalMart to do it.

P.S. This just happened. While I was blogging in the other room.  Apparently it was a group project. I especially like that Lil’ Sis’ unzipped jammies make her look like a late-70s Elvis in his jumpsuit.  See what I go through for you guys??

There are no words for this. . .

Chances Are

9 Nov

Whine: I’m pretty sure most of this post is too embarrassing to publish, even for me. Now that’s saying a lot.

Cheese: I bet lots of people will read it, though. You know what they say about train wrecks. . .

Chances are . . .

. . . if you put on your workout clothes first thing in the morning, the only workout you’re gonna get is cleaning poop out of the bathtub.

. . . if you can’t convince your kids to drink their water and/or milk at meals (or ever) you will have an equally difficult time convincing them NOT to drink the bubble bath. Repeatedly. That Johnson and Johnson’s stuff is non-toxic, right?

. . . if you behave as a concerned citizen and call the utility company’s emergency line when your whole neighborhood smells like gas, they will come out several hours later (talk about emergency response time!) after both you and the smell have vacated the premises, and upon not finding you home, will turn off your gas. Meaning that everyone in your house who has not bathed in a day or two (which is everyone) will either be bathing in cold water or not at all. (i.e. not at all)

. . . if you finally clean all that junk out of your purse, you will then be at the grocery store late in the evening with two snot-nosed kids (literal, not figurative) and be forced to wipe their noses with a pair of socks that you found in your purse.

. . . if your husband, who for nine years has slept like a log, suddenly cannot sleep without the white noise of a box fan, you will no doubt be kept awake all night by its incessant rattling and will have to resort to stealing the kids’ humidifier as white noise to cover up the white noise.

. . . if you scour the sale papers, clip scads of coupons and save yourself lots of money on groceries, you will inevitably rack up a gigantic fine at the library and cancel out any and all money you saved paying for late fees.

. . . if you pay your credit card bill on time for once, you will inevitably forget to move money into the appropriate accounts and bounce a bunch of six dollar checks (yes, one to the library). 

. . . if you take your kids to the doctor for non-existent ear infections and pay two copays, both checks you wrote (because you forgot to pay for the second kid at the first window) will trigger an overdraft on your account (see above) and cost you double the double copays.

. . . if you wait long enough and give up on your children ever growing up, you will look up one day and realize that they can dress themselves, brush their teeth and are completely potty trained, which means you will save lots of money on Pull Ups, which is handy since you keep bouncing all those checks.


I’ve humiliated myself enough for one day. Now it’s your turn. Put your very own “Chances Are” in the comments section. The best one(s) will get a highly coveted Gold Star on the next post.


At Least I’ve Got Good Benefits

2 Apr

Whine: Two children. Six weeks. Five ear infections. Eighty doses of antibiotics. One bottle of kiddie Motrin. One bottle of something else. . . . (I mean Sprite, for goodness sake. What kind of mother do you think I am?)

Cheese: SPRING! It’s here. In Texas, these are the BEST DAYS ALL YEAR. I had almost forgotten there was a whole ‘nother world out there. Filled with non-television-ways to entertain my children. Too bad it’ll be over by May 1st and we’ll have to head back inside lest we all melt directly into the sidewalk. But that’s ok, because today IT’S SPRING. Which is why I took my kids to the movies and sat inside today.


As a SAHM (isn’t that a sassy way to say stay-at-home-mom? I don’t really think so either, I’m just too lazy to type it out) I often get asked The Question. It used to bother me when someone asked me. Mostly because I would look back on my day and have absolutely nothing to show for it. I’d have no idea where those twelve hours of my life had gone. It both confused and terrified me to wonder what had happened to that day in my life. But, alas, after doing this for almost four years, I have found my answer. If someone asked me today, I think the conversation would go something like this:


Innocent Questioner: (trying very hard not to offend but still very curious) So, what is it exactly that you DO all day?


Me: We go to the doctor.


IQ: No, really. I mean, I think I’d just go crazy being at home all day.


Me: Yeah, me, too. Good thing I’m never at home and I’m always AT THE DOCTOR.

Or on the way to the doctor. Or on the way from the doctor to the pharmacy. Or sitting up in the middle of the night taking someone’s temperature and wondering how early I can call the doctor. Or sitting at home within arm’s reach of my phone waiting for the doctor to call to tell me when I can come in and see the doctor.


IQ: (looking baffled and not sure s/he believes me) Oh.


I’ve been told (and I’m sure this is correct) that this stage, too, will pass. I’m sure it will. Only to be succeeded by the  drive-them-to-school-and-sports-and-music-practice-and-the-orthodontist-and-because-they-forgot-their-lunch phase. Where are we on developing those alternate fuels, anyway? I’m going to be broke.

But don’t worry, I hear that they eventually get their own drivers’ lisences. Then they drive themselves places. (Still on your dime, of course). But at least then we can finally sit at home and enter the oh-my-gosh-she-hasn’t-called-where-is-she-is-she-in-a-ditch phase, which I’ve heard is the phase that actually never ends, even when they’re 65. 

This mothering gig is never going to end, is it? Oh well, at least I have good benefits:

Show Me Those Baby Blues

Show Me Those Baby Blues


You Too With the Baby Blues?

You Too With the Baby Blues?

Quick Hits

18 Feb

Whine: Six, count them, six basketfuls of clean laundry balance precariously on my love seat waiting to be folded.

Cheese: At least I have clean underwear now.


So, it comes down this choice, dear readers. Either I can post now, a rambling heap of the last week or so, or I can wait until I have time to to package it neatly and place a nice bow on top. We both know that time is not coming any time soon, don’t we? So, I’ve decided a few quick hits are in order.


In the last week I’ve . . .


. . . taken my kids to a doctor’s appointment at 8 o’clock at night. Both had ear infections.


. . . cleaned out my fridge and discovered that I could’ve treated the girls’ ear infections with what I found in there.


. . . woken up to find Big Sis watching Diego and eating a stick of butter-flavored Crisco like a candy bar. (Where was her father??)


. . . fished a pacifier out of a toilet, courtesy of Lil’ Sis and her newest hobby: Bobbing for Paci.


. . . came to pick up Big Sis from Sunday School. Found her sans shirt and huddled in her blankie. Apparently the toilet (that she was not using, of course) “overflowed.” Except that her shirt was completely wet, front and back, top to bottom. I was like, um, did she swim in it or what? I guess it didn’t technically overflow, it’s more like it sprung a major leak and sprayed everywhere. Except she was the only one who got wet at all.  I suspect the Toilet Trolls have a bounty out on her.


. . . witnessed Big Sis make some impressive potty-ing strides (complete with lunatic-Mommy-dancing-celebration and candy bribes) only to have her decide that was enough success and start holding everything in again. But she doesn’t eat much when she gets like this, so at least I’ll save some $$ on groceries. (Settle down, I’m just kidding. I’m not that callous. Yet. She is still my firstborn.)


. . . noticed that toilets are a major theme in my life. I’m not sure what to make of that, but it can’t be good.


But enough about me and my toilet fixation. I want to hear what you guys have been doing. So, I’m asking you to go to the comments section and finish this sentence with the craziest (publicly admittable and semi-true) thing you can.

“In the last week I’ve . . .”  

Quick Hits

5 Nov

Whine: Lil’ Sis has her very first ear infection. And first amoxicilin. And the resulting digestive unrest. But at least her ear feels better!

Cheese: Gruyere. Definitely gruyere.


Ok, ok, I’ve got to admit I’ve been tuned into the election ALL NIGHT (ok, ok, technically not ALL night, but some of it) and the crazy graphics and red and blue flashing lights and prognostications and victory speeches have kept me from writing (or maybe I was watching dvr, but that’s neither here nor there). But, now that the fat lady has sung (and my show is over), I return to you, my loyal readers, to entertain and enlighten.

But since it is, in fact, late-o’clock, I will employ a little writing technique I like to call quick hits, thus removing any need for cohesvie thought. Our quick hits tonight are brought to you by rocky road ice cream and two sleeping children.


Tonight I . . .

. . . saw a hologram. Yes, you heard me correctly, a hologram. CNN had one of their anchors piped in via hologram!?! I felt like I was watching the original Star Wars (circa 1977). “Obama, you’re our only hope. . .” If you want to watch it, click here.

. . . am hoping that people of both colors (red and blue, that is) will decide to act like grown ups in the after-math/glow of this election and play nice. Ugly words don’t change history or presidents whether they are coming in or going out.  

. . . made a delicious quiche. Made of roasted red and pablano peppers, covered in gruyere cheese, surrounded by a flaky cheddar crust. Mmmmmm. And it’s true, real men do eat quiche, even Mr. Dad liked it.

. . . played backgammon and lost. Repeatedly. Grrrrrr.

. . . watched the girls’ play together, so sweet. Actually, we were walking (on a 72-degree November evening- I love Texas!) and it actually went more like this:  Lil’ Sis pulling Big Sis’ hair from the back seat of the double stroller and grinning, Big Sis turning around and thumping Lil’ Sis on the cheek in retalliation and grinning, Mr. Dad threatening Big Sis with a thump on her cheek (ow!) and scowling, Big Sis turning around, thwarted, and Lil’ Sis smiling mischeivously, like the little puppet-master she is. Oh, I am in trouble here, I know it. Don’t need a crystal ball to see that.

Well, tomorrow I hope to drag this tired mom-body to the gym so I can pretend to exercise. I have honed this valuable skill so that I can use the free child care while I take a stroll and watch HGTV, all while barely breaking a sweat.  But pretending to exercise requires just as much beauty sleep as real exercise, so I’m headed to bed.