Saturday, December 11, 2010

Does your husband do this - part two?

Doing Christmas cards at the last minute, less than 24 hours before going to Korea, dials the phone.
"Hey mate," Martin says in suddenly a thick, English dialect. "Hey mate, how are you? I'm doing Christmas cards at the last minute and I don't bloody have your address. I think I bloody did this last year."
Blah blah blah.

When we come back from a trip to England, I swear, I hardly understand anything he says.
It's not so bad when he talks to his folks via Skype, but throw in a few friends, and I can't barely catch a word. The longer we are in England the thicker the accent gets and the longer it takes when we get home to get back to normal. And now it's coming on strong after a phone call?
The scary thing is we've been together five years and I'm still not used to it.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Does your husband do this?

Last week hubby says he MUST go to the car dealership to get some parts because his car is missfiring.
I didn't know which dealership he was going to - and frankly - didn't care. Chloe was eating, making a mess and needed my attention.
Hubby takes off. I clean up baby, play with her and then get her into the bath because when it comes down to it, Chloe may be cute, but she's grubby.
I don't notice hubby is gone. He comes back at 8 p.m. -- 90 minutes after he left. I didn't think much of it as I was busy with said baby.
He spills his guts about the visit to the dealership, which included a TEST DRIVE OF A CAR.
I was not suprised. I probably should have been, but I wasn't. Hubby does this all the time.
Periodically he shows up at the house driving a car he's test driving. He's all excited like a kid in a candy shop except for my husband it's a kid in a car showroom.
It turns out that he test drives cars to get it out of his system. It helps him cope with the urge to buy a car.
Although, I'd say, increasingly it's not working. This is the second time he's test driven a car in the past 6 weeks.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween fun

We've been trying to get through the past few weeks of TEETHING HELL ... and it's been tough. We are probably more sleep deprived than when she was eating every two hours.
Just to update ... Almost two weeks ago Chloe started teething again ... we thought after getting the last four teeth at once we would get a two month break before the next four came in .. nope. She's getting in the last four teeth 13 to 16 before the two year molars.
This has been the worst of the teething - of all of it.

She's had fevers -- twice last week we were called to day care to come pick her up. I stayed home two days and Martin one day. The diaper rash from hell has mostly healed. She also had a cold. When we went to her 15 month check up, she cried the entire 40 minutes. The doctor felt so sorry for her that she let us off with the shots. Chloe goes back next week for them.
Anyway, we have all been super cranky, tired and sad that Chloe is in such pain. 

The above pic is Maureen and Chloe in the Strip district of Pittsburgh where we were 10 days ago. The nightmare teething had started a few days earlier.

Anyway, enough of that boring teething drivel. The good news is that while Chloe is still getting up at night and in the early morning - she's screaming a few notches below breaking glass. And she's cracked a few smiles. While the teeth haven't quite come in yet -- not that we can see -- she seems much, much happier.

She was well enough to go trick or treating, which we enjoyed tremendously as a family.
She's been painting at day care and generally doing arts and crafts that I never taught her. This is a pumpkin she painted.

So, while she got up a few times this morning, she still looks so darn cute. This is the coat I bought her because the only warm jacket she has is one-piece snow suit. It's a bit fancy for her but it was on sale.

All right. Hopefully you got your Chloe fill. 

Monday, October 11, 2010

A mouth full of teeth

It's kind of shocking how fast things change. At Chloe's first birthday three months ago, she had 4 teeth. Ok, maybe 5 as one of those upper molars mysteriously appeared.
Now she has 12 teeth. That's a heck of a lot of teeth growing in such a short time.
Unfortunately it's been a time of a lot of whining and crying. Occasionally I see glimpses of my old little girl.
She can be full of smiles and sneaky glances.
On Saturday we went to dinner at one of Martin's colleagues homes. Chloe had already been admonished for banging things against the glass coffee table. I had put the stone coasters up on the fireplace mantle, but I guess someone used one for a drink.
We are standing in the kitchen talking and I heard this horrible banging noise from the family room. I yelled for Chloe and rushed into the room. The minute she saw me she tossed the coaster over her shoulder and took off crawling in the opposite direction.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Sharing the road

In the past two weeks a 15-year-old Leamington teen was killed on his bike and a semi-professional mountain biker was severely injured outside of Ann Arbor while commuting from work on his bike.
Both accidents were hit and runs.

While Kyle Peters is dead, Jason Lummis has a broken back and a variety of other serious injuries that will have him recuperating for months, if not years. While Harrow teen Peter Martens Schmitt turned himself in to police for the hit and run in Essex County, Ann Arbor authorities are still searching for the driver who ran down Lummis.

The two accidents can't really be compared except that for whatever reason two drivers were unable to share the road with cyclists.  While this might not be a solution, I think driver training should include a component on how to share the road with others. In Windsor there are plenty of cyclists and even motorized wheelchairs that use city streets for commuting. I think there already is mention of sharing the road but it needs to be further emphasized and drilled into drivers' brains because it's obvious that the message hasn't sunk in.

There are always a few accidents every year involving cars and bicycles in Windsor. Fortunately most don't result in a death. The loss of Peters is a reminder -- especially in the Leamington area where tons of migrant workers travel by bicycle - that roads aren't just for cars and trucks.

As an avid cyclist myself I am wary of biking on the road and often break the law and use sidewalks because I just don't trust drivers, especially in this car-culture crazy area. There is no or little respect for cyclists. Drivers rarely give cyclists enough room and often come very close when passing. I can't tell you how many times people have actually honked at me while biking on the road as if to say I don't belong.

The car-bicycle clash is also why I mostly stick to mountain bike trails or little used dirty roads. I am paranoid as I myself was hit by a car when I was 15. I was on my way home from a job interview and crossing a very busy intersection. I was on the sidewalk while the driver was making a right turn and didn't look before she pulled into traffic. I knew I was going to get hit seconds before it happened. My screams of warning attracted the attention of dozens who were waiting at the bus stop but not of the driver. She hit me and I flew vertically into the air and landed on the hood of her car. The bike saved my life because otherwise I would have been thrown into oncoming traffic and would surely have been run over.

I remember rolling off her hood, landing on my feet, picking up my keys and wallet that fell out of my jacket and hobbling to the side of the road. People from the bus stop picked me up and carried me onto the sidewalk.  I was taken to the hospital by ambulance where they cut off my pants.

Luckily, my injuries were localized to my legs, which turned black and blue over the next few days.  I was so fortunate. This was the era long before helmets and I can't imagine surviving if I had hit my head.

For whatever reason, police were unable to charge the driver because I was astride my bike in the pedestrian walkway. I was not a pedestrian nor a vehicle. That's why you have to get off your bike as you walk across an intersection, then you are a pedestrian. Or you ride on the roads and you are a vehicle.

Drivers really shouldn't need a young man's death as a reminder but please, please, please share the road.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I have 12 days left

Before I have to go back to work. I'm going to miss Chloe and that sensation that I don't have to be anywhere at anytime.
Do you remember that feeling you used to get on Sundays . . . homework or assignments that weren't complete and due the next day. It took years after graduation university to shed that feeling. And then you start working full time and there's a bit of dread Sunday nights that the fun is over and you have to go back to the grind.
I'm feeling more anxious about leaving my Chloe-Chloe in the care of others 5 days a week and having to be places by a certain time.
I'm always early and my husband is always late. But this past year time has been irrelevant. I haven't had to be anywhere by a certain time. It's been great, freeing. My schedule is wide open. I can do errands whenever I want. I'm not looking forward to being constricted.
Now, that being said, I am anticipating being around adults, engaging in intellectual conversation, making money and having freedom. Now - you say - how's that? Well, my commute is two hours a day when I'm by myself in the car. I can get lunch by myself. Generally, I get to spend some time alone, which I never do now. So, freedom is also relative.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Crazy teeth

So, Chloe has been teething these past couple of nights and I assumed that she was getting an upper incisor as that's the proper order of getting her teeth.

Now, I did my research and followed the above chart for putting the numbing medication on her gums. It's not like you can see anything coming in until the tooth bursts through the gums. Her bottom teeth have been visible  through the gums since she was four months old but she didn't get her first tooth until she was 10 months.
Anyway, so I'm putting the numbing medication on the upper gums on either side of her central incisor. Well . . . Mommy did wrong.
I dug out my head light Friday morning to fish around in her mouth.She'd kept us up the night before so I wanted to see what was going on. So, I'm poking around in her mouth and I can't see anything. But out of the corner of my eye . . . I see this flash of white on the right upper gums -- way in the back. I was absolutely horrified. HORRIFIED.
The white was the full surface of a molar that had come through the gums probably about two weeks ago. I felt around on the other side of the mouth and low and behold found a sharp edge of a more recently erupted molar. EEK.
She was teething around her birthday two weeks ago but I didn't see anything come through so I figured it was one of those preliminary teething episodes when the tooth moves through the canal but isn't ready to come through the gums. How wrong I was.
I felt terrible all day that this tooth had come through and I didn't even know it to sooth her pain.
The worst part is that's not the first time that's happened and I guessing it won't be the last.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Smile drought

It never fails that when you're paying the photographer Chloe won't crack a smile. But when Mom is taking the pictures for free, she can't stop them coming.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

My friend Roberta took this video at Chloe's first birthday party on Saturday. I'm a dork but hey, we aren't all perfect.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Good day

I just have to take note that Chloe and I are having a good day. We've been playing loads, especially with the musical tea set she got for her birthday. She's a darling. I'm very lucky.

Friday, July 30, 2010

She must have known what was coming

I wonder how aware my daughter is of her surroundings and whether she understands what I say. Sometimes I think she's got it, while other times I'm positive she's clueless.
Well today, it was like taking the dog to the see the vet. They just know where they're going and what's expected.

Chloe had her one-year checkup today. She talked a lot, so much and so loud that I couldn't hear the doctor when she was speaking. Sound familiar?
But when the nurse came into the room, she started getting antsy. It's as if she knew there were shots coming.
She struggled with me and wailed as if she lost a limb. Then she was cranky and needy for the rest of the day. This is why I scheduled the one-year visit at 4:10 p.m. on Thursday. I knew the shots would hurt and she'd need time to recover. Unfortunately I forgot about the appointment. I arrived at 5:10 p.m. instead, long after everyone went home. So I got the pleasure of having an 8 a.m. appointment today.
It's my fault. Miss an appointment and pay for it with a cranky daughter for 12 hours afterward.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I've been writing this book for 2 + years

So I'm a procrastinator. I don't deny it. When I have to get something done and have a deadline, I'm there. It's organized, it's done. But when it's for myself, I putter.
I've been working on this book for two plus years and have about 63,000 words written - only 30,000 more to go. That sounds like a lot, but it's not really. Most decent sized books - 400 plus pages - are about 90,000 to 100,000 words.
It's ironic because most of our stories for the newspaper don't exceed 500 words. If they do, they get snipped. At work I've found it very challenging to write tight. You gotta make every word count.
I'm doing that with my book and it's slow going. It's easy to write sloppy. Making every word precise and meaningful  is tiring and exhausting. That's probably why it's been 2 plus years and I'm still not done.
But unlike the past two years, this time I have a deadline. I go back to work the Tuesday after labor (labour) day and I want the first draft done by then.
Wish me luck.

My little goofball is one

My sweetheart is one today. We sang Happy Birthday and she greeted us with smiles as she does most mornings. Her party is Saturday, so we won't be doing much.
When I dropped her off at daycare - she goes one day a week to let me write - she cried. Breaks my heart every time she does that. But she recovers pretty quick. Isn't she darling?
We think so.

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