Friday, January 28, 2011

The Virus Files

Points of Interest?

  • I have been so sick for so long, that somewhere along the way I lost an entire day. I wanted to meet Jodi out on Thursday. Thursday in my fevered brain was today. But? The rest of the world seems to think that yesterday was Thursday. Huh.
  • I nearly killed myself with Nyquill, truly. Thus the lost day. Someone remind me the next time I am sick, that I can not take a full dose of Nyquill, 800mg of Motrin, 3 Tessalon Pearls (cough meds) and an antibiotic - at the same time. 
  • Trying to decide where I want to live off of the list we have to work with is akin to trying to figure out if I want to live on the 6th level of hell, or the 9th. I am not really being very adult or constructive in any of the conversations about it with Les. I am using very foul language and acting a bit....unbalanced.
  • The kids are on an upswing from their sicknesses though, not entirely back to normal. This means that Liam is walking around weeping over nothing and that Ev is Snarky McSnarkerson. On second thought,  I may take that Nyquill cocktail again, very soon.
  • I had a long talk on the phone today with a dear friend who lives far away.(Hi Vicky!) She really helped me with my attitude on the move and helped me remember that in the military- it's all temporary anyway. I needed that talk. I miss my Stalker. 
  • I am trying to get Liam into Speech Therapy. The hang up seems to be that the one place my insurance will let us go to, has a wait list and Liam is the 50th kid on that list. 
  • I had to tell Ev that she could not go with Brev and Lissa to an indoor pool place this weekend because she was still too sick. The look on her face was heartbreaking. 
  • We have used about 5 entire boxes of Kleenex over these last 12 days. 
  • My family has not called to be fakey/happy to me or to even wail and moan and complain about our Impending Move of Doom. Serves em right if we end up back in Alaska. (that's a joke Mom) (the deserving part anyway) (the Alaska part is so not a joke)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Life in Uniform

Well, there it is. "The Dream Sheet" and please believe me, I am using that term ironically.
Dream Sheet. Indeed!

My husband has advanced. It's time to move on, well, getting to be that time anyway. And we have to look at all of the possible locations we could be sent to and we have to research them and each job and decide what we want. It's usually what we want, but this time, the choices are so dismal and far flung, we are left deciding what we can "live with".
Detroit at number 2? Really?!!? Now listen- I am sure there are lots of things about the Detroit area that are great. I am sure there are lovely and fine places to live around there. I just don't want to. OK? I just don't. So that means of Les gets that job he will "geo bach" it.
Geo-bach-ing is this awful circumstance where in the military member moves to the new location and his or her family stays in the old location and they see each other once a month or so - that all depends on what the job actually is.
Miami?!?! What?!!?
These are not locations/jobs/choices I would have EVER thought would be on any "dream sheet" we ever did.

This all pretty much blows chunks.

I don't even have the heart to call my family and tell them our top 5 like I always do. They can read it here and weep and then find something, anything,  nice and encouraging to say and then they can call me and be Fakey McFakersons about it.

Eff this noise.


We're still sick.
That's a solid week of active sickness.
No one is actually on the upswing yet.
We are going to die of either:
                            1) Boredom
                            2) Snot
                            C) Bored Snot

Also how many days can 2 kids cough non-stop? What's the record on that one? I think we may have it beat. These kids are pitiful shadows of themselves. Slightly gross, hacking shadows.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Sick Beds

...and sick couch and sick floor and .... well, you get the idea methinks.
Friends, we have been laid low by a nasty virus. So nasty in fact that I have nothing but respect left for this thing.
We went to the Outer Banks to see Uncle Mike. And that was fun. BUT, somewhere along the way we came in contact with, "The Virus That Doesn't Exactly Kill But Makes You Wish It Did".
I have never been this sick in my whole life. Never.
At first we thought it was just me (and poor old Uncle Chris) and I was ok with that. There was Les to take care of the kids and I just laid in the dark trying to breathe and not cough and contemplating all the ways my body was aching. Then at some point yesterday, I stumbled down the stairs to witness both kids laying eerily still on the couch. Pale and shaky, hot and listless. And Les was coughing.
We have had headaches that make 6 year olds weep and fevers of nearly 103. We have had copious amounts of various colored snot and phlegm. My chest and guts are so sore from coughing that I am thinking about giving up moving and breathing all together.
Like Les says, it's " like a pathetic combination of a zombie flick and a Helen Keller biography"

So realistically I think we are looking at a solid two weeks to full recovery. If this were historical times, we would be quarantined and shunned. Possibly burnt out. 

Leslie remains the strongest one and I am utterly amazed at his ability to do things like walk upright and use higher math to calculate everyone's next dose of motrin/tylenol/symptom manager.

In other news: I showered today but had to sit cold and wet on the edge of the tub for about 10 minutes to gather the strength to dry off. I am also partaking in such risky behaviors as sleeping with my hands on my face (only my sister will get the dire straights of that one) and eating chocolate ice cream for all three meals.
Liam is currently rolling about in his crib oozing snot and asking for help, why he just won't fall asleep is a mystery for the ages.
Also we are at the very dregs of "family entertainment" and if I have to watch one more sub-par animated piece of crap I just might induce a coma with Children's Vicks 44 - it would take the entire bottle for one my size but hey, you gotta do what you gotta do.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


I know the blog has been slow lately. I have many, many things that I want to talk about. It's just that I am having a hard time getting things out. My mind flits from one subject to another and I am left sort of scrambled. If you couple that scrambled thing with the fact that, for some reason I am feeling very emotionally delicate, well you can see why there hasn't been many posts. I was talking on the phone with my sister today and she mentioned how "all over the place" I seemed.

I have been in bloggy land reading though and have found lots of great posts that echo what I am feeling and happen to say it much better than I can.
Like this one,   or this one,  and this one.

We also happen to be having a "time". I am hesitant to talk about it or acknowledge it- like in baseball when  pitcher is pitching a perfect game. You sort of sit and breathe shallow and hope that what you are seeing is, in fact, really happening. So I am just trying to enjoy it.

I may be quiet a bit longer. Just giving my self time to let a few things gel. Plus we are having a big family thing that will eat a few days of our life, a fun thing, a positive thing but it will keep me away from the computer for a bit.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Boy in the Hood

Liam goes one of two ways when the camera is on. He either: 1) Gets completely serious or 2) Gives me his patented "pucker smile" or some variation there of. While the pucker smile is cute, I don't want every picture from his first year home being of the pucker smile. In an attempt to get a few natural smiles and expressions, we played nearly a gajillion games of "Where's Liam?!?!" today while he was wearing the hood on his favorite play outfit. It was hard work. He was heartbroken from being excluded form going sled riding this afternoon, though he didn't know a thing about the sled riding, he just knew that Papa and Evah left without him and it was sad and he was sad and not even the cat could cheer him up there for a few minutes. Mama prevailed though. Yes, she did. She did not resort to a sweet snack, why would you think that? Nope. She did it all with her very own brand of Mama Magic, which does not include sweet treats. Ever. Never ever. Well.....maybe sometimes. In desperate situations...

Billy Bones would like you all to know that He is always photogenic, even when He is about to commit a heinous crime such as clawing the couch in an attempt to wrest Mama's attention away from, what He calls, "That Thing". Please note his stripes.

Calamity Bean Loads Her Gun

Friday, January 7, 2011

Adventures of the Caped Crusaders: Chatterbox and Scowley

Chapter 1: In which plans are made and not much else...

First there is a conference to identify enemies, maidens in distress and to decide what The City will be called.

Then Chatterbox shows Scowley the map of The City (name still to be determined) and they lay in a course.

Now we see Chatterbox teaching Scowley about "action arm" which assists in flight.

Scowley's attempt at "action arm". 
"Not too shabby" says big sister Chatterbox.

Scowley finds himself in need of a big dose of encouragement. And Chatterbox obliges her sidekick with a little squeeze about the neck. 

Chatterbox away!!!!! To the rescue!! Let's go Scowley!!!
(However, Scowley was more interested in not busting his face on the stairs)

And so lunch time rolled around and our intrepid duo took a break form crime fighting -well the planning of the crime fighting anyway.

                                       Join us tomorrow for "Calamity Bean Loads Her Gun"

                                                And now a word from our sponsor...

Kid Cling! The product that keeps kids close at hand.  Our never fail formula keeps those pesky mess makers up off of the floor and on your back like a bad habit. Buy Kid Cling today!!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Last Year.....

On January 5 last year I was watching a Miles Davis documentary with Ev and Les was outside shoveling a mountain of snow out of the driveway. In the middle of a quiet afternoon, my phone rang.
It was 'the call". The referral call for a little guy named Dang Ao Zhuang.
I said yes before Les even knew I was on the phone.
An e-mail with a picture was sent. I looked at his face. I felt quiet and still inside. A little afraid. A lot nervous. But I knew. He was my son.

We waited until July to travel and meet him. He has been home almost 5 months now. Our coming together has been rough and easy, sublime and yet, a struggle. He came to us a 2 year old and that itself has thrown a wrench into MY plans. I am letting those plans go. I am worrying less about tomorrow and just letting us come together each day. A little bit here, a little bit there. I love him though. Desperately, madly. He is so sweet and such a pleasure on many levels. 
I am glad that I said yes. I am glad that my heart understood what my head did not. I am glad that we stepped out into the breach and reached for this little guy. 
My Liam. 

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Top Ten

I decided to follow along with TonguMomma and do a top ten list of my favorite photos from the year 2010. This past year was truly a big one for us all. Ev learned to read and we entered into homeschooling full time for first grade. Les passed his test for advancement. We completed the re-do on the downstairs of the house. We had a referral for a boy in January, traveled to China for the second and most probably last time in July, and we met that little boy. We became a family of four, we went through two surgeries with Liam. Oh and there were so many happy, everyday moments that I can't begin to count them.
2010 also brought it's own share of struggles. We struggled financially, we struggled with Liam and that becoming four that I mentioned. We have faced some pretty significant power struggles with Ev during the homeschooling. Leslie's advancement means a move that we neither wanted or expected for another year at least.
I will say though that we have classified 2010 as a good year. A good, but tough year. A year full of all that life can offer. Our days have been filled mostly with smiles and laughter, love and kindness. I guess that's all you can expect out of any year.

Without further ado, here are the pictures that I have gone back to time and time again over the year. They are listed here in no particular order....

1) Liam's referral photo. He would look nothing like this and be so much older by the time we met him in July but this picture was my first look at our fourth person. The little guy that would round us out as a family.

2) Evelyn and Brevin out playing in the soft rain of a summer afternoon. I will always remember the two of them splashing and laughing up and down the street as if they had the entire planet unto themselves.

3) Les smoking his pipe. I love any picture of my husband but I like this one in particular because that is the exact expression I see on his face most days of our life. 

4) The completed down stairs. The work was finally done, the mess cleaned up, the furniture in place and I finally had the red room I have always wanted.
 5) Ev and Kate and Audrey at Cedar Point. There is just something about this that I love.

 6) Les and Ev at a baseball game. They sat like this the whole game, just talking about baseball and stats and eating hot dogs.

 7) Me, Liam and Ev on one of our many bus rides in China. This was the second or third day that we had him and we were captivated. 

8) At the Cleveland Zoo. I don't know, whats not to love about this picture?

9) My little witch and her pet lion. I snapped this shot while we were out taking pictures. It was not really intended, they were walking from one location to another. They just looked so cute, I got on my knees and snapped the shutter.

 10) The Red Couch Photo. White Swan Hotel, Guangzhou, China. Shortly before heading home with our son. The first picture ever taken with the four of us together.