September 29, 2006

Six Months - 183 Days


That's the Chinese symbol for Six...

And, as it turns out - and you will see above on the ticker with the ladybug - we are LID Six Months today.

Inside I'm all bubbly and happy and bursting...really...I am...

On the outside, I sound like Ben Stein...(see Ferris Bueller's Day off, if you're not sure what I mean...) (Still can't picture it?) (How about this "Bueller....Bueller....Bueller")....

Someone wake me in Spring please?

(zzzzzzzZZZZZzzzzzzZZZZzzzzzz)

September 25, 2006

Re-Poster

Some people are re-gifters...and I'm a reposter. I've been feeling particularly bitter over the latest word that the CC*A* recently confirmed the wait would be three years, and that referrals for December '05 would possibly be completed by December of this year. What the frig?!?! Are they kidding. Meanwhile, they urge us all to stay "focused" and hope we will "remain in the program".

I went back through and found this old post that I wrote. It clearly will be much less tongue in cheek than I originally intended, at the rate we're now going....

Here goes:

Hmmm, meanwhile, all this time is going by and I realized that it's taking way longer than I bargained for! Then it really hit me...this is taking way longer than Keira bargained for! So congrats to all the two families who got their referrals (I'm being sarcastic people) , I really and truly am happy for you...both of you...no really. I am. But I started thinking I might want to write a letter to my daughter, wherever she is...so here we go: Ahem...




Hi Keira! Here's a recent picture of Mommy...I know it's not what you expected, but just you wait. I will be able to do all the stuff the other Grandma's can do! Don't you worry! By the time you get here, I will only be 67. That's not THAT bad. Mommy heard about a woman on the news who gave birth to a baby at 70. Don't worry about Daddy, he wanted to send a picture too, but he didn't hear me when I called for him - but he is still alive and kicking. At least, most of the time. Whew, it's almost time for bed here...7:00...but I want to get this letter off to you, so I'm going to finish it up...

I've been thinking about how nice it will be to teach you to walk! Won't that be great?!? My knees aren't what they used to be, so I might need a few minutes to straighten out after bending down to reach for you...in fact, better skip the bending altogether. Mommies hip is acting up again, ever since the Red Alert button on my Life Braclet broke and I was stuck on the bathroom floor for nine hours. I tell you, the hospitals aren't what they used to be! There used to be places you could go and younger people would be there too...and babies being born...now it's only old folks wearing diapers and hollering obscenities at the staff. Well actually, that was just Daddy...but don't worry. He only drools sometimes now...

Where was I? Oh yes, I wanted to tell you how much I can't wait to hold you and sing you lullabies! Of course, my memory isn't what it was when I started this adoption...back then I used to know lots of...what was I saying? Oh yes, singing...hmmm...Mommy keeps forgetting what we're talking about. Daddy says my memory is slipping, but actually, that's just his way of telling me that my memory is slipping...wait...didn't I just say that? Better move on... I've been knitting you a few things here lately. Just since we started the process. It keeps my mind occupied while we wait for you, but Daddy says you won't need to have eighty-six blankets. I just keep telling him that having a lot of blankets is good for aches and pains in your legs. What does he know?!? He still thinks I'm silly for getting one of those red ropes installed in front of your room and putting a sign in the door that said "keep off carpet". I was afraid someone might mess up what has now become an antique collectors paradise of "baby items". We have people come by the house all the time to view the "Window to the Past Nursery" (I made that name up - do you like it?) and I have started charging for admission. Can you believe that when we started the process to adopt you, our home was brand new? But don't worry...Mommy will definitely get the inspector out to check for dry-rot and un-safe structural conditions before you come home.
My, oh my, how time flies! Why it seems like just yesterday Daddy was helping me install handrails in the shower and next to the toilet. Here's the best part, Mommy had a new ramp installed outside so I can get in and out of the house faster with my walker. Don't worry though, I only use the walker sometimes. Usually only when I'm standing...or walking. Daddy has to borrow it on occasion, ever since he forgot to open the sliding door before he walked through it. I think his eyesight might be getting a little weak. The other day he asked me where his glasses were and they were right on his eyes! Can you believe that? Speaking of glasses, I got my very own tri-focals this weekend! We might need to be careful when we snuggle, because I don't want to scratch you with them, but Daddy sure likes them on me! He says I look two or three years younger with them on...isn't that nice?

Well, Mommy should go. My back is hurting and my corns are acting up. I wonder if Daddy will rub some Bengay on my shoulder? I hurt it the other day when I was eating. Picked up the fork, and ouch! Course, my hips have been saying "ouch" every time I picked up a fork for the last forty years. What can you do?!?

I love you sweetie! Hope you can come home soon...if you want to write back, just send it to the same address, and they'll forward it to the old folks home if we've moved there. Daddy says the old folks home is for slobbering diaper wearing loud old men, and I said "and you're point is?"

Love you and can't wait to see you!

-Mommy


*********************




Just in case anyone was wondering how I was feeling about our adoption lately...

Reading Rainbow...(did you watch that show?)

I really like to read, but I have a problem. I start a book, then stop. Then start it...then stop. This goes on for a while and then I get bored, move on to another book, come back to the original book and so it goes...

I've decided to accept a challenge to organize my Fall reading starting now - thanks to the help of a couple friends Erin and Kelley, who are doing it and of course, the source (check Callapidder Days out for more info).

Here is my list, and I refuse to put them in order of how they will get read, because the reality is, it really depends on the mood I am in.

Warning Disclaimer: I read a lot of Children's literature and/or almost always fiction. It's soothing to me and it is not because I am stunted in the reading department. I truly enjoy a good Judy Blume or Jude Deveraux. I know a lot of people have all these smart and engaging books on their lists (no that there's anything wrong with that), but I don't. You won't see that here. I completely enjoy the Harry Potter Series, and I have been known to get nose deep in a Ronald Dahl book...(as well as some trashy romance novels...but that's another story).

So we've been asked to compile our lists, and I have done so below. You will note that I have five, that's FIVE children's books on my list. I can't help it...I just can't!

Here goes and happy reading!




Great Children's Book:
First, I need to finish this. I'm on page 236 of 270. I've been "reading" it for a year. I know...I know...LAME. I can't help it. It's a perfectly good book, and I have a problem finishing books. What can I tell you?









Next, I need to finish this one. I'm on page 212 of 443. This is seriously the best series! It's called the "Casteel Family Series"by V.C. Andrews. It's mystery with family drama, etc. It's such a good series. I've read all the books before, I think there are five. It's addictive...but by the time I had read the previous three and then got half way through this one, I was kind of tired of the story. It's still a great book, I was just... I don't know...bored, I guess. So, I need to finish it because...










This is the last one in the series and it's actually the prequel. I'm anxious to read it, but really want to finish the one above first. See!?! This is my problem...start, stop, start, stop...













Here's my one claim to adulthood fame: I purchased "Howards End" by E. M. Forster and I really want to read it. I've had a beautiful bookmark in it for a month, and have never even opened to the first page. Maybe because I have so many others that are half done!








Children's Lit:
Here's another one that I started but didn't finish. It's a great concept about a little girl whose father can't read aloud because he has a gift where when he does, the things in the story come to life. I've gotten about half way through it but got distracted by the Casteel Series, above. I really want to finish it also, because...





It has a mate...and that is something I love. When the story doesn't just end, but has another to keep it going. So I really want to get these read. They aren't small either. They're each a whopping 500+ pages.








This is a series also, well...a series of two. AB and I both are interested in these and we bought them, but have never read them. I'm anxious to see if they're good, since we both loved the Harry Potter series.



OK, well that's it, people. Are you bored? Shocked? Amazed? None of the above? Can't blame you...after all, it is
my reading list. Maybe you should make you're own? If you do, be sure to check out Callapidder Days for instructions and rules.

September 24, 2006

New shoes....NOT!

I really wanted to show you a picture of the new shoes I got for Keira. I really did! But my memory card was zapped and fried and so my hubby bought me a newer and better memory card today. I put it in the camera...and.....NOTHING! Turns out the dang camera is fried, and took two perfectly good memory cards down the toilet with it! DAD-GUM-IT!

I am so irritated right now. This post was supposed to be about new shoes. Really adorable, cute, little leather shoes.

Guess you'll have to make do with this...

X X
o
xxxx

For better graphics than the above...I'll need a better $$ budget and a much, much better camera...! It's not even that old!

September 22, 2006

!@$%#^&%@& ANTS!

Who told freaking "Timmy" that having a little Ant Farm would be cute? Who ever decided to invite these annoying, horrible, nasty little things into their house in the first place? Some fool who later found them vastly multiplied and only a small sign in the farm that said "Moved to the Pantry" - I guess that's when he finally understood why some things are better left to Raid.

Do I sound bitter? Well, I AM!!

Tonight as AB and I were wrapping up the evening and getting ready to feed the animals and head to bed, AB yelped and said "Babe...you better come and look at this". I ran to the kitchen and low and behold...the little !@(*&$#@ were all over the dog feeding stations, all over the food that is contained inside them...all over the $$$$ KACHING KACHING KACHING expensive food that Kaleigh has to eat because she is allergic to everything else. Streaming in a neat thick line all the way across the kitchen from behind the fridge. I said..."GET THE RAID!" Yes, we mopped afterward - sort of. And yes, we washed all the pet dishes, bowls, etc. Yes, we fed the dogs elsewhere. And yes, we huffed and puffed and a few choice words got said towards the little buggars. This was not how we wanted to end our night. But it got better, oh yes it did!

Moments later, AB went to deliver Miss Kitty her food in the laundry room, and he came back with a bowl in his hand and said "you won't believe this!" Don't tell me...you don't have to, I said. Guessed it yet? YEP! !@#@#@%$#%%^%&* All over the laundry room, swarming all over Miss kitty's dry food and all over her little dish from last night of wet food...not that there was anything but a few dry crumbs in it. Poor kitty! So we rush to spray and clean and mop, and wash the dishes and feed kitty in the master bathroom. By now we're sweating. And P.O'd. Big time. These little jerks were doing the party dance all over my house... So, now that we're de-stressing from the pet drama...I open the pantry to get out the "Swifter". Good thing I did too....you say it for me this time! Go ahead...ALL OVER THE DANG PLACE. I'm telling you...these suckers were on steriods. Some of them were like four times the size of the average ant. They were huge. Others were small and quick...but not too quick for Raid. Muhhhaahahaahahahaahhhhh!

As we're now on our hands and knees trying to extinguish the life from several hundred ants, I am literally thinking they are the devils spawn.
I look at them and see little horns and beatty eyes...invading our home...our pets food...our food! Criminy, I'll be lucky if we all aren't dead by morning from the vast amounts of toxic Raid in the air. I do take some pleasure in the fact that the Ants that ventured in the house are dead. I picture that somewhere tonight in ANTLAND, all the little ants are lying on their couches watching the nightly news and listening to the breaking story of hundreds of workers trapped in a human house and exterminated via "The Gas". Missing Ants posters will be up by tomorrow morning and the ant factory will have to relocate for awhile...

But never fear...they'll be back. Oh yes, they always come back.

They find a way. And they always come back....

little !*&$#@&#$@#&@!!$*&#@!!



p.s. - Don't forget to read below on my post about Adventures!

September 21, 2006

Adventures

I feel like this trip that we're planning to China to get Keira is such an adventure in the making. And the truth is, unless you're a dare-devil extraordinaire, you don't get a lot of adventure in your everyday life. I know we don't (shrugs shoulders). At any rate, I'm really looking forward to it, but even my adoption buddies can tell you how my hubby's face light up when he talks about going to China with me next year. He absolutely comes alive. He's been and he loved it then and has wanted to return ever since. Now, knowing that I've seen almost nothing of the "world" outside of California and Texas, he is even more jazzed up about it - because he feels like it's an adventure for us - not only to be parents, but to see the world together. An amazing country rich in culture and beauty and history (and, well there's the fact that our daughter lives there...).

AB grew up in Indonesia. He was a missionary kid and literally lived in the jungle (among the bush and the tribe people) for several years with his parents and sister. Their family is all back on suburbian ground, but still count those years and Indonesia as some of the best of their lives. Of all the places they have all lived, Indonesia is what they miss the most. Can you imagine that? Maybe you can. But I can't. I've never lived outside of Suburbia...ok, well there was this one time, if you count living in the country like a farmer girl...but that was really safe and normal. Cows and chickens, etc.

So I married this amazing guy who not only can cook like nobody's business, but is extremely intelligent and soooo book smart, is wonderful with children (specialty = middle school age (gag...can you even imagine that!?!?!) and is a world traveler/dweller. He speaks (or could if he really wanted to, but doesn't) three languages - English, Dutch, and Indonesian - and he just knows stuff. That's why I married him...because he's hot and he knows stuff. Please don't ask why he married me...I'm still figuring that one out.

My point is - my husband of adventures married a girl of no adventures. So I started digging...have I ever taken an adventure? Something that was out of my comfort zone and tested my ability to let lose and have fun and face my fears...

Well I came up with one. I know that's lame. One. But it's still one to say that I have done. Now, here's the preface: I have an irrational fear of water. Bodies of water in particular, meaning the ocean or large rivers. I don't like sea-life. It scares me...a lot...I mean...a lot. Revealing something about myself that I would rather take to my grave, I have such a fear of sea-life, that I have an unnatural fear of shadows in a swimming pool because in my mind...it's a whale swimming over. I know it's not. I realize there is no whale in my mom's pool. It's just...I can't convince myself to be comfortable when the sun started setting and there are shadows cast over the pool. Especially if I'm diving under water and look down and see the shadow on the bottom of the pool. Sends off the alarm...I'm over and out like a walkie-talkie. Great...so now that you have the background, and now that you think I'm a complete lunatic...I should also tell you that at 14 years old on a youthgroup trip to the ocean in Santa Cruz, California, I almost drowned in the ocean and had my youth pastor not seen a wave take me under and swim out and literally pull me up - I still have no idea how he did that - I would not be here writing this story. Now, while I was under...I was literally feeling my life go. I got hit in the back of the head by this enormous wave....pushed under the water and swirling around...all around me was this black water, that is to say, you couldn't see at all. I was turned all around and could not find my way up. Even though there were bubbles everywhere from the wave rushing by, I was pushed down and I just couldn't find my way up. It was such a moment of panic. I thought...this can't be it...I can't drown...I just can't! Around that time, a hand grabbed my arm and up I went...sputtering and coughing and colapsing back on shore to gain my breath and calm my shaking limbs.

Well, I hadn't gone back into the ocean since that day. I had waded in...a little. Walked up and down a sandy shore...but the chances of going back in the water were just so slim.

Enter my adventure: At 25 - some people from work were organizing a River Raft and I was like "nope...no way...not this girl...not in this lifetime". Well, apparently, I didn't mean that. After much coaxing and prompting and prodding by them, I agreed that I would go as long as no helmets were involved. In my mind, if you had to wear a helmet, it wasn't for beginners. Well, I was wrong, but who cares. It was one of the best experiences of my life. I am not athletic. I do not do sports - (sorry honey!). I do not like water. But somehow, they convinced me and I went. I'm so glad I did. There were times that I thought "If I fall in...just don't let me drown!" But I didn't ever fall in, and I was so pumped the entire time...from the first big wave that we hit...I was sold. It was amazing! If you have never gone whitewater rafting, you have to do it. It's so great...and the water was incredible. We did an all day tour - where you stop a couple times for lunch/snack and a potty break and then head out again. You work your way down the river and at certain times of the year, the water is much more active than others. So of course, as you will see in the pictures below...it was pretty active. At the end of the day, I was tired, aching, and wet...but I was also elated, felt a great sense of accomplishment, and felt I had just had an adventure that I would never forget.

Guess I was right...

More on new Adventures sometime next year...


September 18, 2006

Mommies, Movies & Munchies

To say I have met the most extraordinary women on this journey and to say that they have become near and dear to my heart would truly be an understatement. What started as a social lunch once a month quickly grew into bonding with some of the kindest, funniest, and special women I've ever known. We all share the same agency, we all are adopting or have adopted from China, and we all - though different in many ways - are bonded through our journey and now, through our wonderful and amazing ability to relate to one another as friends and "sisters". There really is no explanation for it. Why should these women be different from any others? I've tried to socialize in groups before and it never came to more than very basic interactions. The truth here, is that there is no rhyme or reason to it. Erin wanted to meet - so she sent out the invite and we all showed up. That was several months ago...now we're inseparable. I can't explain it...why don't I let the pictures do the talking...

Although, I will say this - the other night we got together for Movie Night at Valerie's...and my gosh...I haven't laughed that hard in months! I can't remember the last time I had so much fun! We all laughed and laughed...and so many things came up that have now immortalized the night in our minds...for more on those, you must go visit Valerie's blog! It is absolutely hilarious what she wrote (and so true).



I love ya girls! So Kelley, Erin, Valerie, Robyn, and Jamie - Here's to many, many more! And thanks to Erin and Robyn, who I stole so many of these pictures from...

September 13, 2006

Once Upon A Time

I have had several requests to re-post to my blog the short story I wrote and posted in April of '06 to Keira's website. For those who were so kind to ask and persist...here you go...



Once Upon A Time...


Once upon a time, I was single and those were the good ole days. Whatever I wanted to do I did, and wherever I wanted to go I went. I took trips to the library, walks to the park, and spent quiet time at home planting flowers and watching old movies. Dining for one was a treat because there was never a fuss about what to eat or where to eat it. Projects were simple and necessity was the mother of my inventions. I killed the spiders that crawled out from under my pantry and celebrated when I fixed the leak in my toilet. Yes, those were peaceful times. There was nothing to keep me up at night and no one to make demands on my time. Life was content and quiet. But maybe sometimes a little lonely…Suddenly, one hot August evening I met a man who would change all that for me. He smiled and I was sold and truth be told, he didn’t even know I was alive. Mistaken for the mother of one of his students, he assumed I was “taken”. Three short months later, we met for coffee and have never been apart since. Fate worked out the details on how we got to that point and there was never a better first date or first kiss. Love was in the air and I was smitten and swooning after being in his arms for ten minutes.Soon after, my beloved was on one knee in front of hundreds of people asking for my hand and I gladly said goodbye to my single life. After all, my life with him was so enriched and so much fuller than I ever thought it could be. The old saying goes like this “First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage”…but fate had other plans for us.
The first couple years of wedded bliss passed by and never was a couple more in love than my darling and I. We set up house and even got a dog. Eventually we even got a second puppy. We took walks with our dogs, and delighted in their newly learned tricks. We would actually even surprise company with mini pet shows where we would proudly display the things our dogs had learned. Life was good and we were having fun learning to be a family.

Once upon a time we were young and newly married and those were the good ole days. Whatever we wanted to do we did, and wherever we wanted to go we went. We took trips to the library, walks to the park, and spent quiet time at home planting flowers and watching old movies. Dining for two was always a treat because there was never a fuss about what to eat or where to eat it. Projects were simple and necessity was the mother of our inventions. He killed the spiders that crawled out from under my pantry and we celebrated when we fixed the leak in our toilet. Yes, these are peaceful times, we would say to each other. There was nothing to keep us up at night, except the sound of each other snoring, and no one to make demands on our time. Life was content and quiet. But still sometimes a little lonely…And soon the seeds of parenting, that were planted by having our little canine pals around, grew into full-blown desire. We thought about all the things we would do together as we happily plotted our blue-eyed blonde haired children. And so began the hopeful and na├»ve step into child conception. Several months passed and we watched as our friends around us conceived with seemingly little more than dinner and a movie. We laughed it off, shrugging our shoulders and silently hoping we were just out of sync. Several more months passed and still no glorious revelation of pregnancy. In fact, several pregnancy tests sat on the bathroom counter well into the night, in the slight hope that the second line would eventually decide to make it’s presence known. To no avail…
Summers came and went and we did yard work while neighbors happily passed by with strollers in tow – out for pleasant walks to the park. This only further served to encourage us to “get to work” on project baby. Still, weeks turned into months and months turned into three years of unsuccessful bargaining with God.Everywhere we looked, pregnant women glowing with love floated in and out of our paths, their proud husbands standing by to carry their coat and open their doors. Friend after friend called or wrote with news of impending childbirth, and we made calls of celebration, even though our own hopes were slowly fading out like a summer sunset. Family barbeques and dinners with old friends rendered the same question we had heard time and time again “when are you two going to start a family?” We finally had come up with witty answers like “oh, haven’t you met our four-legged kids…they were a pill to deliver?” or “we are a family…children are the addition to what already exists”. Needless to say, most of the time, we just smiled demurely and feigned ignorance. A simply shoulder shrug often did the trick and was quickly followed by a change of subject. Only those near and dear knew our true struggle. We were facing the beast of infertility - crappy, low-down, no-good friend that he is. Hope turned to rain. Dreams turned to darkness. One day we found ourselves talking about the future, the one without the children we so desperately wanted, and we consoled ourselves with this:Yes, once upon a time we would be old and long married and those would be the good ole days. Whatever we wanted to do we would do, and wherever we wanted to go we would go. We would take trips to the library, walks to the park, and spend quiet time at home planting flowers and watching old movies. Dining for two would always be a treat because there was never a fuss about what to eat or where to eat it. Projects together would be fun and simple and necessity would be the mother of our inventions. He would kill the spiders that crawled out from under my pantry and we would celebrate when we fixed the leak in our toilet. Yes, these would be peaceful times with no distractions or worries, like the ones kids would undoubtedly bring. There would be nothing to keep us up at night, except the sound of each other snoring, and no one to make demands on our time. Life would be content and quiet. But maybe sometimes a little lonely…


We moved across the country, bought a home and set up life – a life that didn’t include kids. We still wanted them, but we just couldn’t face the heartache of any more procedures, tests, or the negative results that went with them. We decided to make each other our focus and went forward with our plans to be a happily married couple. As fate would have it, that was not the only thing we were to plan on…


A year and a half later, a miracle happened. I became pregnant. Not the traditional kind of pregnancy that nature had ruled out for me in my mother’s womb, but the kind that entails lots of paperwork and lots of waiting. We call it paper-pregnancy. The kind that twists and turns and melts your tired wounded childless heart, and brings hope for tomorrow and the future. We had stumbled upon a wonderful opportunity to adopt a baby girl from China and door after door opened until there was no way to move but forward. Suddenly we were wrapped up in paperwork and details. Visits with a social worker, forms to fill out, fingerprints to take, and passport photos to pose for. One joyous day all that hard work had accumulated into one little box that traveled all the way to China and made it’s way into the hands of the Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs. Now we sit and wait for the pictures of the little one that will invariably change our lives forever. Even though it took months to get to this point, it seems like a dream. There is a nursery to sit in. One that I still walk into and feel as if I must be in someone else’s house. There is a crib and little tiny clothes. There are even little diapers that smell of baby powder all neatly stacked in a row. There are rattles and toys and squishy little chubby baby books. There are soft furry blankets, and warm thick cotton booties. There is a mobile that plays “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” and a baby doll that has soft black hair and beautiful Asian features. This is my daughter’s room, I tell myself. These are her clothes and her toys and this is her bed. It’s a bit much to take in, even now. And yet, I comfort myself with these thoughts while I wait for her to be in my arms:

Once upon a time we will be parents and long married and those will be the good ole days. Whatever we want to do we will check to make sure it’s kid-friendly and then do it, and wherever we want to go we will wonder if she will like it too. We will take trips to the library, walks to the park, and spend time at home playing with toys and watching Disney movies. Dining for three will always be a treat because there will never be a dull moment watching her jam daddy’s good eats into her little mouth. Projects together will be fun and messy and necessity will be the mother of our many inventions. She will probably pick up the spiders that crawl out from under my pantry and we will celebrate when she goes potty on the big-girl toilet. Yes, these will be glorious times with plenty of distractions and worries, like the ones having a child will undoubtedly bring. There will be nothing to keep us asleep at night, except the sound of her peaceful breathing, and only our lovely toddler to make demands on our time. Life will be content, yet blissfully chaotic. But never lonely…


-Christie

September 11, 2006

I Remember...

For the last four years, I haven't spent much time in memorial or rememberance of this day. I guess because it's so depressing. Out of sight, out of mind. Easy for me to say and do, since I didn't have to lose someone I loved or cared about that day. But it truly was gnawing at me this year, and so I decided to record a lot of the programs that have been airing about 9/11 (documentary style programming) and have spent the last several days watching all of them. I have to say, I am just so humbled. I have cried and cried. The humanity! It's so devastating. Last night, Anton got up from sleeping and came to the living room to find me crying on the couch, watching the remainder of a program I was already almost two hours into. He laid down and put his head on my lap and we snuggled. I told him how much I loved him, how he is my best friend, and how I never want to be without him. I ran my fingers through his hair, and touched his cheek. He just had his eyes closed so peacefully, and I just thanked God for him right then and there. The thought that he could leave the next day and never return put so much fear in my heart and I was filled with love for him and all he is to me.

It has struck me so deeply how much was lost that day. When you hear the stories of these people, and you realize the agony some of those people suffered that day...I mean...it never really occurred to me all the ways people died. For instance, when the planes hit the building they both severed several of the elevator cables. There were 198 elevators running between those two buildings. Some were naturally up towards the top of the buildings when hit, and literally plunged down at rapid speeds covering over a thousand feet, and killing everyone inside. Can you even imagine that? It never even occurred to me all the ways people perished that day. I also watched the movie "Flight 93", which is the movie version of what happened when several passengers of Flight 93 attempted to take over the highjacked flight. It was just humbling, what these people went through, and the agonizing calls they made to their wives, mothers, and loved ones while in the air. I could not fathom facing that with my husband or family.

Today, please take a moment to remember what was lost. Each person had a family, a husband, wife, mother, father, siblings, or friends who loved them. Each one of the almost 3000 people who died five years ago today, had no idea that it was their last day on earth. No idea that they would die violently that day as they kissed their husbands, wives, or loved ones goodbye that morning. Remember them...remember their stories...otherwise, what good did all of their lost lives do?

And don't let another day go by without telling those close to you that you love them and cherish them.

September 9, 2006

Mommies Who Lunch & The Bad Waiter

Why is it, that when you get my favorite group of gals together at a place where the food is great - and we're all in the mood for good conversation - that you have to insert the bad waiter.

I was very happy to see the girls from my Mommies Who Lunch (even though we were missing four - boo hoo) But no sooner had we sat down when Dr. Evil's stupid and neglectful twin approached to take our drink order.

Needless to say, I think we were so distracted by how bad he was - that the food wasn't as good, the conversation was sporadic (because we were too busy deciding how he should be punished!) and I was totally peeved off. Sorry girls if I seemed a little moody - but that guy really ticked me off! And Shelli, thank you for stepping in and defending me over the coke - I'm so glad you did, because I didn't want it. Was he serious?!?!?!

Even though we did not speak to a manager at the time - and boy was I tempted - we did decide to show our "appreciation" for him in another way (wink, girls*) But upon later examination, and after speaking with AB, I decided to write a letter to the management. Not just because of Dr. Evil's twin idiot, but because the last time we had dinner there, we also had a really bad service and I didn't speak to a manager then either...so the letter went off via e-mail last night.

Now that I got that off my chest - here we are - aren't we cute? And for the record, we petitioned a nice waiter to take this shot. Lord knows, our server was never around enough to even ask! (and by the way- I stole this picture from Robyn...that's right...I'm a picture thief!)

Thank God we have plans to meet again soon! The Mommies Who Lunch, that is...I'll see you wonderful women next weekend!

Robyn, thank you for the comedy hour live interpretation of your "Patient Scrap"! It was hilarious!

xo

September 4, 2006

Notice the New Look

Hi all! Just wanted to post and say "I've got a new look". NO - not a new look for myself, although the picture above is mighty fine - I think I was ten and I thought I was "ALL THAT". But as you can see around you - I've been into the color pots...

No, unlike the other gals I blog with, who have super snazzy new looks (Robyn and Jamie and Donna) - I decided to just change my template through Blogger. Now, this is primarily because I knew that if I did what they did, I would lose my previous posts. Or so I think? And I don't want that...so I just decided to pick another template. Well, it appeared I would lose everything that way too...stupid blogger...hmph!

SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

I thought I would get smart and try to decode the HTML and learn how to change it myself. Now what you are seeing is hours of work, i.e. me trying to figure it out. However, it's not completely done - I'm still trying to work a few kinks out, but I've almost got it. Anyone viewing this site through FireFox (which by the way was a God-send when blogger would no longer let me post pics - it's free, easy, and I never had another problem uploading!) will be able to see the best version, but if you're just viewing through plain ol' Explorer, it may appear a little rough...

Anyway, it totally suits my color palate, because it's been raining all day here (FINALLY!!) and I'm in the mood for Fall. I thought these colors and changes to the font would make me happy - and they do - so here we are!

Hope you like it, I know I do!

September 2, 2006

Challenge Accepted:

OK, I will try to get out of my dull-drums...

Erin, I accept your challenge and here are my results:


Ok - 1. Above is my very first shin-dig, which was when my parents and a bunch of their friends hired six stretched white limos and we went to an amazing dinner and the ballet. It was Christmas, so of course we went to see the Nutcracker, and it was amazing. Even better was that my heartthrob crush, Paul, came as my "date". Now people, I was only thirteen...but I was so innocent - just ask my mom, and I was so thrilled to go with him. Several of the "kids" of these adults, myself included, brought dates and we all rode in one limo by ourselves. I was the youngest, mind you. Most of the kids were highschool. But talk about a night to remember. As far as young love went, this night was a cake topper. Incredible down to the last detail!
(Thank you Dad for such an amazing memory and for always doing things "BIG"!)

2. Above I am now 16 and a Junior in highschool and this is my date Denny, who is now an MD (go Denny!) I think it's his Junior Prom...no, scratch that...maybe it was Homecoming? I can't remember. My mom loves this dress. I do too, I guess. What I really can't remember is ever fitting in anything that small! And that hair...don't say I didn't warn you about my early nineties wall of hair!

3. Ok, now I remember. This above must have been Homecoming, because this is my Junior Prom. I did not wear a fancy schmancy because I went to private school and we didn't have dances, we had "Banquets". LAME! Anyway, I'm 16 and this is Korey, who I had the biggest, fattest crush on. He didn't even go to my school, but to my church. I don't even know how I got the courage to ask him to come? Wish I could remember...I hate getting old!

4. Last but not least, Senior Ball - which was also a banquet...what a rip-off! I loved my school, but this is one thing I would change. Do you recognize my date? Come on people, it's only been like 2 minutes since you last saw him! That's right...my childhood 1st love returned to escort me to my Senior Ball...what a guy! Actually, Paul and I remained very close throughout my highschool years and were together off and on for about five. Finally in our 20's we decided to fish or cut bait...being that I'm married to Anton, I guess I don't have to tell you what we decided. Interestingly enough, his mother passed away a few years back, and I went to the funeral. I'd spent so much time with their family, that his mother was like a second mom to me. When I was at the wake following the service, her twin sister approached me and said "you're Christie, aren't you? I just want you to know that you were the daughter she always wanted and she loved you like a daughter til the day she died." Sniffle, sniffle!!


OK - READY FOR MY RETALIATION CHALLENGE - ERIN, KELLEY, ROBYN, SHELLI, VALERIE, JAMIE and anyone else....time to show us what you looked like in those old school pics...come on, don't be shy. I'll go first, of course...

1. Here I am above, adorable if I do say so myself. I am seven and in 2nd grade. The year is 1981. Man, I'm cute!
This is an all time favorite because you gotta love the split screen picture. How 80's can you get? This is 4th grade and the year is 1983. I was 9 years old. Loved that sweatshirt!!

3. Ok, jumping ahead, or we'll be here all day - this is my Sophomore year of highschool. The year is 1988 and I am 15 years old. I am smiling just like my Dad here. He smiles so big that his eyes become hard to see, like little slits. I do that too sometimes...



4. And last but not least, TADA, VAVAVA-VOOM...HERE SHE IS.....MISS AMERICA....
Ok, well, that's what I thought at the time, and apparently my parents did too, because they got the jumbo version and planted it above the fireplace for all to see. I mean...the JUMBO version. In this beautiful frame and a light over it...so 90's. This is my Senior Portrait, the year is 1992 and I am 17 years old. The interesting thing, aside from the never-ending wall of hair still present, is that I should have put out a disclaimer when handing these out to my fellow male classmates - I don't know - something like "Warning: Parental Discretion is Advised". Can you believe that cleavage?!? In highschool!?! The truth is, I totally used it...not like that...I mean the picture. I only handed this one out to all the cute boys...it was my little way of saying "hurrah" to all the jerks who ignored me. Ahhhh, to be young again...scratch that...I think I'll stay put...they don't make enough hairspray for me to maintain that hairdo!

BATTER UP GIRLS!