Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Writing again...finally!

So it always seems that I wind up having some sort of wacko dream that wakes my muse up and gets her going again. Actually, the paranormal series I plan to write was a dream I had YEARS ago. I took out all wacko dream incoherency and made it in to something I'm quite proud of. Now, if I could only find more time to actually WRITE! ;o) No one told me that having two kids 13 months apart would take a serious toll on my creativity and production. But that's ok. I'm sure these days with them will spark a new idea!

Anyway, I digress...Two nights ago, I had a dream that will be my next contemporary. I'm in the mental plotting phase and I'm finding that I find ways here and there (in the car on the way to the grocery store, etc.) to brain storm. I'm taking it as a challenge to get the plotting done by the end of the year. I'm going to make 2008 my year! Maybe not get published, but I'm going to finish all these little bits and pieces of books I've got written (some over 40,000 words already, one over 70,000). I'm going to finish those and this new idea so I can focus on my paranormal series, which I feel is most marketable.

What's YOUR goals for next year? (Inspire me some more!)

Monday, October 22, 2007


We got the second opinion in Birmingham on Friday and it went excellent and thank God for second opinions! This doctor took a good look, measured Chickens head like he was supposed to and told us that he thought on the scale of severe to mild Chicken's flat head was on the extremely mild side. He also said if he had had a child come in and fixed his head with helmet therapy and it looked like Chicken's he would have been ecstatic with the results. He seems to think that it will continue to improve and that the helmet is not needed! So we're so happy about that! They also would have filed our insurance and everything, so I was very happy with this place. They treated us like they cared and we didn't feel like a number. So not only is my little boy going to be fine, we don't have to shell out $3000 to fix his head when there isn't anything to fix. It's nice to know Chicken won't have any problems later on now. I can rest now and relax that I've done all I could do.

Keep in mind, now, the Vandy doc was going to make us pay $3K and I have written documentation from him saying his head is severely deformed. Hubby and I didn't think it was too bad (and even at my darkest hour I wouldn't have called it severe now--before yes), but it was still enough I wasn't comfortable leaving it if the doctors felt it was necessary. What a difference a second opinion made!

Thanks for all your prayers and concern. My son officially no longer belongs in the circus (and he can still be chicken little for halloween instead of a biker dude)!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Hope for Chicken

Ok, there's a light at the end of the tunnel for Chicken's situation. We're headed to a different plastic surgeon on Friday for a second opinion...well technically a first one since the doc at Vandy didn't really say or do anything other than tell us about insurance and then send us on our way. I got in a verbal war with his assistant who deals with all the insurance stuff and she flat out refuses to file our insurance...and that's after I called my insurance and they said they would pay. She said Dr. Kevin Kelly needed his money up front. Whaaaa? You're kidding me right? Like a doc, a pediatric plastic surgeon doc at that, who is probably making in the neighborhood of $600-1000 an hour needs his money up front? The lamos. I couldn't believe it. I told her we weren't coming back and she could throw away our file. I needed an office who was going to work with me not against me.

So I've been in contact with the Birmingham office last week and some of today and they're being much nicer than the Vandy office ever was. I don't know if they file insurance...if they don't I'm going to pretty much assume that no one does since it's in two different states. We're prepared to pay the 3K up front, but it's not going to be fun. But Chicken is my concern and I'll do what it takes to make him look normal. Insurance companies stink...have I mentioned that?

Let's Monday was definitely that...a Monday. I had to call poison control today for Punky. I normally put my purse on the counter when I walk in and because she was sleeping and I was carrying her inside earlier today from lunch, I threw it in the floor and forgot about it. Well, Punky got really quiet and I found her in the kitchen with my hand sanitizer and lid flipped open. I didn't think she had ingested much if at all, but I wasn't taking any chances after all those forward emails I get about how a drop can make them drunk. Well, here's some facts for you people...The NATIONAL POISON CONTROL CENTER told me even a 20 month mouthful is typically harmless. She told me to watch her and make sure she didn't get sleepy and if she did to go to the ER. She was fine. I gave her a snack and some milk like they recommended and she never acted any different, so I figured she didn't get any. Needless to say, I threw out every bottle of sanitizer in our possession.

Shortly thereafter, I was giving Punky a bath and Chicken was sitting in the hallway on his blanket playing like he normally does. I usually check to make sure he's far enough away from the wall if he falls backward so he won't hit his head. I didn't this time...wouldn't it figure? He fell backward and hit his head on the baseboard. As soon as I picked up my little crying Chicken, I felt the goose egg. I panicked and called every friend (ok, the only TWO I have locally) that has children and made sure I wasn't supposed to, like, do CPR or something. ;o) No, seriously, believe it or not Punky has never had a goose egg like that as clumsy as she is. All my friends assured me he was probably going to be ok but to make sure he wasn't abnormally sleepy or throwing up. Now, I'm just praying the goose egg goes away before he has to get fitted for a helmet!!! He can't have a knot where he doesn't normally have one!

HA! So what a day it was for me! On the bright side, the kids got up early this morning so they went to bed early. Hubby's at our church's business meeting so I've got the entire evening to myself....Me and Peter Patrelli from Heroes on a Monday night....sigghhhhh....


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Poor, poor little Chicken...

Well, we went to Chicken's appointment today regarding his flat head. I WAS NOT impressed with this doctor, nor did we get the helmet he probably needs. The doctor rushed in and took a quick look at him, told us insurance wouldn't pay, the cost was $2900, $750 of which was due TODAY and he'd see us back in 4-5 weeks. Now granted, he was a LITTLE nicer than that but took only a few minutes to explain that the liklihood of Chickens head improving on its own was unknown. Gee thanks, you're making $600 bucks an hour and I drove two hours for THAT? They then ushered us into an office where we signed a waiver saying it was ok not to even BOTHER to file insurance (apparently because they've had so much trouble with it) and then tried to make the appointment a few blocks away to get Chicken fitted. I kept throwing hints at hubby. You know, the kind where I say with a raised eyebrow, "We can't afford this, can we?" hint hint...hint.

He signs the waiver papers, and tells the lady we need to talk about it before we commit...thank goodness! We then leave, and I having this sinking feeling in my stomach that Chicken's head is NOT going to get fixed and he's going to be a fat little goth boy in high school trying desperately to fit in because he has a flat head and everyone laughs at him...AND he'll probably be going bald if genetics plays any role in this. Hubby doesn't want to buy anything because he thinks his head isn't bad enough. It's not BAD, at least no where NEAR as bad as it was a few months ago - the back of his head looked like an upside down triangle. Now it's round everywhere but in the middle where it's supposed to stick out the farthest on the back. He has a concave part right smack in the middle that when he moves you can see a shadow. It's about as wide as my thumb print but about half that at its deepest and fans out from there. I wish someone had a black and white answer for me. What I would give for the gift of time travel to see what he's going to look like at 18. I can't get past the fact that we have the ability to do something NOW and not later about it. What if he resents us? What if it leads to the life-long misery of never being able to wear glasses because his ears are uneven? Or what if, from what I've read, he has problems with his jaws because everything doesn't line up? What about his eyes? The doc did say that since he sleeps on his tummy and is upright most of the day he didn't see it getting worse, but he simply couldn't tell us if it would get any better. Can someone just tell me what to do so I don't have to be responsible for this kind of decision????

On a lighter note, after the appointment, we had most of the day to run around Nashville. We went to a really cool restauarant in Opry Mills Mall called The Aquarium. It's got this HUGE aquarium in the middle and the whole restaurant is set up around it. There's sharks, schools of unknown HUGE fish, colorful tropical fish, sea horses, eels (yuck, I get the hibby-jibbies when I see those things!), and numerous Can you tell I'm not edumacated in the area of fish? Punky fell in love and she was mesmerized, as was Chicken who sat in his stroller the whole time we ate simply staring and letting out the occasional squeal or giggle. Oh, and they were so excited they both pooped. Yeah, I do mean that literally.

We had a lot of fun having our first family outing as a family of four. They both did quite well in the car, much to my surprise. Chicken slept for about half the ride and I brought half of Punky's library and she occupied herself "reading." She's getting to be so precious, not that she hasn't always been, but today while we were standing and looking at the aquarium she came up to me and hugged my arm and said, "Iluhyoooou" (I love you.) My heart just melted. My kids are my life and to be rewarded so spontaneously like that almost made me cry. Finally! Punky's recognizing my worth in this whole thing called life. That's right kid, you're learning!

Anyway, after the aquarium we walked around the mall for a bit where Punky dutifully pointed out every "puntin" she saw. We went in Old Navy and shopped a little. As usual she found a ball she wanted to hold (I don't know why they keep those things everywhere!) and we finally left, walking right out with it. I was about two stores down when I realized we were thieves and I jetted around nearly slinging Punky out of the stroller (Thank goodness for seatbelts!), glancing left and right to make sure mall security wasn't on my tail and walked back in, nonchalantly laying the ball back on a display table as I appeared interested in a hideous sweater. Whew! That was close!

In closing, a few posts ago there was an anonymous comment left about ASEMT helmets for children bought online. I would love to talk more about this if by chance you're reading this. I really need to examine all my options and this is something hubby wants to look into as well. PLEASE post again with your email or a way for me to get in touch with you! Thanks!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Finally something fun to report!

Ok, so this weekend was AWESOME! I really needed it, too. As you know, it's been a rough few weeks for me emotionally and this weekend I got to just forget about it. On Saturday, we went to one of my friend's little boys' first birthday party. Let's just say he TOTALLY enjoyed his cake. I've never seen a kid covered with so much icing. He dove head first into and didn't quit until his mother made him. They had a really cute cowboy theme and Punky LOVED wearing her cowgirl hat. Chicken enjoyed his first taste of cake, too. He grinned after each bite. He's going to have a sweet tooth like me...*begin sarcasm* I'm so proud *end sarcasm*.

After the kiddos took their afternoon nap, we headed out to a local farm that's more like a country park. You have to pay to get in and there they have swings, a hay maze, animals to pet, a small barn where you can plummet from the window to your death, er, jump for fun into a fluffy stack of hay and a little ride for the kids that Punky wouldn't go near and a hay ride for the adults into the pumpkin patch where you pick your own pumpkin straight from the vine. It was hot out but it was worth it to see Punky loving everything and having so much fun. Chicken didn't do much except look so I'm not sure what he thought. He passed out in the car on the way home so I figured he was just worn out from everything. We took pictures and enjoyed every moment of making those family memories that mean so much and the best part was we got to go with some good friends of ours who has a little 3 month old sweetheart. We got a picture of all three of the kids on a hay stack and it's just too cute! Having days like that are what it's all about and it's those days that I now know I was longing for when I couldn't have children and knew something was missing. There's nothing like seeing the wonder in your children's eyes as they round in awe, point their little chubby finger and turn wide, excited eyes to you and say, "Puntin!" Well, Punky got her puntin and she's very proud of it!

On yet another note, we've decided to list our house in the spring and start looking elsewhere. We've been in this house almost exactly 4 years and while I LOVE the house and the floor plan the neighborhood is starting to be a little questionable. It's not bad yet, but we got this feeling when we were in our condo and we were right to move when we did. So we're paying attention this time instead of waiting until the last minute. So now I'm in planning mode, keeping my eye on the market and trying to declutter our house and shove everything that hasn't been used in 6 months into a bin that will go neatly into the attic for no one to see when they're viewing it. It will certainly be a challenge to go list the house because of the kids and the chaos their toys will cause (and Chicken will probably be walking by then so that's even more of a mess with finger prints everywhere--and will someone tell me WHY ON EARTH we decided on glass coffee tables and end tables AND a BLACK glass entertainment center with the TV attached?) So, anyway, here's to moving in the summer!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #3

Thirteen Things I Loved to do as a Child

1. Play with my Barbie's. I used to build doll houses with my blocks and use toilet paper for carpet. I probably spent 75% of my free time as a child between the ages of 3-12 playing with my barbies.

2. Play house with my baby dolls. Because my mother wouldn't let me play with real milk, I opted to use flour and water in a real bottle for my babies. My babies needed to eat! Talk about ingenious!

3. Read books. My favorites were The Secret Garden and picture books with life-like pictures. Sort of like clay-mation stuff now.

4. Ride my strawberry shortcake tricycle. I used to run from a lot of imaginary things.

5. Pop wheelies off the end of the sidewalk at my house on my bike with my cousin Sabrina.

6. Play treasure hunt, which consisted of real maps and...uh oh watch out! The rugs in the house were all quick sand and we somehow managed to ALWAYS fall in!

7. Turn cartwheels in my front lawn. Sadly, I never got very good at this. In this case, practice NEVER made perfect.

8. Take my tape player in the bathroom while I took a hot bath and sing Debbie Gibson at the top of my lungs. Usually my mom would have to bang on the door and tell me to hush.

9. Read a V.C. Andrews novel with the window up in my bedroom while listening to the spring birds. This of course, was early to middle teenage years.

10. Go shopping....back then I usually got whatever I wanted if I begged long enough. And it was usually a barbie or something for my barbies.

11. Write. I wrote my first "novel" when I was six. I still have it somewhere. It was entitled "The Bear Who Ate Christmas" story and illustrations by me. Stapled at the sides for a book-like feel. I was soooo proud!

12. Color. But it had to be barbie coloring-books. I always colored their lips red or pink first. And of course, blue eyes. I even once colored the babies on one page all black...literally. I remember asking my mom after that why we called them black when in fact they weren't.

13. Those little coloring books that you brushed water over to "paint". I could sit for hours with an emptied, cleaned Country Crock butter bowl full of water and a paint brush and create what I thought was a masterpiece. Of course, in reality I used too much water and made a runny mess, but boy it was fun!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Hey Punkin!

Well, here goes another negative blog. Quite frankly, I'm sick of myself and if you've stuck around to continue reading, you probably are too. I've been in a rut lately, but this latest development is wearing me down even more emotionally and it's just too hard for me right now to think of anything happy.

I'm dealing with some things (mainly people) in my personal life right now that are taking a huge toll on my confidence and other aspects of my life. That's really all I can say specifically but it just hurts. I hate conflict of any kind and to think that someone doesn't like me sends me running with my tail between my legs like the weakling I am. I literally get sweaty hands, a racing heart and my brain shuts down at conflict. I like people to like me and think of me as a good person. I mean, I like to think I'm a good person anyway, maybe others see me as something else. I have my faults, just like everyone else on earth.

I read a friend's blog recently about how she had a hard time standing up for herself. Well, that's me, too. I sit back and let people take advantage of me. I've done this since I was in elementary school and then I go home and cry because I don't have the guts to say anything. In high school I was bullied and made fun of until I was so depressed I couldn't think straight. It gets to me when people do this, even now. You'd think by now I would learn that it's just life. What really matters is how me, my family and God see me. And that really IS all that matters to me, but I would LIKE to just keep peace and remain in my happy, aloof, ignorant state. If you don't like me, just don't tell me or act like it and I'll be fine. I'm way too observant so most often I notice things, even if you think I don't so you've got to be a brilliant actor to keep it from me. My husband has a favorite expression. "I saw that micro-expression!" Apparently it's some sort of term he learned in psychology and it's a good one. Micro-expressions are my curse.

But you know, I try. I try to be friends with everyone. Occasionally, maybe even more than I realize, my candor comes across as arrogance or pushiness. I'm not smart, I'll be the first to tell you that, nor am I intelligent in most regards. But I have a LOT of common sense and a few little bursts of wisdom occasionally but anything I ever say to anyone is simply that, just what I'm saying. My hubby once told me a VERY wise comment, "You can't listen if you're talking."

On a lighter note, Punky has a new funny. She's been learning to put three very different syllables together like, "All better". Since it's fall, she's been obsessing over puntins (pumpkins)lately, too. So this morning when she came in to greet me when she first got up, I said, "Hey Punkin." I say it alot but today it stuck. I was in the kitchen doing something when she meandered over to me, looked up and said to me very brightly in all seriousness, "Hi Puntin!"

I don't know why this struck me as so funny, but everytime I think about that, I just grin. Believe me, Punky's antics, Chicken's smile and Hubby's love and logical reasoning has gotten me through this very difficult week!

Monday, October 1, 2007

And I came tumbling after...

Wow, it was an eventful weekend, half of which I can't write about because I'm just to frustrated!

Saturday, Hubby made Play-Doh with Punky and then we took them to the park at the military base here in town. It wasn't crowded like the other parks and it was a nice little toddler playgroud. Apparently they don't spend much on the landscaping. Half way there I fell in to a calf-deep hole (while holding Chicken) and took a plunge to the ground. Luckily Chicken was fine albeit a little stunned. But he found my oooooohing from pain quite entertaining. The turkey.

So all night Saturday my ankle was hurting as was my arm because I somehow managed to pull muscled there, too. Oh well. That'll teach me to look where I'm going now, won't it?!