Monday, June 30, 2008

Hampton Beach

This is where we were this weekend. Well, just on Saturday. We drove up to Hampton Beach New Hampshire for the day. It was a great day. It was much colder than we were anticipating though. Notice the cold children on the beach.

Kaitlyn on the beach

Natalie and Kaitlyn on the beach

CJ on the beach

Standing by the water

Natalie, Kaitlyn, and CJ by the water

We walked on the boardwalk, played some games, and all in all had a great time. Here are a few more pictures from the day.

A sea gull standing right next to us on the beach

Crashing Waves

Perhaps next year we'll go back and stay a week instead of just a day.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Swimming Lessons

I brought my camera with me to the pool today and got some shots of the girls during their swimming lessons. They are having such a good time and they both do such a good job.

~Updated ~Thanks for being our Customer for Over 4 years

First thing this morning I called Sprint to clear up my problem discovered in the wee hours of the morning this morning with them. After looking over my bill more and then checking previous months bills I noticed that there was actually another $10 in over charges that I didn't pick up on before.

I think I actually got a person who knew what they were doing. I explained the problem with the roaming charges and he had to look into my plan because it is an old one and he did not know if roaming was included in my plan. So I was on hold for a few minutes and he comes back and says he's still trying to find if I get charged for roaming. I then tell him well even if I do why would I be roaming 3 miles from my home? He said if the tower near by was down then it would go to another tower which could be roaming. I said okay, but all of these calls claim they came from Hartford and we live in Hartford county so still how could these calls be roaming? He did not have an answer for that, but said let him find out first if I should be charged for roaming. So he went and looked into it further and came back and said that our plan does in fact include roaming so they'll reverse all of the charges. Again he put me on hold and came back and said they were reimbursing me about $67. He needed to get a managers approval and there would be more with taxes taken off the account, but that was about what they were taking off the bill.

I asked him if this was going to continue to happen since we weren't supposed to be charged roaming charges and he said no it shouldn't he has marked on our account that roaming is included in our plan. Less than an hour later I had an e-mail stating all of this stuff that we spoke about, but I can't get onto the website to see if my account has been credited. I suppose I will stick with Sprint for now though, but now I have to watch for these roaming charges on my account too. It's always something. I'm relieved I didn't have to fight with them though about these charges.

Thanks for being our Customer for Over 4 years...

now please accept this over inflated bill as our eternal gratitude for your four years of using our service! You have got to be kidding me.

Sprint recently sent me an e-mail thanking me for being with them since 2003 and then today I check my bill and found out that they have over charged me by over $50! And how did they do that? They charged me roaming charges. Keeping in mind that my cell phone is mostly used at home or at the children's school a mile from our house and Joe's is used at home or at his work 3 miles from home. We mostly just call each other with our cell phones. He'll call me when he's on a break at work mostly. All of these roaming charges were charged to my husband's phone and all of the calls were made to me. We actually got a double whammy. First we were charged roaming charges and then we were charged roaming long distance charges. Can someone please tell me how being three miles from home is long distance??? I'm really having a hard time with this one.

Now it's 1 a.m. and I'm up and stewing mad. Everyone in the house but me and CJ are asleep. So while it crossed my mind that I probably could call now I'm not too sure how quiet I could be, and I don't want to wake up the whole house. So now I have to try to go to sleep, whenever I can get CJ to fall asleep that is, with this on my mind. I guess this is what I get for paying bills online at midnight.

And you know the sad thing about all of this is this isn't the first time I've had them over charge me for something. The last time I was over charged it took me months to get them to finally start billing me correctly. I'm hoping I get a person who knows what he's talking about when I call first thing in the morning about this.

I'm not too clear on roaming charges. I know our plan didn't include it which is fine because we rarely leave the state anyways. When we got our plan way back in 2003 I happen to recall them telling us we can go anywhere in the tri state area (CT, NY, and NJ) and we would NOT be charged roaming charges. So I'm pretty sure three miles from our home would have to equal no roaming charges as well. Especially since we've never been roaming in the past.

This could just be the thing that finally gets me to leave Sprint. Has anyone had any wonderful experiences with their cellular phone company that you would highly recommend that I try? Please share any thoughts with me on how to stop getting over charged by my cell phone company. I'm really getting tired of this.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

It's Real Life

Okay, it's time for It's Real Life again. Thanks Farm Fresh for doing this again. It's been lots of fun. Check her and all the other participants out by clicking on the picture to the left.

Curb Appeal
Well, this isn't my house and therefore not mine to make the curb look appealing. And I do not agree with my landlord's way of making the curb or any of the yard look appealing. This is the front of the house though. I'd probably prefer more bushes or maybe some nice flower beds with bright flowers. It's not my call and I also do not have a green thumb.

Here is another view of the house more from the side. We live on the 2nd floor by the way. This is what our landlord calls his "orchard" though. Now keep in mind that we are not out in the country. We live in a city with a tiny yard. We even share our driveway with our neighbors. However, our landlord has planted apple trees, pear trees and peach trees in the side yard. And notice that plastic hut against the house? That is such an eye sore in my opinion. There are actually two of them against the house. They are my landlord's green houses. This is what he spends all of his time doing instead of fixing things around our apartment and now he wants to raise our rent by $35 a month. And for the next 3 weeks the "orchard" is also our responsibility to take care of. What do we get out of this you may ask? Well, his blueberries are going to become ripe while he's away and we get to eat those if we want. Hmmmm, I don't know we're not blueberry fans so it doesn't seem like a fair deal to me. I'd rather not have a rent increase.

Junk Drawer
Here is the wonderful junk drawer. What's that First Aid kit doing in there? Seemed like a good place for it. I think we can see some rat traps in there which thankfully we haven't needed in a long time. Looks like a yellow balloon laying on top of our hand held fans in there too. I think we've got some batteries in there too. Not sure if any of them work or not. It's a scary drawer to go into.

From Whence I Blog

Here's where all the magic happens. Not much to say here. It's a mess, but I know where everything is on that mess. So don't touch!

My Favorite Jewelry

My wedding ring and engagement of course are my favorite. I would have taken them off for a photo, but if you look closely my hand is still healing from a burn I received last week while cooking. I still have a couple of blisters and my finger is too swollen to slide the rings off.

My Best Feature
This was a tough one. Not because I don't think I have enough about me to be proud of, but because I wasn't sure if you wanted best physical feature or best personal feature. So tonight I got the idea while my daughter was pretending to be a hair dresser with me that I could show both. I've always thought I had a nice head of hair although pre-children it was nicer. I thought this showed my best personal feature as being my never ending love for my children. I love when Kaitlyn gives me hair cuts even though countless times she has gotten my hair twisted in hair ties and combs and whatever else she finds to twirl my hair around. It hurts, I've lost tons of hair over the years, but she loves practicing her braids. And after all she wants to be a hair dresser so what better way to encourage that. This is the way I usually look when it's all said and done. I have answered my door like this too. I get strange looks, but I don't care.

So that's my Real Life for this week. I hope you've enjoyed what you see. Now you know when you come over just look for the plastic huts on the side of the house and you're here. I look forward to having you over again sometime.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: A Cheerleader's Pyramid!

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Monday, June 23, 2008

It's Official

Summer has begun. The girls started their swimming lessons this morning and the public library had sign ups for the summer reading program. So we ran out of the house this morning frantic of course just before 11 for swimming lessons. And of course the first day is cloudy with threats of showers. And the weather did not disappoint. As the kids were in the pool it was showering. Boy am I glad I wasn't in there. Have no fear though mommy gets to go in tomorrow with CJ.

CJ seemed to enjoy being outside. He normally does nap around 11, but he stayed awake. He didn't do too bad either. And after swimming we went right to the library to sign up for the summer reading program. There were a lot of kids there today. We went and picked out some books first. Three for each of them. Kaitlyn got all "Froggy" books. Natalie got "The Call of the Wild", "Fudge-A-mania", and "The Elevator Family".

The girls then got their reading logs so they can mark down when they read during the summer. For every honey comb they fill in on their reading sheet they'll get a raffle ticket to win prizes on a weekly basis. And even I get a chance to win a spa prize if they read. How great is that? In their bag also came some things to earn free meals at Applebees and Red Robin and also free entrance into Quassy Amusement park. So they can get lots of nice stuff for reading.

We went right from the library to the grocery store and then finally home where the girls instantly went to read their new books. CJ who hadn't really slept all day went down for a nap too. He was definitely tuckered out. Tomorrow he should be even more tired since we are going in the pool. I'm not thinking he's going to like it much since it's still going to be rather chilly. We will tough it out though. I'm pretty excited actually to see how he's going to do.

All of our days won't be this crazy over the summer though. Just doing the library today made things a little extra. I don't think I could handle all of this stuff everyday. I think the kids are having fun though. They both did pretty good for their first day swimming. Natalie dove off the diving board. She looked good out there swimming too. Kaitlyn jumped off the side of the pool, but still holds on to her teacher's hands. I figure by the end of the summer she'll get her confidence up there. Plus every two weeks they change teachers too and some teachers Kaitlyn can't work her magic on and will make her jump in without holding on. She was having fun out there though. I wish I had remembered my camera because the smile never left Kaitlyn's face and Natalie was all about the swimming.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Who's 50 Something and Who's Almost 30 Something?

Many of you are aware of the issues I have with my parents. It's been a difficult few years with them and this April everything has come to a head and I put my foot down finally and said no more. You can read all about what happened then here. I hadn't heard anything for a while so I figured I would send some pictures which I have been doing all along actually with a little update of what's going on with each of the kids. Here are the e-mails back and forth between my mom and me. My responses are in blue and my moms are in red. Can you tell who's almost 56 and who's turning 30 this year?

I have some pictures of the kids. I was going to send you some from the past few days, but I think Aunt Lynn already sent those to you so here are ones that I hadn't uploaded to Shutterfly when I sent those other ones out:

They are from Kaitlyn's Kindergarten Celebration.
Inserted link to photos here.

The kids are doing well.

The last day of school was yesterday (Tuesday).

Natalie passed to 4th grade with flying colors. She's a super reader and doing great in math, but needs to slow down and check her work. She recently had a recorder concert at school. Here's the video from that:

linked to the video here.

At the end of the year they had the 3rd graders listen to different instruments and choose the sounds they liked and Natalie liked the clarinet. So if she does band next year that's likely the instrument she'll be learning to play.

Kaitlyn is moving on to 1st grade. She had a wonderful report card. She really improved in her reading and got herself to grade level. We're very proud of her. Math is her strong suit. Here's the video from her Kindergarten Celebration on Friday:

Inserted link to video here.

CJ is gaining weight great. He's almost at 17 pounds. He's getting so big. He's still not really rolling or sitting up so we have started Physical Therapy through Birth to Three with him. Also I have a consultation for him in Clinton with Cranial Technologies to find out if he'll need a helmet to reform his flattened head. We are also waiting to see if he gets chicken pox now as I have come down with a pretty bad case of the Shingles. I've been assured by his doctor that it won't be bad for him if he gets the chicken pox at his age and it's probably better for him.

So that is what's going on with the kids lately. They are happy that the summer is here. Next week starts swimming lessons and the library's summer reading program. The girls are looking forward to both.


It's just so sad that Natalie and Kaitlyn didn't have their grandparents at their events. I remember when you were little and had an event how your used to wish that your grandmother could be there. Unfortunately she lived too far away. It used to break my heart that you couldn't have that wish. I wonder if Natalie and Kaitlyn have that wish. And if they do what do you tell them? We don't live that far away that we couldn't be there but oh yeah we weren't invited because our daughter doesn't want to have a relationship with us. My heart breaks again. I dream of you every single night and I wake up during the night and find that it is only a dream not reality. The reality is when people ask me about my grandchildren and I can't say anything because I don't know. It's really going to be sad for CJ because he will never know his grandparents at all. At least Natalie and Kaitlyn might have some memories of us. I guess they can tell their little brother about us if they are allowed to talk about us. It's a good thing for you that we allowed you to go to college in Florida so you could spend time with your grandmother before she died. But maybe that was bad judgement on our part too.

Well anyway thanks for the pictures and info on the kids. It seems like we live in another state and have to communicate like this. It's really very sad. Well one good thing if we do decide to move it won't make any difference. We don't have a relationship now and that's the way you like it so if we live further away it won't matter. Maybe the further the better for you right?

I'm surprised you sent this email actually. Of course an apology would have been nice too but I don't think we will ever get that from you. I hope you apologized to the girls for ruining their birthday party. You do realize that was your fault right? Well anyway thanks again for the videos and pictures. The girls both did a wonderful job I just wish we could be a part of their lives. I know we can't because you don't "trust your own parents judgement" I guess we did a really bad job with raising you to make you feel so untrustworthy of your own parents. Someday you will feel the way we feel right now. Then you will regret what you have done.


It is statements like this: "I hope you apologized to
the girls for ruining their birthday party. You do realize that was your fault right?" that make it hard for me to trust your judgment with the kids. Sending my 9 year old daughter a letter telling her it's her mother's fault that she isn't seeing them makes it hard to trust your judgment. I haven't said one bad thing about you guys to the children. I have kept them out of this as best I can and only tell them that we are having an adult disagreement which has nothing to do with them or anything they have done.

I was simply trying to reach out with a little olive branch here by keeping you updated on what's going on with the children and I get slapped in the face with it. Is that my fault too? I have nothing to apologize to you for or my children for that matter. If I wasn't sure before that I made the right choice to put distance between us I am now.

I find it sad that you don't know me well enough to know that making this choice to keep you out of the children's lives for now was not an easy decision for me. All I ever wanted was my children to have grandparents in their lives, but I don't want it if it's going to be harmful to them. You treat me like I'm a naughty little girl who has disobeyed you and I'm not your little girl anymore. I'm a wife and a mother now and my husband and children will always come first.

Simply put your actions are appalling and I am unable to speak to you at this time. Things are not okay and I am done pretending that they are. I will no longer argue or justify my actions to you. When you truly understand that I am an adult and our relationship can not be the same as it was when I was a child then maybe we can try again. But you must understand that I will not be made out to be a bad person because I refuse to have my children in a hostile situation with you or because I allow my children to spend time with their father. If that means that your time with them is diminished then so be it because their relationship with their father and me are the most important relationships they have. Joe is my husband and he is not going anywhere. The sooner you realize that I think the better off we will be. He has a say in what the children do and I do need to consult with him and if I tell you no that should be the end of discussion. We are their parents and do not need the approval or agreement of anyone else in how we raise our children, nor will we permit anyone to undermine our authority.


P.S. Recently I wrote a list of 20 things I will Always do and on that list I wrote I will always love my parents. That is true, I will always love you guys, but that doesn't mean I have to agree with everything you say and do.

You are really good at taking things out of context. The note I sent to Natalie didn't say anything different then what you told them. I said you were mad at us and that is the truth you told them we are having a disagreement. The statements I made in my email were made to you not the girls so how does that make me have poor judgement with them? You really were being selfish when you didn't come to the party that day. How would you feel if you had planned a party, bought gifts, made gifts, made a cake and dinner and the people you invited tell you on the day of the party that they aren't coming? And you have the nerve to say that my actions are appalling? And why are you bringing Joe into this I never said one word about Joe in my email to you. This isn't about Joe this is about you and how you never return phone calls and how you scream and yell at your parents having no respect and then running away from your problems. Yes I said running away because whenever you don't like what we say you hang up the phone like a little child and you never try to work on the problems we have you just ignore them for months at a time then you think you can just send an email with pictures and that makes everything okay? Adults don't act that way. Adults work on their problems and find solutions. So where do we go from here? If you are going to ignore us for months again then I guess you are not the adult you claim to be. So it's up to you. Do you want to work on our problems or are you finished with us? Because your email doesn't sound like you want to have anything to do with us anymore. If that's the case let us know.

As far as your life with Joe goes I don't have a problem with that, why do you keep bringing that up? Of course Joe comes first, I'm not stupid. And why would you say anything about him making decisions I never said anything about that. You have always consulted him first so what's new about that? I have no problem with the two of you being parents making decisions about your children. I have a problem with anyone who disrepects their parents and the way you scream and yell at us is disrespectful. We don't do that to you. You even do it in front of your children. Did they ever tell you what they think about that? They told me. I didn't ask they just told me. So I guess they are learning what they need to learn from you not from us. So don't worry, our "poor judgement" didn't do anything to them but yours did.

Just remember that we are your parents and we love you that will never go away. You may not like it but it is true.

So I'm sorry for what ever I have ever done to you to make you think that you are better than me and that it's okay for you to treat me like the scum of the earth.



Now I have written a reply to this, but haven't sent it yet. I want to mull it over and make sure it's exactly what I want to say, but here it is:

That's just it, you put all the blame on me for that party and still are. You have been disrespectful to me in the way you speak to me. And that day you were upset that things didn't go exactly as you had wanted them to go. I tried compromising with you so we could get together and it would work for everyone, but it wasn't good enough for you.

This whole thing has everything to do with Joe from what I can see. Do you happen to remember your comment to me about sometimes I act like Joe is going to die tomorrow or something? No, you probably don't remember that. Or I suppose I took that out of context too. If you have no problem with me discussing things with Joe then why do you get so upset with me every time I tell you no Joe wants to do something with the kids? You were still groaning about not getting to take Natalie that Friday night and having her spend the night because Joe wanted to spend time with his kids. That's why I said what I said.

I've been saying the same stuff to you over and over again for over a year now and you don't hear it so why would I return phone calls? Why wouldn't I yell out of frustration when I'm repeating myself over and over again to you? If the party was all set and ready to go then why was there so much sarcasm when I called to let you know exactly what time we'd be there? Think about this Mom. Any other person you invited to a party would have been given a time to be there, but I didn't get that from you and then you get all upset like I'm ruining plans that you had. If you wanted me there at a certain time then why not call me up and say, "Hey Monica we want to do this and this and this do you think you can get here at this time?" From what I can see none of this would have happened if I didn't get the disrespect from you and Dad that I got that day. And whether you want to believe you've been disrespectful or not it's exactly how I felt. The girls are perceptive and they are going to pick up on that tension.

Your note to Natalie was in terrible form. How would you feel if Grandma had written me a note when I was a child saying sorry I couldn't see you, but your mom wouldn't allow it? And why was the note only addressed to Natalie to begin with? I thought the party was for both of the girls. I kept them both from seeing you, but you didn't feel the need to tell Kaitlyn about her mommy being angry with you.

Perhaps you think my not responding to your nasty messages and e-mails as running away, but I view it as a time to take a break and heal. I've been sending you pictures of the kids all along here so it's not like I've completely cut all ties here all together. I honestly wouldn't change any way in which I've handled this situation. I'm sad that we aren't talking anymore, but I truly believe that as important as a grandparents relationship is anything that's going to destroy mine and Joe's relationship with the kids is not going to work. And that's exactly what our relationship with you has been doing.

I'm really not sure what you are referring to with Natalie seeing me disrespecting you. Perhaps that was from last year when Dad came over here with all sorts of demands in our home and was disrespecting me and Joe in our house. When I kept sending them out of the room and Dad kept calling them out. But you wouldn't know what happened then because you weren't up here. I have done my best to keep the kids out of this, but like I said they are perceptive. And this is exactly why I can't have this kind of stuff continuing. We have tried this time and time again, but I don't see anything having changed. I don't see any other way for us to have that close relationship until you can see that you have been disrespectful to me and have undermined my authority with my children.


They always find a way to get under my skin. I always feel so bad when the kids talk about grandma and grandpa and wishing they were there, but then it's things like this that pull me back to what the reality of our lives with them truly are.

Friday, June 20, 2008

It's Real Life - Hosted by Farm Fresh

Well, I'm a sucker for these sorts of things. I came upon this a little late, but I thought it looked like fun. If you want to do it too you can read the instructions on Farm Fresh. So here is what it looks like in my house when I'm not expecting company. Kind of scary.

Here is the outside of my fridge. I hate all the magnets on the front. They should only be on the side, but apparently no one can resist putting it all on the front. Kaitlyn especially likes to put things on the front. And CJ's name has been spelled out on the fridge forever like that. One of these days I'll get tired of everything falling off when I open the door and they will once again get moved to the side of the fridge.

Now the inside of my fridge and freezer. Nothing too exciting. It's looking a little empty. Perhaps it's time I do some grocery shopping.

Here is the closet in my kitchen. We don't have a lot of closets. And the closet in my bedroom I can't even get at so that's why I took a picture of this one. It's small. We keep all of the coats in there though and those bins on the floor are all my Girl Scout stuff. A broom and dust pan and some coolers/lunch boxes on the top shelf.

Here is my tiny little sink and my lovely orange counters. The stuff on the left is all clean. I have no dishwasher and very small counter space so I use the double sided sink to store the drainer on one side.

And the commode. Nothing special there.

I couldn't pick just one pair of favorite shoes. I wear these three pairs the most. The black ones I wear mostly in the winter and with jeans, the flip flops I wear around the house and out and about during the summer, and the sneakers I wear when I am going to be walking a lot and with sweat pants or shorts.

I don't really have a favorite room. The living room is just where I spend most of my time. And I figured I should probably get a shot of where I sit the most at my computer. If I had company over that would all be closed and you wouldn't see my enormous desk clutter.

Here are the two little ones playing together. Kaitlyn had just gotten up shortly before that and wanted to play with her little brother.

You can't even tell, but that is Natalie under the sheets fast asleep. She woke up maybe twenty minutes later and had no clue I had gotten this picture of her. I don't know how she sleeps with the covers pulled up over her head like that. She's like her father.

Laundry in the basement. Time to wash some sheets and towels. I have a pile of blankets that have been waiting to be washed too. I'll get around to it one of these days.

Here is my self portrait. Don't mind my red face. I pretty much always look like that thanks to my Rosacea.

So that's my Real Life. I hope you've enjoyed getting a glimpse into my home. Just don't look in my bedroom. That's really scary!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

CJ's Weight

Who knew? Feed your kid Pringles and he'll gain weight. Nah, I'm just kidding, he didn't get into that can of Pringles, although he really was trying to get them open. CJ had another weight check today. Actually, we managed to go a month this time so we're doing good. He's now up to 16 pounds 15.6 ounces. Almost 17 pounds ;). That's a 20 ounce weight gain in 34 days to be exact. So we're happy happy happy. The doctor is happy happy happy. So happy in fact that we actually don't need to come back until he has his 9 month check up. And actually since they are booked in August we aren't even going for that until September when he'll be 10 months. Wow! What a great feeling.

But you know the worry wart mommy in me can't leave anything alone. His therapist has been bringing up a cranial helmet being a possibility for CJ because the back of his head is flat. She's been telling us that just by getting him up off his head we can possibly avoid that, but I want to be prepared so I brought it up to the doctor today. We have a consultation in Clinton, CT (over an hour away) to see if he does in fact need a helmet. His doctor did tell me it's cosmetics and this is not causing him any sort of brain damage. So there's not really a huge medical need there, but it could get worse as he gets older and then we wouldn't be able to fix it. Now of course I don't want my son to have a flat head. He's a peanut so there's plenty there for other children to pick on him for. So if I can make life a little easier for him in the future I definitely want to do that. So I have set up an appointment today to have him evaluated at this place on July 3rd. They will tell us if he does in fact need to have a helmet or not and can answer all of our questions about it I'm sure. So I'll have to keep you updated on how that goes.

And then of course the whole chicken pox worry since I have shingles. As long as he doesn't touch my blisters (they are covered by clothing) and I wash my hands after touching them he should be fine. If he does get them, then I will call the doctor and she can prescribe something to make them less severe. So now we just have to wait and see. Hopefully he stays pox free, but if not we'll be ready for it.

So that was our doctor's appointment today for CJ. The girls have physicals coming up in July so I don't really get that much of a break from the doctor's office, but it will be nice to be going there for another child besides CJ.

Surprise Surprise

Just 19 hours after the Mets abruptly fire their manager Willie Randolph in the most distasteful of ways the Mets are still playing badly. Surprise Surprise. That's right, it's not all the managers fault. You have one of the highest played teams in baseball and they are certainly not playing like that. Three errors last night! Missed opportunities. Poor pitching. No hitting in clutch situations. How can this be a managers fault? It can't be. You wanna blame someone? I blame Omar Minaya. He brought these players here who are playing poorly so perhaps it's his head who needs to be on the chopping block. And I smell a little hostility in the players with Jerry Manuel taking over for Willie Randolph. They can say all the right words to the press, but I watched that game last night. In the first inning Jose Reyes leaves the game because of an injured hamstring. Now lets start with the fact that he ran to first base without hobbling at all. He managed to stand there while Louis Castillo came to bat and took a pitch. Then suddenly he's pulling at his leg? What could he have done to himself? Then he clearly doesn't want to leave the game and says he's fine, but the new manager tells him to get off the field and he was visibly upset. Well, good for you Reyes for wanting to stay in the game, but probably not the best reaction in front of EVERYONE that you did not agree with this brand spanking new managers call. All I know is tonight should be an interesting game. Oliver Perez takes the mound. And the one pitching coach out there who was able to make him a 15 game winner last season is not there to help guide him through it. Yes Perez is sporadic. He always has been. Why would that be any different? I can't see things improving with a new pitching coach who hasn't figured out how to deal with Perez yet. Have I said that firing Willie Randolph was the dumbest move ever? It should have been done after they choked last year if it was going to be done. Certainly not dragged on like this and allowed to fester. And certainly not across the country in the middle of the night.

Wordless Wednesday: A Long Hard Morning of Jumping

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

School's Out for Summer

School's Out
Well we got no choice all the girls and boys
Makin' all that noise 'cause they found new toys
Well we can't salute ya can't find a flag if that don't suit ya that's a drag
School's out for summer school's out forever school's been blown to pieces
No more pencils no more books no more teacher's dirty looks yeah
Well we got no class and we got no principals and we got no innocence
We can't even think of a word that rhymes
School's out for summer school's out forever my school's been blown to pieces
No more pencils no more books no more teacher's dirty looks
Out for summer out till fall we might not come back at all
School's out forever school's out for summer
School's out with fever school's out completely
Lyrics by Alice Cooper

It's official! Summer has begun at 1 p.m. June 17th for my children. The lazy days of summer are here. Well, probably not so lazy. Next week we start swimming lessons every day of the week. Plus the public library's reading program will begin which both kids are really looking forward to. So I have to encourage that reading. So summer days at the pool and the library. Sounds pretty good to me. Oh and can't forget going to "The Lake" aka Lake Compounce. A trip to New Hampshire for us at the end of this month and then in July when Joe is on vacation a trip to Philadelphia we are hoping for. So nice summer plans. The kids are off until the end of August when Natalie will then enter 4th grade (and like every year she says she doesn't want to move on to the next grade level) and Kaitlyn anxiously awaits beginning 1st grade. This will be the first year she's in school all day long. So I need to enjoy this time with the girls while it lasts because before I know it CJ and I will be on our own for 6 hours every day. I must admit I am looking forward to not having to run to the school to drop off and pick up every three hours. It will be nice to have them both in at the same time and out at the same time.

But until then we'll just enjoy our summer as much as we can.

Kaitlyn and Ms. Bouvier. So Long Kindergarten!

Natalie and Miss Kozlowski. So Long 3rd Grade!

Monday, June 16, 2008

I have Shingles

So last week I had this burning itching feeling on my back and chest. I thought it was the heat because there was no rash. Then Friday night I noticed this little patch of blisters on my back. It didn't really bother me too much though. I put some first aid spray on it. It didn't improve though. So I started researching what it could be. Saturday afternoon I started getting blisters under my arm. That was annoying. My back was getting itchy and then these blisters are developing under my arm. I kept coming up with shingles.

Sunday it started getting painful. Not too bad, but I was sore. So I figured I need to call the doctor. I called the doctor, but the on call office staff was less than helpful and I wasn't about to spend the day in the emergency room. So first thing this morning after waking up at 5 a.m. in so much pain I was crying I called my doctor's office. They were able to get me in for 11 today. This is the kids second to last day of school and it's a half day. Kaitlyn was in at 11 and I was supposed to do two class ice cream parties for the PTA at the school at 11:45. So I called my other officers and got one of them to take care of the ice cream party for me and Joe brought Kaitlyn to school for me. CJ and I were off to the doctor's office.

The doctor looked and said, "Oh yes, you have a very bad case of shingles." So medication time for me. And as far as CJ goes, the 7 month old without a chicken pox vaccine, well my doctor wasn't sure what to say about him. She told me to call his doctor which I planned on doing anyways.

One brick wall after another though his doctor is on vacation. She'll be back tomorrow. The receptionist only could help me with a child exposed to chicken pox, but didn't have answers for a baby. The girls were both vaccinated so I'm not too worried about them. Of course with CJ's weight gain issues I always worry. If he gets chicken pox will he stop eating? How will he handle it? How bad could it be for his tiny little body? I was given the on call doctor's number though and the receptionist is going to speak to the nurse when she comes in today. The nurse could call me today with some information and if not then I'll hear from the doctor tomorrow anyways. Plus, CJ does have a weight check on Wednesday.

So for now I guess all I can do is take care of myself and keep an eye on CJ. I am on Valtrex for a week three times a day, Prednisone for 12 days, and Zovirax cream I guess as long as the rash is there twice a day. I can take ibuprofen for the pain. Let me tell you shingles really does hurt.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Kindergarten Celebration

Kaitlyn's class ready to start the show

Kaitlyn graduated from Kindergarten today. Although she does still have two more days of school. She really improved in her reading this year though and is now reading at grade level. And she's come out of her shell too. Last year she never would have performed like this. It's a long video, but a good one. My favorite poem was the Mother's Day one. Oh and that baby babbling was CJ. He was pretty vocal this afternoon while we were there.

Kaitlyn's Kindergarten class of 2008

Kaitlyn's Certificate

Kaitlyn and Ms. Bouvier (her Kindergarten teacher)

Kaitlyn and Mr. Audette (the principal)

Kaitlyn and Mrs. Eldridge (Assistant Principal)

It was a wonderful day. We took Kaitlyn out for dinner to Friendly's tonight too which she loved. I'm so happy she made it to 1st grade and is not going to need summer school. I am so proud of her!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

No Ice For You!

Natalie still has a sprained ankle. It is improving, but I've still been having her wear the ace bandage because it's still swollen. I also still give her ice. Yesterday when she went in to school I went in with her and went to the nurses office to talk to her and make sure if she needed she could come down and get ice. She said no problem, her ice isn't all that cold because of the heat or something, but she would do the best she could. Natalie was with me so the nurse knows exactly who she is. Natalie even went down to the nurse to get ice yesterday. Today I sent her to school without giving her ibuprofen. I want her to start getting off the pain medication and see how she does. I told her she could go get ice from the nurse if it was bothering her and if it got really bad she could call me and I'd bring her the pain medication. She actually forgot her water bottle today so when I brought Kaitlyn to school this afternoon I went in and gave her her water bottle and had the pain medication in case she needed it. She said she was doing okay and didn't want it though. Then today when I brought her home she was telling me that she went down to the nurses office to get ice and she told her no she couldn't have it. She said she asked her what happened and Natalie started to explain how she fell off the monkey bars last week and sprained her ankle and the nurse actually told her it wouldn't help her now. Ummmm, hello this is a child that had a doctor's note about a sprained ankle. She was wearing an ace bandage when she went in there. Now I do get that some kids do go to the nurses office for every little thing, but Natalie is not one of those kids. The nurse didn't even take time to look at her and see that her ankle was swollen or even had an ace bandage on it for that matter. This is a child she doesn't see often for things so she should have at least looked at the ankle before deciding it doesn't need ice. I'm furious about this. I told Natalie that I would call the nurse tomorrow and tell her doctor's orders she is to have ice if she needs it!!! I said if she still wouldn't give it to her then to call me and I'll come bring her ice. I am so mad that she was denied ice especially considering that I, her mother, personally brought her to her office yesterday and requested that if she needed ice she was to get it from her. This isn't the first time that this woman has neglected one of my children either. She really is messing with the wrong person. I definitely plan on talking to the principal about this. I certainly expect tomorrow that Natalie will tell me that she got a whole freezer full of ice when she asked for it. I still can't believe she told her ice isn't going to help you now. Hmmmm, I wonder what the doctor would say about that since that was exactly what she told us to do with it.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Here it is 11:05 at night and I should be in bed, but instead I'm up watching the Mets game praying for a win. It was a game they had won in the 9th inning before Arizona tied it up and off to extra innings the game goes. And finally in 13 innings Mets WIN! A final of 5-3 with a walk off home run by Carlos Beltran. It's about time! Lets Go Mets! Now they just need to keep the wins coming. METS WIN! METS WIN! METS WIN!

Wordless Wednesday: Leg Lifts

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

20 Things I Will Always Do

So in response to my list of 20 Things I Will Never Do here are the 20 Things I Will Always Do (again in no particular order):

1. I will always love my children.
2. I will always love my husband.
3. I will always try my hardest to bake things from scratch for my children.
4. I will always be involved in my children's education.
5. I will always be a Mets fan
6. I will always love Def Leppard
7. I will always be there for my children for the important events in their lives.
8. I will always put my children's needs before my own.
9. I will always bake tons of cookies for Christmas.
10. I will always love chocolate.
11. I will always love my parents in spite of everything they have put me through.
12. I will always love watching my children learn something new.
13. I will always love the scent of pear berry.
14. I will always be afraid of heights.
15. I will always enjoy having my meals cooked by someone else.
16. I will always admire working moms, especially working moms of young children who still manage to be there for their children for all the really important stuff.
17. I will always be grateful for lazy days.
18. I will always be annoyed when children talk back to an adult.
19. I will always teach my girls that no man should ever push them around or treat them badly in anyway.
20. I will always do my best to teach my son how to be a gentleman.

Well, this was just as difficult as coming up with the list of 20 Things I Will Never Do. I began to think while I was doing this how great would this have been to have done pre children. I wonder how different it would have been ten years ago or after I graduated from high school. I wonder if it will be any different say 10 years from now when my children are mostly grown. Perhaps it will be something to try again ten or fifteen years from now to see how I've changed in that time.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Sprained Ankle

Here is Natalie with her sprained ankle. Last Tuesday she fell off the monkey bars at school. The school nurse put ice on it and it didn't seem bad by the time she came home. She would complain about it every once in a while, but she didn't seem to be limping too much or anything and was running around and playing.

Then yesterday we went to a friend's birthday picnic and she was running around outside. I guess she stressed her ankle because last night it started to swell and she was really limping around. She wasn't any better today. So I called the doctor. We got an appointment for this afternoon.

The doctor looked at it and she said she thinks it's just a very bad strain. She is concerned that Natalie said it hurt a little on the bone, but she doesn't think it needs x-rays just yet. So we are on the RICE plan. Rest, Ice/Ibuprofen, Compression, and Elevation. If in a couple of days of doing that there's no improvement then we'll think about x-rays. The doctor doesn't want to expose her to radiation if she doesn't need it though.

So now Natalie is gimpy. She's been complaining since we left the doctor's office, but in the doctor's office she was acting like it didn't really hurt. I think she's milking it, because this was another picture I got of her compressing and elevating today:

We got a call today that school is going to let out early again tomorrow because of the heat wave we're having. There's no P.M. Kindergarten which is what Kaitlyn is in. So I'm thinking with another short day and having no where to go perhaps it would be best to just keep Natalie home from school. I doubt she'll end up missing too much. She told me today with the shortened day they watched March of the Penguins. So if they are just watching movies that she's seen a million times already anyways then there's no need to send her to school in this heat with a hurting ankle.

A Very Angry Mets Fan

So I have been a Mets fan since I was in middle school. It all began when I found out that the boy I had a crush on (Chris Koteas) was a Mets fan. I had to like what he liked to get his attention. It didn't work, but I became a huge fan of baseball or really the Mets in the process.

So I've been watching Mets baseball now for 20 years. Most of that time the Mets were not a great team. Not a championship team by any means. I still stood firm that my Mets were the best team in baseball. And in recent years they have really formed into that championship baseball team. Just two years ago they were the National League East champions. As a matter of fact they won the National League East with a few weeks still to play of baseball that year. They however burnt out quickly I suppose as they didn't go on to become the National League Champions and lost to of all teams the St. Louis Cardinals. Okay, I was disappointed when that happened, but they made it to the post season with a young team they'd do it again.

So then last year they started out great. They were leading the National League East by 7 games. That's right SEVEN games. It was going to be another run away with the National League East championship. I had dreams of being in the hospital giving birth to my son while watching my Mets win the World Series. I mean there were only 2 weeks to go and they had a SEVEN game lead in the National League East. They blew it though with a historic collapse. No team has ever lost with that little amount of time left and that large of a lead. What a thing to have on your record, right?

Well, there's nothing we can do there's next year. I watched the Mets over the winter trade players and top prospects of theres for other position players when all along knowing their biggest down fall has been their starting pitching. And since Tom Glavine, who put the final nail in the coffin of the Mets historic collapse last year decided to get the heck out of dodge and go back to his beloved Atlanta Braves we were down a pitcher. And there's only one really great pitcher out there which the Mets were showing no interest in. Mr. Johan Santana was playing cat and mouse with the Yankees and the Red Sox. So there goes starting pitching right? But then this glimmer of hope. Just weeks before spring training begins out of no where the Mets make a deal and get Johan Santana. Okay, now we're in business right.

One would think we've got a starting rotation featuring Johan Santana and Pedro Martinez. But Pedro gets injured his first day pitching and just now has come off the disabled list. Plagued with injury after injury the Mets are not playing like a championship baseball team by any means. They are 2 games under 500 and 7 1/2 games out of first place. Yes, there's still a lot more games to be played, but you know what I'm really angry now.

I'm not angry at the Mets manager Willie Randolph. I mean the man can only do so much without actually going out there and pitching the ball and playing in the field and hitting himself. I don't believe in blaming the manager for these sorts of things. These players who are being paid millions of dollars need to step up. We've got Johan Santana who is the highest paid pitcher in baseball on our team, right. He should have the most wins by far as a pitcher, but he doesn't. Seven wins is nothing at this point in time from a pitcher who is making the kind of money he's making. Oh and lets not forget about Oliver Perez. A pitcher who went into arbitration in the off season because he didn't think the Mets were giving him enough money for him to sign a contract with. Before this last outing of his he only went 1/3 of an inning and gave up 6 runs. Now what's that all about? Does he deserve his salary? Not when he plays like that he doesn't.

Okay, so what about their defense this year? There's Jose Reyes. I love the guy. He's a spark plug for the team. But what's with all the errors Jose? Ten errors already? What's up with that? He had 12 errors I believe all of last year. He better clean up his act.

Then there is the hitting. Or the lack there of rather. It's coming in dribs and drabs. Nothing is consistent. Perhaps what they need is much more practice. Get out there and run drills and batting practice an hour more than usual. Or better yet how about paying for actual performance? Maybe instead of these huge contracts for players in baseball or any sport for that matter they all get a certain salary like any other company would do for their employees based on experience and time with the company. And then if they perform well they get a bonus. Because you know no player ever plays as well as when it's time to sign a new contract. This lets fire the manager stuff though is just crazy. It's the players who need to step up to the plate and do what they are being paid these large sums of money to do.

I have been patient with my team. I still love my Mets. I loved them pre-championship caliber team and I love them now. I am just becoming very angry with everything that has been happening. I know they can play like the team who ran away with the National League East title in 2006. They are still that team. They should be better than that team with all of their new additions. I am tired of watching this lousy play. This is a team that can be 11 games over 500 and in first place if they would just start playing like they love the game again. So LETS GO METS!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

20 Things I Will Never Do

My friend Renee did this on her blog and I thought it was a great idea. Please share your 20 things you will never do too.

Here are the 20 things I will never do (in no particular order):

1. I will never sky dive.
2. I will never stop loving my kids no matter what.
3. I will never treat my kids the way my own parents have treated me of late.
4. I will never stop loving my husband.
5. I will never be a cheater.
6. I will never understand mothers who can harm their children in anyway.
7. I will never enjoy cleaning the bathroom.
8. I will never do drugs.
9. I will never eat fish.
10. I will never like to have lettuce on my sandwiches.
11. I will never drink so much I make myself sick.
12. I will never bungee jump.
13. I will never like snakes.
14. I will never let my husband have a ferret in my house while I'm still alive.
15. I will never like paying over $4 a gallon for gas.
16. I will never stop advocating for my kids.
17. I will never like driving in the snow.
18. I will never put a worm on my own hook when fishing.
19. I will never like anything that smells like vanilla.
20. I will never be a Yankee fan.

Okay so coming soon will be 20 Things I Will Always Do. I'm quite surprised at how difficult this list was to come up with hopefully the other one will be easier.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Bing Bang Boom to the Moon with your Name

You can now send your name to the moon. NASA is doing a program where the next shuttle to the moon is taking a computer chip with a bunch of names on it which will orbit the moon for years to come. Finally we can actually send our kids to the moon. Just go to this website and put your name on the list. You can then print out a certificate. You have until June 27 to submit your name and have it placed in this micro chip and sent on NASAs LRO Spaceship sometime on or after November 23, 2008. Don't you want to go to the moon? I know I'm signing me and my whole family up.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

3rd Grade Recorders

Remember when you were in 3rd grade and you learned to play the recorder in music class? I remember that when I was a kid and Natalie has been learning the recorder this year too. Tonight the 3rd graders put on a concert of what they've learned this year. It was great. I took some video of it on my camera, but I wasn't able to get all of it because my card filled up. However, here are the first 4 songs they played. They can play, sing, and dance too. You've gotta watch.

Oh and the times where Natalie leans forward she's trying to find her teacher who was helping a child who fell off of the risers. But notice how she managed to keep playing strong ;).

After the concert we took the kids out for ice cream. So it was a fun evening all around. I can't wait until next year when she gets to join band and or chorus. What instrument will she choose? I'm thinking she'll pick flute.

A Boy and His Glasses

Here is Spencer in his new glasses. It's not a tumor, but what is it? Well, the doctor thinks they can draw Spencer's eye back into place by giving him glasses. So Spencer will wear these glasses for the next month or so. If there's no improvement then they will put a prism on the glasses to try to adjust his eye that way. If none of this works, then Spencer will need surgery on his eye. They won't do surgery though until they've tried all of this and it's been six months. So if surgery is needed it won't happen until November or so. The doctor doesn't seem too optimistic that this will work because in the time that he was on antibiotics there was no change at all and I guess he would have thought he would have seen a change.

Spencer does not like his glasses. He pulls them down on his nose and looks over them. I think it's just going to take some getting used to. Doesn't he just look adorable in them though?

Now what about the stuttering you ask? Well, they think that's just an age thing. Four years old apparently is around the time kids will start to stutter. His pre school teacher did kind of confirm that and said that his brain is working faster than his mouth can get the words out. Anyone who knows Spencer knows that this totally makes sense for him. He is such a super smart little boy. So hopefully his speech will catch up to his fast moving little brain and hopefully these glasses correct his eye so he doesn't need surgery. Prayers are still needed though and I will update you as I get more information. Thank you all for your concern over our handsome little man Spencer.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Where Did it Go

For weeks now I have been telling people that CJ has his first tooth. The other day I was checking to see if anymore teeth were coming in and I felt nothing. Not even his first tooth. Where did it go? This is my 3rd baby I should know what a tooth feels like, right? It was hard and sharp. I must admit he never let anyone get a good look at it, but it had to be there. What are these teeth doing? Playing peek a boo? So CJ is 7 months old now and still without teeth. Oh well he's got time. I sure do feel like a fool though.

Sunday CJ turned 7 months old. He's getting so big. He is finally moving out of the 3-6 month clothing and into 6-9 month clothing. Just in time for the warmer weather to get here. He had his first taste of french fry last night, but didn't seem too impressed. He was much more interested in Kaitlyn's applesauce.

We are moving forward with his Birth to Three stuff. We have an IFSP in place now. Services will likely start for him next week. He will see a special education teacher once a week and an Occupational Therapist once a month. This should be interesting as I'm told the OT is hearing impaired. I'm hopeful that she's more enthusiastic than the Physical Therapist that came out to evaluate him though. I could have had her come out to do his therapy once a month, but I decided that we wouldn't get that much out of her. I've been assured that the OT is completely capable of addressing CJ's motor issues though. We've gotta get that boy rolling and sitting already. In the meantime I was given some things I could try. I was told I could sit him in a box or a square/rectangular laundry basket. Sit him in the corner so he can't flop to one side or the other. I haven't tried it yet. Joe thinks it's crazy. He's a pain though. He was home when the Special Ed Teacher came out to do his IFSP and he refused to be a part of it. I told him he should have been and now he's questioning me on what this person is telling me to do with our son. Doesn't seem that he has any room to be saying anything since he doesn't want to be too involved in this whole process. So instead I've been laying him on his tummy on the couch or bed because he seems to like that better than the floor. And since it all starts from tummy time I want to get him to tolerate that a little better. Then he also has this seat which is like a Bumbo seat (just a cheaper version) that the PT had told me was a great place for him to sit. So he's been spending more time in there. We have the other problem of because he prefers being on his back the back of his head is flat so if we can't get that to come out then he's going to have to wear a helmet. So much more motivation for us to get him off his back.

So here's what CJ does now. He holds his own bottle. He rolls front to back. He says ah ma, da da, ga ga, ba ba. He just babbles he's not saying those "words" for anything, but he's very vocal. He's a very social little boy. He will go to just about anybody and smiles all the time. He's still very hard to get to laugh. He holds it in. He's just like his daddy in that respect. Somehow he does manage to scoot himself along the floor. He's got very strong legs so when he's laying on the floor he just kicks till he gets himself somewhere. He loves being in his jumperoo. He gets that thing going real good. So this is my little 7 month old baby boy.