Thursday, September 30, 2010

Can I get a mouth-transplant?

The reason I have not blogged in the past week is because I'm sick and tired of writing about my stupid teeth. Some days I wish I could have them all removed and exchange them for a set of dentures I could take out every night and place in a glass of scope.

But I digress...

The root canal was easy. The healing, not so. I could go into a long, drawn out, soliloquy about how folks with TMJ (like myself) often have a hard time healing from root canals because the ligaments that support our teeth and jaw are overworked and underpaid, but that would likely be boring and nobody would make it to the end of my post (if you're still reading, I applaud you). So instead, I'll go on to more interesting matters.

My son. My son to whom I have taught quite a few signs. My son whom I still nurse. My son. His worlds of nursing and signing have collided and now my toddler has figured out how to "ask" for "milk time" (as we call nursing in our home). I cannot tell you how long I've been waiting for him to learn how to do this, but more than that, I cannot tell you how much I want him to quickly forget how to ask. Why? because now that he's figured it out HE WON'T STOP ASKING. There are parts of my body which were quite enjoying what they surely figured was the weaning process at work - but alas, it wasn't. it was apparently just a break.

Ah well. I haven't seen many college students still breastfeeding, so I can only assume he'll quit one day. And when that day comes, I'm sure I will be very sad and wish that I could still scoop him up in my arms and nurse the blues away. I'd better savor this.

Speaking of new things Levi is doing, he has also recently learned how to climb - nay, jump - up onto each and every piece of furniture in our home. Not only that, but has figured out that if he climbs onto a piece of furniture, he can climb onto higher things from there (i.e. the bay window, the kitchen table, etc.) Nothing is safe. Nothing. I am awaiting the day I come back from a short bathroom trip to find him swinging from the curtain rod.

I have cute pictures I'd love to post (like the one of Levi and jonathan, both chowing down on Gyro meat at our local Greek Festival. Who knew my kid liked spiced lamb?) but as usual my camera is upstairs with my light-sleeping baby. One of these days I'll surely remember to bring it down.

One of these days.

Do you say that a lot? I feel like I use that phrase ALL THE TIME! And yet I guess all it means is that my time is filled with the things that matter, and everything else takes a back seat. And that's ok.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Drum roll please

Well, I did it.
After a couple nights of wake-you-up-mid-sleep pain, I called and scheduled a root-canal on what I *think* is the problem tooth. I had it done at 11:00 yesterday.

And ya know what? it was - get ready - easier than getting my crown put on. Yes, that's right, I said easier.

I have a theory that the people who say "root canals are TERRIBLE!" are really just remembering all the pain they were in prior to the root canal, because let me tell you, once Dr. Rush numbed me up, I could have fallen asleep. It was the first time in DAYS I hadn't felt my mouth throbbing.

Ok, now all the poking and prodding was no picnic. It's not like I'd sign myself up for another one tomorrow just to fill some free time, but it was NOTHING like the horror stories I've heard, and very much like the few no-nonsense stories some friends and family members have told me. I did choose to go to an endodontist (a root-canal specialist) and that may have made a HUGE difference in my experience, but I don't have anything to compare it to.

For those of you who have had the procedure done in the past, yes, I did have to have "interpulpal" numbing (numbing inside the tooth), which is typically the most painful part of a root canal but I have to say it was no big deal. She said "I'm going to count to three and the in-tooth numbing will be over". And it was.

Remember back up at the top where I said I *think* it was the tooth that was so bothersome. Well, I still do, but there is a possibility that the one next to it is also problematic. I'm trying, for now anyway, not to borrow tomorrow's troubles by thinking about it. The whole area is rather sore, and I'm on a good deal of Ibuprophen to take care of all that gum-tissue pain that is expected with any invasive dental work, so we'll see how it all feels after I stop taking Advil in a few days.

For now though, everything in my mouth feels MUCH better. Whether I need more work or not, this feels like a great improvement. Granted, I haven't chewed anything on that side yet, and I'm quite hesitant to touch my top and bottom teeth together (although part of that may be because I'm scared that it will hurt and prove that I need more work done) but I'd consider the procedure a grand success.

So, thanks for your prayers everyone, it was no fun, but it's over for now!
I'll post a picture of my tooth x-ray for you to ogle at when I get time.

Monday, September 20, 2010

NOT ME Monday

Oh gee, I make so many embarrassing moves each week, it's hard to pick so few that a post will be short enough to be enjoyable. Here goes.

This Saturday we had our lifegroup over for brunch. It was absolutely lovely. So lovely, that I kept reminding my husband, all afternoon, how wonderful it was to have everyone over. Before they came I baked a batch of cinnamon rolls (with a disgustingly simple recipe that I really should post sometime) and I certainly did NOT run out of both brown sugar and powdered sugar. Actually, to be honest, I did not look and find that I had two, nay, only one tablespoon of powdered sugar with which to make icing (who even KEEPS one tablespoon of powdered sugar anyway??). I did not proceed by asking my dear neighbor for hers. Which reminds me, I did not also borrow nonfat dry milk from her a couple of days ago for yogurt making.

My husband and I went on a date yesterday afternoon (thank you Blaskes!) and upon arriving at our favorite local restaurant (the green gateau) I was certainly NOT informed that they were in fact closed. No, I always check things like this BEFORE we plan a childcare-provided date with one another. I'm a GOOD planner after all. After said restaurant turned us away we did not walk aimlessly around downtown, noting that 90% of ALL the restaurants were closed on Sunday afternoons. (I should note that we DID have a fantastic time with one another after we found a local dive called yia yia's, and shared ice cream at ivana cone)

In preperation for Levi's friend Teague to spend the week with us I did a little preparing in the way of cutting up some fruit and veggies, and preparing some easy-fix dinners for the week. However, I did NOT forget two MAJOR ingredients for the roast I was going to throw into the crock pot this morning. I'm so organized, I would never forget ingredients. Not only that, but I would NOT forget to even put said ingredients on my grocery list. Ugh. Hope you like pastaroni hubby.

Upon looking at the thermostat in the house this morning (which read 68 degrees, very low for this time of year) I did not tempt fate and wear a sweater WITH a jacket out this morning. No, I did not ignore the weather man when he said that, despite the morning cool, we would indeed reach 90 this afternoon. I know Nebraska's Fall's well by now, I know that this is how it goes: cold in the morning, scorching in the afternoon. I am not still wearing said sweater because I'm scared that if I so much as move an arm muscle I'll wake one of the two sleeping toddlers.

...speaking of those toddlers... They have certainly NOT defied all my expectations of fit throwing and melt-downing by being complete cherubs the entire morning. They also did not BOTH go down for naps at the SAME TIME without so much as a peep of discontentment. Because we have a small house which is very poorly insulated I am NOT relegating myself to the couch for the duration of their naps - however long that may be. I do NOT have to pee (just keep repeating that to myself)

How about you? I bet you never do anything to embarrass yourself (you certainly don't misspell the word "embarrass" as much as I do, I bet. and even if you did I'm SURE those little red misspelling underlines wouldn't drive you NUTSO as you continue typing and then have to go back and correct them because you CAN'T STAND their red-lineyness. Is that even a word?)

Happy Monday everyone, happy Monday.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Sharing, or lack there of.

I don't know how my son learned his most recent behavior - I don't know if he learned it from one of us, or if he's just acting on his in-born sinful nature. Anyhow, here's how playdates go:

  • Teague (Levi's buddy) has a toy
  • Levi runs up to Teague, screams, and pulls it - nay - rips it from his hands
  • A laid back Teague moves on to a different toy
  • Assuming this toy must be more interesting than the first, Levi runs up to Teague, screams, and rips it from his hands
  • A laid back Teague moves on to a different toy
  • Remembering that THIS was indeed the toy he wanted, Levi runs up to Teague, screams, and rips it from his hands
  • I step in and hold said toy on my lap for both boys to use at the same time.
  • Cue temper tantrum and all-out wail fest from my flesh and blood.
And... Curtain.

So, what do I do?
EVERY time someone picks up a toy - any toy - my son simply HAS to have it. It's thoroughly aggrivating for me, and I can only imagine how irritated his little pals are going to become. Of course, it's worse with the toys at our house than it is when we're in the homes of others, but it happens there too. He's determined to get his way.

Wait - did I just describe a toddler?

Possibly, but there simply MUST be a cure for this type of behavior. How do I teach him that he cannot take toys from others - at the ripe old age of 15 months? I need a strategy here people. Help!

After writing this post, I found This article which describes, to the letter, what Levi does. Even the "proto-sharing" which he's an ace at. Proto- sharing is what we, in elementary school, used to call "indian giving" (VERY not-PC. I know. I'm not condoning the use of the phrase). It involved handing a toy out to another individual as though you were going to give it to them, and then pulling it back. Where do they get this stuff??

Thursday, September 16, 2010

At a loss (and not a lose of nerve)

As in, I didn't (repeat, did not) have a root canal this morning

Although, I almost wish I had. Because I'm still in pain.

I showed up at the crack of 8:00 - which would have been fine had my adorable son not chosen THIS morning to sleep until... well, I don't know when he would have slept until because I had to go wake him up at 7:00 to head to our friends' home where he could be supervised while I headed to what I thought would be my first root canal.

And it wasn't. Did I say that already?

I arrived there, shaking, and practically in tears of both pain and frustration mingled with fear. They took an x-ray and I spoke with the hygienist for a while. When the Dr. came in she performed a number of fairly rudimentary tests. "here, bite on this, tell me if it hurts". "Let me put something cold here, tell me if it hurts." "Does it hurt if I tap here? how about here?"

The result?

The pain is actually radiating from BETWEEN two bottom, back molars. One, the furthest one back, is the newly crowned molar. The other has only a filling. A LARGE filling, but just a filling none the less.

The problem with this result is that it lead the Dr. to believe that the nerve was not damaged. In other words, it isn't worth removing. She postulated 3 possibilities: one, the non-crowned tooth has a crack in it that hasn't reached the nerve. Such a crack might be aided by a crown - even if it's only a temporary fix before a root canal is necessary. two, the recently crowned tooth is still calming down, as is the one next to it which was likely jostled around a bit. Three, the recently crowned tooth needs a root canal, but isn't to the point of yank-it-out pain yet. Such pain, she told me, may be characterized by waking you up from a dead sleep, keeping you from drinking anything that isn't room temperature, etc.

My fourth theory is that my horrific (yes, it has reached that level) TMJ causes some pain which radiates from my jaw to my molars. This theory becomes especially tempting to believe when I consider that I ONLY have TMJ on my right side, and ALL these teeth are on my right side as well - right next to my jaw. Go figure.

So, about my tooth (I'm sure you're SICK of hearing about this, but hopefully the end of the saga is imminent) The pain only occurs when the bottom and top teeth touch. So I can concievably eat an entire meal, and as long as I'm being VERY careful not to let the teeth touch, I can come out just fine. But the moment they do, wowee!

So I made an appointment to have the other molar crowned tomorrow. I may yet cancel it, not sure if I jumped the gun. Not sure if I should just wait it out and see if the tooth "settles down, but really, it's already been 6 weeks. Can't someone just wave their magic wand and make this all disapeare?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I'm going to re-name this year

... "the year of the dentist"
After all, that's where I'm spending the majority of my time - and our money.

The saga (in case you haven't been keeping up with it) all started a few months ago - maybe three - when I finally had x-rays taken. You see, although I don't miss my normal office visits, I hadn't had x-rays in over a year since I was pregnant with Levi for two 6-month check ups. Lo and behold, the x-rays uncovered two problem areas. Just two. I could handle that.

Because the first dentist I went to was new and totally uninformed (read: told me they were a preferred provider for my insurance when they certainly were NOT) I switched dentists. This new dentist took care of my one cavity, and one deteriorated filling (which needed a crown). Now, I had been having some pain in the spot where he put that crown, but I figured it was due to the deteriorated filling, so I figured the pain would subside once the crown was in place.

I was wrong.

Turns out, the pain is in a different tooth completely, but it's hard to tell which tooth is hurting exactly when they're all way back there in the far reaches of one's very large mouth. So, in I go again, to determine what exactly could be the problem. That was yesterday. What I learned was both what I had figured, and what I had dreaded. I have a cracked molar - or so the dentist thinks. It's very hard to tell because the ENTIRE SURFACE of that tooth is covered in an amalgam (silver) filling, placed 10 years ago or so.

Dentist refers me to endodontist (mouth-nerve-specialist) to figure out, with her special equipment, what is wrong with my tooth.

So, I call Dr. Rush, the endodontist, and schedule an appointment for Thurday morning, bright and early. This is the point where i get weak in the knees, as I discover that I have made the appointment and cannot really turn back. Why is this scary? well, you see, once Dr. Rush looks at my teeth she will then immediately take care of it/them. Likely with a root canal - because that's usually what's done with cracked teeth.

The two words "root canal" are enough to make me faint. This is is the girl who got PUT UNDER for the removal of ONE wisdom tooth. ONE! I believe the very kind receptionist when she says that Dr. Rush is very good. I have no trouble believing she is - I, however, am jumpy. I am scared. And I lack MAJOR faith when it comes to the dentistry department. Remember This post?

Anyway, according to her office, the entire procedure (whether it be a root canal or something different) will take one hour. One. I endured 24 hours of labor - and at least three of those were in transition, at 9.5 centimeters, without pain medication. You'd think this would be NOTHING! But man, it's freakin' me out.

So say a prayer for me on Thursday morning. In the week that follows I'll also have to get a crown put on the root-canaled tooth, yet another dental process I'm none-too-thrilled with. When all is said and done we'll be out over $1,000 (oh yes, that's AFTER insurance. ouch) but I'm sure it will be well worth it to be able to eat hard things again. It's been a while.

Friday, September 10, 2010

the "FISH" philosophy

Do you know what that is?
It's an inspirational team-centered video series.
like the kind you have to watch with people you're going to be working so closely with that you're bound to get sick of them sooner or later

Basically, the video series focuses on teamwork and cooperation in a work-place setting.
The FISH philosophy includes four points:
  • Play
  • Make their day
  • Be there (aka be present)
  • Choose your attitude
I hate to admit that when I sat down to write this post, I remembered not four, but ONE of the bullet points. I'll get to that later.

I first saw "The FISH video" when I was in High school. I was taking a class called cullinary arts - it was actually a class and a for-profit catering business rolled into one (and you wondered whether or not Jonathan and I were really foodies from the beginning - silly you). Our teacher, who I strongly disliked, I'll be honest, had us sit down and watch this video as a way of motivating us to work together towards the greater purpose of pleasing our customers.

And it worked - mostly. Actually, the incentives of gift certificates to area restaurants were really what made most of the class shape up and get work done (without being paid, might I add, but instead for school credit) But this post really isn't about that class - it's about the philosophy, so, I digress.

I have found, recently, that the FISH philosophy applies to me now more than it EVER did in any work environment. I mean think about it, what do I do all day as a stay-at home mom (yes yes, aside from laundry, cooking, cleaning, and driving all over tarnation) I play, I try to ensure Levi has an enjoyable day, and I try to be as present as possible, interacting with him.

but wait. I missed one.

Yes, it's that last one that I truly rememberd. It's that last one - the one about choosing my attitude - that I've had such trouble with lately. If you're a mom you probably understand that it is VERY EASY to allow little things, like totally worthless naps to completely ruin your attitude. And it only takes ONE LITTLE THING to do it.

Today Levi woke up at 6:15, happy as a lark, and I rolled over and commiserated to my pouty self that the morning would probably be no fun at all. No fun, because when he wakes early, he's ready to nap early. Duh. When he naps early, he's ready for bed early. Duh. When he goes to bed early, he wakes even earlier. Duh. And this cycle took my attitude and shoved it so far down the toilet, I'm quite sure the plumbing system couldn't handle the load.

And it is in moments like these that (warning: here comes some self-talk) I have to remind myself that Levi is not in charge of my attitude. I am. I decide whether something will make me irritable, and I decide what I will brush off. And since that ball is in MY court, I, as an adult, am responsible for setting the good example of a happy heart.

So today I challenge ME to choose MY attitude - and I will not allow all the junk going on around me dictate how I will respond, in what tone of voice, and with how many eye-rolls. So there.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Standards of Identity

Speaking of being "foodies", There's a term we use in the food processing world. It's a term I used A TON when I was working in the Food Processing Center at the University of Nebraska: Standard of Identity.

Many food products have a "standard of identity". This just means that, in order to carry a particular name, they must meet certain standards. To be called a "custard" for example a product must contain a certain amount of egg and a certain amount of cream. To be called "mayonnaise", a product must contain a certain amount of egg as well. These standards ensure that wackos out there aren't creating a frozen dessert out of corn and trying to market it as "ice cream", thereby fooling the unknowing public.

We, also, have standards of identity in society, only they aren't regulated like they are for food. Generally, they're assumed. You assume, for example, that if someone tells you they have a degree, they mean they attended an educational institution and obtained a diploma. Unless they're trying to be someone they're not, or they're lying to you, you're probably correct in your assumption. Similarly, if someone tells you they have kids, you'll probably assume they are referring to little people they're raising, and not small goats. And usually, you'd be right.

What this brings me to is a HUGE point of anger, a very large bone I have to pick. Why is there seemingly no standard of identity for Christians? The brain-child of this post comes from what I consider to be an absolutely heinous act by a Florida "pastor" who intends to burn Koran books on September 11th. And yes, he calls himself a "Christian".

Let me be perfectly clear: I believe that Jesus Christ is the ONLY one true way to salvation. I believe that Muslims will face judgement in front of God himself, just as will ALL of humanity who have not placed their trust in Him, and have not believed in His solemn promise of salvation through the death and resurrection of this son Jesus.


To take a book cherished by an entire people group and; in the name of a religion which MANY Americans claim as their own; to burn that book as a sign of hatred, is absolutely wrong. I don't care what day of the year it is. In what way does something so offensive win any believers to Christ?

And isn't that what we were called to do? To make disciples out of all the nations?

It's about Love, people. Now I'm not saying "let's just ignore sin, and have a big 'ol love party", but if we do not come FIRST in love, who will listen? Who?

I'll tell you one thing. The pastor who is planning to burn those books on the 11th will NOT be sharing Christ's unending love with ANYONE. And certainly not a muslim. I am ashamed that he has intentionally aligned himself with the God I love so dearly, with the Savior who stole my heart. I am horrified that people outside our religiously free United States may lump my Jesus in with his hatred. Horrified.

Beyond the simple tenets of faith, there is no standard of identity for a Christian. And that makes me upset, because I think this act of horrific hypocrisy has the potential to deflate outreach efforts of MANY who are risking their lives as good-news-spreaders in the Middle East, and throughout the world.

Lord, may they see your light through all this mud. May they see your light.

Food. Lots of food.

My husband and I are foodies.
That is to say, our lives really do revolve around food.
Well, not mine so much anymore, now that I'm no longer gainfully employed, but his world is all wrapped in milk, and cheese and ice cream, much like mine used to be wrapped up in all-things-Italian.

So, it should come as no surprise to anyone that the very service opertunity I would seek out at our church would be one related to food. I love to shop, I love to cook, I love to serve meals to big groups. I love the looks on peoples faces when they see what I've created. I love the details; the serving dishes, the garnishes. I like eating too, but not nearly as much as I like making (which is a good thing, otherwise I might not fit through my front door.

A while back (as I'm sure I've blogged about before, but honestly I'm too lazy to go find the link and link-up to that post) I volunteered to cook a meal for a group of 15 once a month. The church pays for the food and I deliver it. Simple. This saves them money because they're only paying for the food, and it gives me the opertunity to strech my culinary wings. A few months later I was asked to do a monthly meal for 30, which I accepted as well. Then, I don't think it was very long after that, I was asked to do a meal for 70, one time.

This one, I had to think about. I had to figure out how I could pull this off without a commercial kitchen, and without an account with a food service providor. No walk-in cooker, no steam-jacketed kettle, no flat top. No steam table, no convection oven, no hotel pans, no staff of 30. And of course, no Sysco. What in the world could I pull off - ALONE?

Truth be told, I was plum out of ideas. This from the woman who's organized catering for over 1,000 - but the lack of all those important pieces of equipment & resources (and MOST importantly, the STAFF) really puts limits on what you can do.

In the end I settled on Italian meatball sandwiches on french bread, creamy pesto pasta salad, Sundried tomato pasta salad, garden greens, fresh watermelon, and oreo frosted brownies.

I could drone ON and ON about what I did early, and what I saved until the moment of, but it would likely bore almost everyone. Suffice it to say, the success of any meal is three fold: preperation and organization beforehand, punctual set up, and appealing, detailed presentation. Things like colorful serving dishes, multi-colored lettuces, and hand-cut rose tomatoes really do make all the difference. Of course, they won't make up for dry meatballs, or gluey pasta salad, but that's why I stuck with food I knew well.

My thanks go out to Lewis (my former boss/restaurant owner) without whom I would have absolutely ZERO knowledge of the food service industry, let alone the confidence to take anything like this on. I would also have no notion of portion sizes, or recipes. Also thanks to Costco. Man, I can't wait 'till 2011 when we actually have one here in Lincoln. And, Dani Gipe who gave me the magnificent idea a few years ago to add honey (yes, honey) to my pasta sauce to take away it's acidity. Man, that is a GREAT tip.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Adventures at Costco

I went to bed late last night.
My husband went to bed later - actually, as I was heading to bed, he was heading BACK in to work to finish some unfinished business.
True to form (as he does seemingly every time we go to bed late) our little munchkin was up with the dawn at 6am. Crying. What does that mean? All together now: he's still tired!

You got it. And he was. but he wasn't going back to sleep, so in my half-awake state I roll over and say the four words every husband wants to hear first thing in the morning: "wanna go to costco?"

And he gave me the most loving response: "can we go to IHOP first". Of course we can! And thinking, what's better to do with a still sleepy toddler than to strap him into a restraining device and head down the highway? Absolutely nothing of course!

My plan was that he'd fall asleep in the car and snooze for 30 minutes or so, leaving me with a contented, rested, and yet not over- rested (read: still willing to take an afternoon nap) toddler. Needless to say, my plan failed - and my son wailed.

But IHOP was such fun. As a rule I generally dislike IHOP food, but I'll do practically anything for a husband whose willing to leave the house at 7:30am on a Saturday. After breakfast we were on our way to what I could only hope would be a highly successful price grabbing trip to my favorite big-box store. I AM from Seattle you know. I could practically live at Costco if such a thing were allowed.

The reason for my trip today was twofold. One: to buy the food I needed for next Thursday's church luncheon (they'll reimburse me later), and two, to check out prices on a list of items I've been making for a while now; to determine if I can get a better price here in town, or up at Costco. No, I'm not taking gas money into account. That's getting too detailed.

While I shopped and compared, my loving husband and adorable son ran up and down isles, burning up energy and giggling at one another. It was quite the sight. By the end both of them were pooped (and one of them had done so in his pants) and ready for a drink and a ride home.

The results of my comparisons, in no particular order (and this isn't all of them)

Baby wipes: cheaper in the economy Target brand pack (.018/wipe vs. .021/wipe)
Milk: cheaper at Costco (2.40/gal vs 2.99) but it goes on sale here in Lincoln all the time
Individual yogurts: Super-Saver's Best choice brand (usually around .05/oz vs. .08/oz)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Costco (6.99/liter vs. 4.99/liter)
Turkey Lunch Meat: Costco (.21/oz for Costco brand vs. 37/oz for Oscar Meyer at Super Saver
Chicken nuggets: Costco (.15/oz for white meat nuggets vs. .20/oz for tyson nuggets)
Ground turkey: Russ's Market (.99/one pound tube when on sale vs. 2.37/lb)
pasta sauce: Costco, barely (.0625/oz for best choice brand at super saver vs. .0620/oz for Prego)
Cheerios: Super Saver (.13/oz when on sale at Super Saver vs. .15/oz)
Rice milk: Costco (1.30/qt vs. 1.39/qt at Hy-Vee

My take home message(s):
  • ALWAYS price compare before you buy at Costco. Just because it's in bulk doesn't mean it's necessarily cheaper.
  • When you price compare, ALWAYS break things down by unit.
  • REMEMBER that Costco doesn't have "sales". Your local grocer does. It is HIGHLY possible that your local grocer will have a sale that will blow Costco's price out of the water, and WHEN that happens, buy IN BULK like you would at costco. Buy a whole case, or flat, or pallet if you'll use it before it goes bad.
  • Bring a list! Costco is a dangerous place to be without a list. Before you know it you will have tasty things in your cart like basil pesto, sun dried tomato bruschetta, pre-portioned salmon fillets, and apple sauce squeeze pouches. (Me? did I purchase these things? no, not me. I always stick to my list!)
I'll have more to add to this post after I visit Target, Super saver, and Hyvee over the next week. I wrote down more of Costco's prices (trash bags, for example, which are .06 each, and dish tabs which run .15 each) but I haven't had the time to match them yet.

I'll be heading back up to Costco in October, so if you want me to pick something up for you (and you don't mind throwing a couple dollars into the pot for gas) let me know*. And man, if you use disposable diapers, I've been told THIS is the place to go (200 size 4's for $40)

*no, smart-alec friends in Seattle, the offer doesn't extend to you, or anyone outside a 15 mile radius of my Nebraska home. I'm talking mostly to you, Dave.

Friday, September 3, 2010

there's so much going on right now

yeah, I thought long and hard about that title, can't you tell?

Levi is no longer taking a morning nap - partly by his choice, and partly by mine. You see, typically he won't even go down for one until 10am, which completely obliterates my chances for getting him to take an afternoon nap. So, I made the call. Unless he wakes up unreasonably early (read: before 6:30am), he will not nap until after 12. Closed book.

What that means for me though, is that I don't step away from my dear child until lunch time.
That morning nap WAS my blogging time, and now it is no more (which is my poor excuse for lack of blog posts, and TOTAL lack of pictures).

What else is going on - let's see. We're doing toddler team-up at the childrens' museum, that starts on Sept 30th. We're signed up for Titus Women at Lincoln Berean (Mums, similar to MOPS). We play at milkworks with our toddler and mommy friends on Monday mornings. We go play outside at all sorts of playgrounds, and we have play dates with other friends almost every day of the week. I can't say no to playdates, he just interacts so well with friends, and it tuckers him out, so they're a win for both of us.

Meanwhile, I've kept myself VERY busy during his ONE 90 minute nap each day. We've had a couple roof leak issues crop up (tiny drips, not big problems. One has to do with the sealant on an exhaust pipe that runs out from our water heater, the second we aren't even sure exists but I was SURE I heard a drip, drip, drip, while I was standing in the kitchen the other night) so I've been making phone calls here and there. We're also in the middle of a potential home-loan
refinance. Looks like we may be able to reduce our interest rate from 5.875% to around 4.25 (if the info I got today from Lincoln Federal was correct).

And because I'm simply not busy enough, I've been cooking meals for our church. As I think I've explained before, there are meetings of all sorts of groups at the church on any given week
(church employees, not like weddings and stuff). So, instead of paying MORE to have a meal catered, they asked if anyone in the congregation would like to cater for free. It's a sweet set up for me because I love to make big meals, and they pay for all the food. - I started out cooking for groups of 12. Then, apparently they liked what I did because I was asked to do a bi-monthly meeting for 30. Then, apparently they liked what I did because I was asked to do a quarterly meeting for 70.

Now, these should be no big deal for me, right? I mean, this is the woman who catered for 1400 with ease... but there are a few tiny differences. No staff to help. No restaurant appliances. No equipment. So, I visited our local restaurant supply store recently and (after drooling over all the pieces that I knew, loved, and wished I had in my very own possesion) walked away with a couple of very large salad bowls that should serve my purpose nicely. Next thursday's meal
includes meatball subs with melted provalone cheese, creamy pesto pasta salad, creamy sundried tomato pasta salad, fresh cut watermelon, and spring greens with cheese and croutons. Oh, and frosted oreo brownies, can't forget those. For seventy. Ok, NOW you can call me crazy. AND you can come watch my kid on Wednesday because the prep work for this gig is going to be taking my EVERY OUNCE of energy.

But underneath this guise, I really do LOVE the rush. I used to get paid for it after all.

I've also made a few improvements to our hallways - which were largely naked. No longer! I hung a photo collage (newborn, 3 mo., 6mo., 1 yr) that we were given by the photographer who photographed Levi throughout his first year, and also a shadow box I made of newborn-Levi memories.

And there is the sound of my waking child. Adios 90 minutes, how I loved you.