There's no place like

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

There is a pet shelter at Blackham Coliseum in Lafayette, right next to the Cajundome. Evacuees may bring their pets there for housing. They have PLENTY of food, water, crates, cages, bedding and newspaper, BUT the owners are responsible for feeding, watering, walking and medicating their own pets. Interested parties may call Lafayette Parish Animal Control at 337-291-5644 for more information. Also many area vets are accepting animals right now, until they fill up. Get the Yellow Pages out!

Someday Memphis will experience a large earthquake. I have heard this prediction for decades. When it does happen I will be horrified for the people and animals. Doug will be horrified by the loss of architecture and memories. Doug is a romantic. Not a flowers on your anniversary kind of romantic but a Byron-esque romantic who sees the past through a filter that makes it all seem wonderful. "The grass was greener The light was brighter With friends surrounded The nights of wonder" As we are all captured by the horror Katrina left behind, Doug is a wounded soul, holding tightly to childhood memories of living in New Orleans. I want to take a caravan of buses down and bring children up to Knoxville like World War I refugees. I want to protect them from the pain and let them go to school and karate and play happily while their parents find new homes and jobs. What Doug needs will have to wait until the call comes out, but when it comes, he will go. Doug will need to go back in time and help rebuild the past so that New Orleans has a future. "With friends surrounded The dawn mist growing The water flowing The endless river Forever and ever"

On second thought, I think Doug would have told me to take the children and head out of the area. He would have stayed behind to keep programming until the power went out and then he would have been too busy getting the house ready (moving things to the attic) to evacuate before travel became impossible.

Ecological theories of criminal behavior: Social disorganization Ecological deviance Could this happen to you? Assuming I would live in a coastal town (I won't) and assuming I wouldn't have evacuated (I would have done everything in my power to do so), would I be looting and behaving criminally? I am not talking about the people stealing food, water and diapers. I am talking about the gangs of people trying to break into the Children's Hospital to steal drugs, breaking into office buildings to steal computers and shooting at anyone who tries to stop them. At what point did survival instinct become something much more dangerous? We are safe in East TN but people are already panicking about a gas shortage. Will people be shooting each other over a tank of gas this hot, holiday weekend? Every sociologist knows the old line that "Murder rates go up when people eat more ice cream". A 2002 speech to the UN addressed disasters in areas affected by poverty.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

The pictures of people carrying infant carriers on flooded streets and handing babies to boats for rescue gives me chills. This site has information on baby-wearing that would help any parent of a small child. from Blogging Baby

Monday, August 29, 2005

Being a typical Monday, there were many miles to cover to get all the children to and from their various activities. Doug took over getting Tommy to and from therapy since I haven't found a way to clone myself yet. I took the three youngest to Noah's karate class. Evan immediately decided he was hungry which is fine except that the place was packed and I was sitting cross-legged on the floor. Luckily Noah doesn't get embarassed or he might have complained about being the only person there whose mother was sitting on the floor breastfeeding and singing like a crazed hippie. Amy decided to take herself potty while I was feeding Evan but left the bathroom door wide open. I considered trying to hoist myself off the floor and crossing the crowded room to close the door but with a baby attached I decided I would be a bigger spectacle than Amy. Crazy hippie moms don't care if their children close the bathroom door. Amy made her way back and I praised her for staying dry all day. Karate class is primarily a loud activity but for a few minutes each class the music is turned down and the students listen quietly to the teacher. It was during this moment that Amy loudly asked me "Did Evan come out your butt". I tried to hush her so I could whisper a better explanation but she just shook her head and stomped off while announcing to the already aghast parents that "The baby came out your butt". Crazy hippie moms have very confused children. At this point I stopped making eye contact with anyone in the room and decided to have a conversation with a well-fed, happy Evan. From across the room Amy sensed that she was not the center of my attention. Amy appeared in an instant, grabbed the edge of the blanket where Evan was wiggling and she pulled, hard. Evan flipped over onto his tummy before I slapped my arms down on the blanket to prevent Amy from removing it completely out from under her brother. I rolled Evan onto his back and Amy flopped down beside him. I played along and made faces and sounds at the both of them while holding their bare feet. This moment of bliss lasted only a few minutes before Noah was finished and it was time to race through traffic to pick Sarah up from her student council meeting. I buckled Evan in his infant seat and asked Amy to hold my hand. Nope. Amy was still on the floor kicking her feet in the air and proclaiming herself a baby. Crazy hippie mom must neglect that poor attention starved 3-year-old. I eventually managed to get everyone to the car and mentally encouraged myself that we would be home soon. As soon as we were stuck at a red light in a left turn only lane, Amy spoke up. "I hafta go potty." Crazy hippie mom thought about how much easier it is when little boys have potty needs while traveling. Doug can take Noah to his next karate class. I'm staying home.

In a few weeks, Sarah is going on a school trip to Dauphin Island for a week. I am soooo happy she isn't there now. I was nervous about the long drive and the land bridge but now I'll be anxiously watching the weather.

Let the rains begin. I know everyone on the Gulf Coast is eager for the rains to end but I need the rains to get started. I am one of those freaky people who get terrible headaches just before rain. Headaches that start off as a shadow and build no matter how many Tylenol I ingest. The relief comes quickly once the rain begins although an echo lingers for a day or so. Doug likes to joke that I have some leftover primitive human barometer in my head. I do wonder why I am chosen for these stupid headaches that make me want to order Vicodan from the spammers.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Doug and the older boys went camping this weekend. I got bored with laundry and needed an activity to do while holding Evan so, I made a new blog.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Did you know that House of Mouse is on the Disney Channel every morning at 4:30 a.m.? Evan knows and has a wake-up call set so that he won't miss a single fascinating episode.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Quote of the day - "I've got a card on my desk. Want me to go sign it and give it to you?"

How can the same person who can't control his own thumb enough to put it in his mouth when he wants it manage to grab my hair every single time I pick him up?

Amy multi-tasking for Half-Nekkid Thursday. Posted by Picasa

Doug posted one of my favorite pictures today. I find it very annoying that he looks exactly the same today while I have aged and gained weight. It's like living with Dorian Gray. Exactly one year ago we were celebrating and umm, I think we should celebrate fully clothed this year. I love you Doug!

Further Adventures in Bad Parenting - Last night Amy was sitting at the table finishing her dinner while I sat on the couch folding clothes when I heard her say (again) "bleep-bleep". I asked her if she had said the bad words and she held up a small action figure from a Happy Meal. "No, I didn't say it. He said bleep-bleep." I sighed, walked to the table and picked up the toy. I scolded the toy and put him in time out, facing the wall. Amy puckered up her face and frowned at me. A few minutes later I picked up the doll, warned him about using bad words and handed him back to Amy. Amy grinned. I returned to the laundry, convinced that I have truly lost my mind.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Noah forgot his Social Studies book so I found this website to help him do his homework and this website to help him study states and capitals.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I am happy that Doug got out of bed today.

For safety reasons, during the day the classroom doors stay closed and locked at my oldest daughter's middle school. Citing health department rules, no home-made snacks are allowed at my youngest daughter's preschool. Background checks are required to teach Sunday School or help in the nursery. Why do I still feel like moving my family to a cabin in the wilderness (Yes, I saw The Village.)? I think it is largely because no matter how many rules and restrictions we put in place, bad people will always do bad things. Does it really comfort parents that their child won't be eating homemade cupcakes at school this year? I have known more than one family who left their doors unlocked when they left the house. They understood that locks don't stop bad people. My heavily armed extended family thinks they are protected. I don't. Sometimes I think we should put Prozac in the drinking water.

Monday, August 22, 2005

I am happy to have air conditioning.

Today is Amy's first day of preschool. She has never been to daycare and her only babysitter has been her grandparents. Amy is thrilled and excited to have children to play with during the day. "I go to school just like Sarah!" I am a big mess of contradicting emotions. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, August 21, 2005

I am happy that all of the children are in bed and their clothes and bags are ready for morning. Now I can sleep.

Today I am not going to complain about my neck hurting. Instead I am going to whine and moan that the only time my arm doesn't hurt is when it goes numb for no reason. Grrrr.

Maybe next year we will take Evan in the fountain to cool off. Posted by Picasa

We watched the dancing, listened to the music and ATE good food at the Greek Festival. Posted by Picasa

Then, we went to the World's Fair Park and Doug whined about the fate of the Candy Factory. Posted by Picasa

Yesterday we had a Girl Scout meeting and then the children went swimming with their grandparents. Posted by Picasa

Regardless of the humidity, yesterday was HOT!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

I am happy to have a loving, extended family. I am thrilled that one brother will be in town for Thanksgiving and the other will be here for Christmas. Now if we could just get them to visit at the same time. Hmmm.

Happy Birthday to my brother in DC who doesn't visit often enough. I guess I'll just have to bring my gang of mess-making hoodlums up to your nice, clean house so the children can visit with their Aunt and Uncle.

Friday, August 19, 2005

I am happy that I have a roof over my head because many people do not.

Blogger has added a little censorship flag to the top right of its' blogs. Shame on you Blogger! I am a grown adult who can make her own choices about what I do and don't read. Will people censor blogs that they disagree with politically? What about bloggers who discuss breastfeeding? Pictures of baby bottoms? This is just ridiculous.

What good does it do to keep the classroom doors locked all day when you have small children spending their days in tornado magnets? Why do different schools have their open house on the same night? at dinnertime? Why is there no meal that everyone in the house will eat? Why is printer ink so expensive? Why can't three broken mowers be used to make one working mower? Why are my back and shoulder killing me?

Thursday, August 18, 2005

I am happy when Doug holds my hand. I like the way we can finish each other's sentences and appreciate how he knows what I'm thinking. Doug is a very complicated person but I love him dearly. When Doug is happy, I am happy.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

I am happy when I pet Molly. She helps me to relax and just enjoy the moment. When she sleeps with her feet in the air I just have to laugh at her silliness.

Blingo I've been using Blingo as my search engine for a few weeks now but haven't won anything yet. The problem must be that I need more "Blingo Buddies". Just click on the link above or in my sidebar and register. Then, use blingo as your search engine and you might win a prize. It's like playing the slots for free.

Another invention idea: We need a "workshop dishwasher". The dishwasher in the kitchen is for plates, cookware and things involved in eating. The workshop washer would be for crocs, flip flops, legos, bath toys, frisbees, etc. Guys could use it for some of their workshop toys too. I'm still waiting for the sippy cup with a child-proof lid and a revolving front door for houses to be invented.

This is what I do on the weekends. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

You know Amy likes a movie when she drags her potty chair into the living room.

This has been an odd day, so I am happy that Amy was completely unscathed when she knocked her dresser down. I am happy that Molly ate one of the dusters. She made a huge mess of wood splinters and whatever fur it was made of BUT the thing was so nasty with dust that I literally choked every time the children dragged it out to swordfight with it. I prefer to clean with a cloth that can be thrown in the washing machine even if I have to drape the cloth over a broom handle.

Ironic remark of the day: "Look around the classroom. If you aren't doing what everyone else is doing then you are doing something wrong." Doug's parting words to Noah this morning.

I have said nothing in my blog about something that has captured the media's attention. Lest it seem that I am unaware of anything happening in the world I will make just one comment. I want all of my children to have happy, productive lives. My worst nightmare would be losing a child and the mere thought of it is so horrible that I avoid it altogether. I have no doubt that it would change me. I don't know if I would lose my sanity or become a crusader against injustice. I do know that my grief and suffering would be private and not a circus sideshow for the world to stare at in amazement. I have seen a mother throw herself on her daughter's casket and watched a child stroke his dead father's cheek. These were extremely personal glimpses into mourning. Family and friends alike had the good sense not to pull out cameras or stare. We bring casseroles and chicken to homes. We hug, hold hands and cry together. We listen silently or just listen to the silence. The missing are heard much louder in the silence than in a noisy crowd.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Maybe it's a good thing I never got a tattoo.

Today I am happy because it is Tommy's birthday. It has not been an easy 15 years but the progress Tommy has made is fabulous! He has come so far from the child who doctors said would never read and should be institutionalized.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Today I am happy because the laundry is all washed and dried. I have a mountain to fold and put away and there will be dirty laundry once everyone bathes and gets in jammies but that's ok. This is progress.

One of the relatives gave Amy an Elmo Giggle Gabber several months ago. It giggles and says short little phrases. One of its' favorite phrases is "Yippee-ki-yay" and every single time I hear it my mind follows up with a Bruce Willis movie quote. Make it stop! Posted by Picasa

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Ben & Jerry's does GREAT birthday parties. Tommy liked putting his handprint on the store wall. Everyone liked making tye-dye shirts and sundaes with two flavors of ice cream. I chose Fossil Fuel and Chocolate Therapy. Doug had some coffee ice cream. Posted by Picasa

Right now I am happy because Evan just nursed himself to sleep. He is sound asleep, completely relaxed in my arms and I feel bliss just staring at him.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Today I am happy because tomorrow we will be having a family birthday party for Tommy at Ben & Jerry's.

WHY is the commercial ditty "Galaxy Glue" stuck in my head? Does anyone other than me remember the movie it came from?

Doug has made a photographic entry describing the school morning madness involved in getting three children to three different schools. When we start taking Amy to preschool two mornings a week later this month the madness should really crank into high gear. Aunt Jeni and Uncle Dean posted some wonderful pictures from their visit last weekend.

Number of times you tell a child something before they learn it? 1000s "Did you wash your hands after you flushed?" Number of hours you have spent reading with your child? millions "I do not like green eggs and ham." Number of times you curse before your child repeats it for the grandparents? one "Where did Amy learn to say bleep-bleep?"

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Today I was happy when we all went spent time together. I am happy that the children are all happy with school and their teachers.

Today's Higglytown Hero is a detective. I guess crime and infidelity are a problem in Higglytown too.

Two questions: What kind of mental health and personality issues would it take to commit a murder that is certain to be a death penalty offense just so you could consummate your marriage to an inmate? How could the same prisoner escape three different times?

One of the children celebrating Half-Nekkid Thursday. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Today I am happy that the backpacks are packed with everything that was on the first supply lists. Tomorrow's clothes and shoes are set out with the bags and the children are all tucked in bed.

Dear teenage driver, I know you were happy to get that parking place near the store today. You are young, strong and healthy but I am sure you felt relieved that you didn't have to walk all the way across the hot parking lot. I don't know why you thought we were racing each other and I can't believe you were taught that it is okay to cut people off and pull into the parking spot they were clearly already entering. I do know that I would like to have called your parents. I would like you to spend your day driving five children all over town and wrestle two of them in and out of car seats in busy parking lots. Thank you for causing me even more stress as I had to safely hold a lot of little hands to cross the dangerous parking lot when I should have been parked next to the sidewalk where you were parked. I sincerely hope my own children are more polite and considerate when they are drivers. Cathy

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Today I am happy that Girl Scouts has started back up for the year. I worry about managing my little ones around a flock of teenage girls (we are up to 11 girls in the troop this year) and hope the girls are eager to work on their Silver awards.

Blockbuster is having money woes. Are they really blaming it on eliminating late fees? You can rent a movie from the cable company without getting off the sofa (or out of the bed). For the cost of two movie tickets you can buy a DVD. I suspect the days of video rental stores are numbered.

Yesterday on The Today Show Katie Couric interviewed a physician about breastfeeding. I didn't see it because SpongeBob was entertaining Noah at that time. Non-Prom Queen watched it though. Apparently Katie Couric finds it creepy to see older babies being nursed. The article on the Today Show website states:

"It's clear that these experts feel that infants should be exclusively breast-fed for the first six months of life. And they also recommend that breast-feeding be continued for 12 months with the addition of complementary food. Finally, breast-feeding for the first two years of life is encouraged."
Shame on anyone who discourages mothers from doing what is best for their babies. I am disappointed that someone who worked so hard to reduce the stigma in another area would use their power as a celebrity irresponsibly on a subject like breastfeeding.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Today I am happy because it is not suffocatingly hot outside. I walked the mall with Evan and only had to stop and nurse him three times and change his clothes once. He is a few ounces shy of 14 pounds but I would like to hold him all the time. He is so snuggly.

Was it a movie line or a celebrity quote that credited the key to a successful marriage being only one spouse going crazy at a time? Doug and I may test that theory this week.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Today I am happy because Aunt Jeni and Uncle Dean are here painting the girls' room. The grandparents are keeping the girls busy until it is done and the girls have no idea what we are doing. Sarah and Amy will be thrilled but I am probably more excited than anyone. The room looks soooo much better. Thank you Dean and Jeni!! Posted by Picasa

Mom had pancakes while Evan had milk. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Today, Breastfeeding in Public Tour '05 stopped at: Roane State Community College

Today I am happy that Tommy earned two first place ribbons and one second place ribbon at the horse show. He was nervous and flapping but he relaxed and rode beautifully. The very best part was the huge, sincere smile of joy and pride on his face when they called his name as the winner. STAR has made a tremendous difference in Tommy's life.

World Breastfeeding Week ends tomorow but I will be nursing for another 10 months. Posted by Picasa

:) Posted by Picasa

Friday, August 05, 2005

Today, Breastfeeding in Public Tour '05 made stops at: Post Office Proffitts Old Navy (while shopping) Bi-Lo

Today I am happy because I found a shirt for Tommy to wear to his horse show tomorrow. The family will all be there and it is a very rare but special opportunity to see Tommy shine.

Our Health Department let me down (again). Yesterday I had a letter from the county health department informing me that one of Amy's immunizations was invalid because the vaccine hadn't been stored correctly. She received the pointless shot in August of 2003. Did it really take 2 years to find this mistake? As the parent of a child with Autism, I take immunizations very seriously. I know the risks and worry that we are making the right choice. Giving my child a bad vaccine is very upsetting. The letter goes on to offer replacement shots on a specific date later this month. No thank you, I will be visiting the pediatrician for this and all future immunizations. This isn't my first bad experience with the health department. Last month they sent me a letter stating that Evan had his PKU testing done before he was 24 hours old, invalidating the results and asking that I have the test repeated. I was upset that a month passed before they let me know there was a problem but even more upset because I knew the testing had been done correctly. A few phone calls later it was learned that the paperwork had been dated incorrectly when the health department collected it. Maybe the health department needs to spend a few less dollars surveying teenagers about their risky behaviors (KAPPI) and hire someone to get information released in a more timely manner.

Even during World Breastfeeding Week, keep your baby buckled in his seat when the car is moving. Posted by Picasa For Barry

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Today I am happy because Doug is going to clean the floors. I am uncharacteristically calm and unconcerned about cleaning the house. I am just happy to watch the children play while I hold Evan.

Today, Breastfeeding in Public Tour '05 made stops at: Bearden Middle School Home Depot Driving down Kingston Pike (not technically a stop)

Keeping with this week's World Breastfeeding Week theme, click to see today's Half-Nekkid Thursday picture.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Today I am happy that Amy stayed dry all day (even during her nap) although I know she isn't potty-trained yet. Evan's big gummy grin makes me feel blissfully happy.

"Song for a Fifth Child" Mother, oh mother, come shake out your cloth! Empty the dustpan, poison the moth, Hang out the washing and butter the bread, Sew on a button and make up a bed. Where is the mother whose house is so shocking? She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking! Oh, I've grown as shiftless as Little Boy Blue (Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo). Dishes are waiting and bills are past due (Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo). The shopping's not done and there's nothing for stew And out in the yard there's a hullabaloo But I'm playing Kanga and this is my Roo. Look! Aren't her eyes the most wonderful hue? (Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo). Oh, cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow, But children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow. So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust, go to sleep. I'm rocking my baby. Babies don't keep. by Ruth Hulburt Hamilton (first appeared, Ladies Home Journal, October 1958) Thank you M, I think I'll post this in my living room in bright blue crayon.

:) Posted by Picasa

The house is dirty, laundry needs folding and dogs need bathing. I need to buy groceries, find Tommy's birthday present and use the giant washing machines at the laundromat to wash the sleeping bags. I have two weeks to get Amy potty trained and one week to get school clothes and supplies for the children. Soooooo, I spent the morning sorting band-aids by cartoon character and putting them in separate ziploc bags.

World Breastfeeding Week Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Today I am happy because I got to bathe AND wash my hair. I laughed out loud when Amy was singing a silly song and I felt very proud watching Noah doing karate.

"In all time in this Godforsaken country, the one thing that has appalled me most of all is this prepostrous preoccupation with bosoms. Don't you realize they have become the dominant theme in American culture: in literature, appetizing and all fields of entertainment and everything. I'll wager you anything you like that if American women stopped wearing brassieres, your whole national economy would collapse overnight." Can you identify the movie and the actor?

Today, Breastfeeding in Public Tour '05 made stops at: Karate class IHOP (Kids eat free)

"Lady Madonna, baby at your breast Wonders how you manage to feed the rest" There just aren't many song references to breastfeeding.

My Tuesday picture for World Breastfeeding Week is Evan having a meal in the bookstore. Posted by Picasa

Monday, August 01, 2005

Today I am happy that I got to spend time with my husband. I missed him this past weekend.

Today, Breastfeeding in Public Tour '05 made stops at: West Park Baptist Church Michael's Crafts (shopping while feeding) Chick-fil-a Tommy's psychiatrist

It's almost time for school to start and the road that leads directly to the middle school is STILL closed for construction despite promises that it would only be closed for one week. Sarah has student council activities there twice this week, which means playing taxi with an infant passenger who wants to eat all the time. I need that road open, NOW!

How to embarrass your preteen - Instead of answering the phone with "hello", say "Sarah's answering service". The preteen will literally fly across the room to swoop the phone from your hands to stop you before scurrying back to her room to mope and talk about nothing. "Whatcha doin?'" "Nothing. Whatcha eating for lunch?" "Dunno."

As promised, one breastfeeding picture every day this week to celebrate World Breastfeeding Week. This was taken in the hospital. Posted by Picasa


In the house:

Me - the Mom
Doug - the Dad
Tommy - age 15
Sarah - age 12
Noah - age 9
Amy - age 3
Evan - 8 months old
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Mom's Stuff:

100 Things About Me
My Kids Are Pigs
My Husband's Crap
Pottery Barn Registry
Blogroll Me!

It runs in the Family:

Seldom & Never
Serendipitous Reflections
The Ramblings of CarMom
The Stomock's Retchings

Blogs I'm reading:


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