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Archive for January, 2006

i just transferred a boatload of photos off my digicam, and will sort thru those in the next few days. they’re spread out over the last few months; i expect a Christmas photo montage is in the offing. 😉

hubby is healing, thankfully. of course, the downside is that he doesn’t keep the toe bandaged as much, so i have to look at it (car wreck sort of thing, y’know), which isn’t all that great. but it is healing, and he’s more mobile/less cranky.

the lastest addition to The Ark are the mice. they’re surprisingly difficult to photograph, which i suspect has far more to do with the photographer than the mice. here’s the best shot i have so far:

they’re only in the small tank because i was cleaning the big one; they’ve inhereted one of the Critter Trail tanks, since the hammies are happy in the bin cages. it seemed like a good opportunity for a shot, tho. from left to right, the meese are Snoozey II (named after MedSm’s first and much missed Syrian hamster, whom Snoozey II resembles in coloration), Mocha Cocoa Kinkajou (who is two shades of chocolate, and has a kink in her tail), Hazel Jumping Bean (who launches herself to great heights using her tail), Ophelia (who hasn’t earned a nickname yet), and Gingersnap, who is the shyest of the lot so far.

the mice are amazingly interesting, and very amenable to being handled. so very different in personality from the hammies in terms of sociability – it’s great fun to watch what they all get up to together. 🙂

off to a performance tomorrow with Jen, and i’m looking forward to a bit of a sleep-in, as MedSm’s mom picked him up tonight late. grocery shopping done, laundry mostly done, bought some new clothes for myself, picked up two paychecks on Friday… life is pretty good. 🙂

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Long distance:: tlephone
Meant to be:: fate, karma
Here:: or there
Endless:: summer
Resentment:: useless
Insipid:: bloated
Bunny:: hop
Slogan:: eering
Naked:: truth
Sarcasm:: way of life

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mmphrgh.

while many things are good these days, this was still a rough day. and then, when i had a chance to go thru my email tonight, i found this quote.

The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.

— Ralph Waldo Emerson

and that helped.

the rough part today was reading all the stories about how our donors died. one woman, 53, fell asleep and drove off the road. when the EMTs got there, she was still walking around. another older woman, with a history of depression, shot herself in the head. her mother was the one who signed off on the donor form. a young man, hanging out at home, was shot in the head several times while sitting on his own porch. a young boy seems to have died from complications of a genetic disease; researching the disease, the odds were stacked against him from the start. a young girl was hit by a car. a young boy was hit by a truck, and doctors spent days trying to save him. one infant seems to have died from ‘shaken infant syndrome’ – a fancy term for parents who can’t cope with a crying child, IMHO. and one young girl, who should have come in to the world, curious and lovely, died almost instantly after an emergency C section.

equally bad were the reports on the teenagers. almost to a person, the reports read like this: ‘MVA, victim ejected from car, coded on site’. they weren’t wearing seatbelts, driving or not. if they had… if they had. who knows. one boy was thrown from the bed of a pickup, going 40 mph, and died of head trauma. (don’t even ask me how many medical variations of head trauma exist.) thrown out of the bed of a pickup! part of me wants to travel back in time, and yell at these kids.

i spent many moments today trying not to cry. talking to hubby tonight, he said ‘you need to find a way to leave work at work, or not care.’ and while i see his point, i disagree in some ways. it’s not about not caring, in any way. but i do need to let go.

what i think is this: it’s possible to read all these stories, see the people as individuals, honor the decision to be an organ donor, respect the families, and… not take it to heart. i can read these stories, hold them in my hands, honor and respect the individuals, light a candle for them on my altar, and let them know that they are seen as people. just … hold them in my hands, bow, honor, and let go.

yeargh.

spent time with MedSm tonight, caring for animals and cleaning cages. got huge hugs from him and hubby, which were balm to the soul. made a decent dinner. cleaned off both cars this morning. got supplies for many of The Ark.

eh.

some days. some days are better than others. here’s hoping that tomorrow is one of the better.

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first: helmet procured. the weekend was curative, in many ways. sadly, for MedSm, it involved a big, wonking nap for me. but i still got to spend time with him, so it’s not all a loss. 🙂

second: we anticipated rain on Saturday, so we made plans to go to a movie during the day. MedSm was thrilled, because he got to bring part of his candy stash (from Halloween!), as much as he could carry in my pocketbook. he was also thrilled to see a movie, and to see it with two of his parents.

third: wow. just… wow. and… wow. we took MedSm to see The Chronicles of Narnia. i’ve talked about these books before; i read them when i was 7 or so, having checked them out from my Sunday school library, and loved them for the sheer inventiveness of the stories. at the time, i had no idea that they had Christian overtones. (in hindsight… but at the moment, i honestly didn’t get it.) when the film was announced, i knew i wanted to share with MedSm the absolute joy and loveliness of the stories. so we’d arranged with his mom that we’d get to take him to the movie. he’s been a bit impatient, has MedSm. so getting to go this past weekend was amazing and fantastic on all sorts of levels – getting out of the house, having a plan, getting to go somewhere (as we’ve been playing the budget close to the vest), buying snacks, seeing a Movie! on the Big Screen! as a Family! was all good.

this is one of the few movies, for me, that’s lived up to or surpassed the book(s). interestingly, i hadn’t realized until i’d read a few reviews that Lewis was, in fact, fairly sparse with details, in terms of how things/people/places looked. plot was thick on the ground, visual details, not so much. so, when i’d read the books, i had a very clear picture of how things should be, as i’m sure every reader did. the beauty of making this into a film is that the filmmakers had a great deal of latitude in presentation, as long as they hewed close to the text, which it seemed to me they did.

the *only* quibble i had with the film was the voice of Aslan. i have no idea who i would have cast, but … that wasn’t it.

that quibble is far outstripped by what i loved. the casting of the kids, the transition from wardrobe to Narnia, the degree to which the film represented the core of the story, the beauty of acting from the person cast as Mister Tumnus… soooo many details rang true.

plus, it was wonderful to share the experience with MedSm, who also loved the movie for his own particular reasons.

feh… snow/slush/nastiness today. shovelled my car out three times, came to appreciate the value of covered parking at the workplace, or, really, anywhere.

remind me not to wonder where winter has gone, eh? 😉

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ai yah.

y’know, i know that many people have bigger problems than mine, so i really shouldn’t complain all that much. i have a loving spouse, loving kid, family, friends, home, job, health…

and yet, at the end of a day like this, i just want to burst into tears, i’m so tired. to wit:

6:45 am: alarm goes off.
7:20 am: dressed, down the stairs, packing snacks for MedSm and explaining that he’ll have hot lunch today (because i can’t countenance packing a sandwich).
7:30 am: ask MedSm to brush teeth.
7:35 am: ask MedSm if he’s brushed teeth.
7:40 am: ask MedSm if he’s brushed teeth.
7:45 am: ask MedSm if he’s brushed teeth.
7:50 am: threaten to remove MedSm’s teeth, and duct tape sneakers to his feet.
7:50.5 am: manage to leave house, relatively intact.
7:51 am: watch MedSm take a digger down the front stairs (only 3, thankfully) as he remains engrossed in his GameBoy.
8:07 am: get MedSm to school, have arguement over wether he’s on time for 8:10 start of school. receive evil eye when i refuse to argue and say ‘what. ever.’
8:15 am: finesse things in school office over various issues – none of which involves MedSm being late.
8:45 am: arrive at work.
5:15 pm: leave work. (the intervening time is best left alone, for now. there was An Issue today which took altogether far too long to resolve, and all else was picayune details.)
6:00 pm: arrive at haircut appointment. small sanity break.
6:30 pm: start grocery shopping for the week. call home to let hubby know. spend the next two hours between stores and mentally inventorying the cupboards.
8:30 pm: buy bottle(s) of wine.
8:45 pm: arrive home, tote bags of groceries and wine upstairs. sort mail, feed animals, put away groceries, empty dishwasher, start load of laundry so MedSm will have a basketball uniform tomorrow morning (at 8 am, which means a 6:30 start for some of us), and try to make dinner for self. MedSm expressed surprise that i haven’t eaten yet, but doesn’t apologize for eating *all* the pizza.
8:46 pm: anticipate next hour or so, and whine to hubby, who advises ‘procure helmet.’ (as life is always hard, and he’s right.)
8:47 pm: open bottle of wine.
9:45 pm: catch up with Chica Bean, find out what’s up with her, use many inappropriate words on the phone; MedSm is still awake, and has the volume muted on his Gameboy, all the better to hear Dirty Words. 😉
10:30 pm: reply to several emails about volunteer and school commitments.
10:31 pm: revisit idea of volunteering.
midnight: fish laundry out of dryer, and feel overwhelming impulse to document my sad, sad day. 🙂

and yet, i’ll get up and do it all over again tomorrow. minus the office, but plus MedSm all day. i love him, yes i do, i love this kid. but 15 hours straight of seven year old energy on a rainy day… is rough. thankfully, there’s basketball in the (wee hours of the) am, and we have a plan to see a matinee movie tomorrow.

yewfah. off to snuggle with my cat and my hubby, not necessarily in that order. 😉

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so, wicked brief recap of the last few weeks, best as i can recall:

Medium Small’s finger has healed. we’re still tussling over karate – why he’s going, and if he should keep going. basketball is good. school is pretty decent, altho he’s back to (still at?) some social issues. gawd… can we ever really remember how hard it is to work all that out – friends, peers, how to deal with adults, yadayada – once we get out of it? yewfah.

hubby has started a second gig, in addition to the magic, one which affords us insurance. and that’s a good thing, as he’s injured himself on the job. here’s hoping that the insurance kicks in to cover the worker’s comp claim. *wry grin* he’s healing, which is good. and i brought him a roast beef sandwich from Kelley’s in the ER, after i’d dropped him off there, which made him happy. i only regret that i didn’t bring enough sandwiches for everyone there. doesn’t it rot to be sitting around waiting?

life here is good, if topsy turvy. MedSm is dealing with many changes up north (stepbrothers are gone for an indeterminate amount of time), and many changes here (see above). hubby and i are both figuring out what it means to be working at least full time, if not more.

and i’m rather confused by all of it. i feel good about the current project, happy with what i’m still able to do for the school, panicked about getting chores done, disappointed that i’m not putting a proper dinner on the table every night, relieved about the positive cash flow, forgetting things every which way because i’m sooooo dang tired… gah!

small happy Parent Moment the other night: MedSm had a bad dream (that’s not the happy part), and his first instinct was to call for me to come help him. i’m immensely honored to have worked up to that place in his life. hubby, as it turns out, was the one to go check, because it wasn’t clear what the issue was, and if it was a Boy Moment (bed wetting), it’s better to have hubby check first.

pig, my dwarf hammie, is doing fairly well. i’ve changed his diet all around to a custom blend with very little if no sugar, and liquid vitamins in his water. he seems happier, drinking less, and peeing a bit less, altho his sugars are still thru the roof. much to my delight, i finally managed to score Keto-Diastix to test his levels and make sure he doesn’t lapse into ketoacidosis. not sure if there will be anything to do, should he reach that point, other than comfort him, but that at least would make me feel like a better pet parent.

pig, btw, has become the loviest little animal – i can pick him up, carry him anywhere, and he comes over to the door of his cage when i call. spoiled little man – i think he expects treats. 🙂

oh! my sis is coming up here for a conference next month, and managed to wangle a few extra days. so she’ll be staying with us – yay! – and i have the honor of hosting her baby shower. 🙂

speaking of babies, we got to visit bro-in-law #2 and his wife last week, with MedSm in tow. the big treat was meeting Peanutte, our 3 month old niece. ohmilord, but she is tiny! when she was born, she was within 3 ounces of my birth weight. she’s since doubled her weight, and i was still panicked about breaking her. called my mom the next day, and explained what a visceral appreciation i now begin to have of her experience as a first-time mom. oh. mi. god. how my mom didn’t lose her mind, i do not know.

*sharp right* this weather is absolutely insane. not the rain and wind today, or the freezing temps yesterday, or the balmy temps last week, but the whole of it. it’s like being on a big seesaw. and my poor garden. if any of my bulbs make it thru and bloom, i’ll be happy. i still apologize to them every morning, when i walk out the door.

*sharp left* the hardest part of my day was this: typing in donor info for an 11 month old boy and a 3 day old girl. how can you see those numbers as anything other than heartbreak? mostly, i can see my work as statistics, or informed decision, or material for positive medical advancement. but with those numbers… i can’t see anything other than the families.

feh. it’s late, i’m tired, and i have to go back to it all again tomorrow. there is a lesson in this somewhere. but i think i need more sleep to find it.

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driving along tonight, stressed out, thinking about a million things, that unimaginably sweet voice came on the radio, and i found myself singing along at top volume.

You’ll never find
as long as you live
Someone who loves you tender
like I do
You’ll never find
no matter where you search
Someone who cares about you
the way I do.

we’ll certainly miss you, Mr. Rawls, as well as your caring and generosity.

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