Archive for March, 2010

It’s a wash

Posted on March 29th, 2010, by beanmom

This morning I broke a small mirror (Anth, the little one on the back of the toilet in the back bathroom), but I rescued a tiny slug from the path at the kids’ school. So I reckon my karma’s back to zero at this point, yes?

I wasn’t on the computer as much as usual this weekend. Everyone was really tired out from several nights of crappy sleep, culminating in Alice being away for a slumber party on Saturday night and coming home Sunday completely self-deprived and brain-dead. Anth was working on some stuff on my machine, and I was playing with the Wii disc from Netflix that came on Friday (fun stuff!). Also, I got kind of sucked in to processing pictures when I realized that, once again, I am coming up on being a full year behind in that. It’s not like I’m obligated to post pix, but I do like the process of looking through what we’ve taken, choosing my favorites, sharing them, and reading your comments on them. I just tend to get behind in doing it. I got a few months done, and will do more soon, and hopefully I’ll actually post some pictures here soon. I never posted pix from Alice’s 12th birthday, for one thing, and her 13th is not that far away (see sidebar)!!

Linky dinky doo

Posted on March 24th, 2010, by beanmom

I’ve fixed the excerpt problem, did you notice? Anth helped me find a Wordpress plugin (Advanced Excerpt) that allows me to set how many words of each post show up on this page (I’m now set to 4000, which should cover any post I make), as well as allowing HTML markup to appear, so now you can see the links and stuff without having to click through. You still need to click through to comment, though, but that’s ok for now. Anyway, links!

Infantino recalls more than 1 million baby slings – spread the word. (I never used this “bag” style of sling, and I can certainly see why it would be problematic because of how low the baby is carried and how much excess fabric there is around the baby’s face. I loved my ring slings with both my babies/kids until they got too big to be carried comfortably, when they were around 4 or 5 years old.)

“Why Don’t Students Like School?” Well, Duhhhh… – I posted this to my Facebook Wall and got some spirited replies. Full disclaimer: my kids attend a Sudbury-model “unschool” school and this article gets at some of the reasons why we chose that school.

Does Puberty Make You Stupid? Lessons from Mice – Why am I reading this article at this particular point in my family’s life? Oh, um, no reason!! On the same subject, here is The Teen Brain: It’s Just Not Grown Up Yet. And to be fair, here is The Aging Brain Is Less Quick, But More Shrewd.

5 Creepy Ways Video Games Are Trying to Get You Addicted – pretty much spot-on, and my fellow addicts can confirm that.


Posted on March 19th, 2010, by beanmom

It’s been absolutely gorgeous here the past few days — sunny, highs close to 70°F, etc. All the kids at school are running around in ridiculously inappropriate amounts of clothing, and Alice is angry at me for packing her summer clothes up and putting them in the attic 5 months ago. It’s going to be a cruel shock for everyone next week when the weather’s supposed to be more like pissy rain and highs in the 40s.

At any rate, Spring is springing around here — my crocuses are all up, and the ones by the house are blooming. I think we missed the chance for the ones out by the mailbox to bloom; when the snow finally melted away and uncovered them, they had already grown 6″ leaves and were looking pretty sickly about ever actually finding the sun. Now they’re madly attempting to lay down food stores for next winter, and I think blooming is just not on their agenda this year. My daffodils and hyacinths are up, too, but nowhere near ready to bloom yet.

I love driving around this time of year and noticing all of the places where bulbs are hiding all winter. You know, little hillsides of daffodils next to vacant lots, or crocuses that nose up every year in the middle of someone’s lawn. I am noticing how rare the yellow crocuses are, and wanting to see as many of those as I can right now for some reason. The purple and stripy purple-and-white ones are nice, but the yellow ones just seem special. Plus, of course, as Piet Hein says (and I quote every year):

Black earth turned into
yellow crocus
is undiluted

What’s been up

Posted on March 16th, 2010, by beanmom

We got Anth his car last night. It was stressful for him, running on minimal sleep (DST left him feeling like he got up at 6:30 am, after 2 weeks of working from home and not having to get up until the actual time that work had to start), signing those papers and locking himself in like that. I feel better having this all done, though, and I hope that he starts to feel better soon, when he gets some sleep. There’s just a few more days of weird stuff that needs to happen (like tomorrow we have to go meet with our financial guys in the afternoon), and then I can have a couple of normal days at home. That will go a long way towards improving my mental outlook.

In other news, Sammy has a cold and we are trying very hard to keep Anth from catching it, because he still hasn’t sneezed since the accident and he’s in no hurry to try. Alice was supposed to have a mother’s helper gig this morning, but I called to let the mother in question know that we had germs in our household and she (who has had a rough winter, illness-wise) decided that she’d prefer we not bring them to her household. Alice is a little disappointed, but on the other hand it has made our morning much more leisurely, which we all appreciate.

We’re going out for lunch today. Sammy’s been running a star chart thingy to help her overcome some bad habits, and each line of 10 stars carries a different possible reward, ranging from 10 stars (”Hershey’s Kiss”) to 100 (”special trip”). Alice wrote in “false immortality” for 150 stars, but I’m not obligated to honor that (partly because I don’t know what it is). Anyway, today she got to 60 (”you pick lunch”) and decided to cash in for a meal at Cracker Barrel, which she is telling me is the perfect place, so we’re going there. I love their pancakes.

Happy Pi Day!!

Posted on March 14th, 2010, by beanmom

Did you do anything special for Pi Day today? DST kind of kicked our butts today, so we weren’t up for much of a celebratory sort of mood. The school is celebrating Pie Day tomorrow (they finally got wise and moved it from the week of Halloween to the week of March 14th), so we made a super-quick Chocolate Covered Cherry Pie to take in. Other than that, we’re pretty much just counting down the hours until we can all go back to bed. Zzzzzz…

One and a half cars

Posted on March 13th, 2010, by beanmom

We spent 5½ hours at the car place today, and I got a 2009 Toy0ta Corolla, and Anth is probably going to get a 2009 Toy0ta Matrix, but we have to wait until Monday to iron out some details with his trade-in. I’m very glad to have a car (even though Sammy irrationally hates it so far), but 5½ hours at the car place is about 5 hours too long. My head is killing me. And we lose an hour tonight! Waaah!!

(I edited this to change the middle ‘o’ in the car company name above to a ‘0′, because I got my first spam comment last night for some automotive blog.)

Some links, for normalcy

Posted on March 11th, 2010, by beanmom

You absolutely need to click through on the post title in order to view this, because it looks like total crap here, but has actual list formatting and links if you click through. I promise!

Anyway, let’s pretend I’m not dealing with all kinds of crap and feeling all stressed out, and just share some links together, okey dokey?

  • This is cute and very very very very very very strange.
  • I am struggling to find 20 consecutive minutes in which to watch the entirety of this, but what I’ve seen so far has been really great.
  • One Million Giraffes — Alice sent one in, why don’t you?

Okay, I was gonna find another link to put in there, but then I got sidetracked fiddling with the color and font weight of my links in my stylesheet, and 45 minutes went by, and now I’m done blogging. *yawn*


Posted on March 9th, 2010, by beanmom

Hmm, what’s been up here? Well, Anth had his CT scan and the orthopedist follow-up, and everything’s as fine as it reasonably can be expected. No further ortho appointments are needed; it’ll just be a slow process to healing. It is very painful for him to laugh or cough, he can’t eat his beloved spicy foods because they make his nose run and then he sniffs and that hurts, and he hasn’t sneezed yet and lives in fear of the day that he can no longer avoid doing so. His car is presumably not worth repairing, so we’re trying to figure out how and when we can get two new (to us) cars. I am very airheady and distractible and having a very hard time getting into anything like a functional groove. I talked to the insurance rep for the guy I hit, and she was very nice and very helpful and will be sending us money ASAP, so I’ve gone ahead and ordered a new car seat for Sammy. There’s all kinds of paperwork we’re supposed to be filling out, but we’re only getting through it slowly. The rental car still annoys me, but I’m getting used to it. I got a big bunch of groceries today, so we have actual meals lined up for the rest of the week. Not much else going on here. I miss having the energy and mental space to think about doing something fun like going out to the movies (Alice and I want to go see Alice), but right now I’m either taking care of the crap that needs to be done, or asleep. Bleh.

The freakiest thing

Posted on March 6th, 2010, by beanmom

Yesterday morning we got the police report from the accident, so now I know the name of the guy I hit, and where he lives. Then yesterday afternoon the car died on the road, 2 houses down from that guy’s house. Isn’t that kind of weird?

(We got our rental car today, so we’re no longer carless. It’s a black Kia Spectra, and it seems fine except for the fact that I kind of feel like I’m driving something I got out of a gumball machine.)

Not even funny any more

Posted on March 5th, 2010, by beanmom

This afternoon I went to take Anth’s car out to pick up the kids, and it was making a terrible metally rattle all of a sudden, something that it hadn’t been doing previously. A mile down the road, I stopped behind a school bus, and his car died in the middle of the road. What the hell, people?? What the hell??? So I had to call AAA and have it towed and now we have NO cars, and I am just not even amused by this in the slightest. What the hell.

(We can have a rental paid for by the insurance because of the accident, but we hadn’t bothered to set that up yet since Anth is in no condition to be driving, but we’ll be getting that done this weekend. But what the hell??)

Confirmed today

Posted on March 5th, 2010, by beanmom

1) It was the other guy’s fault for running the stop sign. (Police report came.)

2) My car is a total loss. (Insurance adjuster called.)

3) Anth’s sternum is broken. (CT scan was done.)

Quick update

Posted on March 4th, 2010, by beanmom

Just a quick note here, although I’m sure I’ll go over 50 words, so go ahead and click through to read the whole post right now. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

Are you ready now? Good.

Things are ok here. The kids went back to school today, which went a long way to helping me feel like normal, everyday life may eventually be attainable again. I was quite sore yesterday (neck and back) but am much better today thanks to a combination of massage, ibuprofen and sleep. I drove the kids to school and drove Anth around on various errands today, and I didn’t have a panic attack or anything about being behind the wheel, so that’s all good.

Anth is of course still hurting quite a bit. He saw the orthopedist today, and that was pretty much a total waste of time, except for the large bottle of painkillers that he facilitated. Other than that, though, pointless. He looked at Anth’s X-rays from the ER, which we had to bring in on a CD-ROM, declared that they were too hard to read and he wanted a CT scan, and then the appointment was over. Why couldn’t the X-rays have been emailed directly from the hospital to the orthopedist? Then he could have told us over the phone that we needed to schedule a CT scan before he could productively meet with us. So anyway, the CT scan is tomorrow and the follow-up with the ortho guy is on Tuesday. In the mean time, his recommendations closely follow (and, in fact, he directly quoted) the old “‘Doc, it hurts when I do this’ – ‘So don’t do that’” joke. Gee, thanks. Good thing the insurance is paying for these visits. The suckiest thing is that it is very uncomfortable, physically and psychically, for him to ride in the car right now (especially with the seatbelt hitting him exactly where his injury is), so saving that trip would’ve been appreciated.

Not much else to report here right now. Anth got a shower today, which I’m sure felt good, and he didn’t need me to help him with it, which I suspect improved his outlook as well. I have to help him with a lot of things right now, like sitting up and laying down and putting his socks on and off, and that’s gotta be kind of weird and infantilizing for him.

By the way, apropos of nothing, I wanted to mention that the way the blog comments moderation thingy works is that the first time you sign in to comment, it goes straight to moderation and I have to approve it before it shows up on the blog, but from then on, if I’ve approved you once you should be able to comment without moderation (you know what I mean) from then on out. Just FYI. And thank you for the supportive and helpful comments that everyone has been leaving. I really appreciate them all.


Posted on March 3rd, 2010, by beanmom

You’re going to need to click through to read this one; it’s gonna be long. It’s also going to be somewhat fractured and non-linear. Sorry about that. As you will see, I’ve had a stressful 24 hours or so, and am not quite fully functional at the moment.

Yesterday evening we were in a car crash, a bad one. We were heading out to pick up Anth’s car, which had been in the shop for inspection. It was just supposed to be a quick jaunt out and back, so we all jumped in the car in slippers and PJ pants and totally inappropriate clothing, except Anth who is always well-put-together.

We were only about a mile down the road when someone ran through a stop sign on a cross road and I T-boned him going about 35 mph. I smashed into the side of his car, bounced off, spun, and hit a telephone pole. We came to rest by the side of the road, facing back towards where we’d come. I don’t know too much about the other guy; he was driving a big boxy minivan-type-thing, and apparently that ended up rolled onto its side, but that was around the corner from us, so I didn’t see, nor do I know the extent of his injuries.

Anyway, back to us…

The airbags deployed, which was a novel experience for us all. Everyone’s glasses flew off, except for Sammy’s for some reason. When we found Anth’s glasses, one of the lenses had fallen out. It took forever to find Alice’s, because they fell between the seats. Alice was sitting in the front passenger side, I was driving, Anth was behind Alice and Sammy was behind me in her booster seat. Alice has minor but unpleasant burns on the bridge of her nose and her upper lip from the airbag. She also got some cuts on her knee; I’m not sure what did that, but I guess it has something to do with the front end crumpling. Oh, and she has a cut on her hip from the seat belt. Anth started to have some chest pains after we were all out of the car, which got gradually worse. Back to those in a bit (his heart’s fine, don’t worry).

Once the dust had settled, we got out of the car and stood in the melting snow in our slippers and PJ pants and totally inappropriate clothing. We called some dear friends who live nearby, and they came as soon as they can and gave us a warm place to sit while we were waiting for everything to be done. I’m not sure what else to write here in this part — it was very scary and very boring at the same time. The kids were really freaked out, and Anth’s chest was hurting him more and more. The entire front end of the car was pretty much accordioned. It smelled like burning inside, from the air bags going off.

Eventually the police guy got all the info and he left. He didn’t give me anything at that point but said he’d be mailing it. The guys from the fire station down the road got the car onto a tow truck and towed it away somewhere. (Note: somewhere. Nobody told us where it was going, and we spent a panicky 20 minutes this morning on and off the phone with the insurance company and the police station and the township office and the fire station, trying to figure out where my car was, but we did eventually track it down.)

Part of the problem right now is that I am extremely sleepy. We didn’t get to bed until close to 1 last night, and then I didn’t sleep very well because I was in “Mommy mode” making sure no one needed anything or was hurting, and now I am teetering on the edge of some kind of meltdown. *sigh*

ANYway, eventually Anth got taken in an ambulance to get checked out. Our friends brought us back home to change into better clothes and grab a few things (books, a wad of $1 bills for vending, a stuffed animal). Then we spent 3½ hours in the waiting room while he was getting checked out. The kids weren’t supposed to go back to where Anth was, but I couldn’t leave them alone in the waiting room for long stretches of time (especially because occasionally people would come in who were bleeding, and Sammy’s eyes needed to be covered by a responsible adult when that occurred), so I kind of felt like I wasn’t where I should be all night, no matter where I was at any given time. We ate vending machine junk for dinner, because I had been planning to cook dinner after we got back from picking up the car.

I took some vending machine crackers back to Anth so he’d have something in his stomach to put his Vicodin on top of. They gave him X-rays and an EKG and mostly left him sitting there sending emails with his iPhone in between things. He has a broken sternum, presumably from where the seatbelt caught him across the chest and kept him from smashing into Alice’s seat so, you know, “yay” for a broken sternum if it kept him and Alice from broken faces or worse. But it is very painful and there’s nothing they can do to “fix” it — the two pieces kind of are overlapping and that’s just the way his sternum will be from now on, unless he wants them to do surgery, which he doesn’t. They say that it’s going to be very painful for 2 weeks, and then still kind of painful for 4-6 more weeks, or something. I just Googled a bit and apparently (a) this kind of injury is not uncommon in car accidents, and (b) sternums can take up to a year to heal completely, or maybe it’ll never be as good as it was, or maybe he’s going to have back pain as he gets older because he’ll be a little shorter in the front that he is in the back, or maybe I should stop Googling.

Man, I don’t know how much more I feel like talking about this right now. We didn’t get out of the ER until close to 10, then we got home and then I went back out (dear friend driving, not me) to get Anth’s pain meds script filled. After I got back from there, it took us all another hour or more to wind down for bed. Today my back hurts and my hip hurts a little, and my neck hurts a little, but I feel pretty much fine, which is great, except that it means that I have no reason not to be the one who is taking care of everyone, and that’s hard. *sigh*

Anth says we should do a “100 interesting things about our accident” post of things that we remember later, so maybe I’ll do that. I’m at, like, 1200 words or so here at this point, so maybe I’ve said enough for now. I need to go out this afternoon and get my stuff out of the car (now that we know where the damn thing is) so the insurance company can take it away and verify that it is a complete and total loss. Part of me wants to take my camera when I go, but part of me is too tired to care, and doesn’t particularly want to remember all of this. Bleh. Enough for now — hitting the Post button. Enjoy.

Not to jinx it, but…

Posted on March 2nd, 2010, by beanmom

…ever since the calendar page turned, I’ve had that “spring is inevitable” feeling. I’m not sure why that hit me so strongly yesterday. I’ve been seeing robins, but they’ve been in and out of our yard for weeks. The snow is melting, but a bunch of the snow melted a few weeks ago and it didn’t feel like spring then. I dunno… Something in the air has changed, and winter’s back is broken. We will get cold and snow and ick throughout March, no doubt, but I finally have hope that some day I will see my crocuses blooming.

Please click these words

Posted on March 2nd, 2010, by beanmom

Okay, I’m not sure why this is, but (a) I can’t skip spaces between paragraphs or items in my posts, which is annoying, (b) only the first 50 words of any given post show up on the main page, which is not the way I would choose to format my blog, and (c) links only seem to work on individual post pages, not on the main page. I’m sure eventually we will achieve fixes or workarounds for this, but in the meantime, here’s a link I wanted to share. I’m past 50 words by now, so you’re not even seeing this unless you clicked through.
Bye-bye, Saturday mail? — USPS to propose 5-day mail schedule, major cuts. It’s weird to think of not getting mail all weekend, and I’m a little anxious to think that our small-town post office (where everyone there knows me, because I’m in there mailing or picking up packages at least once or twice a week) might be on the chopping block…

Quotable Alice

Posted on March 1st, 2010, by beanmom

From this morning:

“It’s March! We’re that much closer to spring!! We’re finally out of the months with -ary at the end: Decembuary, January…”

“What is it with squirrels I don’t need??”

Second real post

Posted on March 1st, 2010, by beanmom

Okay, I promise I’m not going to number them forever, but wouldn’t it be fun if I did? No? Okay, maybe that’s just me. Anyway, I’m looking at the post I just wrote, and wondering why (in Firefox) the first word is right-justified on a line all by itself. I’m also wondering why the link (the words “the old blog” should be linked to, well, the old blog) isn’t showing up on the main page. It seems to be working if you go to the individual post’s page, either by clicking on the title or by clicking to comment. Maybe a CSS issue? Hmm…

First real post

Posted on March 1st, 2010, by beanmom

I know, I know, I said on the old blog that I would tell y’all to come over as soon as I made a post. But I think I want a few posts here to welcome you, so here I am posting in secret. Heh.