Friday, June 30, 2006
"They" say that Nutrasweet (R) is bad for you -- that it kills brain cells. "They" may SAY it, but brothers and sisters, I am living proof. Of course, it could just be that I'm getting old, or that I have two children, but I prefer to blame it on "The Man." So let it be known that all my flightiness is surely a result of a lifetime addiction to Diet Coke (R).
Yesterday evening, in my haste to prove that I could, indeed, collect two children (preferably my OWN two children) from daycare and get them home in one piece, I left all of their belongings (dirty bottles, wet bathing suit and towel, craft project, etc.) at daycare on a hook in Marcus' room. They called me at 12 minutes until 6 to laugh at me and tell me to come get my stuff. It takes me fifteen to get there, assuming the kids are strapped in the car and ready. They weren't, so there was no way I could get back there before they closed. No matter... I can get them tomorrow.
So today dawns and I have to pack extra things for the kids because I am working tonight and they are going to Aiden's house to cause trouble there. I remember nightclothes (barely) and diapers and bottles and formula. I forget Athena's pacifier. It's been hard enough getting her to go to bed lately, but I left my good friends (well, I HOPE they are still good friends) with no pacifier.
I get them to daycare this morning and only misplaced my keys twice while dropping them off. I gathered all the stuff from yesterday and threw it in my car, then took the empty diaper bag and bottle bag back in so my friends would have some way to carry all of my kids' crap home.
I had to take the nightclothes and formula to Aiden's house (which is within walking distance of the daycare) and was leaving the parking lot (in my car. I mean, when I say "walking distance," I mean that someone else could walk it. I wouldn't want to.) when I noticed my gas light was on. Peachy. So I checked the trip odometer. 298 miles on one tank of gas. The most I have EVER pushed one tank (and even then I felt like I could putter out any minute) was to 275 miles. Crikey.
Fortunately, there was a Shell (R) station right in that shopping center. Unfortunately, that Shell (R) station is part of a Bunkey's Car Wash (R) and so they charge nine cents more per gallon than any other station in town... unless you buy a car wash. I elected not to buy a car wash. Then I filled my tank COMPLETELY UP, all the while thinking I would just put in enough to get me to the next gas station. While I was debating where that might be... the tank filled up. Forty dollars later, I'm on my way.
I drop off the stuff for later that night, telling John everything that is in the bag (which I bet he could have deduced on his own had he, for instance, looked in the bag), but I neglected to tell him how much or when to feed my son. Fortunately, his wife thought to ask me over IM when I told her I had dropped everything off.
I had some time to kill, so I decided to hit Office Max for a couple of little fun things to dress up my new office. I was delighted to find a parking space RIGHT up front. Of course, it wasn't until I got out of my car and headed for the doors that I realized that out of habit, I parked in front of the Best Buy that is five doors down. I just walked it. I justified my moronic achievement by noting how good the 80 yard walk would be for me.
Lunch managed to go by without incident. Miraculously.
I got to work and upon sending my coworker a schedule for the interviews I just set up (we're hiring a Library Assistant), I realized I had scheduled three interviews right on top of her dentist appointment. I guess I was looking at my WHEN NOT TO SCHEDULE notes rather than the actual calendar. So I have to reschedule three people on Monday for the following Thursday. That's the Monday of July 4th weekend. I'm accepting bets on whether or not I'll be able to reach any of these people.
Dinner managed to go by without incident. I know... I'm astonished as well.
While I was at work, some kids rolled a large recycling dumpster thing into my front fender because they were bored and thought it might be fun. Then they ran. I guess we'll never know if it was as fun as they thought it would be. Fortunately, I have a Saturn, so the damage is not even really damage. The officer pointed out how many other scratches and paint flaws I have. Wasn't that nice of her? Incidentally, this paragraph does not illustrate my own stupidity. It was just something irritating that happened today.
Driving home, I was focused intently. No, not on the road, silly! I was thinking about how I was going to get two sleeping children into my car from Aiden's house, and then how I was going to get them into their own beds without waking them. Unfortunately, it wasn't until I was several miles past the turn I needed to make in order to actually COLLECT my children that I realized the point was moot if I didn't turn my butt around. John and Kathryn laughed at me. And well they should.
I'm home now. I got the kids into bed. Well, Marcus is actually sleeping in his car seat, but the car seat is in his crib. Tomorrow I have to drive them to Greensboro, as Athena and I are getting haircuts. Let's just hope I remember how to drive a car in the morning. I did have three Diet Cokes (R) this morning.
Thursday, June 29, 2006
She did finally simply pass out at about 9:40, but it wasn't pretty before that. I had company over (an old friend from the old job brought me a birthday dinner from Chili's), and she got to witness at least part of the ordeal. She was lucky though. She could yawn, and stretch, and say that she was beat and therefore had to leave. Yeah, right. Leave me with Rosemary's Baby, why don'cha?!
And poor Chris. She is so ticked off at the fact that he isn't here that she won't even talk to him on the phone. He misses her terribly, and all she does is scream "NO!" at the phone.
On the plus side, Kathryn introduced me to Playtex "Drop-Ins" bottles. I was complaining about how, now that I have weaned Marcus, I often have to run my dishwasher half full because of all the baby bottles and their various parts. She told me she used the disposable liners so all she had to wash were the nipples. I suddenly realized that... well... I could do that too!
Basically, we had these really expensive, anti-colic bottles because Athena wouldn't take anything else. So rather than buy new bottles, I just bought new nipples. However, Marcus isn't nearly as finicky as Her Majesty was... so I thought I would try these others.
Turns out Marcus really digs them. And they are lighter to hold and carry, plus they are a more convenient shape. So basically, I'm switching tomorrow! Gonna buy me about three more of these bad boys and some spare nipples, and those old bottles with FIVE SEPARATE parts are going off to the dump. HOORAY!
And even better, they are easier to find. I used to have to drive all the way across town to get replacements for the old bottles. I can get these new ones at Target... and maybe even the grocery store. I'm all a-tingle with excitement!
But for now... I need to sleep. Athena may fight it with all her might, but you won't see me resisting the call of repose...
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
She did not want to go to bed, and was hysterical over it. To try to bribe her into liking the bed idea (bribing becomes par for the course when you are a parent), I suggested maybe she might want her Flintstone's (knockoff) vitamin now. Of course, she was all about that, since vitamin=candy for this kid.
So I broke the vitamin in half (that's all she's allowed at this age) and gave it to her as promised. Then, I left the room.
She came back out, since she "wasn't tired" and I took her back in there. Rinse. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. What I didn't know is that she was sucking on the vitamin, rather than chewing it up like a normal person would do.
About the fifth time, when I walked out of the room and closed the door, I heard "WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA - augh" and then nothing.
I bolted back into the room to find my two year old daughter clutching her throat and gagging. I grabbed her around the waist and the evil vitamin popped free. She gagged a bit more, then calmed down. I, on the other hand, am just now finding time to freak out. She's asleep (I think) and it's just hitting me what has happened.
And to think, you guys thought I was a wimp for being nervous that Chris was leaving me alone with the kids... I swear they should make you get a license before you reproduce. It would stop people like me from doing it.
I'm going to go put my head between my knees now. Happy freaking birthday to me. Crikey.
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
It's silly, isn't it? Chris really spoils me. He is such a homebody that I rarely have to go it alone, even for a couple of hours. I hardly ever take the kids to daycare, and I pick them up from there only a bit more frequently. But starting tomorrow, it's all about me.
He went to Origins last year as well... same time of year. However, we had already made beach plans with Brian and Sophie for the same weekend, so he was only gone Wednesday through Friday night. I only had one kid at the time too... so I was actually looking forward to some great Mommy-Daughter time. Instead, within minutes of him leaving, she came down with Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease. Perhaps you remember...
It was then that I told Chris he could never leave town again. And yet, here he goes. I would be going with him if I hadn't just taken eight weeks maternity leave. I have no vacation time left to take. So I stay home while he hangs out with overweight guys who never shower and overweight women who wear chainmail bikinis. At least I need not worry that he will be unfaithful.
So I've been mounting my plan of attack... trying to figure out how to gently rock Marcus to sleep while Athena jumps up and down on my lap. Or perhaps how to cook dinner while feeding Marcus and entertaining Athena. (Thank goodness for DVRs and Nick Jr.! Huzzah!)
Don't get me wrong... I'm sure I'll survive. But I am going to be VERY tired by Monday morning. And then I will chain Chris to the front porch so he can't do this again.
Monday, June 26, 2006
Ever since I turned 30, birthdays have made me rather philosophical. I look back at chunks of my life and realize how far I've come. For instance, ten years ago, I was turning 25. I was at the end of an emotionally abusive relationship. I had determined that I did not have enough money to make a trip to England and Scotland with my amateur theater group and was forfeiting my ticket and redirecting funds I had raised to those worthy of the money. My father was one-year post diagnosis of prostate cancer and was preparing for a surgery that had good potential to prolong his life. I was working at a smallish publishing company and I was almost done with my first library school course (Introduction to Reference Services). I had proposed to the company I worked for that they needed a full-time librarian, and they were listening to me. I was living in the hood in Greensboro, as it was the only place I could afford on my own, and my roommate had just gone off and married the guy she had been dating since college. A guy I introduced her to, incidentally.
So all that said, my life seemed to be pretty well decided. However, if you had told me then that in ten years, I would own my third home (not all at once, of course... I just moved twice more) in Apex, be married to a mouse-killing gamer who I met while pretending to be a vampire, and have two beautiful children, I would have scoffed. Never mind all the other water that has quickly moved under the bridge. Or is that over the dam. Anyway...
I did end up going to England and Scotland with my troupe after one of the performers had a heart attack and although he survived, he was not allowed to travel. He redirected all his funds into my account because he felt that I was the most worthy recipient.
My father passed away that November despite the surgery being successful. The cancer had just spread too far.
I bought my first home the following January with money from an insurance policy, greatly improving the quality of my own life. I lost 40 pounds because that house was on a park and I was able to walk every day for pleasure/exercise. I've since gained it back, dammit.
I completed my Master's Degree, and assumed the full-time job of librarian/archivist... a job I created practically from scratch. The systems I developed there are still being used today.
I went to Greece with a girlfriend for one of the most fantastic vacations of my life.
I met and married Chris. um... that's all I'll say about that.
I ran my own business for two years, with moderate success.
I had a successful career at Dialog, which got me into management, allowing me to gain the experience I needed to get my current job with the public library.
And now I have the kids and the job at the local libray and the well-written blog that you all already know about.
I did all of that in ten short years. That's the time it took me to go from 3rd grade to graduation. At the beginning of third grade, I didn't even know the multiplication tables. By graduation, I learned most of them. Seriously, think of everything you learn in THOSE ten years. And yet, it seems to have only been a blink of the eye when I look back on it.
Is life like a box of chocolates? I sure hope not. Thirty-five-year-old chocolate is NASTY. Bleh.
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Daddy: Do you want some applejuice?
Daddy: What the hell is "Yeppa?!" Say, "Yes!"
Daddy: Good. Now, do you want some applejuice?
(reading a Dora book together -- Daddy reads the word and points and Athena repeats. Mommy is listening in while feeding Marcus)
Daddy: no, "truck"
Mommy: Athena, say, "Firetruck."
Ah... I am going to miss these days...
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Monday, June 19, 2006
He hasn't done it since, which is in line with Athena, as she did the same thing. She rolled over once at three months just to prove to the world she could, then didn't do it again until six months. I imagine she liked the dramatic effect.
Saturday, June 17, 2006
You'll find it in the Young Adult section of your local library or bookstore. Do it. Now. Before the sequel comes out.
You'll thank me.
Thursday, June 15, 2006
In your day-to-day life, you lose a hair or two along the way. In most cases, other hair has grown in to replace it. This happens in men and women. It's not really something we think about (unless we are going bald). We take a shower, rinse, lather, repeat, and notice one or two hairs in our hands. Or we brush our hair and find there is some hair caught in the brush. On a daily basis, we deal with this, and dispose of it properly, not getting alarmed or freaked out.
Of course, for some people, no hair grows, and they begin to go bald. These people do freak out a little when they find hair in their brush, but they know that it's just going to happen and they have time to adjust. Rarely does one's hair fall out all at once unless radiation is involved. And when you are having chemo, your hair is really the least of your worries (not to say that it isn't a worry...)
So again, rarely do you lose large amounts of hair all at once. Unless, that is, you were pregnant, and now you are not. And this, I think, is one of the strangest parts of recovering from pregnancy. It really does affect your whole body, and here is the proof. When you are pregnant, your body holds on to everything. You stop losing hair, but you keep growing it. You therefore get a head of thick, luxurious hair that many will ooooh and aaaaah over. You forget what it's like to lose a hair or two here or there. You don't have to clean your brush or sweep up the shower drain. You forget that you ever even HAD to do those things.
And then one day, it starts to happen. Your body says, "What IS all this hair doing here? Doesn't anyone ever clean up around here? I'm not the MAID you know. Someone else could take care of this... Geez! Fine, then... I'll clean it up!" and the next thing you know, HANDFULS of hair are coming out. I'm not exaggerating. If I could think of a way to take a picture that wouldn't be extremely icky looking (hair on brush... eeeeuuuuw), I would. And it lasts for several days. I can run my hand through my hair and out comes a significant amount of it.
This shouldn't be alarming. After all, I have lots of extra hair right now. But it is still weird, Weird, WEIRD. I am reminded, perhaps inappropriately, of the scene in Poltergeist when the face is being pulled apart. It is so much hair that it really feels like I'm yanking out chunks of my body. It doesn't seem right. And yet, I am not bald. I am, in fact, still quite laden with hair.
Isn't pregnancy weird?
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
It's gone okay thus far. He sleeps in there for a while, but when he wakes up for food or love or whatever, it's hard to get him back to sleep in there. Both nights, I've ended up bringing him back in here for part of the night. I'm hoping tonight he'll sleep longer, as he had formula just before bed, which seems to induce long, deep sleeps a bit better.
It's great having our room back, though. Especially in that early evening period. Before, I couldn't read or cross stitch up here after he went to bed because the light would throw off his sense of day and night. Now, I have the room to myself. However, I can't help feeling that someone is missing.
Perhaps this is why some (insane) parents find the family bed so appealing. After all, it's quite cozy having his warm, fuzzy little head right under my nose while we sleep. And he does seem to sleep a little better when in the bed with us. However, we certainly don't want to have to wean him from it later in life when he actually can express an opinion about it. Besides, we never have him in the bed all night. We couldn't stand that... we need a little privacy...
So he's in his crib now. I'm really hoping he can stay there all night tonight. One day soon, I'd like to get a whole night's sleep. Maybe tonight? Maybe?
For example, now when someone asks me if I have a picture of my kids, I can say... "No. I have two HUNDRED pictures of them," and whip out the old iPod. On top of that, I'll never miss another episode of VH1's The Best Week Ever, as I have subscribed to it via PodCast. And I can listen to all the book reviews all day from NPR in their PodCast as well. Hey! It's work-related. Perhaps I can get paid for that time...
And let's not forget the thousands of songs I can put on there. I probably shouldn't have taken so much time picking and choosing songs to rip. This baby could hold all the CD's I own in their entirety. Of course, then I wouldn't have as much room for Best Week Ever...
But that's not all! Did you know that iPod can pull your contacts from Outlook? So since I can't sync my Palm to Lotus Notes and I can't use the calendar function in LN anyway because I work at multiple workstations, now I can move my contacts to my iPod and leave the Palm at home. There is also a calendar, but it looks clunky... and there are even games. Hooray!
I do want to get new earphones though. I don't mind the white, stand-out design so much, but honestly, they aren't very comfortable.
I'm telling you, this librarian is so with it... perhaps I should call this blog, "The Hip Mommy Librarian."
Friday, June 09, 2006
Chicks dig hockey. And there are many reasons they do. And if you are a chick, and you don't dig hockey, it's probably because you either: a) have never seen a game, b) have only seen a game on television, c) have never seen a minor league game through two or three brewskies or even wine coolers, or d) have never seen an NHL game sober. Ladies, if you are a hockey virgin, you must immediately mark your calendar for next season and go see one. Even if you have to drive, say, three hours to the nearest hockey town. I dunno, like maybe Phoenix or something. Or Vancouver. Or D.C. I'm just giving examples here.
And don't even give me the "I don't like ANY sports line." Because I didn't either.
And if you are a chick and have read, or attempted to read, any of Chris' hockey blog entries and thought, my GOD this is BORING... don't despair. Hockey isn't about talking. It's about doing. That is a lot of the appeal for women. In fact, let's explore all the appeal factors for women.
Hockey is fast.
Let's face it, these guys are running on really slippery stuff. They are bound to move fast. You can't say that it isn't amazing to watch people move so fast with such purpose.
Hockey requires mad skillz, yo.
Not only are these guys running on ICE... they are moving a puck around and trying to get it past a (traditionally) really big guy into a (proportionally) really small goal. And they are crashing into each other and switching on and off the ice and watching out for which line they cross when... whew! Talk about multitasking. Ladies, these guys are focused.
Hockey players are athletes.
Where else do you need speed, precision, strategy, teamwork, and the ability to balance on thin slits of metal while on a slippery surface? Baseball players are fat (or doped up); basketball players are thin, thin, thin; football players are heavy as crap, but hockey players are lean, built, and have the cardio function of a machine. I would argue that no other sport requires such athletic skills.
Hockey players are team players.
This is truly a team sport. No single player can win it alone. Not even Gretsky. Okay, well, maybe HE could... but anyway. Women like team sports. We like seeing men working together for a common goal. It's a throwback to hunters of old.
And speaking of Darwin...
Hockey players are sexy. All the above traits factor into that whole natural selection thing. And let me tell you... even if your hormones are completely tuned to that special someone you married, your body will buzz when these guys are around. So even if you are the most shallow person alive... hockey has something for you. Of course, should you try to act on said lust, more power to you. For example, my favorite player is Erik Cole. Cute, isn't he? Yeah, well, his wife is gorgeous, is a skilled hockey player herself, and used to be a New York State Trooper. Let's just say that "cat fight" could not even be in the vocabulary of this woman. Try "ass kicking."
Hockey players are gentlemen.
For the most part, hockey players are the nicest guys on Earth. There are exceptions. I won't name names (Laraque, Orpik), but occasionally someone plays a bit dirty. Still, I live in a community where hockey players are the main pro athletes, and they really give back. Seriously. And their personal appearances are never laden with any bad attitude. They are really friendly guys.
Hockey players have a sense of humor.
There are many examples of this, but I must give a shout out to Ray Whitney and Mike Commodore of the Hurricanes. Here is a letter to Phil Coffey, a columnist for nhl.com.
There's two things with the Carolina Hurricanes that demonstrate the loose character of this team, and are potential topics for your column:
1) Mike Commodore & the robe.
For Christmas, Mike selected a white bathrobe as a gift from the team. He had one of the equipment guys embroider it with his number 22. He did an interview in the robe and since then, it has become a best seller in the team store. Each game, you will find impressive numbers of fans in the stands wearing an embroidered robe and a huge red afro-type wig. Being the character he is, Commodore has enamored himself to the fans like no other blue-liner has in the past. Funny.
-link to video
2) Where's Whitney.[sic]
During warm-ups, Trip [sic] Tracy, the team's TV color commentator interviews a player. It has become something that we all look forward to as Ray Whitney always finds a way to get on-camera. He mugs and pans behind the player being interviewed by slowly popping up in the space between Tripp and the player, or gracefully skating laterally across the space pretending not to look at the camera. While not a huge thing, it is something that every Caniac looks forward to. Upon request of my kids, I record each game just so that they can watch
"Where's Whitney" when we return from attending the game.
OK, OK, so these are not huge things, but they demonstrate the looseness, personality and camaraderie of the team, and go along way to endearing this team to the home crowd. It is the little things like this that help differentiate the quality of the people playing the game from other pro-team sports. I'm sure there are other and similar "personalities" in the game and a column on these sorts of antics would be welcome.
-- Fred Moore, Carolina Hurricanes Season Ticket Holder
Hi Fred. Thanks for passing those along. That's funny stuff and now it is in Ice Age. Thanks for passing it along. I don't think I've ever come away from an NHL dressing room after an odd-day practice without a smile because of some of the funny stuff that's going on.
Want to see it for yourself? Watch NBC at 8pm EDT tomorrow and when the players are warming up, watch for an interview with any Carolina player. By the end, you will have seen Ray Whitney. If not, I'll eat my hat.
Hockey is mentally entertaining.
If you want, there is plenty to think about as the guys skate their butts off. If nothing else, let's not forget the great French-Canadian names. Heck, even the Finnish names. Edmonton has a goalie named "Jussi." Yes, that's pronounced "Juicy." How entertaining is THAT?!
Hockey is old and revered.
The Stanley Cup is the oldest trophy in hockey (born in 1892). And it has great stories of its own. Too many to name here. But here's the thing... I've even touched the Stanley Cup. It's not hard to do. It's a very accessible trophy. You've got to hand it to the Canadians. They are a friendly lot. They will share their most prized possession with pride and joy. And really, it IS theirs... even when it stays down here for a year, which it is about to do.
So, in my most manly, girl voice, I scream from the mountaintop...
Thursday, June 08, 2006
Looks like I'll be at my new job (closer library) at the beginning of July full-time. In the meantime, I'll go one day next week. Two days the week after and the week after that. First on the agenda will be to figure out my schedule; second, to hire two people; and third, to figure out who is in my department. Exciting for me, yes, but still not really getting under way until next week.
We are living hockey at the moment. Game 2 is over and we emerged victorious, leading the series 2-0. Wanna know more? Read Chris' hockey blog.
Athena threw up last night all over the babysitter. She seems fine this morning, but we are debating whether or not to take her to school. I think we will. She is in good spirits and has lots of energy. Honestly, I think she may have been a little overtired yesterday. Or it may have been food related. She says her tummy feels fine.
I left my breast pump at work yesterday. This wouldn't be such a big deal, except I don't go in until noon today, and Marcus will be at daycare all morning.
Chris hates his job at the moment. I don't blame him, really. He's thirty now, and I remember this was a big turning point in my life as far as career goes. We'll see what develops.
And now, Marcus is fussing, so that's all I can post. Just wanted you to know I'm not dead... just not really doing anything worth talking about. :-)
Friday, June 02, 2006
Subject: Nuclear Regulatory Commission Local Public Documents Room
The Government Printing Office (GPO), which administers the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), is aware that several libraries that house material formerly a part of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Local Public Documents Rooms (LPDR) have been contacted recently by Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) or local power plant staff regarding this material.
The NRC closed the LPDR program in 1999 and, as a result of an agreement between GPO and the NRC, this material became part of the FDLP. An announcement appeared in Administrative Notes, March 15, 2000 (available at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/fdlp/pubs/adnotes/ad031500.html#1). A number of former LPDR libraries that are not participants in the FDLP, including your library, elected to retain their NRC collections.
If the NRC has contacted your library regarding this material, please inform GPO by completing the form available at http://gpo.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/gpo.cfg/php/enduser/ask.php?p_cat_lvl1=3&p_cat_lvl2=125.
GPO is contacting NRC headquarters to determine the reasons for the recent inquiries about this material and anticipated actions, if any. I will share any information that GPO finds out from the NRC with both FDLP and non-FDLP libraries currently holding these materials.
GPO asked all FDLP libraries contacted by the NRC to cooperate with any information requests, and I encourage you to do the same. Although there has been no formal request from the NRC to withdraw any material, I would like to remind you that, as a result of the 1999 transfer, much of this material is now covered by the regulations of the FDLP and can only be withdrawn by the NRC under the guidelines set forth in GPO's policy on the Withdrawal of Federal Information Products from GPO's Information Dissemination (ID) Programs. This policy is available at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/fdlp/pubs/policies/id72_06-21-05.pdf. Any request to withdraw materials in this collection would be communicated to you by GPO.
I would also like to take this opportunity to remind you to contact your nearest regional Federal depository library if, at some future time, your library is no longer able to support public access to this collection, so arrangements can be made to transfer the material to an FDLP library. A list of the regional Federal depository libraries is available at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/fdlp/pubs/regionals2004.pdf.
Please contact me if you have any questions about this matter. I will be back in touch with you with any new information GPO gathers about these inquiries.
Managing Director, Information Dissemination (Superintendent of Documents)
U.S. Government Printing Office