Thursday, July 31, 2008

Day #34

Tonight was "Meet Your Teacher Night" at the school where I taught for the past two years. It also happens to be the school my two daughters attend. I made it back into town from my work trip just in time for us to all go as a family and check out their classrooms and get all the beginning of the school year stuff picked up. I still have a hard time wrapping my brain around the fact that school here starts in the first few days of August.

This was the first time in over a decade where I was not the teacher on the other side of this equation. For the first time, I got to be the mom and attend a school function as the parent, instead of relegating the job to my husband while I worked. For once, I got to do something school related with my children, and I loved it! This is my oldest child's final year in elementary school, so I made it just in time. I know once middle school rolls around, she probably won't want me within 20 yards of her events (not that I won't be there anyway...).

I expected to feel something about the start of a new school year and my not being there. Amazingly, I feel nothing except an anticlimactic sense of relief. That right there speaks volumes about the correctness of my decision to step away from teaching.

I don't miss it. At all.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Day #33

Some things just can't be avoided.

Apparently, my oldest daughter had some weird destiny thing involving scorpions this week. On Saturday night, I ended up gathering my children and all our stuff and jumping in the car at 11:00 PM because there were scorpions (note the plural) running around my mother-in-law's house. I was not about to have my kids sleeping on the floor with that going way! Of course, I am now in the dog house with my MIL, but too bad. My kids come first. We ended up getting a motel room at 2:30 AM because we were just too tired to make it the rest of the way home. Thank God for a safe trip. That was crazy.

Well, since I am out of town for two days and had to leave very early this morning, we decided to allow my girls to have a sleepover at their friend's house last night and then spend the day there today. I was just wrapping up my trip preparations at 10:40 PM when I received a hysterical phone call from my younger daughter. Her sister had been stung multiple times by a scorpion at her friend's house.

I jumped in the car and raced over to pick them up. It was a very long night, with hourly calls from Poison Control (they were awesome, by the way) and constant changing out of the cold compresses. We had Benadryl, cortisone, Tylenol, and hugs on board. She was ok for the first hour or so (adrenaline is a blessing), but after that the venom starting doing its thing and it wasn't fun. It's so hard to watch your child in so much pain and not be able to make it better. She was having spasms and severe pain and just cried and cried. Amazingly, she popped up like a daisy this morning and was fine. I guess the first 6 hours are the worst.

I am thankful for arriving safely at my training today. It was a 3 hour+ drive on mountain roads and I was certainly tired. I wish I was in a better position to enjoy being up in the mountains this evening, but I'm hitting the sack early instead.

Before I go to bed though you can bet I'm checking for scorpions. (((Eeeeehhhhhww!)))

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Day #32

Things I learned while in Oklahoma City:

  • Oklahoma is flat...really, really flat. We had dinner at the top of the Chase building in OKC, and the 270 degree view did not contain a single mountain, hill, slope, rise, or any other sort of change in elevation. You can literally see the curve in the Earth's surface from there.

  • Oklahoma City has lots of flies. They were everywhere. Gross.
  • You can walk down the street in OKC at midnight and literally see no cars moving in any direction. That city rolls up its sidewalks early. I can't believe I was standing in the middle of an intersection in the state's largest city, with nary a moving vehicle in sight.
  • I miss humidity. Granted, I wouldn't relish living in the Deep South or a tropical rainforest in the dead of summer with no air conditioning, but after two years in the desert the extra moisture in the air was a nice change of pace. My skin and hair were loving it.

I enjoyed my trip, as much as possible considering how much I missed my family. I think 4 days is slightly beyond my limit, and was a rough start to the travel aspect of my new job. Two to three days is a bit more reasonable. I leave tomorrow morning (at 4:30 AM...ACK!) for a two day training about 180 miles from here. I'm sad to be leaving again so soon, but looking forward to a night in the mountains. air...the color green...can't wait!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Day #31...I Dropped It!

I was so afraid of missing my blogging "obligation" while on my trip last week, I failed to consider that the weekend would actually be more challenging. I made a committment to blog daily for 100 days. I made it 30 days, then missed a couple. What now? Do I start over? Add a couple days to the end as some sort of blogging penance? Hmmm...not sure. Suggestions?

Despite having so much to write about (the trip, the hotel, the food, the weekend, the scorpions...) it's going to have to wait until tomorrow. It is late and I'm beat. I will catch up tomorrow for sure.

I can't wait to tell you about these guys:

Friday, July 25, 2008

Day #30

Off to the rez today. I can't believe I woke up this morning in another state, arrived home, and now have to drive 6+ hours to my mother-in-law's. Soooooooo tired!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Day #29

Apparently I am the unofficial gastronomic tour guide of our group on this trip. After last night's fried okra worship service, I followed up with today's lunch. This involved bringing several of my coworkers before the altar of the almighty muffaletta. Now OKC is no New Orleans, but the sandwich shop we found made a more than passable version of one of these:

Of course, it wasn't Central Grocery, but it did the trick.

Once again, I was responsible for broadening the horizons (and possibly shortening the life spans) of my dear colleagues. Just my way of playing nice with the other kids!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Day #28

As the new kid on the team, so to speak, I have often felt these last two days that I don't have a lot to contribute on this particular business trip. I am still learning the software we distribute, I have yet to meet so many of the various players in this industry. I'm green and I know it. Still, one likes to feel as though one has something to offer.

Tonight at dinner I finally had my chance.

I introduced my whole company to something they'd never tried before...

I can't believe I was seated with an entire group of folks who had never experienced the deep-fried country greasiness that is yummy fried okra!

I never get to eat fried okra. First, I have no clue how to make it correctly. Second, my husband can't stand it so even if I could make it right we'd never have it. Third, I know of no place in Phoenix that serves it, so I have no chance to order it for myself at a restaurant. Here in Oklahoma City there is a very good barbecue restaurant whose menu included my all-time favorite fried food.

Tonight I converted ten coworkers to the cult of fried okra...and it was gooooooood!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Day #27...Fancy

I am blogging tonight from my very own (peaceful, quiet, diaper-free, fighting sibling-free, snoring husband-free) room in a very beautiful hotel in Oklahoma City. It is a restored historic building that is absolutely gorgeous! I will post pictures once I return home.

My flight today was the most turbulance-filled plane ride I have ever experienced. I do not "do" flying well to begin with, so this was not fun for me. People were actually getting sick from the frightening movements the plane was making. I have a pretty solid stomach, but I realized upon landing that the shakiness in my legs was from the post-adrenaline crash I was experiencing. It was intense. Needless to say, I was so glad to be on solid ground!

I spent the first hour here in the fitness center (extremely cool equipment), then met up with the rest of my colleagues for dinner. We had a nice time, and I got to further expand my understanding of the various elements in this business.

I also got to see for my self the very different world of sales vs. teaching. Perhaps I should say, the very different personalities one finds in sales vs. teaching. Let's just say that sales folks definitely cut loose much more than the teachers I knew. Nothing crazy or inappropriate...just boisterous and social, with a little less structure and order.

This is a whole new world!

I miss my family like crazy, but honestly I am so tired right now I think I'll sleep alright. Tomorrow is a busy day. I sure hope I can keep up!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Day #26

If there is one invention on the face of the planet designed to empty a parent's pockets, it's got to be this thing:

I hate those stupid claw games! Today was my younger daughter's birthday, and her only request was for our family to go to a local arcade/entertainment complex. This is a splurge we'd normally forego, but she was the birthday girl and I was already suffering enough mommy guilt about my trip tomorrow. I gave in. And I paid...big time!

There's something so evil, so addictive, so insidious about "The Claw". It gives you this false sense of possibility, even though common sense tells you it's a huge sucker bet.

I'm hoping the claw phase is almost over. It seems to be giving way to a new addiction on the part of my children.

Dance Dance Revolution.

Don't even get me started...

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Day #25

I am officially one quarter of the way through this grand experiment! I have to admit I am kind of enjoying it, although the pressure to perform gets to me sometimes. Just kidding...I'm not taking myself that seriously! I am a little concerned about how I'm going to keep my word over the next few days though. I will be on a business trip, and have no idea if I will have the time or computer access to blog while I'm in Oklahoma.

On the home front, we are back to ear infection central. Yes, my nine month old son returned to daycare part time last Tuesday. By Friday, the ear infection was brewing. Not surprisingly, we were ear infection free for the entire time he was out of daycare. Think there might just be a correlation there? So now, on top of the guilt of leaving my baby while I fly three states away, there's the guilt of leaving my sick baby while I fly three states away. Why can't we just win the lottery or something???!!!

Seriously, please say a little prayer for my baby (and his sisters) while I am away.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Day #24

I have so much to do...why am I blogging?

I am trying to get ready for my trip this week and I'm finding I'm procrastinating a bit. I tend to do that when something seems overwhelming. I'm not especially worried about the trip itself, but rather the fact that when I return, my family immediately leaves for several days at my in-laws'. This is not a relaxing trip to visit family, but rather a long drive, very little sleep, and a lot of hard work under hot, uncomfortable conditions as part of my husband's cultural obligations. I am basically trying to get ready for two trips at the same time. It's a lot!

I know my "work" trip will be busy, but I'm hoping to find a little time to visit this place. It would be a shame to go all that way and not have a chance to spend a couple hours there. Besides, I can't think of much else to do in Oklahoma City in July (besides perspire profusely). I sure hope this new job takes me somewhere that I know someone once in a while!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Day #23

Today is my 10th wedding anniversary! I can't believe it has already been a decade for my husband and myself. I keep thinking back to what I was doing ten years ago right now (at this exact moment, probably telling the hairdresser to please make my hair a little less poofy), and wondering where the time has gone.

I am grateful to have made it to this milestone. Our lives have not always been easy over the past ten years. We've hit some major speed bumps along the way. I always used to wonder why people talked about money being such a cause of stress in a marriage. Believe me, now I know. I think our marriage is the poster child for a money-stressed relationship. I like to think that in ten more years (with a little help from Dave Ramsey) we will celebrate our 20th and celebrate being debt-free as well. That's the plan, at least.

Tonight we're celebrating with an oh-so-original dinner and movie combo. I know, how very creative, right? We have a nursing infant in the family at the moment (not to mention other concerns-see above)...trips to Paris are kind of out of the question. Maybe for our 25th...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Day #22

I am so glad to be out of teaching this year!

My (former) school is gearing up for the new school year, and all the beginning of the year correspondences are going out. After two years of frozen salaries, our beneficient district granted teachers a whopping $500 raise.

That's $500 for the year...

As in less than $0.40 an hour...assuming that no teacher ever goes in early or stays late or takes work home or attends conferences and "back to school night" and music performances and plays and the 1,001 other after hours duties and responsibilities a teacher has.

I am disgusted, to say the least.

I really hope this new job is a good fit for the long haul, because every day I'm finding another reason to never return to least not in this state.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Day #21...Guilty

So sleepy! I have reached a point where my eyes are literally crossing, and I have a headache from fatigue. I am trying to do too much right now, I know.

I want to have the house perfectly organized and prepared for my upcoming business trip. I have a lot of anxiety about leaving for four days next week. I never left either of my older children overnight when they were as little as my son. I'm still nursing, for crying out loud! What kind of mother leaves her 9 month old baby and hops a plane to another state??!! I am all twisted up with guilt about this, although I know it's what I have to do at the present. I need to relax and let go...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Day #20

Dust if you must,
but wouldn't it be better to paint a picture, or write a letter, bake a cake, or plant a seed.
Ponder the difference between want and need.
Dust if you must, but there is not much time, with rivers to swim and mountains to climb! Music to hear, and books to read friends to cherish and life to lead.
Dust if you must,
but the world's out there with the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair, a flutter of snow, a shower of rain, this day will not come round again.
Dust if you must, but bear in mind, old age will come and it's not kind. And when you go, and go you must, You, yourself, will make more dust!

Authors Details: 'Dust if You Must' Unknown Author

I need to remember this...

Monday, July 14, 2008

Day #19...Cha-ching!

Things have been a little tight around here lately. Ok, they've been tight around here for years, but especially lately. We have been on a strict budget for a long vacations, no camp for the kids, we rarely eat out, we only hit movies when we have a gift card, etc. I have become adept at clipping coupons and timing sales.

Thanks to Crystal Paine and her awesome website, I have recently been introduced to the fine art of "CVSing" (that's actually a verb in the penny-pinching blogosphere). I won't even begin to try and explain it. Crystal does a great job at that, so go check out her site if you want to learn all about how this works.

I just had to post about it today because I hit CVS last night with one of my daughters and had a true epiphany. It works. It works, it works, it works!!!

We came home with over $30 worth of name brand items we really needed for 54 cents. Yes, that's $0.54! And it gets even better...

I earned $11 in Extra Care Bucks (just like cash at CVS), a $3/$15 coupon, and I have a rebate for $4.79 on one of the items we bought. When I did the math, I realized CVS and the makers of the products I bought basically paid me $18.25 to buy this stuff!

Here's what I bought and how it breaks down:
  • Excedrin Back & Body- $4.79
  • Benadryl Cream- $5.49
  • Benefiber Chewables- $6.79
  • Benefiber- $8.99
  • Schick ST Women Disposable Razor 2 pack (x2)- $0.99 each
  • Glide Floss-$3.49

I used two $2 coupons for the Benefiber, a $1 coupon for the Benadryl, a BOGO (99 cents) coupon for the razors, $16.50 in ECB's from previous purchases, and three $3/$15 coupons.

I love this program! We are stocking up on things we use and need and pay just a few cents each time. I have a huge box under our bathroom sink that is now overflowing with toothpaste, soap, razors, bandaids, "girl" stuff and other things we use on a regular basis. I think we need to come up with a new storage this rate we're going to run out of room! We are even looking at starting to make regular donations to some local organizations. It feels so good to be able to do that when our budget doesn't have an available line for charitable giving.


Sunday, July 13, 2008

Day #18

I remember (way back) when there was nothing in the world I wanted more than to turn eighteen. The idea of being a real grown-up seemed so delicious; no more curfews, no being "told what to do", no permission required if I wanted to go somewhere or do something. Oh, and I was excited at the prospect of being able to vote. Seriously, I was!

Funny, now that I am more than twice that age, there's nothing I'd love more than to have someone take care of things for me. I hate going somewhere and not being certain someone knows where I am, how I'm getting home, and when I should be expected back. I get so tired of always feeling like I have to decide what's going to happen (What's for dinner, Mom?... What are we doing today, Honey?... When will you fill my bowl with kibble, Mom-person?). When I'm faced with big decisions, I have to touch base with my mom and dad still.

I think the only thing I really appreciate about being an independent/mature(HA!)/responsible(HA! HA! HA!) adult is the right to vote.

There are some days when I just wish everything would get done by someone else. I miss the days of self-centeredness, free time, and zero responsibility.

I think I need a spa day!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Day #17...Talk To Me!

Ok people, look down at the very bottom of my blog...see that little "sitemeter" thingy? Well, that not only tells me how many folks are stopping by, but where the hits come from, what time they visit the site, even what operating system they are running.

I'm watching you...always watching!

So here's the deal. I know you're out there...please say hello every once in a while so I don't feel like I'm talking to myself. I admit, I do talk to myself a lot. I also talk to people on the road and in parking lots when my windows are rolled up and they can't hear me. I have gotten much better in the past few years about not using the accompanying hand gestures. I just don't want to talk to myself on my blog!

So, please feel free to leave me an occasional comment. Just say hi, so I know you were here (without having to spy on you via my sitemeter). Tell me I'm crazy, point out my inconsistencies, correct my grammatical errors, whatever. Just talk to me!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Day #16

Now that gas is over $4 a gallon, I've gotten much more serious about fuel economy. I have unloaded any unnecessary weight from my car, check my tire pressure religiously, plan my trips and routes carefully, and do whatever else I can think of to conserve gas and use my car as efficiently as possible.

Since I'm doing a little bit of freeway driving with my new job, I've made a committment to drive the speed limit. It's a proven fact that you lose fuel efficiency when you start going faster than 55 mph or so. This is why the federal government lowered the speed limit back in the 1970s.

I have learned that the rest of Phoenix does not care about my fuel efficiency or mpg. They want me to go 80 in the slow lane, by golly! I'm now analyzing the cost/benefit ratio of driving 55-60 mph on the local highways. I can probably eke an extra hundred miles out of each tank of gas by driving 55...but I may get run off the road or shot in the process!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Day #15

Whoever made up that whole "...but it's a dry heat..." nonsense about Arizona should be taken behind the outhouse and severely beaten with a wet noodle.

Dry heat, my foot.

For about 8 weeks every year, this part of the country has the marvelous experience of the summer monsoon season. We get regular, powerful thunderstorms and periodic torrential rain. I love the rain, don't get me wrong. I just don't enjoy the humidity that accompanies said rain when it's 109 degrees outside!

So, to summarize Arizona weather:

  • April-June: Hot and dry (think blast furnace or convection oven)
  • July- August: Hot and humid (extreme sauna, Native American sweat lodge)
  • September-October: return to hot and dry (see above)
  • November-March: spells of bitter, bone crushing, lip chapping, skin chafing cold

I guess if you're from somewhere like Buffalo, Arizona's climate seems "nice". I suppose I've been spoiled by over 30 years of my life spent on the coast of southern California. I kind of (understatement) miss living in a place where one has no real need for air conditioning, and rarely has to turn on the heat!

Tired and grouchy, time for bed!

Day #14

Ok, technically it's already Thursday, but since I haven't gone to bed yet, in my book it's still "Day 14". There, it's my blog and what I say goes, right? I guess I could cheat and go into the settings and change the post time and date, but I'm too honest (actually too lazy...shhhhh) to do that!

I have hit the ground running with my new job. I have already learned so much, but know there's lots more for me to know.

Now my next dilemma...

My "teacher clothes" aren't quite up to the caliber of professional attire I'm going to need on occasion at this job.

I am working on those 25 pounds of baby chub, thus I don't want to spend money on new work clothes I may not be wearing in 3-4 months because they'll be (hopefully) falling off by then.

Any suggestions?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Day #13

Talk about right down to the wire!

It's almost midnight and I'm beat. My boss came over yesterday and set up my home office for me. Today we had a two hour remote meeting and started really getting into the information I'll be responsible for in my new position. The new technology amazes me. I was able to sit at my desk, on the phone with my boss, while he demonstrated stuff on my computer from his home. Very cool!

Also very convenient when one has three children at home.

Speaking of which, my kids made me so proud today. Baby Boy slept for most of the meeting (I intentionally scheduled it at his usual nap time), and my daughters kept themselves busy and quiet the whole time. This is a near miracle, considering I'm usually playing referee when they're at home. They were just so great, I had to treat them to a DQ run after dinner. Ok, I really wanted DQ too but still...

I am so used to being treated like a child at work, so some of the freedom and latitude I now have seems weird. I keep feeling as though I need to "OK" everything with the boss. Heaven knows, in teaching you are accountable on so many levels and to so many entities (parents, principals, district administration, state and federal mandates). It's rather intimidating to have someone just trust that I'm going to get the job done and not ask for constant, tedious documentation, assessment, and anecdotal evidence of everything I do.

What's that smell? Is that...fresh air??!! Oh my gosh, this job gives me room to breathe!

I think I'm going to like this :-)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Day #12

My brother sent me the video below, which made me think...

Who needs capital punishment when you've got Michael Jackson!

***Question: What the heck is Yao Ming doing in a Filipino prison??? (Look at the guy at the front of the "triangle")***

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Day #11...Yummy!

Today was a day filled with deliciousness.

For starters, I was shocked to discover this morning that my daughters are growing up. I know, I should have recognized some of the signs before now. Walking, talking, beginning school, celebrating birthdays...these are all clues, right? Somehow I didn't really recognize any of this for what it was until today, when my 10 and almost 9 year old daughters made a complete breakfast for the family. Here was the menu:

  • scrambled eggs with shredded colby-jack cheese

  • fresh sliced strawberries and cream

  • toast

  • orange juice

Absolutely the best breakfast ever, in my opinion. To top it off, the stove was wiped, the cutting board rinsed and put in the dishwasher, and the spatula and spoon rest were put in the sink for hand-washing (they know I have control issues when it comes to dealing with cooked-on eggs). Talk about making a mom's day!

The girls went to swim and barbeque at a friend's grandmother's home, so it was just my husband, my baby, and myself for dinner. We decided to check out a new Cuban restaurant in the area. I was cautiously hopeful, as this part of town has shown a surprising lack of quality eateries. You'd think with the number of professional athletes, entertainers, and power players living up the road from us, we'd have restaurants on par with somewhere like Beverly Hills or at least Scottsdale, but noooooooo...we have ()live Garden, Red L0bster, and other similar chains. The rest of our non-chain options range from unimpressive to downright awful.

I love Caribbean cooking, especially Haitian and Cuban food. I kept my fingers crossed as we entered this place. Here's what I can honestly say...Yesssssssssss!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The bread: light and crispy, served with Spanish paprika-infused butter

The entrees: flavorful and cooked to perfection

My husband's ropa vieja was tender and delicious, with excellent moros y cristianos. My pollo cubano was moist and tasty, without being overseasoned. It came with congri and the second-best maduros I've ever tasted (sorry, Tigeorges in LA still takes first in that contest).

We enjoyed chatting with the owner, a painfully young-looking fellow who is clearly thrilled at owning his own place. I did have to ask him about the name. His explanation was that his wife loves "I Love Lucy". I wonder if it gave him pause that his restaurant is named after the orisha of pestilence, plague, smallpox, boils, and various other infectious diseases. Don't ask me why I know this stuff. I really should go on "Jeopardy"!

Overall, this restaurant got two thumbs up from my husband and me. We will definitely go back again sometime.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Day #10: The Mystery Box...Revealed!

Here it is, on my very own kitchen table, the mystery box! I was so excited when this arrived in the mail. After reading Jen's blog faithfully for the past few months, I knew we had a lot in common. I was totally unprepared, however, for the gift of a box full of goodies that were all things I love and need! This was just too good to be true, yet here it is. Want to know what's inside? Check this out:


  • CVS gift card (I loooooove CVS ever since learning to play the "CVS game")
  • Keresal foot cream (my heels are not loving the dry Arizona climate, so this stuff is a must-have)
  • Grammar book (Jen and I share a complete lack of patience for the abuse of apostrophes, misuse of homophones, and other slip-ups perpetrated by native speakers of the English language who actually were granted high school diplomas at one time)
  • Bath & Body Works Cherry Blossom shower gel and body cream (my #1 favorite scent in the whole world!)
  • Hershey's chocolate (the photos show what was left after 2 days)

I loved this treat! I cannot thank Jen enough for such a fun (and generous) surprise, so I plan on sending a little surprise back her way. Jen, if you're reading this, be on the lookout for a little something from me in the coming weeks :-)

Friday, July 4, 2008

Day #9

Happy 4th of July!

I know I promised to tell all about what arrived in the Mystery Prize Box from Jen, but I'm going to wait one more day. She put together such a beautiful and generous box of goodies, I want to do it justice. Today has been a long and busy day, it's late and I'm tired, so I'm going to keep this post brief.

We caught a matinee of Wall.E (great movie, loved its message), came home, did a little cleaning, baked a red-white-and-blue cake (with stars and sprinkles, no less!), grilled some steak, and went swimming at our neighbors' place. No fireworks this year. It's too hot here to go sit outside with 150,000 of your closest friends for 4 hours, waiting on a 30 minute display. Even if we had been motivated enough to brave the heat, the thunder, lightning, and wind started up around dusk and made things a little iffy for a while.

I am falling asleep at the computer, so I think I had better call it a night.

Tomorrow, pictures and details I promise (really this time, I promise!)

Happy Birthday USA!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Day #8

Some good things have been going on around here.

As I said, I began my new job on Wednesday. We were conducting a training for teachers in the county juvenile detention facility. What a way to start! I have so much to learn about this new position, but one thing is certain...I am now armed with loads of ammunition for those moments when my children feel I'm being too strict. What little I saw of the routine and structure and rules inside "juvie" makes me look like the world's most laid back, carefree mom. My girls have no idea!

Yesterday I opened my mail box to find the magic key. That's what my girls call the lockbox key the mail carrier leaves whenever we have a package. My mystery prize from Jen's Bloggy Giveaway arrived! I will post tomorrow with details on the contents. I'll say this for now: I thought this was going to be a box full of Jen's favorite things, but somehow I discovered a box full of my favorite stuff! How'd that happen?

Perhaps one of the biggest blessings of the past couple days is the restoration of air conditioning in our house. It's a good thing I was at work when the repair man fixed it, because I would have probably kissed him. I honestly have no idea how anyone lived in this part of the country in the days before air conditioning.

The skies just opened up and let loose with some very heavy rain. It is dumping at the moment, and I am so happy I want to run out and dance in the rain! Probably not a good idea however, since there's some major lightning with this storm and thunder booming all around us. I love the summer monsoon rains. They temporarily take the edge off the oppressive heat here in the desert. Gotta be thankful for the little stuff, right?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Day #7...Not So Lucky!

Remind me not to count my chickens before they hatch, okay?

After my smug post last night (where I confidently expressed my ability to get a solid night's sleep), I was startled awake at midnight by my 11-hours-post-surgical-procedure husband flying down the stairs and out the door after two guys who were stealing gasoline from our neighbors across the street! They were actually siphoning gas out of our sweet neighbor's truck that was parked in their driveway! Of course we called 911 immediately, but the P.D. was not especially prompt, and was shockingly unconcerned by our report. This especially blew my mind because the neighbors in question have a son and a son-in-law on the police force here in our town...I guess I thought their colleagues would be a little more caring and responsive. Needless to say, it was over an hour before everything was dealt with, then several more hours before the adrenaline wore off and my mind quit racing. Just in time for baby boy's 4:00-ish wake-up call.

I spent my first day on my new job trying to stay awake!

When I arrived home after a very long (but very exciting) day, I discovered our air conditioning unit had just died.

It was 112 degrees here today.

It's supposed to get up to 115 tomorrow.

We need air conditioning!

I am hot and tired...

It wasn't all bad though.
I'll blog about the good stuff tomorrow, I promise!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Day #6...Sleepy

Tomorrow I start my new job! Thank goodness the past several days have been very busy and involved me getting up extra early. I say "thank goodness" because if I wasn't so completely exhausted tonight, I'd probably be up most of the night with my typical "night-before-something-new/big/important" jitters.

For the past two days I've been up by 5:30 in order to get to the gym by 6:00. Of course, this 5:30 wake-up time comes after my usual 1:20, 3:00, and 4:10 wake-up calls courtesy of my dear son. I was so jealous when my friend Ashley blogged about her daughter (born 6 weeks after my kiddo) sleeping for 12 straight hours every night! What is her secret???!!!

In addition to being an apparent infant insomniac, my son has also reached the developmental milestone where he gets into everything, all the time. I spend just about every waking moment chasing this child. I wish there was some way to move all our electrical outlets up about 4 feet...he's not interested in the outlets themselves (so I guess those dozens of outlet covers we bought were for naught); he's obsessed with electrical cords. He wants to chew them! I am exhausted.

Just to make certain I didn't get bored this last day before my new job begins, my husband scheduled some outpatient surgery for today. So, I got to drive my darling husband to his doctor with 3 kids in tow (in 111 degree weather) and keep them busy while he was in the office. Now, he is unable to do any lifting for several days, and is under doctor's orders to be a couch potato until the weekend. So, I got to play step-and-fetch for my poor invalid spouse.

I haven't even started my new job, and I'm already looking forward to the weekend!