Monday, July 28, 2014

The Long Road to Diagnosis

I watched her as she opened the refrigerator that early summer day.  The light from inside the box reflected off her ever-more prominent cheekbones and clavicles. She grabbed the lemonade and filled a 24 oz tumbler.  Dropping in some ice cubes, she proceeded to drink 3/4 of the cup's contents without coming up for air.  Topping off her drink before returning the carton to the fridge, she then pulled cold cuts out of the fridge and began making herself a sandwich.  She devoured the ham and cheese, chugged down more lemonade, and rounded out the meal with two servings of chips and a huge apple.  Ten minutes later, she was back--for grapes.  Then again, not long after, for an ice cream sandwich.   The carton of lemonade was gone long before the sun ever went down. 

When she was a baby, she had a pattern of all of a sudden ramping up her appetite and sleeping much more than usual.  Such a change in habits always preceded a serious growth spurt.  She had been sleeping a lot more than usual that spring, which I attributed to her increased activity and joining the Track & Field team, but it continued into the hazy summer days.  "She's practically a teenager," I thought to myself, and even said to my husband on more than one occasion, "No wonder she's sleeping so much."

When school was out, I sent her to camp--which she hated.  The counselor didn't like her.  The activities were stupid.  I didn't pack enough for lunch.  She was always hungry and they'd only let her eat at snack and at lunch.  She didn't have any friends there.  It was too hot.  It was rainy.  It was boring. 

But it wasn't just camp.  You name it, she had a problem with it.  If we looked at her crosseyed, she'd cry, and then stomp off to her room because she "hated everyone in this stupid family!"  Spilled water equaled a teary meltdown.  A sarcastic comment from her brother, and there was yelling and slamming doors.  Sounds like your typical practically-a-teenager, doesn't it?

I observed her becoming more and more slender.  One of my sisters was incredibly skinny growing up, so I just figured she was taking after her aunt.  But that day when she grabbed the lemonade from the fridge, for a split second in my mind's eye, there flashed an image.  An image of my mother, skin taught across the bones of her face as she waged her waning battle against cancer.  It was gone as quickly as it appeared. 

The summer continued on.  We had a family trip scheduled at the end of July, so I had a lot of work to do getting us ready to be away for 10 days.  Periodically, I fretted about my daughter's health.  She seemed OK.  Yes, she was slimmer than ever, but she was eating like horse.  I'll admit to eavesdropping on her much more than once when she was in the bathroom:  sometimes I feared she might be bulimic, but there was never any indication that was happening. 

When we boarded the plane for Houston, we were excited to spend some time with family and I was eager for the kids to experience a new region of the country...they'd never been out of New England.  Little did I know that this trip was going to be a memorable experience for reasons I never imagined.

***To Be Continued***

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Promised & Delivered


While wandering through the local big-box retailer the other day, I stopped and perused the nail polish.  I needed a pedicure (or at least a fresh coat of color to distract from the fact that I would [still] need a pedicure).

I noticed a Sally Hansen line of polishes called "InstaDry".  Dubious, I looked for a color for my tootsies, figuring at the very least, I'd get some color--Stat!  I did not expect the polish to deliver its touted "One-Coat" and "Quick-Dry" properties.  I mean, their "Hard as Nails" products have only ever been as hard as my own nails--that is, not hard at all.  Another gimmick, I figured, to get me to buy their product over others.

I'd wadded T.P. between my toes to keep 'em separate while I painted, and assumed I'd be hobbling around with splayed toes for twenty or so minutes after the application.  However, by the time I was done with tootsie #10, the first one was dry.  Really dry--and not just to the touch. After only one coat my toes looked fab. In ten minutes I was on my way.

No fuss, no muss, no smears and no dings. 

Best $4.97 I've spent in there since I splurged on Terro a few years back. 

***

Disclosure:  This is not a sponsored post.  Sally Hansen and company don't really care about my opinion, and they certainly didn't solicit my review. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Smackdown in Podunk|Turkeys Gone Wild

If you've got four minutes, and would like to see nature in all its glory, have I got a clip for you!

Here in Podunk, we have a bevy of wild turkeys and right now they are busy chasing all their peeping poults around, keeping them safe from traffic, local hawks--basically protecting them from the myriad dangers of country life.

But there is trouble in the crew...two males had a smackdown on my lawn.  And they are mean buggers. Check it out:




So, you should know, this took me forever to upload on here!  Boy, I thought Google+ would be my friend here, but it was hard to get this happening.  I finally just went through YouTube.  Maybe that's what I was supposed to do in the first place?  I don't know.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Spring Cleaning: Gmail Style | Dumping unwanted emails

With spring actually slated to occur in the near future here in the Monadnock Region, (shut up--there *are* buds on my lilacs and forsythia!) and me enjoying April Vacation Week, I've been doing a little spring cleaning.

Not in my house, but my in-box.

Happily, as a gmail user, I can just dump all the old mail in "archive" and achieve the much-desired status of "Inbox=Zero".  But that doesn't remedy the incredible amount of crap email I receive on a daily basis.  And I can assure you, that it is, in fact, incredible.

So I pitched everything (4k+ unread emails, never mind all the read ones) into archive on Sunday and have been attending to my email inbox on an almost hourly basis ever since.  Every email that comes in, I'm mentally reviewing,

  1. Do I shop here? (ridiculous numbers of web-stores flood my in-box daily)  
  2. If yes, will I shop here, with or without the email alerts?
  3. If you answer #2 with "Only if I get the email alerts," reconsider #1;  If you answer with "Yes," unsubscribe:  you can always search for deals when you want them (that is why sites like "Retail Me Not" exist, after all...)
  4. Do I *actually WANT* email from this organization?  If not, dump 'em.
  5. When in doubt, unsubscribe.

I've unsubscribed to no fewer than 30 email lists in the last three days.  THIRTY.  That's ridiculous, now, isn't it?  This stuff creeps up on you.  If I weren't on vacation, I wouldn't have time to dedicate to undoing this awful electronic clutter.

Sometimes, I consider just abandoning my email addy and starting fresh.  Have you ever done that?  Just abandoned ship on your junk email?   It makes me kind of nervous...

So here I sit...on my cell phone, finding the miniature "unsubscribe" links at the very bottom of the tiny fine print that concludes all advertising emails, clicking through and unsubscribing to as much as possible before I go blind for the tiny font...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

He's coming along

You may recall this past summer I found an old poster from Bubba's days in first grade, where he wrote (and then rubbed out, but it was visible) that doing things to help was just as wrong as folding his mom's underwear.

ahem.

So, it was with great parental pride that this was found in Bubba's folder yesterday afternoon.  All his work...and illustrations!
"I am funny because I can entertain people.  I am brave because I stand up for people"  The drawing is Bub being "helpful"

See, he really does like to help people! 

More importantly to me, though, is the fact that he is now resisting the urge to be a wise-ass on school work that he deems to be below him.

My boy is growing up...