Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween 2007

Love, Puppy Dog Luke

Currently feeling: too cute to spook

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A terrible night's sleep

But I guess that's a good thing, since sleep was actually involved (as opposed to Sunday night, where I didn't go to sleep until after 5 AM). Once we locked the door and he got quiet, he stayed asleep until just after 6 AM this morning. I'm not sure if that is a promising sign, or just being flat exhausted from losing 3 hours sleep Sunday night due to being up 1:30-4:30.

I, on the other hand, felt like I had a newborn again. I couldn't really get into a deep sleep because I kept waiting for the screaming to start. From 11-3, I woke up every half hour like clockwork. At 3, he had a coughing spell and I was convinced that was going to be it, but he slept right through it (or at least didn't react if he woke up, which I find unlikely). Once that was over, I realized that he was probably good and asleep until morning (whenever that might be), so I did sleep a little better. I only woke up hourly instead of half-hourly after that, until just after 6 when he woke up screaming. That's okay. I can handle 6 AM, if it means he will stay quiet and in his room from the time he goes down until that point. DH, however, may need to adjust his schedule. He was still home when Luke woke up and had to rush out the door before we came downstairs so Luke wouldn't see him!

Somehow, I highly doubt this is the end of it. I really think him staying asleep all night like that was a fluke, a result of missing so much sleep in the drama that was Sunday night. Plus we have the time change to contend with this weekend and the "ruining of the routine" that will result from Thanksgiving travel. I see a very long winter in my future. With the time change, I'm hoping we can just keep bedtime where it is as far as his biorhythms are concerned, meaning it will switch from 8:30 to 7:30 as of Sunday. Probably wishful thinking on my part, but I can try. With Thanksgiving, I have no idea what to do. We will be switching him to a "big boy bed" this week, which only leaves us 3 weeks to settle into a new routine before being gone nearly a week to my parents. That usually whacks him out a bit under normal circumstances. Heaven only knows what will happen this year. Regardless, I'm sure you'll hear about it.

In the meantime, the next you can expect to hear from me is tomorrow evening: a Halloween post with pictures!

Currently feeling: tired but some better, for now

Monday, October 29, 2007

Monday night sleep update, part 1

We closed the door at 8:30 tonight. That is a full hour later than he has been going to bed for the last month, and 90 minutes later than his usual 7 PM bedtime for the last 2 years. It didn't seem to help. Still took an hour of *constant* intervention to get him to stay in his room and, presumably, sleep. And yes, we did finally have to lock the door, but it was a last resort and came with several warnings, and within 3 minutes of him realizing it was locked, he was quiet. There was some crying, but very little screaming, and only a couple of cursory bangs on the door. (I haven't been brave enough to open the door and check on him yet.) I suppose that is progress. Guess we'll see.

Hopefully, we won't have to lock it next time. Hopefully, there will be no update part 2 tonight. However, I am starting to feel more and more foolish for hoping for anything anymore where his sleep is concerned.

I cannot even begin to tell you how much your support, suggestions, comments, good thoughts, and prayers mean to me. Thank you so much! And for those of you (who may indeed overlap with the above group) who are just sick and tired of reading about the Luke sleep saga on my blog, I intend to let it go after tonight. There will be updates, but they should be of the one or two sentence variety instead of the long and anguished posts of late. Thanks for sticking with me.
Currently feeling: trying to hang on

Is this a panic attack?

Every time I even think of trying to put him to bed tonight, I feel like I am going to throw up. Every time I try to sleep, I hear him screaming and kicking and banging. I thought it was hard to sit through it last night. It is much harder to live with by the light of day. The sides of his hands were bruised this morning, and it broke my heart. I can't stop crying.

We tried the "stay in bed or I'll close the door" thing last night for over an hour, lengthening the amount of time the door stayed closed for each infraction. It didn't work; he thought it was a game (except when he was screaming and crying because the door was closed). Baby gates won't work because he can climb them. I do sincerely appreciate the suggestions, though.

Other than sleeping in his room with him or just letting him stay up as long as he wants, I don't know what else to do. I just know I cannot repeat what we did last night. I just can't.

Please pray for all of us tonight.

Currently feeling: there are no words

Cut my heart out with a spoon

It is one thing to hear kicking and screaming and crying from the other side of the door. It is quite another to hear, in a very calm, still, clear, and pleading voice, "Daddy, where are you?" repeated several times. Thankfully(?), the kicking and screaming returned shortly thereafter.

Currently feeling: wishing I were out of tears

The door is locked

A way-too-early-to-be-awake haiku:

Bedroom door is locked.
Child screaming and banging.
No one is asleep.

If you haven't yet, please read my previous post before you think I am absolutely the worst mother in the world. I am, but at least I have my reasons.

I was hoping last night was just a fluke. He woke up at 3:30 AM last night, and just like the "new and improved" bedtime routine of the past several evenings, it took us well over an hour to get him back in bed and asleep. Boy, was I stupid to think it was a one time thing. Tonight, he woke up at 1:30 AM. It is now 2:30 AM. We've tried everything in the last hour to get him back in bed. Nothing has worked. I just went in, told him this would be the last time, said "I love you, Luke. I'll see you in the morning," turned the lock, closed the door, and started the same 20 minute timer that we used nearly two-and-a-half years ago to let him cry it out. He has been screaming, crying, and banging on the door ever since. It has been 8 minutes. If the cops do not show up because the neighbors called them and accused us of torturing our child, it will be a surprise. If I don't have to take him to the doctor for x-rays on his hands in the morning, it will be a miracle. (In both cases, I can only hope I'm kidding.)

The door is locked. And no one is sleeping.

Currently feeling: miserable

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Again with the not sleeping?

WHAT IS WITH THIS?!?!! We've skipped nap, we've pushed back bedtime again, we've changed the bedtime routine, we've given him a pillow per his request (the one my grandmother made him; psychic woman that she was covered it in firetruck fabric), we've started letting him choose between sleeping in the crib and sleeping in the floor (until we can get him a "big bed"), we've let him choose between having the nightlight on or off (and he doesn't seem happy with either choice, no matter which he says he wants), and it is still taking more than an hour to get him to go to bed, stay in bed, and go to sleep!

I actually don't care whether he goes to sleep immediately or not. But he needs to stay in his room and stop fussing. This afternoon, we finally turned the doorknob around so that it now locks from the outside. We haven't actually done it yet tonight, as the thought of locking my child in his room is just horrible to me. I don't want him to hate or be afraid of his bedroom! I don't want him to feel trapped. But he has *got* to go to bed and stay there. This is the fourth night of this stupidity. A couple more, and we'll just lock the door and let him cry himself to sleep. And I hate myself for it.

Currently feeling: completely out of ideas

Friday, October 26, 2007

Biological barometer

You know how on sit-coms, the "man of the house" usually makes some sort of joking reference to "an old football injury" when some major body joint starts aching, especially when the weather is bad? Well, I have an old babysitting injury that is giving me fits right now! Actually, I don't think it is the injury itself that is hurting, it was the accidental aftermath.

I was babysitting a very sweet 8 year old when I was about 13, and I was in the floor. I think I was about to stand up, so I was kneeling on one knee, with my right knee on the floor and my left leg bent, foot on the floor (the traditional American wedding proposal stance). She came running around the end of the couch and tackled me, just playing. I was wearing sneakers, so my left foot didn't move at all, even though the rest of my body did. As my left knee pivoted awkwardly, it dislocated. That is the only time ever in my life that I have fainted, but OMG, let me tell you, it HURT! Scared the little girl to death. I wasn't out long, only a couple of seconds really. I don't think it popped completely out, because when I straightened my leg, it realigned itself without any help. I knew her parents would be home very soon, so I just waited. My parents took me to the doctor the next day to have it checked out, and I was put in a knee imobilizer for six weeks.

They also did x-rays to make sure I hadn't done any sort of major damage to the bone or something, and when they did, they discovered a small growth on my tibia (large bone of the lower leg), just below the knee. It was totally by accident! If I hadn't dislocated that leg, there never would have been a need to x-ray it, and it never would have been discovered. It was an "osteocondroma", which per "The World Health Organization (WHO) defines osteochondroma as a cartilage-capped bony projection on the external surface of a bone. It is most commonly found around the knee and the proximal humerus; however, it can occur in any bone." The doctor said that they are usually not cancerous, but was it really worth the chance of bone cancer to leave it there? No, not really, so I had it removed sometime in early high school (how odd that I can't remember precisely when), and I have a lovely 3-inch-long and 1/4-inch-wide scar to prove it. This is also when I learned that my body does NOT react well to staples, a fact which was clearly reinforced with my c-section.

Anyway, the point of this is that every time the weather changes dramatically, particularly when a storm is involved, my "old babysitting injury" flares up and my knee aches. I don't think it is really the dislocation that hurts, it is the spot where they removed the bone growth. Actually, even on a "normal" day, if you press on it in just the right (or wrong) spot, it really hurts. The cats have the most amazing knack for stepping precisely on this exact spot when I have my feet up in the recliner. The weather changed rather abruptly this week on Tuesday afternoon from highs in the 80s to highs in the 60s. I thought my leg was going to fall off! I haven't had that spot hurt that bad in a long time. Thankfully things are settled now, so it isn't aching constantly, but it's still a little sore. As much as we need the rain around here, it sure isn't any fun for my knee.

Currently feeling: achy

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Another late night (and a Luke update)

Yes, I am blogging late again, but for a good reason this time. Well, maybe a sort-of good reason. ::sheepish grin:: We finished the next to last disc of Heroes. Can I just say how horrible it is to have watched all of the last episodes except for the finale! It's still on the last disc (which is not in our possession, since we only get one disc at a time), which won't arrive until Saturday. It had sure better be two hours long! LOL

I also want to thank you all for your get well wishes for Luke. He was already substantially better by yesterday afternoon, including eating a handful of shrimp, two pieces of pizza, some crackers and shredded cheese, and an ice cream cone (just the cone, no ice cream in it) for dinner. So yeah, I'd say things are heading back to normal. He isn't fully well by any means yet, but he is significantly better. Still some coughing at night, but nothing even vaguely approaching what happened Monday night. I did send him to daycare today, but told them to call me if he showed any signs of distress. He did fine, though he was flat out exhausted when we picked him up! No surprise there, but I know he was happier there with other kids to play with than he would have been cooped up in the house on this cold and rainy day. He was in bed (and ready for it) before 7 PM.

I feel bad, though, that I didn't call to tell them he would be out sick. He missed Friday, Monday, and Tuesday. When we walked in this morning, it was about 9:30 (he slept until 8:30). The director, the assistant director, and his teacher were all standing in the director's office looking at his file, debating whether or not 9:30 was too early to call and check to see how he was doing! I felt so guilty to have worried them. At least that tells you that they genuinely care about his well being. They didn't even charge me a late fee for his tuition (which was due Monday). Just goes to show me that we have him in the right place.
Currently feeling: happy my little boy is back

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Maternal turn-about

My mother is not the type of person to wish her own misfortunes on someone else. If anything, a bad experience is enough to make her wish that her having experienced it would be enough to prevent others from having to experience it as well. But I can't help but wonder if, deep down, some tiny part of her will be smirking as she reads the following post. You see, she spent *many* nights doing the same thing that I have been doing tonight.

I have just spend the last 2 hours listening to my child coughing virtually non-stop. As I'm sure you know by now, he has been sick for a good week. Up until tonight, he would have a small coughing spell every 20-30 minutes or so, which made it difficult to sleep, but at least I could cat nap between spells or even sleep through the occasional minor coughing fit. But tonight, starting around 12:45 AM, he was coughing literally every 2-3 breaths (not minutes! breaths). Breathe, breathe, cough cough cough cough cough; breathe, breathe, breathe, cough cough cough cough cough; repeat for over an hour and a half. Trust me, we tried pretty much everything (except alcohol, and that's only because we don't have any!), but he just kept coughing. I have never felt so helpless.

I think the only reason he finally stopped coughing enough to go to sleep (yes, *he* can sleep through his own coughing, even if the rest of us can't) was because he literally wore himself out. He's been down to one coughing fit per 10 minutes or so for nearly half an hour now (my clock says 3 AM). I finally just took the monitor out of the bedroom so that DH, who now seems to have acquired Luke's cold from hell, could get some sleep since he has to work tomorrow (after taking two days off last week due to he and Luke being sick). I am now sitting with it downstairs, trying to rest up for what is going to be a not very fun day tomorrow with sick boy. Guess it's good that I went to bed at 7:30 tonight (seriously), so I got nearly 5 hours of sleep before all of this started. Maybe I can sneak in a few more here in the recliner before Luke wakes up in the morning.

We did go back to the doctor today. After four days of fevers in the 100-101 range, then another three days of fevers in the 102 range, plus obvious signs of an ear infection (i.e. gunk coming out of his ears!), I had just had enough. I'm all for letting things run their course (what they told me to do on Thursday), but this is getting rather ridiculous. Plus, the cough was still getting worse (obviously), including (TMI warning) graduating to coughing until he thew up. It wasn't happening every time, but it was happening at least once a day starting Saturday (and including tonight). Of course, it doesn't matter if you cough that much if you aren't eating, which was another reason I took him in today. He was eating a fair amount through Friday, but all weekend, he barely ate. I'm talking "one pop tart, maybe two chicken nuggets, and a couple of glasses of orange juice for the sum total of his caloric intake" type not eating Saturday and Sunday, which decreased yet further to "half a glass of juice for lunch, 1/3 of a pop tart for snack, and one nugget for dinner, including refusing McDonald's french fries" today. He can't get any better without calories! And I know he is getting dehydrated (darker urine (not frighteningly so, yet), cracked lips, etc), but how do you *make* a toddler drink? He also slept for over three hours at nap, which is the most telling sign. We're usually lucky to get an hour out of him.

Our doctor's appointment wasn't until 4:15 this afternoon, so he has only had one dose of antibiotics. He will be home again tomorrow (note to self: call speech therapy and let them know), but I'm hoping he might be better enough come Wednesday to go back to daycare. At this point, I am most worried about the cough. It is NOT down in his lungs. I now that sounds like something I should be happy about, and I am on one level, but if it were, then the antibiotics should take care of it, like bronchitis or even (heaven forbid) pneumonia. But it's not! It is mostly a dry cough, and they are so constant and forceful that they are just wracking his frame. I know he has to be sore! Trust me, I know!

See, I've had bronchitis virtually every year since I was a baby. I know what it is like to cough until you thing you are going to faint or turn inside-out. And then there was the year that I had whooping cough. Honestly, I don't have much of a memory of that time, but I do have clear memories of my mom telling stories about it. Like the one about her sitting in my bedroom just listening to me cough, knowing there was nothing she could do even as she watched my lips turn blue. Luke isn't quite to the turning blue stage (yet), but I am certainly to the "sitting and rocking and not sleeping because my baby is coughing and there is nothing I can do" stage. So Mom? I get it now. And God? I get it now. I now sincerely appreciate how hard that was for her. Now may my son stop coughing? Please?
Currently feeling: tired of the coughing

Monday, October 22, 2007

Or not!

Well naturally! I redesign my blog and post for everyone to come see it, and what happens? My web server goes down! Looks like Melanie could see everything okay earlier today (thanks Mel!), but now anything hosted on my domain is missing (like, gee, I don't know, my new blog header graphic!). So I logged into my web host, only to be greeted with the following message:
Dear Customers,

This server is under scheduled maintenance. The following services will not be working for the next 4-5 hours: Control Panel, e-mails, SiteStudio, and FTP. Your websites will be working properly and will suffer less than 30 minutes downtime at the end of this maintenance.

Best Regards,
Support Staff

Well, of course! I think someone was spying on my blog and said "hey guys, she just decided to redo her blog, so we really have to hurry up and find a way to ruin the debut; oh wait, I know, we'll schedule some maintenance!" Sheesh. Does Murphy hate me or what? Anyway, hope it is back up for you soon. Luke is still getting worse (and is still asleep at 8-something in the morning, which should tell you something right there), so I probably won't be around much the rest of the day.

Currently feeling: aggrivated

Introducing the 2008 Erin Expounds

For all of you on news readers, come take a peek at my new look for 2008! Hey, if car companies can start rolling out 2008 models in April 2007 (or sooner), then I can roll out the 2008 model of my blog in late October 2007. LOL I'm pretty happy with it. Still fiddling with a couple of things, so you may see a little wackiness in the next few days (including possible header graphic alterations, mainly color tweaks), but overall, I think it is going to say pretty much like this for a bit. I would also like to thank Shalini for helping me out with the testing phase to make sure all is well (even if I didn't wait for her final approval to go on and change it! LOL).

So, what do you think? Anything broken or wonky for anyone? Let me know! And now, I must go to bed, where I will have nightmares about snotty children (see previous post) and CSS code.

Currently feeling: rather tired

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Too proactive

Wow, what a rotten two days! I took L to the doctor Thursday morning because he had been running a fever of 100-101 for three days, and he had an absolutely horrible cold that only seemed to be getting worse. I was afraid that it was either something worse than a cold or that he had an ear infection (which he shouldn't, given his spiffy new ear tubes). She checked his ears and said they were fine, and his lungs were clear. Just to treat the fever as needed (if over 100.5) and let the cold run its course. Funny then that he was up three times Thursday night crying about seemingly nothing (we chalked it up to fever dreams), and Friday (we kept him home from daycare) after nap he had fluid seeping out of his ear, i.e. ear infection! If I had waited until Friday to take him, instead of taking him Thursday hoping to catch something before it got really bad, at least there would have been some manifestation of infection. Letting out the fluid is what the tubes are supposed to do, so we're supposed to just wait and see. Yeah, they're not the ones home with the grumpy three-year-old who spends all day wiping snot everywhere and all night coughing so that NO ONE is getting any sleep!

And to top it all off, his fever crossed the 102 mark this afternoon. We take his temp under his arm, which makes his actual temp a full degree higher than whatever the reading shows. For nearly a week now, I have been accustomed to seeing numbers 99.0-99.8, but this afternoon, it just kept going up and up and up, finally stopping at 100.9. How are we getting worse, not better?!! We still have to survive tomorrow (today? pretty sure it is after midnight, which makes it Sunday), and if he is still running a fever come Monday, it will be back to the doctor (for another $30; personally I think this one should be free since she said he was fine (besides the cold) on Thursday) and *another* day home from daycare.

He's not acting overly sick, and if it weren't for the fever, I'd probably send him on to daycare. There's more to keep him entertained there. He is a bit more disagreeable and he tires more easily, which only serves to make him super-cranky and shorten his attention span (can you imagine a *shortened* 3yo attention span? yeah, it's not fun) so that nothing is fun for more than 5 minutes. If the three of us manage not to kill each other before this thing blows over, it will be a miracle.

And idiot me chose Thursday to start redesigning the look of my blog (not quite ready yet) to accomodate all the new Blogger features, which is what is keeping me up late tonight since sick boy won't let me near a computer without wanting to be on it himself (thus rendering impossible any attempts to modify someone elses CSS coding to my liking). I was hoping to debut it tomorrow, but somehow I'm doubting that will happen.

Currently feeling: tired and frustrated

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Atlanta Parent Block Party

Okay, so I finally got to sit down and fiddle with the pictures from our weekend excursion. There was a fall family festival, known as the Atlanta Parent Block Party, held at the Mercer University Chamblee-Dunwoody campus last weekend. They had one single major reason I insisted we attend, and I'll get to that in a minute. The rest I figured we could check out and just see what Luke wanted to do. It didn't start until 10, and he absolutely has to eat lunch by 11:30 (if we know what's good for us), so we knew we really wouldn't have much time, but I still wanted to take him. And he seemed to have fun, even if DH and I didn't too much. We were both much more tired than we should have been. (I'm guessing the fact that we were both running fevers less than 48 hours later is probably not coincidental.)

We started out with something simple: a moonwalk. These are the air-inflated play things. Most of them were too big for him (marked age 5+), and he didn't want to go in. This one was smaller and obviously geared for younger kids, and he liked it. The thing he liked most was he didn't have to take off his shoes. He wanted to go down the big slide they had at another location, but taking off his shoes (while outside) was a deal-breaker! LOL He also got brave enough to hug the bird mascot that was walking around.

The other reason I wanted to take him (besides the big one; I'm getting there!) was to ride the little train they had running. He has suddenly gotten rather into trains (though still not Thomas, which is probably good given all the recent recalls), so I thought this one might be fun for him. One of the cars had a flat tire, so they were down to carrying only 8 folks at a turn, which means the line didn't move very well. He was very patient, though, and kept himself entertained:

Finally, the train arrived, and off they went! Upon their return, we tried out the (very tiny) petting zoo nearby. I think this was the only animal he touched for more than a fraction of a second, but he still got a big kick out of it. All of the animals were miniatures, so they had a pony, a cow, a pig, three goats, and two sheep all in an area about the size of two parking spaces. I got a few other shots, but this one is by far the best of them.

And last, but not least, on our way out, I snapped this photo of him standing beside the thing that was the entire reason we went: the firetruck! What is it with boys and firetrucks anyway? LOL But he was thrilled beyond words, and I'm so glad we took him, just for this single moment.

Oh, before I forget, we also got Luke's fall school portraits back last week. They were okay, not as good as the last ones. I only bought two sheets. I had just had his 3-year-old portraits made on Oct 8, and those turned out much better (and are of historical significance, but I'll share that story when those arrive sometime next week), so I didn't want to buy many of these (which were much more expensive!). But still, it is so hard to resist photos of him! The color is a little wonky, due to the scanner I'm sure. I touched them up a bit, but the reds and greens in particular look a little weird. They look better in person, I promise!

Currently feeling: showing off

Monday, October 15, 2007

A little forensics tip

Dear Heroes writers,

I appreciate that you do all that you can to ensure that, within the precepts of the show, things are as authentic as possible. It is therefore with regret that I inform you of the following procedural error on one of your Season 1 episodes. Law enforcement would run fingerprints through AFIS (Automated Fingerprint Identification System), *not* CODIS (Combined DNA Index System). Your graphics folks got it right, since the computer screen showed that the title of the window in which the search was taking place did indeed say AFIS. It was probably corrected after the scene was shot (I know the computer screenshots are added in later, generally speaking), but it would have been nice if the actress had been given a chance to loop that line so that it was correct. I appreciate all of your efforts at accuracy and authenticity, and I know that more attention will be paid to such matters in the future. Thank you for your time.

-Erin, Super Forensics Geek

Currently feeling: freaky geeky

Sunday, October 14, 2007

How could I not?

Your Score: Micah Sanders

You scored 50 Idealism, 29 Nonconformity, 58 Nerdiness

Can we play Scrabble tonight?
Congratulations, you're Micah Sanders! You're good-natured, intelligent, perceptive, and naturally inclined toward technology. You're also quite innocent and loving. You've got a fondness for computers and Scrabble. Your best quality: You're extremely perceptive Your worst quality: You can be a little demanding at times

Link: The Heroes Personality Test written by freedomdegrees on OkCupid

Currently feeling: heroic

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Hero(es) Worship

You know that a television show has to be utterly amazing when my husband, who usually turns into a pumpkin around 10 PM or so, voluntarily stays up past midnight so we can watch four straight episodes of Heroes.

Currently feeling: up late

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


This song has been following me for a couple of weeks now. Thought I'd share. "Unwritten," by Natasha Bedingfield.
I am unwritten,
Can't read my mind
I'm undefined
I'm just beginning
The pen's in my hand
Ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words
That you could not find
Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions

Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten
Currently feeling: like singing

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Happy 3rd Birthday, Luke!

Wishing you many many more happy birthdays. Love, Mommy

Currently feeling: well partied

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Mythical blue crepe

If you had told me this morning that I would have been to three different stores and would still be short one roll of royal blue crepe streamers, I would have thought you were crazy. It's just classic primary crayola blue. If you only carry 5 colors of streamers, this blue would be one of them, I'm certain! But Wal-Mart, Target, and Party City (of all places!) didn't have any. I shall continue the quest tomorrow, I suppose.

Currently feeling: pratically party-ready

Monday, October 01, 2007

September 2007 Round Up

Monthly Round Up idea borrowed from Katie the Scrapbook Lady.

Credit: Pinky Blinkies

What books and/or magazines did I read this month?
Um, uh, er.... I am ashamed.

What movies and/or tv shows did I watch this month?
Only one movie: The Queen. Helen Mirren was brilliant and deserved all of her accolades. The film itself was quite interesting, offering a very unique perspective of the whole situation. I had no idea that Tony Blair had taken his post so close to the events. But overall, the film was just okay. It is another one of those weird films for me (The Hours was the same way); each piece was quite good (acting, story, etc), but as a whole, it was only so-so. Still don't know how that happens, but it does. Worth seeing if you like this kind of film and don't mind that it is pretty slow for the average viewer. I have a few more sitting on the DVR, but haven't gotten to them yet (Proof, Twelfth Night, plus a few more set to record in October).

TV-wise, the fall season has finally begun! YYYAAAAYYYYYY!!! (Doing my best Kermit the Frog Muppet Show yay.) A couple of our short summer series are bleeding over, though, and I am not happy about that. World Series of Poker in particular is really mucking up my schedule! LOL Need Damages and Mad Men to be over with as well. Not that I'm not enjoying them, just too much other stuff to watch that I am much more invested in. Not enough hours to watch it all! DVR is getting way backed up.

As far as our fall schedule goes, there is much more than there should be. Returning from our previous rotation are: Shark, Rules of Engagement, House, Criminal Minds (Mandy Patinkin left, waaahhh!), CSI:NY, CSI, and NUMB3RS. Sadly, we have decided to drop ER. We just really lost interest over the last year. Had 7 of them recorded from the end of last season, but when premiere day rolled around, and we had not only NOT watched any of them but had no desire to do so, I deleted them and removed it from the DVR rotation. Been watching it for nearly 10 years. The only other one missing (that I can think of) is Law & Order: Criminal Intent, which will begin its new season on USA sometime in October, as I understand it.

New for (hopefully) our 2007 viewing pleasure are: Chuck (loved it!), CSI: Miami (not a new show, but new to my rotation thanks to getting hooked on the stupid A&E reruns this summer), Back to You (pretty good, but not great), and maybe Moonlight (if my brother gives me the OK that it isn't too scary for me). Whenever The Sarah Connor Chronicles begin (I'm hearing Dec/Jan), we'll pick that one up to try as well. If we're lucky, *one* of them might survive.

Oh, and Heroes! Again, not a new show, but new to us. After much pushing and prodding from innumerable folks, we finally decided to give it a try. I didn't want to come in 2/3 through the season last year, so we waited for the DVDs, and I signed up for a one month free trial of Netflix. Watched the first two last night, and I am mightily impressed. I am DVRing the new episodes in hi-def for viewing after we get through all of Season 1.

What special days did I celebrate and how?
We were in Brunswick almost for my father's birthday (we left on Sunday, his birthday was Monday). And my best friend Connie gave birth to a beautiful little girl!

What gifts did I give and/or receive?
I sent Connie a baby gift. I also sent a card congratulating BIL and SIL on their gestating bundle, due in April. We also gave two albums of photos to DH's grandmother, one of Luke's last 18 months, and one of BIL's wedding.

What illnesses or health concerns did I have?
I was sick as a dog for a day at the beginning of the month. The actual symptoms only lasted a little over 24 hours, but I felt drained and "off" for a good week or so. Luke has either a cold or some serious allergies at the moment, but we're surviving. You might want to buy stock in Kleenex, though.

What fun things did I do with my friends and/or family?
Family-wise, we did pretty well. The reason we left Brunswick earlier than normal on Labor Day weekend was so we could spend Sunday afternoon at DH's uncle's house. MIL was also there (eventually). We've seen his aunt and uncle, oh, three times in the last 8 months, and every time, they have done all but get down on their knees and BEG us to come visit. So when we were reminded of their annual Labor Day Sunday bash, we decided to make the effort to attend. It was a busy day. Drove from Brunswick to Waycross to see my grandfather, then to Statesboro to visit Uncle Jack and Aunt Evelyn, and we left there to come back to Atlanta. I haven't calculated the mileage, but it was a whole lot of time spent in the car, I can tell you that! (380 miles, per MapQuest) We also visited with Steve's grandparents in Vidalia (yes, of world-renown Vidalia Onion fame). First time in over two years. Are we horrible grandchildren, or what?

And we finally had a local stitching get-together. We figured it up, and it seems that this was the first one since November 2006! Dates just kept falling through, and we're all so very busy. We've committed to it not being nearly a year before the next one, though. Can't be; we have to throw a baby shower for Ginny!

What new foods, recipes or restaurants did I try this month?
Nothing comes to mind. Am I the world's slackest person or what? Never even made a single batch of cookies. I am a horrible mommy! I'm trying to find a recipe I like so I can make cut-out shaped sugar cookies for Luke's birthday. Hard to do if you don't actually *try* some recipes!! Best get cracking.

What special or unusual purchases did I make?
New underwear! Sorry if that is TMI. I bought some about a year ago, but I went cheap, and it is awful. It was supposedly the same brand and style I bought a few years ago, but the quality is now absolutely terrible! Doesn't fit well (or even consistently between the pairs), doesn't feel good on my skin, doesn't, er, stay put, and already has some holes in it. So I went back to the good stuff, Vanity Fair, and it is heavenly! LOL Haven't worn $10 underwear in at least 5 years (though I still refuse to pay that for it; got it on great sale). I may have to put underwear in the same category I do shoes: pay for quality, because it is so worth it in the end! If I ever get around to losing enough weight that I wear more a more normal size, I may even go back to pricey bras. (By that, I mean $30-40 bras instead of $10-15 bras.)

And a new washer and dryer, something we were hoping to do without for the next few years. Given that they were a minimum of 25 years old, and possibly more than 30 years old, it was time. Particularly given that the dryer decided to die on us. May as well replace both, since the washer is unlikely to be far behind. I just hate such large unplanned expenditures.

What were this month's disappointments?
I just didn't get nearly as much done as I should have, in virtually every single area of my life. And the dryer; that was a real bummer.

What were my accomplishments this month?
I think I am virtually ready for Luke's birthday party now. Except for the whole cookie thing. Guess I should start wrapping presents. We did get almost up to 80% finished on LEGO Star Wars. That counts for something, right? LOL

What were Luke's accomplishments this month?
Lots of little things this month. We think he might be ready to move from a crib to a bed, we just need to get his room ready. Too many open plugs and accessible wires at the moment. He had a great time laying in our bed, and even wanted to be covered up and have the light off. See!

What else? Speech therapy is progressing well, or so his therapist says. Hard for us to tell since we are with him every day. With gradual changes, it's hard to see when you're there all the time, but other people have commented that they can understand him better and he seems to be talking more, so I guess we're doing well.

There has also been some rather dramatic improvement on the eating front. He has finally started eating chicken fingers/tenders. Previously, they had to be Wendy's nuggets only, not even Chick-Fil-A. We've been trying to get him to eat tenders for 18 months now, but he finally decided to actually put some in his mouth this month, and lo and behold, he likes them! Sheesh. Same goes for milk. He had no interest at all, wouldn't even try it. I don't even remember where we were, but since a drink was included with the kids meal, our waitress insisted on bringing him something, so I chose milk. And he drank it! He still won't drink it at home (um, okay), but as long as we're out, he's fine. And last but not least on our tour of "foods he wouldn't eat for 2 years but suddenly decided he loves" is Mexican cheese dip (without jalapenos). He insisted on trying it after wanting nothing to do with it for ages, and now he'll easily eat half the bowl by himself if we let him. Used to be, we'd say we were going to have tacos on Fridays. Now, we say, "we're going to tacos" and Luke responds "cheese dip!" LOL

Anything else noteworthy to record?
No! I think we've had more than enough going on, thanks.

Currently feeling: well-rounded