Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Pop Up vs Mouse

I know I haven't come here in forever (again). I always say I will, and then I don't. This week I found something I figured I could blog about and maybe it would help some poor soul not have to endure what I did. 

We had a mouse nest in our pop up camper. Let me just tell you that I wish we would have spent more time plugging the holes in it, in the first place. 

We have a camping trip planned July 1st - July 6th. I went out to clean the winter grime from the inside of our camper, only to discover a giant (2'x2') brown stain on the ceiling over Isis' bed where a mouse nest had been. I had absolutely no idea how to clean it and I've put it off as long as I can. 

I figured maybe just bleach water? Nope. I guess that turns the canvas yellow and gets rid of the waterproofing properties. Dish soap, lysol, baking soda? Nope. The thing that cleans it? Ivory soap! 
The soap needs to be PH neutral, I'm told. 

So in the event of mouse Ivory. 

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Our First School Shopping Adventure (AKA: Make Mommy & Daddy Broke Adventure)

My Mother-In-Law and I took Isis school shopping today. I went into it with a plan and a budget. I gave myself $200 and we needed:
  • (5) Shirts
  • (5) Pants
  • (10) underwear
  • sneakers
  • socks
  • back pack
  • lunch pail
We were originally going to go downstate by about 70 miles. There is a far better selection of stores there. However, when we woke up this morning it was 60 degrees and pouring rain. I just could not bring myself to get the girls in and out of the car for Target, Old Navy and Kohl's while trying to dodge the rain.

So instead we shopped locally, at our nearest mall (which is a huge joke to even call it a mall, they lose stores so quickly). They have a JCPenny, Sears, Bon-Ton and a Shoe Department. I figured for a Pre-K we'd be set with those.

We started in JCPenny's. I found three shirts, two pairs of pants and two packages of underwear. I was on a roll! I thought I had picked out several good deals. Then we got to the register: Woo boy! $83 worth of Woo boy! I was stunned. Both my Mother-In-Law and I reviewed the receipt several times to verify it was correct, and it was.

How can that be possible for a 4-year old?!

I was starting to think maybe, I just needed to turn right around and drive to Walmart. With their square shaped pants and all. I mean really what's a little 'baggy ass syndrome' in a 4-year old right? She wasn't going to care.

But instead, I trudged on to Bon-Ton where I expected to be further depleted of my hard earned money. But, we were pleasantly surprised! We found jeans that were significantly cheaper. Cheap enough to return the two pairs we had bought at JCPenny, promptly.

We came out of there with two shirts and 5 pairs of pants for $78. Much better. Phew.

In the shoe store we came upon a new surprise. Isis has moved on to a size 11 shoe. This elusive size is no longer welcomed in the toddler shoes, but not quite cool enough for the big kid section either, apparently. There was nary a pair of cool Dora, Strawberry Shortcake or light up shoes to be found in a size 11.

We were forced to move on to the boring (to a 4-year old) Nike's, Puma's, Sketchers, etc. I must have shot down 10 pairs before we found one under $30. I mean really, I found a pair of clogs I loved for $20. How could they possibly be more material then my size 9 wide!

We ended up settling on a pair of white Converse for Isis, a cute pair of off brand boys shoes for Rory (because really, for 16 month old girls there is nothing but blazing pink) and a Dora back pack/lunch pail combo. All & All it was $64 total.

So, my total cost (after returning the jeans to JCPenny's, and deducting Rory's shoes) was $177. If you add the cost of lunch ($15) then we are dangerously close to what I personally thought was a generous budget!

What am I going to do when I have two girls in highschool! We are so going to go broke.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Isis is Headed to School

I have no idea how 4 1/2 years went by so quickly, but Isis is headed off to Pre-K in another couple of weeks (September 7th). She had her screening this past Tuesday. I honestly thought for sure that she would be really timid and wouldn't cooperate if we weren't involved in the screening. But, she surprised us both and went on her merry way with the teacher without a lick of argument.

I'm a bit disappointed with the communication thus far from the school. We had to have our applications for Pre-K in by May 8th. They never sent out decisions until the middle of July. That means if she hadn't made it into Pre-K (they use a lottery system if there are too many kids, and there was) then we would have had no time to find her something else.

We are still waiting to hear who her teacher will be (they decide after screening) and we don't know yet if there will be a supply list or not. There is also no orientation (only a visitation day for the kids only). There is a 'Meet the Teachers' night two days after school starts.

I'm terrified to put her on the bus that first morning (or even the day of visitation). This really will be the first thing she's done without Jon, myself or my Mother-In-Law with her. I think my biggest fear it going to be simply that she won't get on the bus at all!
I suppose we can always drive her in if we need to. They are going to harness her on the bus in a carseat. That's the one piece I was impressed about. They didn't seem to bat an eye when I asked. She's only 31lbs right now and I just don't like the idea of her being free roaming on the bus.

I'm sure she'll do fine. Right? I know she's certainly a smart cookie!

Friday, August 13, 2010

25 Random Things (as a form of re-introduction):

1. My name is Erin, as you may have guessed from the title of my blog (which, if I do say so myself, needs to be changed) and I'm 27.

2. I have a super cool husband whom I love very much, named Jon, and two cute-as-a-button girls, Isis & Aurora, who are 4 years and 16 months.

3. We live in the 'sticks' in Eastern Upstate NY. You can't get much farther North in NY. We're about 30 miles from the Canadian border (No, not Buffalo...go East).

4. I have always been somewhat of a Tom Boy. I have never been, and never will be a girly-girl. However, I do love purses and the color pink. But, remember: everything in moderation.

5. I'm a Type I Diabetic and have been for 14 years. I was 13 when I was diagnosed and I'm on an Insulin pump, which just so happens to be pink.

6. My oldest daughter Isis was born on April 23rd, on my 23rd birthday at 23:46.

7. Which reminds me: I always use military time, for everything. No, I've never been in the Military. No, thanks for asking: Neither has either of my parents.

8. My Mother and Step Father were killed by a drunk driver 5 years ago.

9. I'm blunt and I'll always tell you the truth. Sometimes that makes me hard to take. Trust me I do have tact, it just comes down to if you deserve it.

10. I'm an Operations Manager for a contact center. We do technical support. Most days I love my job. I love be a leader, and I'm a control freak, so management suits me well.

11. I use too many commas. Just getting that out of the way, so there is no need to bring it up later.

12. I love Jeeps. It's a communicable disease that I caught from my husband, Jon. I have Stage 1 Jeep-o-sis and he has full blown Stage 4. You should see some of the crap he brings home.

13. Related to #12, we love to Mud Bog, trail ride, fish and camp. It's especially cool when we convoy with others and chat on the CB's.

14. I am somewhat of a geek, but less so these days. This disease I caught before my husband and I met, but he's exacerbated it given he's a Unix/Linux System Administrator. I own a Mac and I love it, but I won't likely try to sell you on it. I'm not one of those.

15. I love to read. I read at least one book per week. It's seriously the only thing that keeps me sane sometimes.

16. I meant my closest friend online. No, not in that way. We both belong to the same forum about our Type I Diabetes. One thing led to another and well you know, it just happened. Last weekend we drove 10+ hours to see her on Friday and drove home again Tuesday. That, is love (or total craziness).

17. My children are total opposites. One has dark hair, dark eyes, is shy to a fault but has a fiery temper. The other has blond hair, blue eyes and is so happy go lucky and social she'll make you puke. One looks just like me and the other just like my husband.

18. I'm currently being tested for Melanoma. I had the first biopsy and that came back inconclusive, so yesterday I had a big patch of skin removed to re-test. If I have cancer at 27, someone is going to hear about it. I mean, really?

19. I like piercings and tattoos: On other people. I don't currently have any. I figure by now, in a professional position I may 'rock the boat' if I come in with metal somewhere in my head. A tattoo I would still consider, but I need to make sure I want it there when I'm 80. But anyway, on other people: totally sexy.

20. I love to travel. Put me in a car going nowhere fast and I'm happier then happy could be. We want to drive to Alaska someday and I'd love to go to Ireland. I think if I was single I would take a job that required me to travel all over the country (or further).

21. I'm not a Christian. Funny how I state that rather then "I'm a...(fill in the blank here)". Mostly because, I grew up as a Christian and I'm always afraid that there is someone lurking around the corner waiting to yell at me for changing my mind. I do however, read a lot of conservative Christian blogs. I like other peoples prospectives and opinions.

22. We have a dog named Piper. Sometimes I regret the day I walked into the shelter to find a 'cute puppy'. But, eventually he'll calm down. Right?

23. I always feel like when you are thinking of 25 random things about yourself you should include a hidden talent. Except, I'm pretty sure I don't have one. I used to be able to remember phone numbers really well, but the age of the cell phones killed that. Now I just use my address book like everyone else. I can tie a cherry stem in a knot with my tongue though! Wait: No I can't. Damn.

24. I'm starting to run out of things to say. Oh! A random fact about our (very) small town. The only month on record that it's never snowed? August.

25. Speaking of puke: Give me a break I did say something about puke up there somewhere. I hate it. No, that's wrong. I HATE it. Which has been a struggle with having kids. Of course you just push through it and get on with life, but really I do. It must be genetic, because so does my sister.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Things were starting to look up...

Then it all went down hill, starting last Thursday. Well, Monday really. I started with this pain in my back that felt mysteriously like my kidneys feel when they are acting up. But it had been years since I had an infection & previously I would go months before having them treated with no problems. I also had just started my period & thought maybe it was just bad cramps.

Come Wednesday they weren't any better, but not a ton worse either. Advil was still taking it away but I couldn't get up & walk around too much or my whole pelvic area would ache. I went to bed that night & woke up around 1am with convulsive shivers that wouldn't stop. I actually woke Jon up I was shaking the bed so badly. The first time they happened I was shaking for a good 45 minutes straight.

I had Jon get me the themometer & I had a temperture of 103 at some points. I laid in bed & tried to sleep, but it just wasn't working & my pain was getting worse. I finally ended up going out to the couch & I was able to sleep maybe 2 more hours or so on & off, I had a couple more shivering episodes & my fever was still 101 or more.

Come morning I decided that I couldn't wait for an appointment with my doctor & I needed to go to the ER. We got Isis up & dressed, all the while my pain was getting worse. By the time we got out the door to take Isis to my MIL's, I was bawling & every little tiny bump on the road was agony. Jon decided to drop me off at the ER & then take Isis to his Mom's.

I bawled my way into triage & had pretty well decided by that point I had a kidney stone, not just an infection. They saw me really quickly & actually I had already seen the doctor by the time Jon got back. Between putting an IV in & trying to draw blood, they had to stick me *9* times before they found good enough veins.

But, once they finally got the IV in, they gave me Morphine, Tramadol & some anti-nausea meds & I started to feel much better. They did a blood & urine culture on me as well. The ER doctor came in originally & told me I had very "dirty" (read: infected) urine, so they put me in for a CT Scan. He said if the CT Scan showed that I didn't have any stones they would send me home on some Antibiotics & pain meds.

Well, the CT Scan showed that I had a small (2-3mm) stone that was blocking my ureter. Fluid was unable to pass through the kidney, so as a result of that the kidney was very large & swollen. There was also an obvious infection backed up behind the stone.

The ER doctor came back & told me they would need to admit me at least over night & do surgery to insert a stent (tube) into my kidney that would open the ureter & let the stone pass & also let the infection drain.

Needless to say I was pretty scared. They took me "upstairs" & admitted me to a room. The anesthesiologist came to see me shortly after I got there & said they were going to take me right in. In the middle of talking to me, he got a call for an emergency C-section so he ran away (literally) & came back another hour or so later. (Oh & just a note here, apparently the C-section never happened. The woman said she needed to push & she delivered vaginally on the OR table. How lucky is that?).

They took me to the OR, gave me some vercit (the anesthesiologist said "this will be like a 6 pack of beer with no hangover, all the men will look good). He was right, good stuff. They moved me to the OR table & gave me some oxygen & that's the last thing I remember before I woke up in the recovery room.

That was the first time I've ever been fully put under (I've been sedated before) & I was scared I would be sick. The anesthesiologist assured me he would do everything he could to prevent it & I kid you not I could have ate a 7 course meal in the recovery room. I felt great.

I spent the next day or so in a hospital room, bored out of my mind while they pumped me full of IV antibiotics & asked me a gazillion times if I had any pain (I had very little). Come to find out the stone must have passed after they gave me the Morphine when I relaxed, but the stent was still put in because my infection was so bad the ureter was swollen shut.

They sent me home & gave me a prescription for oral antibiotics. That's when I got sick. I went through 2 different ones before I finally told them to give me a different CLASS of them.

I'm on a new one now & finally today am feeling about 95% better. I never, ever want to go through this again. I have a CT Scan today to make sure the infection is going away & the stone is gone. Then on 4/2 I will have the stent removed in the doctors office.

I told Jon if I ever have cancer, he should take me out back & shoot me. I never want to deal with so many doctors ever again.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Mock DWI, NH, etc

Michele from our county STOP DWI program got ahold of me again a couple weeks ago. She asked if I would be interested in presenting at any of their Mock DWI crashes this year. I emailed her back & told her it would be dependent on the dates & times. I wanted to atleast send her an email to let her know I wasn't completely 'un-interested'.

A couple days ago, she got back to me & said the first one was on May 1st & said she wouldn't be able to be there, but she gave my name to the SADD director at the school (who I believe to be a student, per her grammar/spelling & the fact she addressed me as 'Ms.Towne'). The SADD director emailed me & said they plan on having a presentor for before & a presentor for after the crash.

I hmm'd over it & decided I should just take the leap & do it. I emailed her back & said I would, but I wanted to present before the crash because the last one I watched was so emotional for me there was no way I could have presented after.

Now I need to figure out what the heck I'm going to say. The last one I did was on October 20th, 2005. Which would have been my Mother's birthday & I figured that was sign enough I needed to do it. But now I have a lot more information about the accident & I'm a lot more removed from it. I'm afraid I won't get my point across as well. I sobbed through half of my story the last time.

The part I'm having the hardest time with is how I address the fact, that the woman that hit them...was charged with 2 counts of Intoxicated Manslaughter & walked away with a felony jail time & not even a suspended license. In some ways it brings to light the failure in the judicial system, but in others it says "See if you drink & drive & kill someone, well its not THAT bad".

The other woman that presented with me last time (& I assume she will again, she does just about every one of them), lost her son when he was 16 I think? His friend was driving drunk. His friend walked away & her son died. She spends about 5 total minutes on her really heartbreaking story & the other 15 minutes of her presentation talking about kids having morals & responsibility & logic.

Both Jon & I agreed that she might be getting blank stares from some of these 16 & 17 year olds. I decided last time to focus instead on the sheer shock value of losing two parents at once, at a young age. Going as far as to give some of my sisters perspective, since she was 14 at the time. There were tons of kids sobbing at the end of my part & I really think *that's* the way you reach a highschooler. Not with a "You should be more responsible then that" speech.

Maybe I'm wrong?

On a lighter note, I booked our vacation yesterday. I'm so flippin' excited about that. We are going to Lincoln, NH. I know how did we come about staying in NH? Well, we planned on going back to the place we spent our honeymoon. However, the timeshare we use (MIL's & FIL's) didn't have dates available into May yet.

I kept waiting & they just never were coming up. I was afraid that either A) I couldn't give enough notice or B) they were going to jack the price when they fianally gave them. We paid $1100 for the week when we stayed for our honeymoon. Soo! We decided to look in NH & go for something "new".

My Step Dad grew up in Littleton, NH & Lincoln is apparently only 25 minutes from there. Its also 2 hours from Boston & 2 hours from Portsmouth, which is a coast town that has some good shopping I guess?

Yay for vacations!

Monday, March 03, 2008

My Grown Up Weekend

My MIL & FIL took Isis for the whole weekend! They hadn't seen her in three weeks because they were in FL for vacation, so they were more then willing to.

Jon worked a midnight shift on Friday morning (12am-10am), so he was still asleep when I got home from work. MIL & FIL came to get Isis around 6pm & then I went in to wake him up. We both laid in bed for awhile & watched TV, which was wonderful in itself.

Then we decided we wanted to have dinner, so we went to Lobster House at like 8:30pm & it was so nice & quiet in there & we talked the whole time, it had been along time since we had uninteruptted conversation where we didn't feel rushed. We had gone out for Valentine's Day but since Isis was with a sitter we were paying for, it was harder not to worry about the time & when we got home.

After that we came home & went to bed with the intention of sleeping in the next morning. However, Jon was up before 6am & I was up before 7am. I guess that's what we get for working so often & getting used to not sleeping in!

We hung around the house until about noon, read our books & just generally relaxed. Then we went & had lunch at Eben's (yes, we were taking advantage of getting to eat out since we haven't done it much since Feb 1st). After lunch we went to the Sugar Island trail that is near our house.

We had never been on the trail before & we were hoping to snow shoe. Turns out its not a great snow shoeing trail, because either end of it is paved & plowed before it starts the actual trail. We ended up just walking the paved/gravel portion of it (about a mile & a half). We poked around both the dam & the power house (which was very cool, we need to go back & get pictures).

Then we came home, got our snow shoes on & walked the 1/2 mile loop that Jon cut on our property. I sure did get enough exercise that day!

That night, we decided to go out & see Sandi & Derek. We hung out & eventually watched Jeff Dunham on DVD with them (so funny, I love him :). We stayed until about 9pm & then came home. Neither of us had dinner, but both of us were so whooped that we didn't even want to think about cooking something (I didn't even have the energy to eat), so we went to bed.

Yesterday morning we relaxed until Noon or so, when MIL got back from church with Isis & then we went over to her house to get Isis.

I feel refreshed & for the first time in awhile I wasn't dreading coming to work this morning.

I suggest for anyone that CAN to take a weekend to yourself with your hubby, it sure does make you remember why you married them :)