Wednesday, July 30, 2008

We interrupt this regularly scheduled blog...

To briefly announce that, DAMN, I'm a good cook!

Apparently, my Stuffed Chicken Marsala is *better* than the one they serve at Olive Garden.  Woo yeah!

Not to mention last week's homemade Portabello Fettuccini Alfredo.  Mmm.

Now I have to expand...  Ya see, when it was just the three of us in our apartment, cooking large, hours-consuming meals just *wasn't worth it* since I just don't DO well with leftovers for days... and hello?!  I'm LATVIAN.  I can NOT cook for a small family.  It's been taken out of my DNA.  Those of us with roots along the Baltic Sea feel that we must feed the entire neighborhood... or at least prepare enough in case, oh, I don't know, a wandering troop of SOLDIERS appears on our doorstep - starving from days without food.  Seriously.  I will have to find a photo of the *typical* spread at a family party.  YIKES.

Anyways... now that there are more mouths to feed (and more bodies to add poundage to), I'm getting into some pretty downright GOURMET cuisine.  Even when we slack on dinner around here, it usually consists of grilled steak and baked potatoes.  LOL

Does anyone have any REALLY good recipes they'd like to share?  Or else, I'll be kneeling on the kitchen floor, waist-deep in the pantry, cooking up combinations in my head until DAWN.  =P

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Eating on the Run...

This is Greyson's favorite method of consumption. Apparently, it is WAY too much to ask that his jaws work without his little legs simultaneously running around the room.

And once he sits down again? Yep, he stares at the food, only to cave and take another bite... and those legs start twitching again until he slips out of his chair before we can tell him to stop.

I'm thinking there might be some wiring loose somewhere... ya know, like there's a short making him have to be physically MOVING in order to get the food going.

But then. that doesn't explain why he eats an approximate 3.5847395734 times more food WHILE AT THE GROCERY STORE than he *ever* eats at home. Literally, he will REFUSE breakfast if he knows that we are headed out shopping afterwards. We have resorted to *spelling* a LOT of things around here... and even then? He usually knows what we're talking about. Damn you, Super Why!!

Does anyone else have a child that has an INSTANT metabolism - to the point where the second the food hits their tongue, it's converted into MAD energy? *sigh* Because I do. Ugh.

Monday, July 28, 2008

I think it's time to indulge a little...

And yes, I *do* mean in ALL variations.

Ya see, yesterday, the hubby made a random statement about how, considering now that insurance is settled... that the next kid could be, *whenever*.


Not that I DON'T want another one. But really? It's kinda come up a lot faster than I expected!

So now... I think it's time for a drink. Or a round.

Better make it a round.

What is it about twisted men...

In movies that gets me a little "warm?"

We saw The Dark Knight last night at the Drive-In, and it was GREAT.  Of course, about half-way through the movie, I turned to Ralph and asked:

"Is it wrong for me to think that this version of the Joker is kinda hot?"

And I've determined this:

I have a thing for slightly demented and relatively *off-balance* men - at least in movies.

Christian Bale in American Psycho?  Yum.
Johnny Depp in Sweeney Todd?  C'mere.
Edward Norton in American History X?  Oooh, yeah.
Brad Pitt in Twelve Monkeys?  Is it getting hot in here?
Matthew McConaughy in Frailty?  I need a cold shower.

Can you *see* where I'm going with this?  What does this SAY about me??

Oh.  And the fact that Hayden Christen is hot.  But only after he goes all *dark side* and shit.  Yeah.  Maybe it's the red and yellow eyes?  Damnit.

So... I'm thinking I need some kind of an intervention.  Like, SERIOUS movie suggestions where, um, maybe there's *no* chance of me getting a little steamy while watching someone exert their mental instability?  Anyone?

I think I need a stiff drink now. ;)

Do NOT join my family...

If you DON'T want to have a child in November (or early December!) in the next few years!!

Apparently, there is something about being a part of my husband's side of the family that occurs, OH, around late February, early March...

I will have a new (great) niece or nephew around November 18th!!!

So, here's how it goes:
December 5th, 2004 - Carter is born (my SIL's nephew)
November 21st, 2005 - Greyson is born (MINE - duh!)
November 7th, 2006 - Nicholas is born (my great-nephew)
And now a DIFFERENT nephew's wife is due.  In November.  In our family.  Can you see a pattern here???

Everyone thinks (or hopes, is more like it!) that she is having a GIRL... but, I'm gonna lay odds on a boy.  Because?  Well, being at a family party for his side is TESTORONE CENTRAL if you look at ages 12 and younger.  HOLY MOLY.  There are *no* girls.  Period.  The youngest girl is almost 20.  ROFL  And she's the ONLY ONE.

Then you get to us *old folk*.  LOL

Can I just say that it is DAMN funny that all but *2* of my NIECES AND NEPHEWS are OLDER than me?  Yeah.  And my SIL is older than my mom.  Fun stuff, fun stuff! 

Anyhow, we went to my SIL's 50th birthday / their 25th anniversary party down in Oak Lawn today... and I brought home an exhausted, soaking-wet child from the ordeal.  Because he wanted to play on the slip-n-slide... but wouldn't take off more than his shoes and socks.  ROFL  Ah well, at least he enjoyed himself!!

So!  Happy Birthday, Barb - Happy Anniversary to you and Dom - and CONGRATS to my nephew (ROFL - he'll be *30* this year!) Allen and his wife, Brandi!  We''re all waiting for little Briana or Landon to arrive in November!!! =)

Friday, July 25, 2008

Dear Parents at the Park,

I understand that apparently, for many of you, once your child reaches the age of, oh *6* years old, you find it unnecessary to monitor them while on the playground - instead leaving them to their own devices while you "do your own thing."

I'd like to inform you that no matter how much trust you have in your child... they STILL need supervision... and just because I am there with *my* child, does not mean that I will be a stand-in for YOU with *yours*.

This evening, Grey and I took a walk to the park closest to our house (which still took us a good 15 minutes to walk to with those 2 year old feet!). There were SO many kids there... and also so few adults actually IN the enclosed playground area. Sad.

About 20 minutes after we got there... I got to witness 3 boys around the ages of 6 - 8, all PEE through the chain-link fence onto the surrounding grass. Nice.

By the way, there is a restroom about 25 feet away from where they were standing. A full-fledged BATHROOM - not even just a measly port-a-potty.

C'mon people! Where in the world are some parents getting off?!? And I will *not* fully blame the children for their behavior, simply because children learn what they live. If you can't man up enough to teach your children right from wrong, and intervene when they start to go astray... Well, you *really* don't want me to know who you are.

Because next time? I *will* open my mouth. And you will NOT like what comes out - I PROMISE you.

Things like this used to irritate me to no end even BEFORE I became a parent. But now? Now I have a little boy who has *these* children as his older peers, his possible role models... and I absolutely REFUSE to have him grow into one of the disrespectful, crude little snots that I see all too frequently while we are out and about.

Is it too much to ask that you teach your child SOME manners? Greyson? He says please, thank you, excuse me... and more. UNPROMPTED. Why? Because I have made it an integral part of his daily life from VERY early on.

While other parents apparently find no problem in letting their children urinate in public while surrounded by 20+ other children. Nice.

I think that I have determined that there are far too few people who actually PARENT instead of just PROCREATE.

Yeah, that's it.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Happy Flu!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Doing the Happy Dance!

We got our insurance card today!!  Yippee!!!

I just went and picked up a month's worth of my primary medication for $3.00... as opposed to the $5.00 a PILL I was paying just last week... my GOD, did that feel good!  And apparently any generic prescriptions are FREE.

I am in medical HEAVEN here, people...

Now tomorrow I have the job of finding and scheduling an OBGYN visit, as well as a G.P. visit for my back... and to find a new Ped. for Grey!

A lot of work, but I DON'T CARE!  Because it's FREE!  Yahoooooooo!!!

(Think I'm just a *little* happy about all this?!?)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Who Ya Gonna Call?!?

Well, maybe ME, soon.

As some of you know, I have had a lifelong interest in the "paranormal," as well as many direct experiences with such.  I joined a forum based on hauntings, etc. in IL, just to have people to talk about this kind of stuff with, without having to worry about being judged or ridiculed for my beliefs.

I have now decided that I may start working for a Paranormal Society out of northern IL.

So, instead of running the risk of having Bill Murray with a REALLY bad haircut show up on your doorstep if you ever have a paranormal problem... I might just be the one that can lend a helping hand.  LOL

If These Walls Could Talk...

They would apparently say some pretty creepy things.  Well, at least according to Greyson.

Tonight I *finally* got a real answer out of him as to why he doesn't want to sleep in his own bed, and why it's like torture trying to make him do it.

The walls by his bed are scary... oh, and his pillow gets too cold.  ROFL

Now, let me explain.  The walls in the basement pseudo-apartment where we live are  about 2/3 wood paneling on 2 walls, and 100% paneling on the other 2, in each room.  Not the cheap stuff - like dark stained cedar or something.  That has random "knots" in the wood all over the place, that the depth of the stain has turned black.

Apparently, Greyson is seeing faces in the patterning on the wood.  He had already pointed out to me that there is a "little boy" in the markings left from stripping the old wallpaper down (Which of course, I *still* haven't primed over to paint)... and now the "wall by his big-boy bed is scary.  It looks at him."  Sheesh.

So, I made a compromise.  I told him that we could go to the store, and he could pick out some fabric that I would drape on that wall so he couldn't see anything scary anymore, and that nothing would be able to "look at him" lying in his bed.  I also offered up to make a snuggly pillow/pillowcase from the same fabric since he said his pillow gets too cold (it's a cotton cover, and it *does* stay pretty chilly... I'd LIKE it.  Hmm.)

And that was that.  He fully agreed that if he couldn't see the wall, then it couldn't *see* him... and then he would try the "big-boy bed" again.

Now just to make sure that an entire wall of the bedroom isn't covered in Incredible Hulk fabric or something... ugh.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

My Forever Baby

After coming home from the Wake, MetalliDad had fallen asleep, while my little monkey was, of course, still awake... standing on a pile of pillows looking at me over the baby gate and through the curtains that make up our "bedroom door."

After changing out of my "pretty clothes" and into something a *bit* more suitable for sleep (HA!), I climbed into bed and invited Grey for a snuggle while trying to wind him down a bit before sleep.

"C'mere, big boy."

"I am NOT a big boy.  I am a BABY."  His definitive tone on this subject has simply become stronger and stronger, and it, of course, has left me simply finding ways to stress to him how proud I am of him and all he can do... and why that means he isn't a baby anymore.  Logical, right?

"But honey, babies can't drink from cups like Mommy & Daddy do, or eat pizza, or ride bikes, or jump, or anything fun like that!  You are *such* a big boy."

"But I *want* to be a baby, Mommy.  I don't want to be a big boy."  The light simply faded from his normally radiant brown eyes.  What had made my child so utterly saddened by the prospect of growing up?

"Greyson, does it make you sad to not be a baby?"  A little nod, then a return of his head to my chest.  "Why?  Why do you wish you were a baby?"

And in the tiniest of voices, "Babies are better."

And as I swept him into my arms, I could not help but wonder just what it was that had told him that nonsense.  Of course, the joy of a new baby brings untold and unexplainable wonder to life... but watching that child grow along their own glorious, independent, awe-inspiring paths is a music unsung.  My son is my GIFT.

I began to tell him that no matter how big he gets, or what he can do, he will always be *my* baby.  That nothing could ever replace him and make him any less special than he always has been.  That I was *proud* of him for being the best big boy EVER. 

And he wrapped his little arms around my neck, and squeezed tight... whispering right into my ear, "I love you, too, Mommy.  You will always be my Mommy."


After he fell asleep, I decided that, for him to read someday, I would (try to) put down in words what exactly he means to me.

I leave you with what came pouring out:

Oh, my sweet boy~

If you only knew how carefully I hug you for fear that I might accidentally crush you into a fine, fine dust from the strength of my love alone!  How could I ever make you understand?  I would join forces with the moon and overthrow the sun for you.  I would carry a big rock on my back across the widest desert for you.  I would tame the biggest dinosaur if only for you to study it's skin.  I would brave the roughest seas to find a calm shore for you to swim.  I would learn how to harnessstorm clouds for you, so you'd never miss another sunny day.  I would wrestle crocodiles with the big, big teeth.  Then I’d do a funny dance - if it would make you smile.  I would hire an airplane to write in big white smoke letters across the blue blue sky: “Mommy loves you, Munchkin.”  

I would build you your very own playground out of moon rocks and music notes.  It would be on a big green hill in a land from somewhere, anywhere in your mind, where there were no such things as sickness, pain or old age.  There would be parades around it every single day with fireworks and ice cream trucks, and the tallest slides you could ever come flying down with your hair all excited around your smiling face.  Greyson, I will hold your hand through the world’s biggest parking lots and across the widest of streets.  I would leap in front of cars for you.  I would brave the meanest pirate ships for you.  I would stay up all night and count the sky’s stars for you - and give you the brightest one.
But this above all.

I will be your personal pioneer and go out ahead to conquer Death for you - if only to explore, uncover, and investigate everything to make sure it’s cool - but don’t worry.  I will come rushing back to life in your heart and mind, and whisper all of Death’s secrets in your trembling ear. Just use your soul, because that’s where your Mommy will ALWAYS live.  Remember to be still and listen with your whole self.  Even when you are a very old man and you are in your very last bed, you won’t need to be afraid.  Just close your eyes.  I will be there.  I promise.  I’ll open my arms so wide.  Just listen very closely with everything you can muster and you’ll be able to hear me say through those veils of misty silver…
You are *still* my forever baby... and I love you.

Back from the Wake...

And actually feeling decently. It was good to see people that I hadn't seen in at *least* 6 years, even if it WAS because of a death.

Everyone was MORE than civil... and I actually wound up somewhat *enjoying* the latter part of the visit. It was nice to be able to focus on the *good* memories, and have my now GROWN cousin agree that it boiled down to age and stubbornness that basically escalated all over the place - and that it just didn't make sense. Drama. That's it.

I got to meet my cousin's fiance, who really does seem like a nice guy. I'm happy about that... and she seems like she may finally have a decent head on her shoulders. Which, all crazy childhood-ness aside, I'm rather happy about.

I got to see some "family" that grew up with my mom that I hadn't seen in ages, either... and that was GREAT. I really missed them, and got their email and such to be able to keep in touch from now on.

All in all, I think it was a good experience... I can only hope that maybe it will continue on some level without the tragedy to spurn it.

Monday, July 14, 2008


On a slightly lighter note... these a re couple more photos that I have had the chance to play around with.  Enjoy!

Can't sleep...

And I think it's just because I'm mentally *shitty.*

I'm thinking about this whole "wake" thing... and just really hoping that all goes smoothly.  And, well, the fact that it's just not a fun situation to begin with.

In a completely different situation, I feel screwed and left wondering what I did?  Or what I didn't do?  Or even if I did anything wrong at all... but any way you put it, there's a big chunk of me that's feeling pretty damn ugly, because it's all one-sided and leaving me questioning things all around.

Of course, my pain levels don't help *anything.*  In fact, I noticed today that I apparently hurt my knee worse than I thought after I came home Saturday night from one of the hubby's shows... stepped over the 'baby gate' and heard an actual crunching/tearing sound coming from my left knee... as it gave out from under me.  It *feels* better than it did at that point, luckily... but it's a rather UGLY deep blotchy purple that's spread around the entire vicinity.  YUM.  Now it matches the bruise on the OTHER knee from over a week ago that *still* hasn't faded... ugh.

I think this is the worst I have felt in a bit, and I just can't shake it.  I can't cry about it, I can't really get angry over it... it's just a *funk* that I can't quite put my finger on or ease up.  I was hoping that some sleep would buy me a bit of a reprieve, but apparently that's not in the cards as of yet.


It's times like these that make me wonder where exactly I stand on a lot of levels.  And how exactly I got there.  I just wish it was as easy to think out as it was for the issues to crop up in the first place.

So, another family member passed

And it's a complicated situation.

See, it's on my mom's side.  And for the last 10 years or so, things have NOT been so happy between various members of that little Latvian clan, and we had not seen my great-aunt (my mom's aunt and godmother) for a number of years.

But her son didn't even call us to let us know. We found out from *another* family member, who actually isn't even blood-related.  I then sent a message to my cousin letting her know that I sent my regards and thet I wished her dad would have just called us.

Apparently, he took my advice... and spent some of the conversation trying to argue moot points about things that happened between my grandma and her sister a few years back.  Should it matter at this point, really?

Anyhow, I think I am going to go to the Visitation tomorrow evening.  I think my standpoint is this - my cousin specifically stated that she hopes she will see me there, because it's been a long time.  And whereas we were *definitely* off again, on again through childhood... she *is* now 25, and hopefully done a lot of growing up.  I think that I should at least offer a CHANCE at civility.

Maybe I have changed my mindset on things since having Grey.  I think the concept of family has become more important, even if they are all incredibly dysfunctional like mine.  Part of it is the wish that Greyson could just know and love as many people of the same "legacy" as him... and another part is that, well, I wish more of my family was able to *enjoy* him, as well.

It's sad that all of my dad's side are *states* away, but the members of my mom's side - the ones IN ILLINOIS, nonetheless - barely or DON'T talk.  Ever.  Except for various branches of the old-lady grapevine that pumps rumors, etc. through the Latvian chain.

I hope that tomorrow goes as well as can be, honestly.  For what THAT'S worth, at least.  Do I think that this will change everything and make the world whole again?  No... but at least *I* will know that I tried.

RIP Dzidra.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Photo Manipulation...

When your 'photographer' blows... (sorry Mom!)
These are the *only* shots I could salvage - besides one of a seagull - from the beach on Thursday:

As you can tell, I've been playing with Photoshop Elements for a short while now, and I must say I *love* this program!  Here are a few other photos that I had lying around that I decided to jazz up:
I'm also currently working on a few new *really neat* effects, so look for more to come in the next few days!!!

Friday Music Musings

Has anyone *else* wondered just what kind of statuatory, abusive, pornographic relationship Chad Kroger of Nickelback is in - especially listening to the latest album? Just wondering.

Who gave Anthony Kedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers the inspiration to turn "Californication" into a trilogy? Because, honestly, I'd like to have them shot. Then again... I wanted to put "Tony" out of his misery after hearing the *first* song.

Does it make me odd if I belt out random songs on the *Lite* station... and then in the same 10-minute time frame pop in a Cradle of Filth CD? Anyone?

Is there a reason behind the fact that *every single radio station* is apparently on the SAME commercial schedule? I want music, not commercials for laser hair removal and mechanics training - on ALL the stations at the same time. Thanks.

How do you comvince a 2-year-old that NO, every heavy metal band that is not Metallica, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Van Halen, or Motley Crue (since he recognizes those) is NOT "Daddy's Band?" No one else has this problem? Oh yeah. Heh. Sorry.

I'm sure I have more, but considering the radio is *not* on right now... all I have in my head is my *own* music, and that, well... isn't all that explainable. =P

So we got rained out...

At the beach.  Which was fine anyways, since Greyson only lasted about 10 minutes in the water... he started kicking and splashing - and then the water started "fighting back."  The waves were knocking him down repeatedly, and it just plain freaked him out and pissed him off!  So, the slight drizzle that started when we got there - which rather quickly turned into a slight *downpour* -didn't ruin our attempt, at least!

My mom *did* get a couple pictures... but apparently she is one of the worst photographers ever created.  By the look of the pictures, I'm amazed that I have so many good ones of *me* from childhood!!  But then again, I think my dad handled the photography back then.

I'm going to try to edit some of them later on to see if they are salvagable, and if they are, they will be here...  *if* they are.  =P

Luckliy, we did manage to get in lunch at "Dockside Dogs" prior to the actual "water" experience of the beach, and Greyson managed to eat some *not* cut-up hot dog, which amazed me, seeing as though, well, 2-year old.  And of course, I was watching like a hawk since it was a hot dog and all.

He says he had fun, even though he was scared, and that he's willing to try again another time.  Which is great... he's actually been *very* willing to try new things, and even give them a try a second time around if the first shot wasn't all he thought it would be.  Which means he actually may be learning that different tries means different outcomes, etc.  I'm so proud of all that he has accomplished even in just the last 6 months or so.

One thing that has amazed me is that I know a number of psychologists, namely child / school psychologists... and every single one has been amazed at how young he is compared to all he can do.  I've heard the comment more than once about how he talks more and has a better vocabulary than most of the kindergarteners they work with.  Which, well, WOW.  I know my kid talks up a storm, but that puts him way above the cut. 

I have a feeling he will be following a *bit* in my footsteps... =)  I just hope that he isn't plagued with the INCESSANT perfectionism that I had while younger.  Yikes.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Our afternoon adventure

For today is a beach outing... 

Greyson has never been to Lake Michigan as of yet, so it should be interesting to see exactly what he thinks about "unboundaried water" - as opposed to all the pools he has been in.  On the swimming pool level, he LOVES it, so we shall see.

We're actually going to be eating lunch down there, as well, as there really are some great eateries on the beach from nice, sit down to the glorified hot dog stand... At least I know that there will be a selection!

I'm hoping to get some pics this afternoon... as long as he doesn't become a monkey and hang all over me trying to escape the *freed water.* =P

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

I am sad, disgusted, disappointed...

And all-around just.. in shock?

I every-so-often check out the 'Registered Sex Offenders" list on our counties website, 1) for my own knowledge and 2) well, because I'm a parent.  There are some people in there that I *do* know, simply because of that fact that I used to be a crisis counselor at one time, and unfortunately I *did* have some clients that were rather mentally ill and had issues such as that.

However, tonight I was hit a little too close to home.

I discovered that someone, who I *literally* grew up with, as he lived next door to me from age 2 to 13, is on the list.  He was convicted of aggravated sexual assault on a 13-year-old girl, 2 months before his 19th birthday.  I honestly got instantly sick to my stomach.

The counties definition of aggravated sexual assault is "penetration" of a minor related to you, someone whom you were aware could not understand the situation or could not respond, or a youth of at least 13 years of age which you had some form of supervisory power over.

So, it's not even a case of cried statuatory rape by a girl's parents... not like at 19 you should be having any form of sexual content with a 13 year old, anyhow.

This whole thing hurts.  I was *really* close to this person growing up, and we spent many years unseparable.  We may as well have lived in each other's homes.  He didn't have the background of many, MANY offenders you find statistically... and I am left confused and heartbroken.

In addition to *that* tidbit... I also found 2 brothers that I associated with back just before high school.  Two of my *good* friends at the time dated them... and one is on the Sex Offenders list, while the other sits on the "Deadbeat Parents" list.  Nice.

I think I'd like a nice, stiff drink now.  *sigh*

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

His Stomach is the Size of a GRAPE...

Or so you would think most days. 

Greyson is the *champion* at eating next-to-NOTHING... and yet, still manages to run around like a rabid monkey.  And grow to insane heights... I'm 5'11" and the top of his head is darn near at my waist already.  Sheesh.

Anyone else encountering this with their little one?  It just does *not* make one ounce of sense to me how he can achieve this...

So I'm Having ANOTHER Sleepless Night

And this time it out of sheer PAIN.  It started this morning when I took it upon myself to lift, literally, *5 pounds* of weight off to my right side... and immediately felt SEARING pain shoot all the way down the right side of my back and *explode* in my SI joint area.  SO not cool.

Then, this evening, Greyson took it upon himself to push my head to the right side via my jawline... which to the average joe, not too bad.  However, every time I turn my head back and forth (and it has been this way for a LONG time), it sounds like I have Rice Krispies between my cervical vertebrae.  YUM.  Makes you wanna go grab a bowl, huh?  Anyways, his seemingly small act erupted into an *immediate* migraine.  Yikes.

Whereas the migraine has faded a *bit*, the added pain in my back is NOT any better than it was earlier... and has made changing positions *and* any pressure on it, well, pretty near excruciating.  So...  it looks like I will be waiting for MetalliDad to get up for work before attempting to sleep, simply so I can have more room in the bed to try and get comfortable in.

God, I HATE nights like these.  C'mon insurance... Momma needs some MASSIVE medical workovers!!

Dontcha love...

When people carry on like you're clueless... Yet you know WAY more than they would care to acknowledge?!? 

Yeah.  Me too.  Ugh.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

There are so many good sites...

in the FrogPond! Normally, I only find one or two, but this morning, I just keep coming back here with more that I have to share. =)

Wish Upon a Hero

Wish Upon a Hero is based upont the premise that "Everyone Has a Wish... Anyone Can Be a Hero."  On this site, you can list any need or want, ranging from a simple prayer to a desperate need for assistance during a rough time in your life.  Members can then browse wishes or needs from other members, and maybe be able to become a hero...

I think this is a wonderful idea!  Everybody needs something... and here is the place to voice that need.  And on the flip side, how great is it to be able to fulfill that *one* thing that someone is looking for, big or small, just to know that you have made their wish come true?

With the absolute ups and downs of my family, I know that a place like this could make the *big* difference for someone out there.  In this day and age, there are so many people who wind up in dire straits with little or no warning... and plenty of people out there who could help if only they had the means.  Now they do - and even if ONE fewer person misses a rent payment, or can give their child the gift they have been asking for for their birthday, or even just overwhelming thoughts and prayers during a very stressful time?  Wouldn't it all be worth it?

Check it out.  See what you think.  There's never any harm in thinking of others... and who knows?  Someone out there may just become *your* hero!

Wow! Two Fun "Bzzzz" Posts in a Row!

So, I've just come across another interesting site in the FrogPond.


Postcrossing is designed to give people a break in the day from a mailbox full of bills and junkmail... with postcards from around the world!

When you register with this site, you only provide your address with a username - your actual name is not required *anywhere* so you retain a bit of anonymity.  Then you request an address from the site and mail out a postcard to that address, labeled with the unique ID code given to you.  Once the recipient enters the code from the postcard you sent onto the website, your address is put into queue as the next address to be requested in the system... so you will get a postcard soon, too!

It sounds like a neat idea to me, simply because you can get some fun mail from literally anywhere in the world, without having to pay an arm and a leg for travel expenses. ;)  Also, it's always a bummer for me when, after sorting through all the mail, all I have to show for it are things to be placed in the "circular file," or people wanting my money, oh, NOW.

I myself have signed up.  We'll see where this little adventure takes me!

Now, to go buy some postcards...  or maybe I'll make a few myself and take the risk of frightening whomever it is that is (un)lucky enough to be my first victim... I mean, recipient!  =)

Frogpond Badge

Bzz... Movie Fans with Children!!

Yes, everyone, it's that time again!  BzzAgent FrogPond is another aspect of the BzzAgent site that lists numerous websites with various services, ideas, products, etc. to review and share. 

I just came across one that I thought was *really* useful, especially being the mother of a 2-year-old movie *fanatic*!!!


Since the difference between a PG-13 and R-rated movie isn't usually very discernable (before viewing, at least), Kids-in-Mind offers a completely objective, in-depth look at the film's content. So before you watch the flick, you'll know exactly what to expect.  They base their ratings on a zero to ten scale of three criteria: Sex/Nudity, Violence/Gore and Profanity. When you read a Kids-In-Mind analysis, you'll see each rating, specific details from the movie justifying each rating, notes on substance abuse, discussion topics you should be prepared to answer questions about and the film's overall message. And we're talking seriously "no surprises" in-depth breakdowns, here. 

Avoid those uncomfortable moments. Check out and know what you're getting into... BEFORE your kid turns to you with one of those questions that leaves you looking loke a deer in the headlights searching for a way to explain it to them!!!

I just have to say

That Bahama Mamas are YUMMY.

That's all.

Have a good one!

Disgusted isn't a strong enough word

For my reaction to reading this horrid story, that I found the link for on "Bane Rants":
Girl, 14, kills baby at school Teen gives birth, suffocates, drowns newborn boy
 A 14-year-old girl has been arrested and charged with murder after she allegedly killed her newborn baby in a school bathroom.
Baytown, Texas, police said the eighth-grade student submerged the 7 pound infant in a Cedar Bayou Junior School toilet and jammed toilet paper down his throat so he wouldn't cry, the Houston Chronicle reported. Police have been investigating the incident since the baby was found April 2. The baby also suffered blunt trauma to his head and neck, according to a Harris County autopsy. Gerald Yoakum, the girl's attorney, claims she wasn't aware that the baby was in the toilet because she was bleeding profusely. The teenager who claims not to have known she was pregnant wore loose clothing to hide her growing belly. "Please remember that this is a 14-year-old child who has experienced a tragic event," he wrote in a statement. Yoakum said he plans to work with authorities to ensure "only the facts, not opinons and speculations, will control this case." Her attorney said the teenager is mourning her baby's death and saw him for the first time at his June funeral. The girl named the 7-pound, 16-inch baby "Johnny." Prior to the baby's delivery, she visited the nurse's office and complained of painful menstrual cramps. The nurse gave her a heating pad and told her to lie down for a few hours before she returned to class. The teenager then went to the bathroom where she delivered the baby. When medical help arrived, they took the student to the hospital, and the newborn was pronounced dead. Medical examiners said the death was not accidental and ruled it a homicide, the Chronicle reports. Authorities say "Johnny" cried at least one time before the 14-year-old girl attempted to flush him down the toilet.
What in the deepest recesses of HELL must have been going on in this girl's mind?!? And, as a parent, HOW could you NOT notice that your DAUGHTER was, um, PREGNANT?
This is one of the BIGGEST things in life that I simply canNOT forgive or condone... any harm to a child. This includes abandonment, depravation... and obviously, goes even further. I would soon lose my own life before seeing any true harm come my One & Only. Same goes for even the *thought* of any future children I hope to have.
Even at 14, I hope that this girl is prosecuted to the absolute extent of the law. And even then, I hope someone decides to force toilet paper down *her* throat and then her face into the toilet. I don't want her to die, though. She should have to live the rest of her life knowing EXACTLY what she has done.

I have to go vomit now... and pray to the powers that be.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy Fourth...

Though now it's really the fifth. Hmm. Anyhow!

I hope everyone had a fun-filled, safe, and happy one. My day started pretty early, as I had grocery shopping to handle... yeah, *that* was fun on a holiday. Yikes!

We grilled up some *tasty* burgers and cheddarwurst, threw together some fresh salad (does anyone else know a 2 year old that LOVES salad? I mean, my kid would eat salad before CHOCOLATE... well, maybe not chocolate... LOL) and chowed. Good eatin!

We headed out to Gurnee for their fireworks, because my mom had read that Waukegan did theirs *last* week. Come to find out from a few people after the fact tonight that NO, they had fireworks tonight. WTF?! Oh well, regardless, it was a great spectacle, and Greyson thoroughly enjoyed himself... especially since we went for ice cream afterwards! =P

Shortly after consuming the *entire* cone... he gave me a bit of lip about not wanting pajamas, just jammie shorts so he could keep on his "skull guitars" shirt - he passed out with his head on my arm. Sleepy boy! At least I'm pretty much guaranteed that he will *not* be waking up before 8am tomorrow (today?! It's not Saturday until I sleep at least a *little* damnit) like he did this morning. Shame on him... didn't he get the memo that it was a holiday?!?

On a bit of a side note, a great friend of mine posted on her blog (Vanity & Sin) that her brother is getting ready to come home from Iraq. I couldn't be happier! Especially to find that out today of all days. I was just commenting earlier in the day that I was glad to see our neighbor's son home this 4th, seeing as though he is 4 years younger than me, and had already spent I *think* 2 years over in Iraq... so it was nice to know he was home with his family on this day that basically, besides celebrating our country's initial independance, also *kinda* celebrates our troops. They are the ones fighting for us... even if their directives aren't exactly agreeable with me at all times.

But that's an ENTIRELY different post. Do NOT get me started on anything political if you have somewhere to be, oh, in the following 3 *hours* or so. Because, boy oh BOY, I am definitely opinionated on that subject. Sheesh.

Ooh, or religion. That's another doozy. LOL

I digress... if you are reading this, then odds are in your favor that you are home, safe and sound... and that's what I had hoped. =) Have a great rest of your weekend!

Friday, July 4, 2008

It's 1:00am...

Do you know where *your* spouse is? Because I don't.

He left for practice with his band an hour earlier than usual today (3:00pm), and he's still not home, no word from him or anything.

Okay, sometimes he's gotten home around midnight. And tomorrow is a no-work day. But... he left early on top of it? Hmm.

I just hope he's home soon and has some explanations. Or else I may start blowing up his cell phone real *lady like*.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

My Two-Year-Old Son is Channeling

A 13-year-old premenstrual girl suffering from her first heartbreak. Can anyone tell me *why*?

For the last two days or so, he has had a *serious* meltdown over everything I say, everything I do, and everything that just plain looks at him wrong. Honest.

"Greyson, please don't stand on a pile of pillows to reach the *unreachable* DVDs." Meltdown.
"Honey, would you like some smiley face potatoes?" Meltdown.
"There is a rabid snake climbing up your leg and injecting you with molten lava!" Meltdown. Okay, I haven't said *that* to him, but from his reactions to normal, everyday things lately - I may has well have.

Is it just because he's 2 1/2? Or is there something *else* going on that he just can't quite put words to? Mind you, he is one of *the* most vocal youngsters I have ever encountered, even in all my years of teaching early childhood - but it just hasn't been explainable beyond "Aaaaaaaahhhhhhhh! Leave me alone! Don't touch me! You can't see me! (when he's doing something he shouldn't) Aaaaaaaaahhhhhhh!" And believe me, the transcription is *much* more pleasant than the live version.

We have been through the entire list of "Does ____ hurt?" and every answer has been an emphatic no. I thought *maybe* his tummy was bugging him, since he actually woke early this morning just to go #2, and gave him some acidophilus tablets... so that's not it, either. It just seems like he *really* wants to left to his own devices, as nefarious as they are, and for me to turn a blind eye to EVERYTHING he does. Because really, it's OKAY to do that with an imaginitave 2-year-old boy with a penchant for technology. YIKES.

I'm glad tomorrow is a holiday. Because that means that the OTHER parent can help me fend off some of these Xanax-inducing spells. *sigh*

Bzz Bzz Bzz!

I currently belong to - a website where you can sign up & join campaigns where you get the chance to try new products for *free* - all for spreading word of mouth and finding out what others think about the product. Plus, you get fun *additional* freebies at times, like t-shirts, coupons, mugs, etc... all for doing nothing but TALKING. Neat, huh?

My newest "BZZ" is on Teddy Grahams Trail Mix. I must say, this really is a great product - cholesterol free, low in saturated fat, and *very* taste-friendly. The Munchkin *loves* it - he's had it even before now, and I had already decided that it was a buy-again snack for him.

There are two kinds - Bears & Cheese Crackers, with Cheese Nips crackers, and Bears & Bees, which has Honey Maid "bee" grahams in it. Both are good... but I like the cheesy one - kinda gives you that nice mix of salty and sweet like all good trail mix should!

Have you tried this before? What did you think? Let me know!

And check out for your chance to sign up, too!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I'd simply like to announce

I would simply like to announce the fact that I am *very* proud of the turnout of some of my photographic conquests while taking photos for MetalliDad's band(s). Here are some of the most recent that I really just kinda stopped and thought, "Wow," over... especially since I can't exactly ask them to *hold a pose* in the middle of a concert performance!!!

What do *you* think?

If I could bottle this pain, I would be able to make someone else VERY uncomfortable

Wow. So. I still have not slept... and at THIS point in time, why bother to try? The little man will be awake somewhere in the VERY near future, and I'm also still not convinced that I could get comfortable enough to sleep anyhow.

Why am I so uncomfortable?

To start with, I had a BAD back injury a year ago. Hmm, yes... actually just about EXACTLY a year ago. I tried to pick up the Munchkin at an odd angle when he decided to wedge himself between the computer desk and the wall... and was only able to stand back *up* with him to a 45 degree angle. I bet it was a pretty interesting sight to see my then turn on my heels with a toddler in my grasp, lower him to the floor using ONLY my arms, and then proceed to kneel and fall sideways to the livingroom floor.

I then spent the next 15 minutes in AGONIZING pain, trying to convince that same 19 month old that yes, you really CAN climb up on the computer chair and then ONTO the desk to retrieve the cordless phone for Mommy. Oh, yeah... that was the *greatest* part, by the way... The Dad was at work at the time, so I was stuck at home, immobile, with a rampant toddler.

Thankfully, the most destructive thing he did was help himself to a few DVD's knowing Mommy couldn't stop him. On the other hand, he DID bring me his oversized stuffed duck as a peace offering to place under my head. Such a compassionate boy, even then.

Anyhow, I was diagnosed with a severe lower back sprain and a slipped disc. Off I was sent with pain meds... of course which may as well have been Flintstones vitamins for all the good they did me. System says FAIL.

Fast forward to a year later, and I have now developed acute sacroiliac joint disorder as well as a general fuckuppance of my lower spine. I have random and frequent spasms of pretty much every muscle that has anything to do with my back functioning, mainly on the right side, and at times become "lopsided" - my right hip sits higher than my left, with some MASSIVE swelling around the lower back on the right.

Exciting, eh?

I have tried, oh, maybe 7-8 different pain meds, and just as many muscle relaxants. I have endured injections of anesthetic and steroids INTO MY SPINE AND SI JOINT. The result?

Still have pain. The best part? NONE OF THE MEDICINE HELPED ME SLEEP! Insomnia - 1, Larissa - ZERO.

Last night, I was stepping over the "baby" gate in the bedroom doorway (We don't have a door. Don't ask - LOL) and Greyson chose that EXACT point in time to move *directly* into the path that I was about to step into with my right leg. My immediate reaction was to, DUH, move my leg to step elsewhere. The problem with this was that... hmm, someone seems to have placed a DOORFRAME in the way of my KNEE.

Yep. It's REAAAAAL pretty. My right kneecap (points for me on THAT one - it's the SAME side as the majority of my back issues) has two parallel, vertical cuts on it from slamming into the edge of the frame so damned hard, and a *gorgeous* bruise surrounding both and spreading further down my knee.

Yep. I had to bite my tongue REAL hard not to let loose a very LARGE stream of wildly inappropriate words directly in the face of my bewildered son, who could do nothing but ask me if I was okay like a broken record. He means well, he really does. =)

So, I am a truly GLORIFIED gimp today, and am just WAY too damned uncomfortable to even fathom a decent position to sleep in. Of course, I am pretty much guaranteed to pass out at SOME point in time today, if only for an hour or two... I just hope I can survive long enough to have it happen *at* naptime. Ugh.

BTW, anyone have any *wicked* pain relief suggestions? Or maybe something along the lines of a phone call from Ghandi's dog kinda remedy for insomnia???? Just wondering.

At the sound of the tone...

The time will be - 3:43 am. BEEP!

So, I have OBVIOUSLY wound up in yet another whirlwind of insomnia. Surprised? I think not.

I think I have had ONE honestly GOOD night's sleep in the last... um... 6 weeks? And the much-needed vacation from the strike that the sandman has OBVIOUSLY placed himself on only lasted a week after a good, long, HARD picketing for a solid 6 months.

Can you say sleepdeprivationohmygodineedsleep? I can. And it only makes me giggle a little. Honest.

So with this recent lack of slumber, I have decided to take my blogging PUBLIC, yo, and away from the restraints that is MySpace. I think I want to kill that website a little. Because it only lets me sign in of its OWN convenience, which is SO not on my schedule. Figures that I just recently agreed to help a friend set up a band page on there for a new band he is promoting... Ugh. Graphic design and layouts, OH MY!

I'm just a little random. You'll have to excuse the bags under my eyes for this one, everyone. I REALLY try to make sense... but when you're looking at about 20 hours of sleep a WEEK? Yeah, doesn't happen all too often.

ANYWAYS... I *did* have a point when I started this. Honest.

I'm FINALLY getting desperately *itchy* for being outdoors with it being summer and all. We still haven't taken Munchkin to the beach, and I've already threatened MetalliDad with going this weekend... 4th of July weekend... simply because I can't take it any longer. I've decided that I am *way* too pale (yes, I know... Sun = Skin Cancer... but, as twisted as it sounds, my urge to NOT be glow-in-the-dark is WAY greater than my fear of cancer. Maybe if there had ever been cancer in my family, I would re-think that, but for the time being... I NEED SUN, FOLKS.) And I am dying for a little sand between my toes. The fact that the Munchkin *loves* swimming is always a great thing, as well... =)

My biggest problem in getting OUT and about is that I *really* don't know too many people in the area with little ones... and sometimes the social scene isn't what it's cracked up to be with MetalliDad. He is NOT a nature-y, outdoors-y person, especially in the heat, and there are only so many places to go where it's not an outdoor thing, especially this time of year. I think that I *seriously* need to do some networking on the Mommy-front!

Speaking of the 4th... yes, I know, I did that, like *2* paragraphs ago... see the dark circles? Yes. Move on.
What are your plans? As it stands, we are planning on heading out to Great Lakes for their celebration, as it is the first time they have hosted one for the public in 20 years... and it's supposed to be a GREAT year! There's bands (bonus for ALL the family), and of course what's bound to be *fantastic* fireworks!

It's becoming harder to keep my thoughts straight, and I'm watching the clock tick towards "wakethehubbycmonyouneedtogotowork"... which in other words is 4:15am. So... I'm thinking I'm just gonna call it a "BLOG." Welcome!!! =P