Life as a reformed Zookeeper. Now living a life as a working mother who dabbles in karate, scrapbooking, and Coors Light!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

There is Something Wrong With Me....

...when I go to Wal-Mart hoping to sneak in buying a new CD and all the ones I want to buy are only available in EDITED versions..... Love Wal-Mart for their value-priced sensorship.....

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I Get By...

...with a little help from my friends. I seriously would be in the shitter without them. They have kept me sain over the past week. From brining my family Sprite and other illness-related goodies to make you feel better (Hi, Judy!), to Starbucks (Hi, Rebecca!), to putting up with all my text messages whining (Hi, Katie!), to chatting with me on Mobile IM (Hi, Renee and Nancy!).....You have totally kept me out of the insane asylum.

In a household with a week like we have had, the house transforms into several different buildings....

1. Triage center...because you seriously think that it's a short-lived emergency.
2. Long Term Care Facililty....when you realize that the shit's just NOT going to go away.
3. Insane Asylum....because if you have to spend one more minute in the germ-infested stench of sick bodies, you just might have to slit your wrists.

And, you, my dear posse of lovely ladies, have made it to where I didn't slit my wrists. You guys deserve a much better friend than me. Love you all!

I will end on a brighter note that we have had minimal fevering over the past two days. Griffin hit 100.5, which is low, but high enough to make him a sobbing miserable mess...and keep him out of school. That was last night, and today we're still fever-free....we'll see what the 4 o'clock hour brings, as that seems to be the witching hour for fever....

Monday, February 25, 2008

Oh. My. Hell.

So we're still sick. Everyone but Collin. Collin went to the nurse's station on Wednesday with a 99.7 "fever". That's it. Otherwise, every other family member has been stricken with this loverly flu strain that gives the person a fever and so much congestion they cough themselves into an oblivion. And the fever won't go away. We STILL have it. I am still sick, but I don't get paid sick leave and I'll be damned if I use all my vacation time for this fucking flu.

I seriously haven't been this sick since the twins were in the hospital.

I'm getting to the point where I'm afraid to reassimilate myself into normal society!

Back at work today and the saving grace of getting here at 7:30 is that my taxes are now complete. Woot!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Call It Mother's Intuition...

(this is my current favorite picture) Aaron is home with the twins today. Erin spiked a temp last night. She got out of bed to lay on the floor in the hallway at about 4 this morning. And she had a 101.5 temp. Not too shabby, but enough to make her feel like crap and keep her home for the day. Aaron is also currently feeling poorly and has paid time off, so he is the unlucky soul to deal with them today. I say unlucky because he is just NOT as good as I am with taking care of sick children. As much as mothers know when their kids are going to get sick, they also know the right stuff to make them feel better. Not that Aaron does a bad job of taking care of sick kids. I just do a better job. Conceited and narcissistic? Why yes... yes I am.

... Nothing much else going on around the Asylum. Collin and I had sparring class last night. I sparred with a 13 year old loose cannon and beaned him in the stomach. Hard. He sat out for 10 minutes. Then wanted a rematch. Seriously, the boy's taller than I am. And he's nuts. Now I know why a kid has to start over from 1st degree black belt when he turns 16. Kids younger than that just can't control their bodies the way adults can. I feel a bit badly for the boy. But he seriously is a lunatic to spar with. He'll go at someone without pads on. You're not supposed to do that.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

What Do You Want to Be When You Grow Up?

So while I was off getting my tuckus kicked on Saturday, Aaron took the twins to see his grandpa in Terre Haute. While there, someone asked the twins what they wanted to be when they grew up.

Griffin: Sthpiderman or Batman, so I can be in the movies. Erin wanths to be a Princtheth...
Erin: No I don't, Griffin, I want to be a butterfly.

On a different note, I am happy to report that we only had ONE meltdown before going to school today. Griffin and Erin are on the brink of getting sick. Not feverish, though I'm sure it will eventually happen, but they both have LOTS of congestion. Griffin had wiped his nose with a tissue and was trying to throw it away in the garage. He couldn't open the door (we've many such trick doors in our house...). He started sobbing. I looked at him and tried to talk as calmly and evenly as his preschool teachers (boy, do I wish I had half their patience....this is usually where I start screaming back...), trying to get him to find the words he wants to use to let me know what's wrong. He eventually said "I don't know!" But...I kept my cool. You see...these meltdowns happen all. the. time. And I'm so tired of them. So I'm really trying hard to keep my cool. The morning went so well.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

PKC Tournament....

....OK, so I did it. I went to good old Muncie, IN yesterday and participated in my first-ever karate tournament. It was interesting to say the very least! You sign up for the tournament, which gains you access to compete in five events. Chanbara (think NERF meets samurai and that's pretty much the weapon you're fighting with), Weapons (where you do a kata --routine-- with a weapon of your choice), Self-Defense (think setting up a try-out for Texas Walker set up a scenario of self defense), Kata (a routine of punches, kicks, blocks, etc....think dance), and Kumite (sparring). I was hoping to sign up for Chanbara, Kata, and Kumite. I had to not go for the Chanbara because I didn't have a full-mask head gear. What kinds of pansies are running this, anyway? A full mask? WTF? Little did I know that I would have been the only woman in my division who would have signed on to compete, thus earning me a first place plaque and some points. Whatever. So I had to bow out of that one. I did, however, compete in kata. Was nervous as shit, but got average ratings for the kata. Was simply happy to finish it. I got third place. Woot! Oh, I shouldn't forget to tell you that only three women in my division were there that day, eh? *winks* So, next came Kumite. I lost my one round. I didn't even score on the girl. She was mean. Mean, I tell you! The redemption on this one? A girl who actually won first at Nationals last year got swept by her, too. So I can't really say how I did. The girl who got second (which is a lark, too, because I never fought her, so how would we REALLY know how I would have done....she got the buy, so an automatic second place....a lark, no?) told me beforehand that she's NEVER won against her. So I feel a little vindicated. I still don't know how I would be against other competition. So I walked away with two third place plaques.

What did I learn? The worst thing that can happen is that you get beaned in the face. Getting some additional gear will be a good idea (next month they will start letting brown and black belts hit in the face to score points....a face shield will be a necessity!). Being a brown belt has its disadvantages, as you get roped into judging and scorekeeping, thus missing your friend's sparring match and the other competitions that you could learn from.

The biggest lesson? That I'm glad that I did it. I wasn't ready to do it. And if I would have gone to just watch, I would not be competing any time soon. Also, I know that I need more practice. I need to be able to get some mat time to actively work on techniques. If I can't get that from my dojo, I will thank him for what I've learned so far and move on to a different school (Well, after this October, since I am on contract through then to get my black belt from him).

The biggest and best surprise of the day? Watching Collin be inspired by his old mom. Next month's competition will likely be done by HIM. Not me. If I can't afford to sign us both up, I'm going to be switching places with him month after month.

Friday, February 15, 2008


It's tomorrow! What am I DOING?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day

I celebrated each of my kids by making them a book that was a "Weekend Creative" project by Ali Edwards. I read it to each of them this morning, giving them some snuggles. They were well received.

I celebrated Aaron by buying him a new phone. Of course, he had to call them up this morning to make sure we got the right phones to the right numbers.

I celebrated myself by buying myself a new phone. It's green. Loads of fun.

I celebrated a coworker who got his office decorated by his wife by making fun of him all day. I put Barry White on his computer for when he comes in. I just hope that we're around to see some of the reaction, as he's not been in all day. **

Hope you are having fun celebrating those around you....whether they be your loved ones or the unfortunate souls whose offices are decorated.

**For the record, if it were MY office that had been decorated with balloons, flower petals over the floor, flowers and chocolates and CANDLES on the desk....I would have been PISSED! Now, take that same office and slap a six pack of Coors Light on the desk? I wouldn't be angry.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Politics and Selfishness

On Politics: am thinking that I'm an Obama fan. I think he has more charisma than Hilary. I don't typically voice my political views on my blog, as they're severely limited. But I think that he would be a good presidential candidate. He screeches less when he's put on the spot. Shallow? Perhaps. But I think that this country might need a fresh face to be its representative, too.

On Selfishness: Aaron recently read Tony Dungy's book. And he said that he would like to utilize this year to make a positive impact. How very shallow I feel that my goal for the year is to compete in karate tournaments. Postive impact, schmositive impact. But I'm going to start that goal this Saturday by competing in a tournament in Muncie. I'm going to do it. And I'm totally freaked out now about it. But if I go just as a spectator, I am positive that I would totally psych myself out and not compete for a long time. I know I'm not ready. I know I will likely get my ass kicked. But if I don't ever try it, I'll really be upset with myself. You see, as a child, there were so many things that I wanted to do but psyched myself out of doing. Trying out for cheerleading, doing Girl Scouts, trying out for basketball, trying out for musicals, studying music in college, studying in Germany. You see, there are all kinds of things that give me a bit of regret now. So I'm going to do this on Saturday. I will post pictures of the bruising.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Erin & Griffin

....Happy 5th Birthday to the Gruesome Twosome! I'm so happy that you're turning five. That means that you're growing up. Growing into big kids who will be doing bigger and better things all the time. And despite the fact that I will always call you my babies, you're no longer babies. This year you will go to Kindergarten. We will stop taking communal showers. I will no longer keep dressing you in the morning. You will be too big for that. But I hope that you don't yet outgrow climbing into bed with me on Saturday and Sunday mornings and cuddling with me. Not yet.

...I'm so proud of you guys. Who knew five years ago that you'd be the healthy kidlets you're turning out to be. You've been blessed more than you know. And so have I.

(written on a day where they haven't been arguing and fighting so much I want to sell them....)

Friday, February 08, 2008

IU basketball.... Aaron and I are taking turns running from our house. Last night, Aaron went with his friend to BW's to watch the IU game. They left around 7ish to get a table and eat boneless buffalo wings and drink beer. While I didn't begrudge him the time away from the house (between karate and karate, I get time away!), I really did begrudge him the boneless buffalo wings. So I fell asleep pretty early (though I wasn't tired from a late night out on Wednesday, as I was home by 10:45...I know....shocking!) and didn't realize that he got in really early....His friend Curt had opted out of staying with us and instead went home, which is about 1 1/2 hour drive. So they left. Before it was over. And IU won in double OT. I feel bad for Aaron. I did send Curt a text message today making fun of him for leaving early!

...nothing else happening in the Byers world. We're gearing up for the twins' 5th birthday. I'm not sad about my babies growing up. I think I've said this before. Each stage brings new wonderment as a parent. New headaches, too. But the headaches from kids Collin's age aren't nearly as severe as those from the twins' age. I can't wait until they can control their emotions better! Which is rich coming from me, I know. And slowly but surely, we're coming along.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Magic Boobies...

...I can only imagine the hits that those two words will get.

So the twins are turning five in less than a week now. And recently they have been quite enamored with how tiny they were and the fact that they were in the hospital for months on end. We were cuddling the other day when we had another of these conversations...

Griffin: So we were in the hospital for a long time when we were born, right, Mommy?

Me: Yes.

Griffin: What all did they do to us?

Me: Well, they poked your skin with a needle so that they could give you medicine...(showing on Erin's leg where her pic-line was)...and they put tubes down into your tummy so that you could get mommy's milk.

Griffin: Mommy, how did the milk get in your boobies?

Me: (not wanting to attempt to explain the process of making milk and mammory glands)'s just there. It's something a mommy's body does.

Griffin: like magic?

Me: Like magic.

Griffin: Magic boobies? I'm going to make milk for my babies when I grow up.

Me: Only girlies can make milk for their babies, bud.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Monday Morning Quarterback.... fucking justice. I so got to the point where I hated the Patriots. And the assholes had the nerve to march on to the field to the tune of none other than Crazy Train. Who said they could do that? That's MY song. MY song. And in a fit of nerves and five Coors Lights later, I thought I might just have to give it up and go to bed. But I'm glad I didn't. Despite many errors in the first half, the Giants pulled it off. And, while it would have been much better to have had the Colts go to back-to-back Super Bowls, I'm certainly not mad at the Giants for squeaking it out.

...I was just about ready to say that the only other thing of any importance was a quiet visit from Matt and Renee on Friday night....but I suppose it's because my signature coping mechanism is to block out memories that I'd rather not remember. Saturday morning found my frozen ass on the square in Noblesville for a Mardi Gras parade. Accompanied by Griffin. Who decided it was too cold to be in the parade with the rest of his preschool class. So he cried so hard that I took him to the square so that I could get some coffee and watch the parade go by. He then cried because he wasn't walking in the parade. I can't fucking win. I know that each stage will bring along a different reason to pull your hair out as a parent, but I'm over the preschooler phase. Seriously. I love them. I really do. And I'm trying to be patient like all the kick-ass teachers at their school. But I fail miserably at that. Am beginning to feel like growing up is genius on the part of whoever created us. It's ensuring survival of the human race.

Friday, February 01, 2008


...that's what I feel like the weather people are saying... we were threatened with this huge winter storm...and we got maybe 1.5 inches on the ground. It's a bit slick, but nothing major.

...nothing much going on around here, really. Not with me. Plenty of people are going through junk right now. The worst thing I got going are some whiny four year-olds who will be five in ten short days. What four year old do you know who's not whiny? Griffin was in bed before NBC nightly news was through last night because of the whine....well, his whine is usually accompanied by stamping feet and threatened hitting instead of cheese, as is customary. *sigh*

...the good news of the week, aside from me actually winning a sparring match, is that I promoted to 2nd degree brown on Wednesday night. I've this belt and 1st degree brown to muddle through, until October, but then I'll be a black belt, too. And the thought of that is way exciting. I have lots of work to do before then, but I'm excited to hop on for the bumpy ride!