Battle Wounds

April 2, 2013

ImageEver had one of those moments as a parent where you feel you should be writing a speech for winning “Worst parent of the Year” award? You know, where the guilt of a distracted moment lead you rushing to the ER in sheer panic? From an outsider’s perspective, it’s understandable that not much could’ve been done to prevent the incident, but deep down you still feel like you should’ve known better, or should’ve done something different. . .here’s my latest.

Last night, as we were leaving for an evening stroll with the dog, we double checked the locks on our Prius parked in the driveway. It wouldn’t lock because a door was ajar. I suspected it was the hatchback since I was unloading groceries earlier. In the time it took me to open and close the door, my baby, one day shy of 2 years old, snuck his entire arm in the way. I closed the door on his little baby arm!!! But the nightmare was just beginning. It wouldn’t open. The damn thing was S-T-U-C-K! And his arm was trapped. My husband and I were both pulling as hard as we could, and it wasn’t budging. Instant panic. My husband crawled in the back seat to push from the inside, but that didn’t work. He threw his phone at me so I could call 911, and we kept pulling at the door. It didn’t open, but the handle detached. My husband ran to get a hammer, and jack knifed the door enough to wriggle his tiny arm free. It was flat and crooked, and I assumed broke. The first thing he did was give himself kiss and blows. (Such a brave little sweetie!) He had one giant tear falling down his cheek when I scooped him up. My little girl was pretty shook up as well, and the fire trucks didn’t help to calm her worries. But they did distract the little guy, and after the rest of us had a moment to calm down we noticed his arm was bouncing back. We then turned down the ambulance ride and I took him in to urgent care for an X-ray.

Miraculously, there was no fracture. His arm was like a memory foam pillow, that was flattened, but slowly puffed back into it’s original shape after the weight was removed. They fitted him with a brace and we were on our way home, much to mama’s relief. Awaiting us was his worried big sis, who was sweet enough to stay up late and wrap him a present (a balloon) to cheer him up. Oh my goodness, I love my sweet children!

I guess the moral to the story is threefold. One, ALWAYS check your surroundings before closing a door so that all children limbs remain accounted for. Two, when a hatchback does not open with a child’s arm is inside, RUN for the hammer. Three, and most importantly, my children are the most precious, important pieces to my life. I wish it was my arm instead of my baby’s, my tears instead of his, my screams instead of his sister’s. But it is over now, and thank God my babies are safe and healthy. I am so lucky to be their mommy! 


I miss you.

October 30, 2012

Hello my ever so neglected blog! It appears I’ve been. . .occupied. Sadly, I did not finish posting my September photo challenge pictures, and November is less than 30 hours away. For the record, I do have the pictures, but the number of steps it takes me to upload them on to this blogtackular website is, at the moment, overwhelming. I give myself a C- for effort. Much room for improvement. Oh, bother!

This week has been a week from hell. My best four legged buddy for the past 8 years was taken much too soon. He was missing for a full 7 days before we found his body. During those 7 days we were concerned, sad, hopeful, and even a bit angry. We checked the shelter’s website daily, and drove out there twice, only to be greeted by the same sad eyes of dogs and cats that were waiting for their owner’s who never came. What I would’ve given to have found my little chunks in one of those cages! Where are all these owners? My husband had it worse than I, as he did the gentlemanly thing to do, and put my dear Peta in a box and buried him in the backyard. It took days for him to get the image (I’m too sad to even describe it, but you can imagine) out of his head. The most heartbreaking moment was watching our daughter scream at the top of her lungs, “I want to see Peta!” as she reached for his grave, sobbing. Nobody teaches you how to console a grieving child. I feel awful for those parents who have even more horrible circumstances for their babies to overcome. We miss you Peta chunks, and this is for you

I found Peta working for vector control just after college. Actually, one of my coworkers found a litter of kittens in a hallowed out log near the river we were spraying for mosquitos. I very unenthusiastically came to see what the fuss was about. After all, I was never a cat person. He came running out to me, blonde fluffy tail pointed straight up to the sky, the same color as his eyes. I scooped him up, and thought for a brief second about taking him home. Then I very quickly put that thought aside. I would be moving across the country in a matter of weeks, and who knew if my apartment even allowed pets? It sounded so irrational, right? So I put him back in the log with his other, not so friendly siblings. My coworkers looked at me in disbelief, and so did he. He came running towards me, meowing, as if he was saying, “mommy!” End of story. He was mine.

He proved to be a good decision, as he became my best friend, and a very cool cat. He was a great traveler, happy to be included in the new adventures. He even camped with us at the beach when we reached the coast. He loved being outdoors, and he loved people. When my daughter was born, he would cuddle her in the bassinet. At night, he slept in my arms like a teddy bear. He would follow us to the park, and chill underneath the slide for some shade while the kids ran around and played. Of course, he attracted the attention of the neighborhood kids, and would let them pet him. When he had enough, he would go hide under a bush. But when it was time to go, he’d follow us home. Oh how I miss hearing the jingle of your collar, Peta. I miss seeing you saunter through the neighborhood when you heard us coming. I miss your cuddles, your meows, your gentle scratches at the door. I hope you found Jackson and your old buddy Lemon in the kitty afterlife. You deserve the best. Thanks for being such a good friend.

Precious Moments

September 25, 2012

“While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about.” – unknown

I’m going to devote one day a week to record the precious moments of my children’s lives. The adorable things they do and say need to be recorded somewhere so I can savor these moments forever. It’s cliche, but time goes by too fast. And these days, I can say with certainty, are the best days of my life – days filled with bath bubbles, glue messes, tickles and goodnight stories. I wish I could live these days forever. Fourty years from now, this is what I want to remember:

How when I leave for work, I give kisses in my girl’s hand and she puts them in her pocket. When her daddy asked her for a kiss after I gave her one, she pointed to her lips and said, “but I want to keep mommy’s kiss here!” (Daddy had to settle for a kiss on the cheek.)

I made her a project to finish at the sitter’s house. On one of the pages I drew a picture. On the way, her daddy reminded her and she said, “I can look at the picture when I get lonely?”

How my little boy puckers his lips when it’s time for me to go. And how he wants to give a kiss to everyone in the family, because it’s only fair. . .

My baby boy’s first words: “ere’d daddin go?” “Daddin” for daddy, “-ater” for water, and “boop-boo” for poo-poo.

How he is the cuddliest cuddle bear! His cheeks on my chest in a puddle of baby drool, his arms hugging me. I hope he can feel my heart surrounding him.

How my girl repeatedly reaches out for me to make sure I’m still there as she falls asleep.

I know these days are limited, but these memories can last forever.

A weird little G.I.M.M part 3

September 24, 2012

Since I’ve already established how compatible we are and how much we think alike, I’m dedicating today’s post to just how different the hubs and I are.

1. Snacks: I love snacks. Crackers, popcorn, pretzels, hummus, m & m’s, you name it. The hubs, on the other hand, not so much. He’d rather make a sandwich. Even at midnight, if his tummy’s a rumbling, he’ll skip over the chips and go straight for the salami. The one and only exception to this sandwich addiction is when we have artichoke jalepeno dip in the fridge.

2. Video games: I think they are mind garbage, he thinks they are an acceptable way to pass the time. Sorry, but our children will never play Call of Duty, hun.

3. Chocolate shakes: These are the only thing he will order from Dairy Queen, and he despises malts. I LOVE homemade malts, and DQ has so much more than shakes!!!

I’m keeping it brief tonight, ladies and gents. ‘Twas an awful Monday, and I’m still trying to recover from staff meeting hell.

My daughter’s latest phase is going to the bathroom every 5 minutes. No lies, EVERY FIVE minutes. It’s terribly annoying. We just get settled into a new game of tooth fairy or reading a new book and she says, “pause it mommy, I have to go pee pee.” At first I was very concerned, (bladder infection? UTI? Oh, my gosh, kidney stones???) but thanks to the over the counter azo test strips, I confirmed she has no infection. So I consulted with Dr. Google, and it turns out to be yet another freakishly common toddler habbit I had never heard of. Even if I did, I doubt I would’ve believed that they actually meant the said toddler would want to go potty EVERY 5 minutes. Did I mention it tries my patience? This weekend, we went out for lunch as a family after her gymnastics class. We used the bathroom before we left class, then she said she had to go when we got there, so I took her again. The bathroom was a 3 story elevator ride away. (and by the way, if you’ve never taken a toddler on a trip to a public restroom, it is how you might imagine. . .the germ-o-phobe in my brain is on loudspeaker, and it won’t shut up, “don’t touch, no gross, not that, step away from the bowl, oh. . .ew!”) Anypoop, so we had already been to the bathroom twice in a matter of 20 minutes when she says she has to go again. I was not about to take her, darn it. So I clearly said, “no, we will use the bathroom when we get home!” and of course, my daughter screamed at the unfairness. As we passed by a few onlookers I realized that I must look like the world’s worst mother. I mean, who wouldn’t let their poor toddler use the toilet if she had to go wee-wee? For shame! So these, my friends (all 2 of you) are some things I’d like to explain to my former self:

1. CK Louis says it best here. Don’t judge other parents. 99% of the time, they are probably amazing parents with valid reasons for their seemingly horrible parenting skills. Kids are work. Worthwhile and rewarding, yes, but work!

2. Sending out RSVP’s for wedding invites is not as easy as it seems it should be when it is your own wedding. I know, they couldn’t possibly make it any easier, self addressing the post cards and all, but for some unknown reason the laziness gods make it impossible to put that post card in the mail. Whether it’s the decision of turkey vs. vegetarian or sitter vs. skip, it just doesn’t get done. This is why all weddings should be either byob/meal or strickly private events.

3. Having a cat is not as cool as you once thought. My whole life I despised cats. I was clawed as a toddler and scarred for life, or so I thought. Fast forward 23 years and I meet my first “cool” cat. And for the most part, he is pretty cool. He follows us to the park, and is  chill with all (minus a few one crazy) neighbor-folk. He cuddles like a teddy bear in my arms at night, and comes when I call for him. All signs of a cool cat, right? Here’s the problem: they pee, sometimes outside of the litter box, they scratch your floors, tear your curtains, and make a mess of your couch, they leave fur everywhere, bring in bugs, and leave headless mice for you on the patio. Gross. Cats are not cool, former self, not cool.

4. Stick with photography. I started out as a photojournalism major in college. But, I lived in a small town where I personally knew the photographers of the two local papers. The practical, midwestern, voice in my head told myself that the job prospects would be slim and I should go for a job with a bit more security. So I majored in special education. Now I have pelenty of job security (NO ONE wants to do what I do) but my satisfaction is at an all time low. And I don’t even live in that small town anymore, did I really think I’d stay there forever? It’s not that I hate my job, I can find the positives in what I do, but I’m just not fulfilled. Oh what I’d give to tell my former self, “teaching ain’t as rewarding as everyone makes it out to be, kid. Just keep going, you’re on the right track.” Ideally, someone annonymous would leave us a million dollars on our doorstep so I could stay home with my precious babes, and pick up my photography hobby again. You never know what could happen. . .

I may have to revisit this topic, as I’m sure more will come to me with the passage of time. In a few years I’m sure I’ll be doing weird new things I thought I’d never do that somehow became habits overnight. Life is crazy like that. Speaking of crazy goodness, I’m loving iclw week! Thank you all for stopping by my little piece of the inter-world. I’ve so enjoyed learning everyone’s stories, and reading some wonderful blogs!

Four fill in the blank Friday

September 21, 2012

ICLW week is here, and so I begin with this fun game:

This week’s statements:
1. The last time I was on vacation, I went to ___
2. For ___I like to eat___
3. My heart hurts when____________because_______________________.
4. Why must _____________ just to____________________.

Answers from the chocohalic:
1. The last time I was on vacation, I went to Fargo, ND.
2. For breakfast I like to eat eggs.
3. My heart hurts when I hear the stories of the children in Haiti, from my dear friend Krystal, because I feel helpless. The Fielstra family is amazing!
4. Why must my cat kill mice just to leave them (headless) outside our patio door?

Want to join the Friday fun? Head on over here.
Happy furlough Friday everyone!

In case anyone is wondering what this is all about, check out stupid stork, who came up with this magnificent marriage confessional idea. You should check out her blog anyway, I don’t know if she knows it yet, but she’s sort of my blog hero. Anywho, here are tidbits you might find out if you were lurking in our bushes. Not really, gross.

  • Tonight my husband calculated that in order to actually pee a million times, you would have to live to the age of 330, assuming that you use the facilities an average of 10 times per day. These are the thoughts we ponder and find answers to right here, from the comfort of our couch. You’re welcome.
  • We have opposite approaches to cleaning the house. I’m more of the cleaning induced ADHD-type, rushing the house trying to get done as soon as possible. He turns into an OCD patient, cleaning every nook and corner of the counter top with a 7 step procedure. I can clean the entire rest of the house in the time it takes him to clean the kitchen countertops and cabinets. This used to annoy me to no end, but I’ve since  grown to appreciate his thorough, snail-paced approach.
  • For our honeymoon, we did a road trip from North Dakota to the coast and down to San Diego. At the time I remember feeling a little down that we couldn’t afford a tropical honeymoon filled with umbrellas in our drinks. We made the most of it, and looking back, it was THE best choice we made.
  • We’ve been driving a mini-van since before we had kids. We drove it for four years before we could use the kids as an excuse.
  • In order to put our 3-year-old to sleep, we need to lay in bed with her until she nods off to sleepy-land. In her full size bed, I lay next to her, and my husband lays at the foot of her bed. Often we both fall asleep with her, and roll ourselves to our own bed around midnight. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Los Angeles News and Video for Southern California

Pretzels and chocolate

Thoughts of a thirty-something

Fielstra Family for Haiti

Thoughts of a thirty-something

Thoughts of a thirty-something

Stupid Stork

Thoughts of a thirty-something


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