Sunday Confessional-Water Safety

These past few weeks since the hubster went to nights have really been a blur.  I’ve been trying to adapt to his schedule so that we can spend some time together, yet I also have an almost 12-month old boy and his schedule . Needless to say, the only reason I knew today was Sunday was because the store closed earlier than what I exepected.  That also means I missed Thrifty Thursday this past week-I am so sorry!  I have been hitting all of the Goodwill stores in my area (Tarrant County) and will post about my visits to all 12 on Thursday, I promise!

This week’s Sunday Confessional then is an interesting one.  Yesterday we visited J2’s best friend over on the other side of Dallas.  They have been best friends since high school (and we’re headed to their 20 year reunion this upcoming weekend, so the friendship spans quite a few years), and his best friend has a huge, beautiful home that houses him, his wife, their two and a half year old little girl and their seven month old baby boy.  The guys went golfing while his wife and I watched the three kids and talked about everything under the sun (our men, babies, sewing, etc).  After the guys got back, we all decided to take a swim in their brand-new pool.

Now this pool is not just a pool.  First off, it cost what a decent home here in the DFW area of Texas costs and includes a rock waterfall, a tiled slide, a hot tub and an area just off to the side that has a 60″ flat screen TV and some gorgeous furniture, plus an outdoor kitchen.  Yeah, when we saw it, we drooled all over ourselves.  Cool thing is, they saved up and paid cash for it (must be nice!).  We had just ordered pizza when it was decided that everyone was going to go down the slide.  We all went down, with J2’s best friend’s wife going down last with their daughter.  Well, something happened; J2’s best friend thought that his wife was going to go under the water and then pop up with their little girl and he would grab their daughter, and she thought he was going to grab their daughter as they hit the water.  Of course, neither happened.

For a moment, it was confusing; the wife popped up without the daughter, both realized the other one didn’t have her and all hell broke loose.  J2 had just dived down into the deep end to grab something off the bottom of the pool and the wife and husband are trying to find their daughter in a pool that has a blue bottom (and therefore is very dark).  I had J3 in my arms and was completely helpless, J2 was entirely unaware of what was happening above him, and the husband and wife were frantic.  Thankfully, they found her and grabbed her quickly, but she had been under just long enough that when she came up she threw up all over daddy.  All of our hearts were beating out of our chests and I thought I was going to throw up.

Now, yes, I might have thrown up due to the adrenalin, but I also felt sick for another reason.  See, when I was eight, my slightly older cousin and  I were playing in the pool and we started goofing around.  I splashed him, he splashed me, I splashed him harder, and he proceeded to hold me under the water.  The next thing I knew, someone was bending over me (performing CPR I later found out) and I too threw up all over.  To this day, I am terrified of being trapped under the water.  I doubt I will ever scuba dive (even snorkeling is a push for me, although I can talk myself through it) and I don’t like being in deep water either.  Seeing two dear friends frantically trying to find their daughter in the deep end of the pool brought back all those old memories.  Of course, their daughter wants nothing to do with the water right now, poor thing.  Hopefully she won’t end up scarred like I am to this day.

I’m sure there are readers asking why she wasn’t wearing some kind of flotation device.  That I don’t know.  But I know that J3 will be in one from here on out, no matter what.  For many on Facebook or on Twitter, you may have seen this blog post on how to spot someone that is drowning (if you haven’t read it, stop right now, read it and then come back.  Don’t worry, we’ll wait-this is SUPER IMPORTANT).  This is one of the most valuable bits of information that’s been circulated around the internet in a long time.  Being from Arizona, there are at least 20 kids that die each year from drowning and not all of them fall into pools when parents aren’t looking.  Sometimes we just don’t know what to look for, but this article shares the signs of someone in distress.  This article is also great, as it discusses water safety and children in particular.  And here, it says that according to the National SAFE KIDS campaign, 9 out of 10 kids drown while under adult supervision (not necessarily in direct site), meaning we’re not really WATCHING our kids around water, we just think we are.  Scary stuff.

In summary, everything ended up being okay in the end, but PLEASE make sure that if there’s water around, your little one(s) have on flotation devices and that you’re watching them like a hawk.

‘Til next time,

Nicole

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Sunday Confessional

So, the other morning I’m innocently sitting in my home office, trying to get through my 1000 emails (hmmm, thinking I may need to trim the ol’ blog list down), when I notice while looking out the window that there are a large amount of weeds popping out from behind a couple of the shrubs in my back flower bed.  Now, I love that back flower bed because it contains seven different rose bushes, a lilac bush (that hates me and refuses to bloom), and some gorgeous scarlet wisteria that are also slow to bloom this year.  It also contains some other plants, but those are my favorites.  Considering the fact it’s been HOT AS FRICKIN’ HADES in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and at that point it was still early, I decide to go out and snag those few weeds before it gets too hot.  No biggie, right?  WRONG.

The first thing I notice is this:

Yep, a big fat wasps’ nest in the middle of one of my rose bushes.  This, after the exterminators came out two weeks ago and did their thing, removing six wasp nests in the process.  Okay, no biggie, mental note to call them to come out and remove the little buggers since that’s part of our agreement.

I’m weeding along, and disappear back behind two blue spruce bushes.  I’m nearing the wisteria and notice that one of the tendrils is a little wonky-as in, growing into the spruce AND into another rose bush.  I grab the tendril and start pulling it up onto a secure spot on the fence when I look up and not six inches from my face is this:

HOLY MARY MOTHER OF GOD WHAT THE EFFING HELL IS THAT?!?

Needless to say, I screamed like a four year old girl, loud enough in fact, to have my neighbor come out onto his back patio and ask if I was okay.  Uh, no.  I was back up against the opposite fence, scratching and itching because, although I was not getting close enough to take a really good shot, that is a two and a half inch (garden) spider in the above picture and they give me the heebie geebies!  For the record, yes, I know that garden spiders are not the kind that eat your flesh or bite you and you die.  Yeah, I know, I know.  But here’s where the Sunday Confessional part comes in.  See, I am deathly afraid of spiders bigger than a quarter, and I’m giving myself credit there.  More like a dime, maybe a penny if I’ve had a drink, but not anything larger.  This is due to the fact that when I was four my family lived in Great Falls, Montana and we lived next door to a boy named Bobby.  Bobby was about eight years old, the devil incarnate, and loved to chase me and the other little girls in the neighborhood around and drop big fat spiders like this down the back of our shirts.  So to this day, the thought of spiders gives me nightmares.  And everyone knows it.  When the movie Arachnophobia came out, my dad deceived me into watching it with him, and then lightly tickled my legs when the first spiders came on . Unfortunately for Dad, I punched him in the arm and ran screaming from the room.  I think I itched and scratched for the rest of the night.

And you do know that feeling when I say itched and scratched, right?  Like there are little (or big) spider legs crawling all over your skin?  Okay, just checking.  YUCK!!

So of course, after stumbling into the house, trying to avoid the piles of dog poop that I’ve failed to clean up in the lawn, I yell for my husband to get his butt up (he works nights) and fix the “problem”.  Poor guy, he’s only been asleep for an hour or so, but he goes outside and here’s how the conversation goes:

J2:  “So where is it?’

Me: “In the wisteria.”

J2: “Which one is the wisteria again?”

Me: (Me rolling my eyes) “The stuff climbing up the fence.”

J2: (looking at the three huge plants climbing up the fence)-“Uh, you’re going to have to help me out here.”

Me: (Reluctantly leaving the patio, dodging poop as I go and pointing from 15 feet away)- “Right there, that big ass web with the big ass spider in it-you know, with the really long legs and the yellow and orange body.”

J2: “Wow!  How cool is that?!?”

Me: “Are you effing kidding me?!?  Get rid of it!”  (pretty sure I said the real word here, but keepin’ it PG)

J2: “No way, they’re good for the garden.  You want it gone, you kill it.”

**Right here is where I debate how much a divorce would cost me, how much I like my house, my car, my flower bed…crap…the spider isn’t worth it***

J2:  “Seriously, come take a look-it’s really cool.”

I inch closer…and closer…and then realize when I’m about ten feet away that it is pretty cool looking.  And that it won’t eat me, just the nasty flies we’ve had issues with.  And then I concede.  But only to a certain extent.

Me: “So you’re going to weed the rest of the flower bed? Because I’m not.”

J2:  “Nope, that’s still all yours.”

Looks like the flower bed will be full of weeds this summer…and my skin is crawling as I write this…

Til next time!

Nicole

Sunday Confessional

Hey All!

What a week!  It’s been crazy busy at our house, and it shows no signs of letting up either.  The in-laws are headed to our abode this week, J2 celebrates his birthday on Saturday and of course, the 4th of July is a week from today.  This will be J3’s first experience with fireworks, so I’m super excited to see how he reacts.  We bought a new camera today (a Canon Rebel), so we should have some great pictures to share.  Anyway, enough of that, on to Sunday Confessional!

1.  The first is in honor of another big event this week-yes, I have to admit it out loud, I’m a closet Twilight fan and Eclipse is coming out on Wednesday!  I have always loved children’s books and I think the Harry Potter series is genius.  When I heard that “Cedric” was in a movie about vampires, I thought it to be silly.  Then my BFF T-Spot’s little sister kept telling me how great the books were, so I decided to read them over my maternity leave last year.  Well, I couldn’t put the books down!  Literally, I was reading them while breastfeeding (bad mom, I know).  The movies have been okay, am I have to admit I’m Team Edward, only because lusting after a 17 year old boy makes me feel dirty (and not in a good way, sorry Jacob 😉 )

2.  That leads to the next confession…J3 only breastfed for a little over three months.  Not by my choice, but by the choice of my birth control.  I was already having some problems keeping up with the guzzler and supplemented after he’d suck me dry with the free formula that Similac sent.  Then I went back on birth control at my six week follow up and my milk almost completely dried up.  I was fighting like crazy to keep going, but finally right before I was laid off, I gave up.  I was sooo upset.  Then on top of everything, he had a horrible reaction to the formulas that had milk derivatives in them, so he’s on soy formula.  So I’m the target of some controversy when it comes to breastfeeding.  Oh well!  We’ll see what happens when he hits a year and can have milk.  We’re praying he’s not lactose intolerant.

3.  Probably one of the hardest things for me when I was pregnant was not being able to drink.  See, I really like alcohol!  That sounds awful, but I like the taste-I hate the feeling I get when I drink too many.  If they made non-alcoholic drinks that taste like the ones with alcohol, I’d be all over them.  And if asked, I am a gin girl.  I love a good gin and diet tonic, especially if it’s Bombay.  I’m not a big beer drinker, Jack is not a friend of mine, nor is Jose, but Jose is directly related to a bad 21st birthday.  I like my gin, wine, vodka, rum and many others, but for fear of sounding like a lush, I’ll stop there…

4.  Hmm, what else.  Well, my big accomplishment for the month is letting my fingernails grow.  See, all my life when I’m nervous, stressed or just bored, I’ve chewed on my nails.  I was sick and tired of paying the money to get the acrylics done, and no other option seemed to work.  This time I got the nasty tasting nail polish stuff and since I’ve put my mind to it, I’ve left my nails alone.  Woo hoo!  They’re growing slowing but surely, but at least they don’t look like the dog sat and ate my fingertips.

5.  One more…probably one of the biggest challenges I face is my ADD-yes, attention deficit disorder.  I’ve had it all my life, but trained myself to focus when I was a kid and in college.  Now that I’m a SAHM, it’s out of control.  I have half finished projects all over my house and it drives J2 NUTS!  That has in turn led me to be a freaky list maker so that I get at least a few things accomplished.  I’m just frustrated that every night it appears that I transfer 75% of the day’s list to the next day.  If anyone has any suggestions, I’m all ears!  I’m thinking I need to assign certain hours of the day to certain projects-does that work for anyone out there that has little ones running around?

That’s it for today.  From now on, things will be a little more exciting, but this laid the groundwork for some funny stories.

Until next time!

Nicole

Sunday Confessional

This Sunday Confessional will be short…today has been busy and tiring, but well worth all the work.  My hubby loved his new golf clubs, favorite home cooked food and the homemade gifts from J3 and I, but cooking elaborate meals will wear one out!  I’ve been thinking about my dad all day long, and in addition, my mother as today would have been my parent’s 40th anniversary.  It’s been 13 years since my dad passed, but the awareness of his physical absence never stops.  I miss my dad’s crazy sense of humor, and the jokes he constantly played on all of us.  I miss sitting and watching the Atlanta Braves play baseball with him, as when I was young he taught me everything there was about my favorite sport.  I miss the yellow note pad he would get out whenever there was a big decision to make, drawing a line down the middle, and labeling one side “PROS” and one side “CONS”.  Most of all, I miss the dreamer in him.  He was the eternal optimist, always seeing the brightest side of everything.  He never let anything get him down, including cancer.  Unfortunately, it did, but not without a fight.

I think one of the saddest things for me is that my husband and child will never know him but through stories and pictures.  My husband has so many of the same qualities that my father did; the strong work ethic, the love of sports, and most of all, the firm hand and loving heart.  For that I am grateful.

So on this Father’s Day, I just want to say, Dad, I miss you so much.  J2, thank you for being such a wonderful dad and husband.  To all the other dads out there, Happy Father’s Day!

Sunday Confessionals

Yes, I know it’s Tuesday.  Yes, I know that I really am the crappiest blogger on the planet.  But, alas, if I don’t sit down and finish writing this today, I will never get on a schedule.  And I love writing, almost as much as I love reading other people’s posts and since my husband makes fun of my blog addiction, I guess maybe I’ll write so he’ll stop.  So here I am, starting this little series I’m going to call “Sunday Confessionals”.  Basically, I get to “confess” all the things I love and hate and then let people discuss them (if I ever have any followers–hey, it could happen).  I’ll start off slow–10 things today and maybe more next Sunday, but for now, here’s some tidbits about me that might (or might not) be interesting…

1.  I have lived all over the western U.S.-I was born in Washington State, have lived in Oregon, Montana, Utah, Nevada, Arizona and currently reside in Texas (Fort Worth area to be exact).  I grew up in Spokane, lived in Phoenix for 15 years and moved to Texas four years ago.  I love Texas, but miss my family in Phoenix like crazy (and the food…and mountains…and the fact everyone has a swimming pool in their backyard…but I digress!  I could write an entire post on Phoenix and probably will some day-stay tuned).

2.  That leads me to #2-I grew up with my stay at home mom, retail big-wig manager dad and two younger brothers, whom shall be called Mom, Dad, Darth B and No Neck from here on out.  They’re a pretty funny bunch, although I lost my dad to pancreatic cancer in 1997.  Yeah, cancer sucks.  The same form of cancer got my dad’s dad too, so it really sucks in our family, as that’s all we seem to go from in the end.  Darth B has a long term girlfriend, Tree Hugger, and a little girl, Ry-Boo.  No Neck has a girlfriend that I hear he’s very serious about that I will call Sonnet for an inside joke.  She did graduate from Arizona State though, which is my school of choice (no, I didn’t end up graduating from there, but my blood runs maroon and gold as I attended there for many moons in the Jake Plummer/Chris Tillman years), so I can’t knock her too much.  Together, we are quite the dysfunctional, yet hilarious, family.  Just ask my BFF’s, T-spot and BBKF.  They are always highly entertained at our family gatherings.  We are rowdy, irreverent and are constantly bantering.  My poor, poor mom.

3.  I got married young to someone that wasn’t right for me, go figure, because at 22 you barely know your own darn name.  I divorced him a year later right after my father died, which is another story for another day.  I met my (now) husband in 2005, we were married in 2007 and in 2009, two days after our second anniversary, we had had our son.  From here on out, DH is J2 and DS is J3 (yep, he’s a third…).  Both are my world, my universe, the sun(s) that I revolve around.  I couldn’t be more lucky.  Granted, there are days where I wonder if I could put both of them on Ebay or Craigslist because they’re driving me nucking futs, but those days aren’t enough for me to sell either one of them (yet).  J2 is a registered nurse and works in the cardiac and regular ICU at the hospital where J3 was born.  He is one of the best nurses I know, and having worked in the health care industry for a long time, I know quite a few.  And I’m not biased, I swear, he really is that good.  He makes me proud to be his wife every single day.  And J3?  Well, he makes everything worthwhile.  🙂

4.  After having J3, I got about three weeks of maternity leave before I started working from home, and was back to work a month after his birth.  I got pretty damn screwed on the whole maternity leave thing, but when you work for a small company, that’s how it goes.  The upside of that is that I got to take J3 to work with me every day-until I was laid off December 19th from the company that I had worked for going on six years.  Best damn thing that ever happened to me (besides the usual things like marriage, baby, etc).  I never thought I could be a SAHM, but I am and loving it!  Take that corporate America!  I plan on being my own boss and watching my child(ren) grow up, not punching the clock to make someone else money.  I am done with those days.

5.  I am about to finish up all the prelims on my business (Mommy Moxie) and am hoping to launch by July 1st.  I am an anal, analytical yet creative person (there’s the Libra in me, gotta be balanced) and I want to make sure I have all my ducks in a row so that I don’t have to go back and do things over.  I spent almost six years watching my CEO/owner of the company get screwed left and right by decisions that didn’t work out, so I’m trying not to go that route.  I know there will be some but I’d like to keep those to a minimum (insert sarcastic laugh here).

6.  Let’s see…what else.  Well, I guess you could say I’m really tall.  Like as in 5’11” tall and am a total shoe/high heels whore (which then raises the height to around 6’2″ or 6’3″).  I LOVE shoes.  I used to have about 150 pairs before an ex-boyfriend made me get rid of a bunch of them.  Now I have built the reserve back up to about 80 or so.  Granted, that’s not counting the flip flops that I am totally and completely addicted to, and Old Navy flip flops are my fave.  I have Roxy’s, Havaianas and many other designer ones, but Old Navy ones are perfect, especially the metallic ones.  Oh, Teva’s mush flip flops are up there too.  Flips flops are another 50 or so in the ol’ shoe collection, much to my husband’s chagrin.  When you live in Phoenix, you can wear them year round though and I’ve never  broken the habit.  Plus, I’m not a barefoot kind of person, so I wear them all the time around the house, which is all tile except the bedrooms, the media room and the den.  Because stepping on dog food grosses me out.

7.  That leads me to the hounds.  We have two Boxers, a 12-ish year old brindle female and a 6-ish year old flashy fawn male.  Both were adopted from a local rescue agency, Legacy Boxer Rescue, which if you’re in the DFW area and want to adopt from a great rescue group, Legacy is the one.  Our female was the first fur baby, adopted in 2006 a month after we moved to Texas.  We fostered for Legacy after that, and after five fosters, “foster failed” and adopted our male.  Currently, our boy is having thyroid issues, so he is Fat Dog and the female is Momma Dog.  They are the coolest dogs on the planet-neither of them bark, bolt out the door or fight, they stay off the furniture (when we’re home) and they love to be wherever we are.  Fat Dog lets J3 climb over him like he’s Mount Rainer, but not so much for Momma Dog.  She just gets up and leaves, poor thing.  Can’t blame her there.  Of course, them being rescue dogs and us once being volunteers, I am VERY pro-spay/neuter and am 100% for adoption.  I also tolerate professional, responsible breeders, but if you are a backyard breeder selling your puppies on the side of the road or in a parking lot and are selling them for what professional breeders sell puppies for, I will probably stop, get your info, and turn you over to the IRS, especially if I find out you’re using your female as a puppy mill and she’s on her fourth litter of pups this year.  Grrr….

8.  Another passion of mine is recycling and thrift shops.  I love finding new uses for old things and I have no problems shopping at thrift shops for clothes.  In fact, I’m thinking of doing a “Thrifty Thursday” post to show what I find and how I’ve re-purposed or re-fashioned it.  There is another blog that I read that does this on occasion, so I need to figure out which one does it and link up.  Some of my favorite finds are shoes (go figure) and t-shirts.  I love re-fashioning old t’s them into something new and funky.  Granted, I don’t have much luck with pants from thrift stores.  But when you’re trying to find jeans with at least a 35″ inseam, that’s not surprising.  I am frugal/cheap when it comes to a lot of things, but I will fork out for a good pair of pants.

9.  I am also an avid book knerd.  Yes, I know, I spelled that with a “k”, mainly because there is a really cool pub here in Fort Worth called The Flying Saucer that spells their knerd as knurd and I think it’s fun.  And it’s my dang post so I can do what I want.  Anyway, I was heavily into children’s lit in college (could’ve been that I was an education major at the time), and the love has never died.  J3’s room is filled with all kinds of books, many of them that were mine as a child.  My mom is now a librarian (she went back to work when the youngest, No Neck, was 12), and she has collected quite a few for me, so I have everything from Nancy Drew first editions to Chris Van Allsburg picture books.  I also read “grown-up” books and can usually be counted on to have my library card maxed out.  I don’t watch too much TV, so while my husband is watching, I usually have my nose buried in a novel.  Oh, and I read REALLY fast.  As in read-the-last-Harry-Potter-book-in-six-hours kinda fast.  That’s what happens when you’re the kid with the flashlight under the covers reading a book.

10.  Last but not least, I am also a music junkie.  If I’m working or doing chores around the house, I’ve got some tunes on in the background.  I’ll listen to almost anything, but my faves include Dave Matthews, Lady Gaga, Three Days Grace, Nickelback (don’t hate-Chad writes some thought-inspiring lyrics) and a band from Phoenix called Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers.  Remember The Refreshments?  Roger was the lead singer for them and then broke off when they got too big to form his own band, taking the drummer, P.H. Naffah with him.  In short, they rock.  They put on a huge show in Rocky Point, Mexico (Puerto Penasco) at least once a year that we used to drive down from Phoenix for and it’s one huge par-tay.  I mean hell, Roger passes tequila around to those in the front row and partakes himself, so by the end of the show he’s having the audience sing because he’s a little tipsy.  The shows used to be held in a big vacant dirt lot with a stage put up in front, but since we’ve moved to Texas they moved to a different venue and I haven’t been able to go.  Still, they’re a riot and very fan friendly.  Maybe I’ll write a post on the time the bass player, Nick Scropos, tried to pimp me out to Mike Tyson at the bar.  No joke…I might have to remind him of that when T-Spot and I go see them play on the 18th of June up in Denton at the Boiler Room.   The Peacemakers have been a big part of my and J2’s relationship–in fact, we were married on the beach in Rocky Point because we loved the area after having been to so many concerts down there.  It really is a beautiful, sleepy little town, just south of the border (hehehe) and right on the ocean.  Where I would kill to be right now…with a marg in hand and a book in the other.  What a life!!

Well folks, that’s it for today!  I could go on and on, but J3 is up from his nap and I need to go to the fabric store (and maybe a thrift store or two).

Until next time!

Nicole