Apr 26 2006

We’ve gotta get out of this place…

We’ve been living with my parents for about 2 1/2 months now and fucking hell oh my goodness, we need to get out.

It’s not that my parents are bad- I love them very much- but they are my PARENTS. I am an adult with a husband and child. I do not need to be treated like a teenager any more just because they can’t seem to remember that it’s been at least 10 years since I last acted “that way”. Plus, if I have to live with said husband and son in one tiny room stuffed with a king-size bed much longer? I’m gonna snap. That’s all there is to it.

So, we’re looking for places. But, hot damn! They’re expensive around here! In Pittsburgh (and I’ll grant you, it was PITTSBURGH and who but crazy people wants to live there?)(Side note- y’know the awful daycare lady who let Cole get hurt? It’s her Biggest, Bestest dream EVER to live in Pittsburgh. That should have been a clue from the start.) we were paying $550 for a two bedroom, one bath house with a back yard. Here we’re looking at $1300 for something comparable. I realize that there are lots of places where that rent is good or reasonable, but we live in the middle of NOWHERE. It takes an HOUR to get to a Costco or Target or a mall. And we don’t make that much money- the wages have not caught up with the cost of living here.

And don’t even get me started about trying to find a house that will let us have our dog. Damn dog. Why do I have to love her? It would be so much easier if I hated her.

We’ve also looked into buying instead of throwing away our money on rent. Right now, housing prices are so ridiculous that it’s not even an option. The available houses are STARTING at about $300,000 for something that should only be worth about $180,000, tops. That’s out of our range.

We’ve realized that we are in that section of families who make too much money to qualify for any kind of aid, yet not so much that we can really afford everything we need. It’s almost worse than being outright poor. Almost. It almost makes it worth it for me to quit and stay at home so that we would qualify for more things. Almost.

Always almost, but never just right.

And so, for now, I have to put up with a 1/2 foot walkway between my bed and the overflowing laundry; with no crib for my son; with parents who hate my dog; with a mother who thinks that she shouldn’t have to do any chores now that we’re here; with a father who lectures us about anything/everything that comes up.

It could be worse, I know. And I do love my parents and wholly appreciate what they’re doing for us- not all parents would do the same.

I don’t need to be rich. I don’t need everything I WANT. I just need to feel like I can take care of my family and not just live paycheck to paycheck. It’s a hard thing to feel like a medical emergency or car trouble or something like that could make it difficult/impossible to pay rent or buy groceries. It’s sad that a family could have both parents working at relatively good jobs and still be in this position.

Conflicted much? I’ll say.

I’ll just spare you all and stop here.

Apr 21 2006

Teefus!

Cole is teething. It’s FUN!!!

Or not.

He’s been running a fever- anywhere between 99.6 to 102.2 for the last couple of days. I don’t know whether it’s related to the tooth he’s popping out or not. I’ve gotten conflicting reports lately.

My father, big “helper” that he is (HA!), keeps suggesting that I rub bourbon on Cole’s gums. Maybe it wouldn’t hurt him, but I’m still not doing it. STOP SUGGESTING IT ALREADY.

The tooth coming out is on the bottom left. I noticed a little “bubble” on his gums the other day. Last night I looked again and I couldn’t see it. Knowing that I had seen it for sure the day before, I wondered aloud about its disappearance to my mother. She said that, sometimes, teeth come through just a little , then go back down, then pop out again, and back and forth like that multiple times. In fact, she said, my father’s teeth came in that way. Fucking joy of joys.

So, he’s not the most beautiful bubbling boy that he usually is right now. Especially at night. He’s been so fussy that I’ve tried to keep him attached at the boob most of the night, just to get some sleep. He’s been sucking me dry which has caused my milk production to increase and led to more discomfort during the day when I’m at work.

It’s fun times in our house right now!

I need a margarita.

Apr 19 2006

Because the excitement in my life would KILL you if I wrote about it.

A Google game- play along!

Danielle needs help. Mental, physical, with the laundry- just in general, in fact.
Danielle needs your vote. Or she might come break your legs.
Danielle needs more self-respect when it comes to the boys she chooses. Whore.
Danielle needs to feel that she’s safe at all times and could be located in a real emergency. As opposed to a fake emergency.
Danielle needs to stop. But…I won’t.

Danielle wants a moustache ride from Tom Selleck. Well… he was cute at one time but…I dunno…
Danielle wants to be a role model to others. Because my choices in boys are obviously so good.
Danielle wants none of the lady-loving, I’m sad to say. Like Tom Selleck isn’t enough.
Danielle wants to apologize to him, too, as she’s sure she caused him some serious stress. I mean, his moustache can only bear so much weight.
Danielle wants to be a cosmetics queen. Mary Kay- Here I come!

Danielle has become who she is today because of the support around her. And all of the cosmetics.
Danielle has a pet rock; and an awesome hat. Ooh, thanks. I like it too.
Danielle has gone to Cannes in the year 2000. Yeah. I wish. Maybe Tom Selleck took me.
Danielle has worked as a Clairvoyant Channeler and Tonal Healer. You need an enema. I can tell from here.
Danielle has been a leader in the baby bedding industry. Her own bedding, however, is covered in baby vomit, urine, spit-up, and drool most of the time.

Danielle would never have reconciled with her husband. If I had gone for that lady-lovin’.
Danielle would always come in about 20 minutes late. Sadly, too close to the truth.
Danielle would head to the north. To the land of the ice and snow…
Danielle, would you like this extra copy of the ‘Left Behind’ DVD? Um…no. Really, really no. But thanks for asking!
Danielle would welcome the connection. Heck, she’s been stranded all alone for 16 years right? A woman needs some lovin’ every once in a while!!! But not lady-lovin’!

Danielle……. can you say sexy. Well, I guess I do look pretty good in this skirt. It’s new. Thanks for noticing!
Danielle can draw antelope better than life. Better than life- I make ‘em SEXXX-AY!
Danielle can sleep with one eye open. And, most frequently, both eyes open. Oh wait- that’s not sleep.
Danielle can often have no feeling of self worth at all. And, therefore, does not choose boys well.
Danielle can also be heard on the As Good As It Gets soundtrack. A movie where there’s boy-on-boy lovin’, but STILL NO LADY-LOVIN’!

Apr 18 2006

Happiness is Good Daycare

Today is Cole’s second day at the new daycare. I can tell already that it is a huge improvement. Yesterday, when I picked him up, the new lady (Judy) didn’t want to let him go. She kept saying how nice he was all day, how good, what a treasure. She told me that he’s a “keeper”. It was really nice to hear because, even though I know he’s wonderful, his old daycare lady used to greet me by telling me how “bad” he had been all day. She only had complaints. I used to worry that it was, perhaps, something I was doing. Now I know it was just her.

Last night he was also much more active and responsive. He used to act like a little lump when I would pick him up after work, but yesterday he was excited and happy- the way I’m used to him being when he’s with me.

Judy made a card for me and John with pictures of Cole from his first day. He looked happy or involved with a toy in every picture. It was a really nice touch. She also bound our copies of all of the paperwork so we can easily keep everything together. She is so much more professional than the last.

So now, even though I still think about him all day, I don’t worry constantly about Cole any more. I know he is safe and as happy as he can be being away from his family. I know it’s a cliche to say that it feels like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders, but that explains it pretty accurately. What a relief!

Apr 13 2006

It’s a gloriously beautiful day here today. The temperature couldn’t be nicer, there’s a soft breeze and birds soaring overhead. This kind of day is why I moved back to California. Too bad I’m stuck in an office. At least I have a window.

Cole is OUT of the evil daycare officially today. YAY! I went last night and got all of his stuff. Today I called ICES and the Licensing bureau and filed official complaints against her. She will be getting inspected and written up for facility cleanliness (total lack thereof) and personal rights violations against Cole. They told me that a lot of the things I was complaining about, unfortunately, they have no control over and can’t police. It’s disgusting what these people can get away with and never even written up for.

When I told the daycare lady that I was taking Cole out she asked me why. I told her a couple of things, not even the things I was most upset about, and tried not to get aggressive. Then I asked for two week’s payment back. She tried to tell me that, since I was only giving her notice now, she was not required to give the two weeks pay back to me. I told her that I would have given her two weeks, but I felt that Cole was not safe there and didn’t want him subjected to two more weeks with her. She looked at me like I was speaking Esperanto. It looks like I’m going to have to file a small claim against her to get my money back. I was even going to let this week and the times she called in sick and asked me to pick him up early go. But now I’m counting it all against her. She owes me a couple hundred dollars, and I can’t afford to let that slide. She wasn’t worth it in the first place. Bitch.

But today is gorgeous. Unless it turns bad in the next few hours, I WILL be taking a walk this evening. Cole loves our walks. He totally digs his stroller and loves to look around. He frequently goes to sleep, but usually not until about the last 10 minutes of our 45 minute walk. It will feel really good just to get outside for a while.

Do you think I need to go around twice to walk off a bag of jelly beans?

Apr 12 2006

Easter- A Pagan Holiday Gone So Wrong

I have this idea in my head that I’d really like to lose a bit of weight before going to BlogHer on the off chance that I’d get the urge to show my blindingly white body off in a bathing suit by the pool. Forget tanning, that causes cancer and, if the chemical version is used, streakiness (obviously almost as bad as cancer). But losing some cellulite? That’s something I should do anyway.

Then Easter had to sneak up on me.

I hate Easter. Not only is it a religious holiday that I have no real interest in celebrating, but everything closes that day. That’s a day I need to be able to go out and get things done. You can’t close! It’s not like it’s Christmas!

But most of all, there’s the candy.

Only one other holiday is as dangerous as Easter when it comes to candy, and that’s Halloween. But Halloween is after Blogher and so I’m not worried.

But Easter with it’s Spice jelly beans (they’re low fat- no biggie! And clove jelly beans? YUM.) and mini Cadbury eggs (they’re TINY. That can’t Possibly hurt me.) and the chocolateChocolateCHOCOLATE. SHIT! It all just adds up. (Plus, I went to Trader Joe’s and got these triple ginger snaps and I just can’t stay away from them, dammit.)

And the weather has been so bad (with no break in sight) that I haven’t wanted to get out and walk, which is just about the only way I am willing to exercise.

So I may spend all of BlogHer in jeans and a turtleneck, hiding behind a potted plant and holding Cole in front of me like a shield of cuteness. Never mind that it’s in July. Maybe if I wear all black like a stage-hand no one will see me at all. They’ll just see the baby floating in mid-air. Yeah. That’s the ticket.

Apr 10 2006

Halleluiah!

I have Cole in a new daycare program starting on Monday! That means just one more week in the hell-hole. I’m so relieved and excited that I’m shaking.

I completely trust the new lady. She took care of my nephew for a few years when he was younger, and would take care of him still if he hadn’t moved away. She’s clean, she’s safe, and kids just love her. They do art projects when they’re old enough and their days are nicely structured. I know already that there are some things about her that are a bit frustrating, but they pale significantly compared to the horrors of the place where he has been. At least I know he won’t come home hurt anymore.

I’m not going to give notice. I’m just going to tell her on Friday when I pick him up that we won’t be back on Monday. Then I’m going to report her to ICES and the state because, honestly? There are some major problems with the way she does things. I’m really not just being picky or petty.

So celebrate with me today! Only 4 more days in the baby torture chamber for Cole! And my Mom said she may be able to take him for at least one of those days. Hooray!!

Apr 07 2006

Bubba

My bubba is 5 months old. I can’t get over it.

He now hangs on when I hold him, and I can finally hold him on my hip. He has started to wave and to hold his arms up when he wants to be picked up. He thinks the dog is hilarious! He also laughs at really exaggerated nose blowing and at peek-a-boo.

He’s eating solids. Last night he had peaches for the first time. He was shaking with excitment at each bite and screeching when he didn’t get the food in his mouth soon enough. He does that a little bit with green beans too, but nothing else. Everything else he just eats.

He’s already in 6-9 month clothes.

He can just about sit up completely by himself. However, he makes NO move to catch himself when he starts to fall. He does laugh at the numerous face plants though.

He is almost ALWAYS in a good mood. Especially in the morning when he sees everybody for the first time that day. He always has a grin for each family member, but he has cuddles just for me.

He (pretty much) sleeps through the night. We go to bed at 10 and he (mostly) stays asleep until about 6:45 or 7. Since I get up at 6, this works beautifully.

My only regret about having had him is that we didn’t wait until we had enough money so that I could stay home. But that is SO overshadowed by how much I love him and how perfect he is. I have no complaints about him. I never even complain about the poop. He could not be better.

Which is why I am seriously considering a change in this whole “working” thing. Perhaps not quitting, but maybe a schedule modification. There’s no plan in place yet, and I don’t even know if work would go for it, but I think I have to try something. Anything! As long as he’s not with the evil daycare anymore. It’s worth some sacrifices. He’s worth sacrifices.

On as almost entirely non-related note: For a few weeks now I have been having a boobie problem. I thought it was a blister from nursing, but it would not go away. I started to get scared about it but, instead of going to a doctor (not only do I hate doctors, but I also have no insurance at the moment), I decided to mess with it. I squeezed it. I used a hot compress on it. It fucking hurt like HELL by the time I was done. So, I went to bed.

At 5 the next morning, I was awakened by Cole latching on and the feeling that someone was shoving a knitting needle into my breast through the nipple. I popped him off and went to the bathroom, only to discover that the “blister” was now standing out from my skin. I poked at it some more (OUCH, motherfucker!) and, finally, out popped a huge (at least, huge compared to my nipple) ball of DRIED MILK. I never knew anything like that could happen. It was so weird that I saved it to show my husband when he woke up. He was thrilled, let me tell ya.

But tell me, those of you who have breastfed your babies, is this something I should have known about? Or is this one of those things that only happens to me, the freak. Is there a name for it, or might they name this discovery after me?

And finally, was that TMI?

Apr 05 2006

Child Labor

Cole is at work with me today. It’s…interesting, to say the least. It wasn’t my plan, but the daycare woman called me at 7:30 this morning, just as I was about to leave, and told me that she was too sick to take kids today.

WTF?!

Ok, I can understand and appreciate a sick day. But to call 15 minutes before she expects us there? That’s just crap.

Cole has been the best baby ever today and, honestly, I think I could bring him in every day (until he starts crawling and pulling out computer cords), but it’s just not professional. It has, however, made me think again about staying home and taking in a few more kids to help pay the bills. I would hate to burn the bridges here at work, which is probably what’s stopping me most. Oh, that and not yet having a home of my own- silly little things like that. Just silly.

I must find a new daycare person. The sooner, the better.