Archive for March, 2007

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Vet Visit

March 13, 2007

A few days ago I noticed a spot on Joe’s left thigh/hip that looked a little sore. Well, being a very clean little dog, he licked it incessantly. Unfortunately, this caused more harm than good and now the wound is much larger. I called the vet’s office yesterday and got him an appointment for today. Since we only got him in December, I have not had him to the Vet’s office yet and was unsure how he would react. He is a very good boy and was completely fine with the vet visit, even when they shaved all the hair from the infected area.

I invited my mom to go along as she is looking for a vet that is somewhat holistic. She, of course, brought her camera and took many pictures. Here are a few that document our visit…

Joe sits patiently, waiting for the vet to come in.

“Perhaps a belly rub while I wait?” asks Joe.

Joe thought the vet needed some kisses.

Here you can see the shaved spot. It is an angry red, but with the air now able to get to it, we should see vast improvements shortly. We have to wash it with a disinfectant daily, and he is also taking an oral antibiotic. He has to wear the E-collar (Elizabethan) so he can’t lick it. He was relatively unphased by the whole ordeal, but I imagine he will be very happy when he no longer needs the collar!

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New Glasses

March 11, 2007

Silly me…I was so tired last night that I completely forgot part of the reason why! Friday afternoon Sarah and I were watching television when she gasped and groaned. I looked over to see her holding the temple for her galsses in one hand and the rest of the glasses in the other. This is the second pair (same frame style) that has come apart in this manner in the last year. She had been complaining about not being able to see well, so I figured it was a good time to get an exam and new glasses. Here begins the fun!

Since Jeff got laid off money has been tight, but the kids were supposed to have insurance effective March 1. Well, as of March 6 I did not have any proof of insurance, and the application was “awaiting approval.” When her glasses broke I groaned due in part to the fact that I wasn’t sure if she had insurance yet and partly because we were going to a hockey game Friday evening and she would not be able to see without glasses! I got on the phone and praise God, her insurance had been approved. The woman gave me her policy number and I was able to go online and print a copy of her insurance card.

It was about 12:30…the game start was 7:35…we needed to leave home by 6:45ish. I jumped in the shower, threw the girls in the car and hurried across town to the mall where no one shops (long story). We go there because we can always get right in for exams with no appointment. We go to a place where they have an independent Doc within the place where they make the glasses. After her eye exam we went to look at frames and were informed that due to the severity of her perscription, they would not be able to make her glasses there, but could order them. This is one of those places who claims to be able to make your lenses while you wait. Seeing the obvious dismay on my face, the helpful optician suggested that one of their other stores could probably do them because they have more sophisticated equipment. After some coaxing, he finally called the other store so I could be assured that another 20 minute drive would not turn up futile as well. The time then was 2:50.

We arrived at store #2 around 3:15 and by 4:00 Sarah had decided on a frame and been measured, etc. The only hitch was that the “about an hour” claim, turned into 2 hours…because of her perscription…UGH!!!! Remember, we needed to leave our house, 20 minutes away, by 6:45. We were cutting in awfully close and Kyle was at home, oblivious to our chaos, thinking that we would be home at any minute and I would make dinner before we left for the game. The girls and I decided it would be a good idea to eat while we were waiting, so we decided to try a place near the glasses store that touted itself to be a bar and grill…yeah right! Granted it was Friday afternoon, about 4 PM, but this was no grill…it was indeed a bar! After standing in the doorway for a full minute and not even being greeted, we decided to go further down the mall to a TGI Fridays, also a bar and grill but more grill than bar!

After eating, we wandered the mall for a few more minutes and then headed back to the glasses place. It was only 5:45, but I was hoping they would be done. Thankfully, they were finished and we were able to head home by 6:00. We got home, said hi to Jeff, grabbed Kyle and went to the game. It was an absolutely hectic day, but everything did finally fall into place nicely and Sarah is very pleased with her new glasses!

Not the best picture of her glasses, but you can see that they look cute on her and that they are blue.

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Whew!

March 11, 2007

What a long day! Last night my in-laws took the kids and me to an Amerks hockey game. What a disappointing game. They were playing the Crunch and neither team played well. The final score was 7 to 4 in favor of the Crunch. As if their bad playing wasn’t enough, we had to change seats 3 times while we were there. One of the seats we had tickets for was broken, so we sat in the row above our seats, until the people holding those tickets arrived. Then we moved to some really horrible seats in the lower section. Finally, after the first period had ended, they finished fixing our broken seat and we were able to move to our ticketed seats.

We didn’t get home from the game until around 10:30 and I had to unwind before I could go to bed. Of course, I had to be at work at 5 AM, so when I didn’t fall asleep until after midnight, I knew I would be really tired today. Work was absolutely insane! I made more bagels between 5 AM and 10 AM than I normally bake in a full 8 hour shift. Another store near ours has closed so they can reopen with a new, improved store so we think we are seeing a lot of their customers at our store in the mean time.

On my way home from work, I stopped at a local mall where the Irish Import Shop was sponsoring an Irish program of sorts. There were singers and dancers (but no la-laers LOL!). One of my favorite groups was there, the Dady Brothers. My mother-in-law had picked up the kids while I was at work, so I met them there and we enjoyed the dancers and musicians for a couple of hours.

Dady Brothers,
John (left) and Joe

Sarah was taking pictures and wanted a picture of John Dady, who happened to be sitting nearby while another group was on stage. When she and Erin went over to ask if they could take his picture, they got a surprise…

John asked his daughter, also an Erin, to take a picture of him with my girls.
We also ran into a friend that I work with, Peggy.

Once we left the mall, I was ready for a nap, but I went home and played around on the computer for awhile, leaving myself only about an hour to nap before church. The church we attend has 5 services between Sataurday evening and Sunday morning, so Sarah called her friend to see if she was going to be there tonight. Her parents were planning on going tomorrow, but said they could drop her off tonight, if we could bring her home. Then I also offered to take her big sister back to her college dorm (2 minutes from our house). Now, I am soooo ready for bed!

On that note…Goodnight!

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Butterflies

March 9, 2007

Yesterday the kids and I went out to lunch with my Mother-in-law. When we had finished lunch, the girls announced that they wanted to go to Grandma’s house and spend the night. After working for 7 hours on 3 hours sleep, then staying up even longer to go out to lunch, I was exhausted and saw an opportunity to get some sleep, so I let them go.

We have been trying for a couple weeks to go to a local children’s museum, but it just hadn’t worked out. Well, my mother-in-law took the girls today, and said the rest of us could go again another time. She has a membership that gets her and my father-in-law and all of the grandkids in for free so she can go as often as she likes. This museum has a butterfly garden where you can go in and walk around and see all the different butterflies. Sometimes they will even land on you. My girls both like it quite a bit and I got quite a surprise in my email this evening. Apparently my mother-in-law gave Erin her camera to take pictures while they were in the butterfly garden. I seem to have a budding photographer…

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Epiphany on the Couch

March 7, 2007

Okay so I wasn’t exactly ON the couch when this epiphany hit, but rather it was about the couch. As I was sitting in my comfy chair, cuddling with my baby (Joe…don’t tell Erin!) watching home improvement shows I happened to look out my dining room window. It was at that moment that I realized just how wide that window happens to be. Now, I should be well aware of how wide that window is, since I put an air-conditioner in it every summer and take it out every fall! However, being inattentive to detail, I missed it somehow.

Now, it is important that I back up for a minute here. One year and eight months ago, Jeff’s grandmother moved from her one-bedroom apartment into a studio apartment in a senior housing center. Her rather large couch was not going to fit, and having spent the money some years ago to get a very nice couch, she did not want to just donate it, so she asked if we might want it. At the time we had a hand-me-down that should have gone to the curb long before it was handed to us. It was a sleeper sofa, and it came into the house 5 years ago with much force and strong language on the part of Jeff and several of his rather hefty friends. Our house simply was not made for large items to come through the doors!

Moving on to the couch coming to our house. I called my Mom and arranged to have her meet me at Grandma’s to get the couch in her truck and bring it to my house. A week or so before that, my Mom and I took a sledge hammer and various other tools to the hand-me-down sofa bed. Since it was so difficult to get into the house, we decided we would take it out the easy way! We sure did have fun! Jeff was mortified, as he really like the horrid thing. I assured him that it would be okay though, as Grandma was giving us her couch and soon he would have a much nicer, newer, cat hair free couch (I very much dislike cats but the former owners of said couch had 3) .

Now, remember how I said large items don’t fit through the doors in our house? Yup! You guessed it…the new couch was too big to fit through the door. Our front entry consists of a door to the porch with a straight shot into the entryway, followed by a 90 degree turn into the house. The couch made it to the entryway, but would not turn the corner into the house. We tried in vain for about an hour to force it through, but it was not going. So…the very nice couch took up residence on the front porch.
This is the door to the entryway…the one the through which the couch would not fit!

Back to the present. As I stared at the dining room window, I wondered if the couch would fit through it. HMMM!?!?! Finally, I got my tape measure and sure enough, there was almost a whole extra inch to spare. BUT, in order to have enough height, I would have to completely disassmeble the window. Oh, Kyle! I asked him if he wanted to help me with a crazy project, and knowing his mother well, he agreed. (I would have done it with or without him, but he knows it’s easier to just agree up front than to get wrangled in later!) I did not relish the thought of carrying the couch from the front of the house to the back of the house, lifting it over my head and through the window, but that seemed the only way. Then it occurred to me that the middle (of 3) living room window might also be wide enough. It was! Thank God, because I forgot to mention earlier that it was only about 4 or 5 degrees outside.

After diassembling the window, with some difficulty, Kyle helped me navigate the couch through the window opening. All this time Jeff was upstairs sleeping. We got the window apart, the couch in, the window back together, and the furniture put back into the living room in just under one hour. When Jeff awoke and discovered the couch in the house, he asked how it came in. I told him through the window, to which he wondered if he dared ask how. I told him proabably not, and we left it at that. He did mention that he kept waking up, but was not sure why. Must have been my hammering to get the trim back on the window…LOL!

So now the couch is in the house and we have enough seating for all five of us without anyone on the floor! Amazing!
Yes, our little abode is a work in progress. The black “spot” on the wall is where the chimney from an old woodstove comes into the house. The discoloration on the wall marks where the surround was behind the woodstove. The crown moldings are down waiting for spring so I can finish stripping them and the ceiling is awaiting a finish after it had to be replaced due to the bathroom plumbing leaking through onto it. Eventually I will get it all back together, but doesn’t the couch look nice there?

Here is the window through which the couch gained entry:
The one in the middle with just the sheer showing. Except for a few little dings in the finish, which needs to be stripped anyway, you would never know I took the whole thing apart!

The best moment during this whole process came when Kyle told me that he hoped we never had to take the window apart again. The look on his face as I reminded him that the couch would eventually have to be moved out again, was priceless!

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Fun with Kids

March 7, 2007

Snowtubing
There is this great snowtubing place about 45 minutes from where we live. So a couple weeks ago I got some discount tickets from work and my Mom and I took the kids. What is snowtubing you ask? Well, you climb a big hill, sit in an innertube, and go flying down a well groomed hill complete with moguls.

This picture doesn’t really do justice to the size of the hill, but it does show the nicely groomed lanes. For those who would rather not walk up the hill, there are two tow lines that one can use to be pulled up the hill. The waiting for those could be a bit lengthy however.

The kids had a ton of fun, even though my Mom and I froze our fingers and toes and noses watching! Erin, being the youngest and by far the shortest, had a tough time navigating the lanes once she got to the bottom of the hill. With all her winter gear and a huge innertube to tug along, she was having trouble keeping up with the big kids. Michelle, taking pitty on poor little Erin, told her to get in the tube and Michelle pulled her around for the entire 2 hours that we were there. Erin was quite the lady of luxury!



Earlier this week, I took Kyle, Sarah, Erin, and Sarah’s friend, Kelly to the Science Museum. Most of the exhibits at the museuem do not change, but the kids still love going and seeing the same things over and over again. Normally I drag them through the “educational” exhibits, that they consider BO-ring, then I allow them to do the more fun, hands-on stuff. This time I decided to just let them do whatever they wanted and oh did they have fun.

Science Museum

We played in a big stream table (my personal favorite), looked at optical illusions, put the kids faces on money, played the stock market, went on a submarine ride (just pretend), and many other fun things.
Those are some scary baby dinosaurs!

While Kelly showed Sarah how to make origami frogs…

Kyle explored an elevated maze that goes from the first floor to the second floor.

Next the kids tried their hand at being meteorologists on television.

I think the most fun was had when we visited a hands-on exhibit exploring the properties of matter. Sarah and Kelly spun themselves until they could barely stand…I think Kelly’s face says it all:

All four kids checked out a bridge to test which type of construction would support them better.

Much fun was had by all. I think I got more tired out than the kids did though! I was exhausted by the end of the afternoon. After seeing all that the kids wanted to see at the museum, we went to our favorite Mexican restaurant for a yummy late lunch. After all that fun and food I was ready for a nap!