Tuesday, December 1, 2009

My Little Man

Little Man is not a talker, he has some developmental delays.

Sometimes I just watch him in wonder. When he is playing and talking in his "Little Man Language," it is just amazing. He is so loving and smiley. He does have some words, but those are mostly words I understand. I am not sure if the average person would understand him.

But my heart just swells with love for him when he has his accomplishments. He is starting use a fork like a little big boy. When he builds his towers and they stand so tall, I am so proud of him. This little man will take a key and try it in every lock until he finds the right key and lock.

He will play for hours with his "Choo-choos", some complex story weaving through his mind. You can almost see the wheels turning. When he sees construction equipment he cries out "Bahb Bill" which we know is Bob the Builder.

He is also a wicked little devil. He has this mischievous look that tells you "Yeah mom I am up to something."

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Streets of Heaven

I haven't blogged in awhile and I apologize for that.

Four years ago on the Saturday after thanksgiving I found out I was pregnant. I was over the moon. It was the first month we had tried. She to this day is the only baby we tried for. I remember POAS (it was a clear blue easy digital).

I went down stairs to show Big man. The way I told him I had bought an Atlanta Falcons onesie and handed it to him. It took him a minute and then his eyes got wide. He was so happy. We told out parents with Christmas cards that said "Merry Christmas Grandma and Grandpa."

I think we were all in a state of shock. I certainly wasn't expecting it to happen so fast. I had read stories about how hard it can be to conceive a child. I was so excited that for ONCE we were catching a break in something that something was going to be easy for us.

The first trimester was super easy. The only thing that had me worried was they kept pushing my due date back. By my last period it should have been Aug. 10, then it was moved to Aug. 13th, then the 16th and by the last ultrasound it was August 26.

Our first Christmas as a married couple we were given an ornament that was an upside down umbrella with baby toys in it. I was so happy thinking that this time in a year we would have a four month old baby. Part of me knew she would be a girl.

Before this I have been lucky in my life, I had never had any one close to me die.

When I was in the hospital bed waiting to deliver her I kept thinking that she was going to be all alone in heaven. Who would keep her company? Who would tell her about me? Would she be lonely? Would she know how sorry I was that I couldn't make her healthy? That I couldn't protect her? Why was she being taken from me? What had I done that was so terrible that I was faced with this choice? Didn't God know how badly I wanted this baby? Why did crack heads who don't want their babies get to have them? Wouldn't I be a good mom?

Then when it came time to push I can't tell you the absolute terror I was seized with. If I could just keep her inside me, I could protect her, please don't make me push her out I can't she needs to stay safe. You don't understand I need to PROTECT HER. Please don't make me say good bye.

I don't know how I did it, but I did.

Some days I am ok, but I am not nearly as ok as I act like I am. Drugs don't work, alcohol doesn't work. Writing helps a little.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Monday, October 12, 2009

Well isn't this interesting

Today's Dr. Phil is about mistresses. I am sitting here with my jaw on the floor at the nerve of some of these women. They are telling the wives that it is the wife's fault that her husband cheats, that if she was keeping him satisfied he wouldn't cheat.

I am sorry are you fucking kidding me? I was the perfect wife. I cooked, I cleaned, I BEGGED for sex. Yes I gained weight but that was from having his babies. 3 babies in 3 years? Yeah that will make anyone gain weight.

What did he tell you honey? That I ignore him? That I don't want to have sex with him? Oh please sweetheart.

I don't care that you are heartbroken that he won't end his marriage. I don't care that you built your life around a man who is married. Not my problem. You are not a victim you are really nothing more than a home wreaking whore. Oh you are evil, you are making a conscious choice to have an affair with a married man.

How can you be so stupid to not know he is married? Excuses, Excuses.

You are a sad pathetic creature.

PS and if our marriage did end because of you, I would OWN his ass. In my state I can get as much as HALF his monthly income in child support and alimony and you bet your ass I would.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The First Step

is admitting you have a problem.

Yesterday it occurred to me. I am an addict. I have an addiction. It could be worse but it was kind of eye opening.

I am addicted to caffeine. We were out of my K-Cups so I could have no coffee, we had no sodas or tea. Well by 100 I had a terrible headache. I passed it off as being tired from the lack of sleep. We Big Man got home we went to the store and I picked up a bottle of store brand cola and a bottle of Cheerwine (hallelujah praise jebus we have Cheerwine here). Not 10 minutes after I drank my first glass my headache was gone.

So that was my body going through caffeine deprivation. And I can only get my K Cups off the interweb. Curse my coffee snobbery.

On other notes: Thank you upstairs neighbors clearly you got my memo and stopped clogging about 930.

Banana who is a picky eater loves salami. She is on pieces 8 and 9 right now. Thank goodness it is on sale.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Dear Upstairs Neighbor,

Why hello we have never met. But I am familiar with your laundry at 1100 pm on a Sunday night. Which is annoying but I can deal with, but last night you people took the cake.

Why is it necessary to go clogging from 1030 to 100 am? I am not sure this is what you are actually doing but this is certainly what it sounded like. I am certainly not one to stand in the way of your dream to be Olympic cloggers, please take into account you live on the second floor. Clog all you want, all day starting at 800 am (with the exception of 1130 to 130) and until 9 pm. I lost valuable hours of sleep because I became "that neighbor".

Which neighbor you ask? The bang the ceiling neighbor. Yes friends I banged on my ceiling with my broom. I hate being "that neighbor". But really you all asked for it. There is no reason for such inconsiderateness. See how sleep deprived I am, I believe I am making up words.

Sincerely,

TQ1

PS Now when you achieve your Olympic status please remember all the people who lived below you.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

How I Spent my Summer Vacation

I was in North Carolina for my BFFs gorgeous wedding. It rained, but it really fit the atmosphere. I cried like 4 times during her wedding. Peaches, my dear you were the prettiest September bride I have ever seen.

After Peaches' wedding Big Man drove us 7 hours to my grandma's beach house. He then turned around and drove himself 5 hours home. I guess this is the meaning of true love. 12 hours on the road so I could go to the beach.

A little background on this house. My grandma and grandpa have owned this house for 25 years. It is a little townhouse with 7 brick steps that end in a wooden deck (this will be important later).

This town used to be a blip on the tourist radar, no one knew about it. Well as the years progressed it became more and more popular. This wouldn't be such a problem except these people are rude and have no idea how to treat a wild life preserve. I am super protective of the national park. To illustrate:

This park has wild ponies. Wild is a bit of a stretch but they don't live in pens. Well said ponies will sometimes graze on the side of the road. Idiot tourists think it is fun to feed them.

While this is annoying to me as long as they don't block the road I close my eyes and pretend to ignore it. I also hate people who litter on this island. I mean I REALLY hate it.

Well I am 7 months pregnant with my son. We are driving through the park on the way to the beach. Well there is this couple, the have the cutest little girl. They are trying to put this 4 year old on a WILD PONY'S back. Not only that they left the door open to their gas guzzler, there was trash blowing out all over the park.

I tell Big Man I want to take pictures of the ponies. He looks at me skeptically and pulls over. I get out and pretend to talk on my cell phone about "the idiots who put their little girl on a WILD ANIMAL'S back. I know right? I wonder who they will try and sue when she gets bitten or kicked." They quickly pull their daughter off and get back into their gas guzzler.

I may love my island but I still hate confrontation and can be passive aggressive as hell.

But I digress the last week of September (weather wise and people wise) is perfect. It is warm enough on the beach but not crowded at all. There was only one incident of tourist idiocy on this trip.

There is a beautifully paved bike path next to the road. Bicyclist lobbied hard to get this paved path. You lobbied so HARD FOR IT USE IT! Instead of taking up both sides of the road, use the path. Morons.

Here comes my first FAIL as a mother. I mean it is an EPIC FAIL.

We are on our way out the door for dinner. Remember those 7 hard BRICK steps I mentioned? Yeah my 2 year old took a header down those. One minute she was standing there the next she was tumbling. The good news is she is made of rubber so she is ok. Just some scrapes and cuts.

We are home now and everyone is getting back into their routine. Everyone (including me) is a little cranky.

Tomorrow I will discuss my love for the new Melrose Place. STFU critics it is tv gold. Plus I have a girl crush on Katie Cassidy.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

One of those days

Forgive me this is going to be an all over the board post.

Have you ever had one of those days where you wonder if anyone would miss you if you just disappeared? Like you fell of the face of the earth? I am having one of those days. Like I feel the world would just keep turning without me. I wouldn't even be a blip on the radar. And that kind of hurts.

I know all kids are different. But today the difference in personality really shined through in my kids. While I was cleaning the kitchen Banana was underfoot the entire time wanting to help mommy.

But Little Man was happy to play in the bedroom all by himself. He was just happily playing with his trains and cars.

It is just funny the dichotomy of the two.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Best Laid Plans

I have decided I am going to get us on a schedule. I watched the Super Nanny marathon yesterday (I think this is where this urge is coming from). I think the kids and I will do better with a schedule.

Anything before 8 am will be free play time. This will be the schedule when Big Man actually gets home at 400.

8 - 9 am Breakfast and getting dressed
9 - 930 Walk
930 - 10 play outside
10-1130 Movie or Sprout (Mommy will clean up, Laundry etc)
1130-1200 Lunch
1200-300 Nap time/Quiet Time (Laundry and whatever clean up isn't done, but Mommy will rest here too)
300-500 Learning Playtime/Play outside/Play with Daddy
500-600 Dinner time
600-700 Bath time/clean up
700-730 Story time
730 Bedtime!

When Big Man doesn't get home until 600

8 - 9 am Breakfast and getting dressed
9 - 930 Walk
930 - 10 play outside
10-1200 Movie or Sprout (Clean up, Laundry work etc)
1200-100 Lunch
100-400 Nap/ Quiet Time (same as when Big Man gets home at 4)
400-630 Learning Playtime, Play outside, Play with Daddy
630-700 Dinner
700-730 Clean up and Story time
730-800 Bedtime!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

I stole this from someone

I stole this from someone on FB. While Banana is not ready for school yet, I know it will be here before I know it, and Little Man will follow shortly after.

I Trust You'll Treat Her Well

World, I bequeath to you today one little girl in a crispy dress.. with two brown eyes...and a happy laugh that ripples all day long, and a batch of light blonde hair that bounces in the sunlight when she runs. I Trust You'll Treat Her Well.

She's slipping out of the backyard of my heart this morning and skipping off down the street to her first day at school.

And never again will she be completely mine...

Prim and proud, she'll wave a young and independent hand this morning, and say goodbye and walk with little-lady steps to the nearby schoolhouse...

Gone will be the chattering little hoyden who lived only for play, and gone will be the delightful little gamin who roamed the yard like a proud princess with nary a care in her little world.

Now, she will learn to stand in lines...and wait by the alphabet for her name to be called...

She will learn to tune her little-girl ears for the sound of school bells, and for deadlines...

She will learn to giggle and gossip... and to look at the ceiling in a disinterested way when the little boy across the aisle sticks out his tongue.
Now she will learn to be jealous...and now she will learn how it is to feel hurt inside...and now she will learn how not to cry.

No longer will she have time to sit on the front porch steps on a summer day and watch while an ant scurries across a crack in the sidewalk...
Or will she have time to pop out of bed with the dawn to kiss lilac blossoms in the morning dew.

Now she will worry about important things...like grades...and what dresses to wear...and whose best friend is whose.

Now she will worry about the little boy who pulls her hair at recess time... and staying after school...and which little girls like which little boys...And the magic of books and knowledge will soon take the place of the magic of her blocks and dolls.

And she'll find her new heroes. For five full years I've been her sage and Santa Claus...her pal and playmate...her parent and friend.
Now, alas, she'll learn to share her worship and adoration with her teachers (which is only right).

No longer will her parents be the smartest, and greatest in the world.

Today, when the first school bell rings, she'll learn how it is to be a member of the group...with all its privileges, and, of course, its disadvantages, too.

She'll learn in time that proper young ladies don't laugh out loud...or keep frogs in pickle jars in bedrooms...or watch ants scurry across the cracks in a summer sidewalk...

Today, she'll begin to learn for the first time that all who smile at her are not her friends. That "the group" can be a demanding mistress... and I'll stand on the porch and watch her start out on the long, long journey to becoming a woman.

So WORLD, I BEQUEATH TO YOU TODAY ONE LITTLE GIRL in a crispy dress, with two brown eyes, a happy laugh that ripples all day long, and a batch of light blonde hair that bounces in the sunlight when she runs.


I TRUST YOU'LL TREAT HER WELL.


AUTHOR: Dan Valentine

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Jersey Devil, Poisoned Coffee and BBC...

Nothing I do is ever boring. You add in my BFF Peaches and you are in for a wild time.

Peaches and I drove up to CT to visit some of our other friends. Everything was going wonderfully until we hit Jersey. First we hit Dunkin' Donuts. Which usually has the best coffee and the best donuts. Well not this one. The coffee tasted strange and the muffin and donut were stale. We chalked it up to being a late night. It was like 1100 at this point.

We notice we are at about half a tank, so we stop for gas. In Jersey you can't pump your own gas. So this crazy short guy comes over and Peaches gives him her credit card. We tell him we aren't really sure what to do, as we are not from around there.

"Where you from?"

"Virginia".

"Where you going?"

"To visit our friend in..." "Why you go?" We look at each other at this point. He can't SERIOUSLY be asking us this. "She is getting a divorce." "Why? Oh he was not good at sex right?" Wha? "ummm" "He must have little cock. She need big black cock. I have big cock, but a lady wouldn't have intercourse with me (changed from the four letter word he used). She said it too small. But it's big."

At this point we weren't really sure what to do. The dude had her credit card. Finally he gave it back to her and we were off. The directions took us on a back country road. I casually brought up the Jersey Devil. The street lights in front of us started going out. Holy Hell it is the Jersey Devil! That demon chased us all the way through Mawah (which is pronounced like a kissing noise. Peaches and I have decreed it so) to the crazy hotel guy.

Onto the crazy hotel guy... Have you ever seen someone get mad at directions? This dude did. He flipped out at how bad they were. He gave some sketchy directions and we headed on our way.

Well crap he told us to stay on 287 crap crap crap all we see is 95 North. So with some trepidation we head on 95 North. This can't be right. So we go to a gas station. We see a couple of construction guys coming in after us. Here it is 1 am two girls who have no clue where they are, a poorly lit gas station. I ask the gas station attendant how to get to M. CT to get to our friend's house.

The douche points to the map on the wall. But the construction worker jumps in and gives us great directions.

Finally after 13 hours on the road, we arrive safely at our destination.

Friday to come next!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The DVD Eating Monsters

Ok my kids destroy DVDs. They like to play with them. I try to take them away before any damage is done. I am usually too late. More of the kid's DVDs skip than actually work properly.

At Target last night I bought our 3rd (yes 3rd) copy of Barbie Island Princess. It is Banana's favorite Barbie movie so she tends to like to carry it around with her. I also picked up our second copy of Barbie Magic Rainbow.

As I am walking out of the aisle catches my eye. It is something that claims it can fix DVDs. Yeah right... But for $20 that is cheaper than re-buying these movies... Ok I throw it in the cart along with the movies.

So I get up this morning and with trepidation open my DVD cleaner. I pull out Barbie Tika (as Island Princess is known in our house) the most scratched DVD we own. This is going to be a trial by fire.

I follow the really simple instructions, I run the repair cycle and then the cleaning cycle. I wipe it with a soft cloth and without much hope I pop it into the DVD player.

Holy Barbie Batman! It works! We are over half way done with the movie and not a skip or a stutter! This product works!

What is this product you ask?

Why it is OptiFix Pro by Memorex. It is 19.99 at Target so if you are a Bargain Hunter, check it out there,

Monday, July 13, 2009

To Do This Week

My niece is coming to visit for a week starting Friday. I have a lot of things I need to get done. I am going to have to call Big Man to come over just about every night this week because there is certain stuff I can't do with the kids in my hair. * is stuff that will need to be done multiple times.

Kitchen
Keep sink empty of dishes*
Keep counters clutter free*
Sweep*
Mop
Clean out Fridge
Empty Dishwasher

Bathrooms
Scrub both tubs
Clean Toilets
Sweep floors
Clean sinks
Clean Mirrors

Bedrooms
Pick up floor
Get all dirty clothes into baskets
Pack up stuffed animals
Pick up toys in kids room
Change my sheets
Organize my linen closet
Organize my closet (I got those wonder hangers and so far they are really neat)
Get rid of broken TV

Living Room
Declutter
Dust (including blinds)
Windows
Pick up toys*
Vacuum*

Laundry
Kids clothes
My clothes
Linens

Other
Pack Little Man's clothes (he is going to my in-law's place while I have my niece)
Pack him some toys

Oh yeah and renew my driver's license that expired in 2007

My Quiet Morning

I woke up about 600 am this morning and could not get back to sleep. So I came into my living room and am watching "I Survived". It is my current television guilty pleasure.

Banana was never happy to just sit in her bed and play. If she knew mommy was up she needed to be with mommy. Little Man is much different. He is much more independent. He woke up about 45 minutes ago and has been happily playing with his Magna-Doodle type thing. Just happily baby talking to himself and drinking his bottle. He is such a good Little Man. Now he is mooing. Everything moos. Cars moo, dogs moo, cows moo, mommy moos.

I had been debating when there was one less person in bed, moving Little Man to my bed so the three of us could be together. But he has a certain independence about him. He likes to cuddle with mommy, but he also likes to tank around on the ground.

But I think it is important for him to not get used to sleeping with mommy. Once Big Man comes back, which it looks like he will, I don't want to have 2 babies and a mommy and a daddy in a full size bed. Banana can pretty much take up the whole bed by herself.

Things with Big Man are actually going really well. He came over Saturday about 1030ish, we watched a movie, then he went home. He came over Sunday morning we had breakfast as a family. He went to his Podcast, then he came back and we cuddled on the couch and watched a My Bloody Valentine 3-D.

It is almost like we are dating again. He is trying so hard. I just really want this to work.

Sorry this is kind of a stream of conscious post this morning. I took a sleep med last night and feel kind of jittery this morning. I am not tired or groggy. I feel like I want to crawl out of my skin.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Not where I thought I would be...

It is amazing how much life can change in a few months. I had been so proud of Big Man for over coming (or so I thought) his addictions. But he didn't. It has set us back months if not years. It makes me really sad.

Although with the latest discovery, he is stepping up and FINALLY starting to become the man I know he can be. We are taking it one day at a time and will over come this. We are stronger than that.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My Little Man is Growing up!

Well Little Man turned 1 on June the first. We had his party and it was AWESOME. He got a couple of CAT trucks from us and some cars from his Oma. This leads me to my post today.

I came into the bedroom he shares with Banana this morning and he was pushing one of the trucks around going "vroom vroom". It was the cutest thing ever. He is also coming leaps and bounds with his words. While they are not super clear it has become obvious when he is saying "Mama" "baba" "ball" "kitty". He makes sounds for other words. When he wants his stuffed snake he hisses. He will also pretend to be a snake. My heart just grows with love for him every day.

I am afraid there is still something wrong. He took his first step about a week ago, but nothing since then. I know babies do things in their own time, but I still worry.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

I need to get the word out

I like to go to Barnes and Nobel and look at books. I am terrible about just picking up a random book because the cover or spin art intrigues me. If the dust jacket makes it sound interesting I will buy it. Or if a friend recommends it I will buy the who series. That is how I discovered this book. I saw the cover and thought it looked interesting. My Enemy's Cradle is about the German Lebensborn, a birthing center for Aryan children. It is an AMAZING and unlike what two of the reviewers thought I had no trouble relating to the characters in the book. I cried for Cyrla and some of the other girls. I don't want to give too much away. But as a mother of two and a baby who didn't make it I find this to be a powerful book and I want to read more about this topic.

(Ok I know this entry sucked and I am not selling this book at all well but READ it.)

Friday, May 8, 2009

It must be Friday

Here I sit, 2 days before Mother's Day. I am in a dark spot right now, I don't know what to do.

My first Mother's Day was spent grieving a lost baby. It was spent rather quietly at my parent's home with my younger brother and husband. I under cooked the potatoes (I was trying to roast them, didn't work) so my brother and I were making potato Martini's. It was funny to watch, I am sure pictures exist somewhere but I don't know where.

I know we won't be doing much on Mother's Day which is fine. But I find myself thinking a lot about Sara. I didn't cry for her on her birthday and a part of me feels guilty for that. I miss her so much right now. I find myself drawn to the grief and loss boards, hoping I can share part of my story to let these ladies know they are not alone. But reading their stories brings back my pain.

I don't want to dwell in it but it is like a comfortable sweater. It slips on so easily and strangely I am comforted by it. It is an emotion other than anger.

I am angry a lot these days. I am angry at the situation we are in, I am angry at Mr. QO a lot. He has slipped back into what I like (well hate really) to call his "internet infidelities". He hasn't taken it as far as he did this summer, but I know that is coming.

I have a group of women I can share this with, but I hate to burden them with this. I am the new guy on the block and I don't want to push them away. In high school one of my friends told me I complained too much, that I always had to make it about me. I guess what she said made an impact, I hold too much in I think. I am afraid to share because I don't want it to appear that I am trying to be an attention whore.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Illness

When Mr. QO gets sick, he gets really sick, no one in the world is or has ever been as sick as he is. It must be a terrible burden on him. It is cured only by staying up until 200 AM playing xbox

Also it is funny that when there is a happy hour that he wants to go to he can magically get out of work on time (early even) but when I need him to come home because I and both children are coming down with the same debilitating illness that he had earlier in the week, nope he has to work late. And because he called out on Monday he can't call out again this week.

Because and this is a direct quote "It can't be that bad".

Oh wait honey as I have said before payback is a bitch.

Friday, May 1, 2009

One Car

We are a one car family. We are not doing it for any political reason. Although I suppose since our one vehicle is a Hybrid it would appear to some that way.

We are a one car family because I enjoy only having one car payment. None would be better but I won't get that for a couple more years.

What I do not enjoy is when I need the car and Mr. Quiet One needs to be to work at 5:00 am. It is not fun getting 2, 2 and under up at 4:00 am. Mr. Quiet One suggests that we could just leave them at home, that they would stay asleep until I got back. I told him he could walk to work.

We managed to get them in the car and they fell back asleep. Awesome. What is not so awesome is when I get home at 5:45 and it is time to get them out.

Both are sort of awake, by this I mean are awake enough to know if I leave one in the car to bring the other one in. So I am juggling two kids, and trying to work the security code to get into the building. I make the biggest mistake of the morning. I set Nana on the ground so I can do the code and open the door.

Let me just tell you this. She is standing up, it's not like I set her naked on hot coals or anything. But she starts to HOWL. I mean bloody murder.

If my daughter wakes up on her own she is very pleasant. If she is woken up, not so much.

I try to calm her down as the hallway is very echo. Didn't work.

To all the residents of my building I apologize for the early AM wake up call. Except for the guys who come in drunk at 300 am. Yeah payback is a bitch.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Other Side

I was indifferent to the Twilight books. They were ok, but not really my cup tea. I am a HUGE vampire fan, so big I wrote a 25 page paper on the existence of vampires, based on similarities across cultures and the myths behind them, for my junior research paper.

I bought all four of them based on the hype. Read them. Gave them to my sister in law.

Well I wanted to see the movie. I had no hope for it, I couldn't see what the hype about the guy who played Edward Cullen was. I was just not that into it. I figured I would what for the hoopla to die down and then Netflix it.

Mr. Quiet One knew I had a rough couple of days coming up, thought it would be sweet to buy me the movie. He knew I read the books, but missed the part where I said I wasn't crazy about them. But how could I be mad. He tried.

All I can say is I am in love. I know a lot of the hard core Twilight fans didn't like the movie. But I LOVED IT. A million times better than the books. I thought the leads had GREAT chemistry.

Now I want to re-read them. But I know my sister in law will not give them up.

Monday, March 30, 2009

What is Faith?

What is Faith? A simple dictionary definition is:
faith
   /feɪθ/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [feyth] Show IPA
–noun
1. confidence or trust in a person or thing: faith in another's ability.
2. belief that is not based on proof: He had faith that the hypothesis would be substantiated by fact.
3. belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of religion: the firm faith of the Pilgrims.

My favorite passage from the Bible defines it as "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1 in case anyone is wondering.

What does it take to have Faith? Do you need to go to Church to have Faith? I have Faith. I think. I believe in God. While I don’t know what his plan is for me. I believe he has a plan for me. Is this Faith?

Is it still Faith if I question? Is it still Faith if I cry sometimes because it is. Just. Not. Fair.

Life is not fair, I am well aware of this. But at what point am I no longer the punching bag? I know compared to Job, my trials are minimal. But what if they feel like the breaking point for me? What if I wake up and can’t take it anymore? Is it Faith that I still get up? That I don’t do the Really Bad Thing. Sometimes I still think about the Really Bad Thing. About how my kids would be better off without me.

But I keep going day after day. I want to find a church. I want to go to church. I want to find one that will welcome me. But I don't know if a church will provide me with what I need.

My mom and I were talking about this a few days ago, and she told me that my faith was stronger than many people's. Starting with Sara, moving on to some other trials we have had. She said that would have broken many people. Yet I do keep going. I tell her that I lack faith, my faith has no form.

But will a church help form my faith? I guess what I am afraid of is I will be judged. I know people shouldn't judge but they do. Most of the bad choices I have made I am truly sorry for. But there is the choice I made about Sara. And for that I am not sorry. I know the choice we made with her is against so many fundamental doctrines that I almost feel like a sham for joining the churches. But I can't be sorry for the choice we made, as I believe that God helped guide us to this choice and helped me through it.

I know some of my friends are religious and I think I am turning to you for guidance.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Taking a break.

Yesterday evening when I thought my computer was out of commission I was in a panic. It is my life line to the outside world. But maybe I need to focus a little less on the outside and focus on the inside for a while.

I think this move is coming at a good time. I am going to take a break for the next two weeks. I think I will be back on April 2. We will be moved in (and hopefully settled) into our new place. I just have become too dependent on my computer and online things.

The internet has not been keeping me from the things I need to do. I just don't really know how to explain it. I want to offer my friends advice, but I am always afraid when in relating my story (to try and show commiseration) they are going to think that I am trying to one up them or hijack the thread. Which is not the case at all.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

No computer

Well it looks like my lap top is on the way to being fried again. I don't know how much longer it will be around. I found a couple for under 800 that look nice. But the trouble is coming up with the 800.

I wish I had known this repair was only going to last like a month. Then I would have saved more of our tax return. The good thing is our apartment complex has a computer room with a desktop that I can use.

Even if my computer survives, I will be away from the dates of 3/26-3/30. They have to cut the cable at the end of the billing cycle and can't rehook it up until 3/30. Stinks.

Well it looks like my computer is going to the shop in about 5 minutes.

Signing off.

*******UPDATE************ Turns out this time it was a faulty power cord. So it's only a 70.00 fix.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I just don't get it.

I need to preface this post with: I am pretty liberal by nature. But I do have some conservative leanings. The war in Iraq is not one of them.

I do not support the war. Never have. But I do support our troops 1 million percent. My father is a Vietnam Vet, both my grandfathers are ex-military, and my husband is an ex-air man who is thinking of re-enlisting.

What I don't get is how some people can have such a hatred for our troops. It's not like the troops themselves say "Hey let's go invade a foreign country." They put their lives on the line for us every day. The troops are just doing their job. One they get relatively low pay for. They do this day in and day out so you can post the things that you did on a community forum I frequent. All of the people read this blog know which community I am talking about.

I am not naive I know such hatred exists. This war is already being compared to Vietnam because it has become a quagmire. Let's not treat our troops the same way they were treated after Vietnam.

To all the service men and women out there, we thank you and are proud of you. We want you to come home safely.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I want my cake and eat it too....

We got our tax money today! Who-ho!! Yeah baby. I have paid all the bills we are (were) behind on so we are caught up on absolutely everything. I feel like a weight has been lifted. But now it is time for me to spend money on the "fun stuff" from our budget and I. Just. Can't. Do. It. We budgeted $150.00 to buy Banana a kitchen. I found an awesome one at Target.com (it's this one ). No where has it in the stores, it seems to be good the reviews are good, it is $50.00 less than what we budgeted. What is the problem? I just have trouble buying this sight unseen. I am such a terrible online shopper. I have no trouble filling my shopping cart, but when it comes time to check out I hesitate.

Argh we are going to Target tonight for a few things maybe we can look around and see what is there.

(PS shout and big thanks to my wonderful friend from LA who put my mind at ease about the paint).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A Deeply Personal post

I am about to share something. I debated long and hard whether to put it in my blog. But I figure I have shared so much already this would only be a natural place to share it. Now please don't judge me this was a really hard choice for me to make....



We have picked out paint colors for our new place. See it wasn't really that serious but I needed an attention grabber. Also I am really nervous about what we are doing in the living room.

I watched this how to video on homedepot.com about Ralph Lauren's paint effects. The one that really jumped out at me was the suede. It looks really easy that even a person as inept as I can do it. What has me nervous is the color. It's called "Spitfire" and you can see it here: http://www.ralphlaurenhome.com/rlhome/products/paint/items.asp?haid=76 However it looks more like the color "Snowdrift." Now that has me nervous as to which is the more accurate representation. The paint chip or website? I have also never painted a room brown before. I am from the school of bright vibrant colors.

As evidenced by the colors I am debating over for the rest of the apartment. I am thinking about painting the kid's room Artisan and Topiary Green. The top of the wall will be Topiary and the bottom will be Artisan (these are by Glidden).

Oh we did have a heart attack yesterday. The complex called and told us the people whose apartment we are moving into changed their mind. Ok what does that mean? Well they have the same apartment available on 4/7. We have already burned our bridges here so there is no telling them "Oh by the way..." Then they asked if we had our hearts set on a first floor. Well yes with two little ones... Then she said well we have one available but it is more expensive. Here I am tail spinning. I ask how much more? She puts me on hold while she checks. I am imagining $50 or $100. It is a whole $2.00 more a month. I laughed and said that would be fine.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A light at the end, that isn't a freight train

Well I checked this morning (as I have every morning since Feb 12) the IRS website. Our refund is scheduled to be direct deposited by 3/24. 2 days before move in. Awesome. I am still nervous, because we still don't know exactly what is going on with our kids SSNs. But whatever, maybe it was just a computer error.

We need this money to get caught up on bills. I don't feel comfortable making a budget without being current. I know that is silly and probably self defeating but that is how I feel. I also feel as long as we are current and I have a budget in place we can stay current.

Yay this is a happy post and hopefully a happy day.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

3 years ago (disclaimer long and rambley)

Three years ago on March 27 we made the hardest choice of our lives. She was born silently on 4-1.

I seem to fall into funks about a week or so before her expected due date, and almost a full month before her actual birthday. I have two healthy and happy babies now, I should be able to move on, or at least not be so consumed by it. But I can't.

I discovered this website: http://namesinthesand.blogspot.com/. And thought what a perfect way to commemorate her third birthday. They are no longer taking requests because they are so overwhelmed. While my rational sane mind understands that, the emotional wreck part broke down into tears. I am the only one who remembers this day, my family tells me to "Get over it." My husband tells me "You have two kids now, focus on them."

But I don't want her to be forgotten ever. I looked at her pictures for the first time in almost a year and I cried (like I am doing now.) It hurts me to remember her like, I wonder how much pain she was in. I ask why was I punished by having to make such a choice. But then I feel guilty because it is like I am asking why did I have Sara? I love her so much that it breaks my heart.

I have these perfect sonogram pictures and wonder "Why my baby? Why did you make her feel that pain? Why punish her? Why didn't she deserve a chance? Did you punish her because of something I did?"

Am I still being punished for the choice we made?

I know that "they" say like attracts like, so I should think positively and that will attract more positive energy. I think that is a load of crap. I think positively, I try to be a good person, but we can never catch a break. Our friends lie to their landlords and never get caught. And they continue to get what they want. I can't lie. I just can't do it.

I have to listen to people talk about how their parents are offering to get them home loans and help pay off their cars. These are the same people that would rather buy new computers than pay their bills. So when their water/electricity/gas gets shut off they run to mommy and daddy and they get it reconnected for them.

Maybe I am not really living positively maybe I am harboring envy and that is what is keeping us down. I wish I could live without it. It is just hard when we struggle to make ends meet and they throw their new stuff in our faces.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Courtesy

cour⋅te⋅sy (from dictionary.com)
   /ˈkɜrtəsi or, for 5, ˈkɜrtsi/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [kur-tuh-see or, for 5, kurt-see] Show IPA noun, plural -sies, adjective
–noun
1. excellence of manners or social conduct; polite behavior.
2. a courteous, respectful, or considerate act or expression.
3. indulgence, consent, or acquiescence: a “colonel” by courtesy rather than by right.
4. favor, help, or generosity: The costumes for the play were by courtesy of the local department store.
5. a curtsy.
–adjective
6. done or performed as a matter of courtesy or protocol: a courtesy call on the mayor.
7. offered or provided free by courtesy of the management: While waiting to board the airplane, we were provided with courtesy coffee.

I wish my neighbors would learn to read this. Our apartments are 868 square feet. It is barely big enough for our family of four. They have a family of five plus at least one or two other people. They always have four or five guests over. Tonight they had 9, yes 9 cars taking up all the parking spots in front of our apartments. The reason we know it is them is because at various times we have seen people going from those cars to the house.

It was icy (because they didn't shovel or salt or sidewalks) windy and FREEZING. We had to park down the block and walk with our little ones on icy sidewalks.

I hate them. 24 days until we are done with them.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The State of the Onion

Well my computer is back, thank Heavens. One of my friends is giving up our bulletin board for Lent, I barely survived three days without my computer. ***Special Shout Out to my Wonderful Princess Peaches.*** If my computer hadn't been ready Friday I would have used what you gave me, on Saturday. (Like how I made that all cryptic sounding? ;))

I do not recall what I did on Saturday. Oh yes we found a couch for our new place, and Big Man's chair quite literally exploded, so we picked a recliner out. I did some minimal packing and took a nap with Banana. Oh we also stopped by the new place so I could measure walls. We also found out that we could sign all our paperwork the day before so we can start first thing Thursday morning. We also made our monthly trip to Costco and our almost daily trip to Target (although we are getting better). We bought some things at Costco for Chatsworth, a laundry sorter and a kitchen sink set. It is really sad, but I am hyped about that.

Sunday, Sunday Sunday..... My parents took Banana for four hours. I packed, did laundry and cleaned up. Big Man cleaned the kitchen like a fiend and it looks great. I packed more this evening and I am BONE tired. I just can't wait to get to our new apartment.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Where art thou computer?

Is it because my kids are sick? Nope.

Is it because I need to pack? No sir.

Is it because my laptop is fried? Bingo!

The place where my power cord plugs in is messed up so it does not charge. I have it at a computer repair place that seems to be on the up and up. My dad is my hero of the day because he is getting it fixed for me (aka paying for it).

I will miss you all and any drama be sure to note it for me!

kthxbai!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

What is a friend?

A friend is a person who you can count on. A person who treats you the way they wanted to be treated. I just realize the only people that do that for me are the people on the internet. I am just having a bad, bad day.

I thought I had a go to person in the F&B (you know like brick and mortar stores are b&M. Flesh and blood is F&B). Guess I don't. I never used to be this way. If someone gave me crap and had terrible double standards I would call them on it. But there is a person in my life that is doing that and I can't call her on it because she is my ONLY friend.

I want to just tell her how I feel but I can't I am terrified of being lonely. A friend of my mom's knows a bunch of stay at home moms at the new apartment complex. She says they are always open to new mommies. I went to summer camp with a bunch of these girls (they are a church group). I am clinging dearly to this move. It is my life line.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Great Chicken Stock Disaster of 2009

I have some very handy friends. They do cool things like make butter, do wainscoting themselves. I aspire to be like these people. So when I got a bunch of chicken thighs with bones from Angel Food Ministries, I thought "Hey Q1 you can make chicken stock from scratch like your hero Alton Brown".

I spent all day yesterday cooking the chicken thighs in the slow cooker to make it easier to get the meat off the bones. It went very well. I had my mom bring over a stock pot, I thought it was going to be so easy.

Banana wanted to help me, so I set her up over by the fridge with the new "cookering" stuff we got her for her birthday. I go about warming up the liquid and chopping the carrots, celery and onions. Dump them in and stir.

Uh-oh my pot is smoking from the underside. No big deal if something is on the burner it will burn off. Not with my luck. So I figure I will pick up the pot wipe the bottom and we're back in business.

What is it they say about the best laid plans? As I am lifting the pot the momentum carries it forward and I end up dumping half to pot all over me and all over the floor. Luckily Banana is far enough away she misses most of the fall out. Also luckily it has just started to warm, so it feels like a warm bath. A warm bath of chickeny goodness. *gag*

I was going to try making the butter that J and C and Me made, but after this debacle I think my at home handiness is on hold for a while.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I'm about to Break

I am at the point where I am afraid. I really don't know how much longer I can keep it together. I really, really don't. I constantly feel on the edge of a panic attack. I called our insurance to re-check our coverage, because Big Man's insurance company sent a letter saying our coverage is changing but didn't go into what. So I called. They no longer offer mental health coverage. I do not know what to do. I was supposed to have an appointment to get my medicine changed and now I can't.

I really am afraid.

Friday, February 13, 2009

What I Have Done

(X) Gone on a blind date
(X) Skipped school
(X) Watched someone die
(X) Been to Canada
( ) Been to Mexico
(X) Been to Florida
( ) Been to Hawaii
(X) Been on a plane
( ) Been on a helicopter
(X) Been lost
(X) Gone to Washington, DC
(X) Swam in the ocean
(X) Cried yourself to sleep
(X) Played cops and robbers
(X) Recently colored with crayons
(X) Sang Karaoke
(X) Paid for a meal with coins only
( ) Been to the top of the St. Louis Arch
(X) Done something you told yourself you wouldn't
(X) Made prank phone calls
( ) Been down Bourbon Street in New Orleans
(X) Laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose
(X) Caught a snowflake on your tongue
(X) Danced in the rain
(X) Written a letter to Santa Claus
(X) Been kissed under the mistletoe
(X) Watched the sunrise with someone
(X) Blown bubbles
(X) Gone ice-skating
(X) Gone to the movies
( ) Been deep sea fishing
( ) Driven across the United States
( ) Been in a hot air balloon
( ) Been sky diving
( ) Gone snowmobiling
(X) Lived in more than one country
(X) Lay down outside at night and admired the stars while listening to the crickets
(X) Seen a falling star and made a wish
( ) Enjoyed the beauty of Old Faithful Geyser
(X) Seen the Statue of Liberty
( ) Gone to the top of Seattle Space Needle.
( ) Been on a cruise
(X) Traveled by train
( ) Traveled by motorcycle
(X) Been horse back riding
( ) Ridden on a San Francisco CABLE CAR
(X) Been to Disneyworld
( ) Been in a rain forest
(X) Seen whales in the ocean
(X) Been to Niagara Falls
( ) Ridden on an elephant
( ) Swam with dolphins

Friday Night Bloggy Time

It's that time!!! FNBT!!! Ok I am about 4 hours early but I am hoping to play Rock Band when the kiddos go down. I am going to do 2 blogs tonight since one is of a serious nature and another will be fun.

This one has a bunch of people who should be punched in the junk, not just punched but have their junk removed: http://www.dreamindemon.com/ . This site helps catch the kids that all through the cracks. We all hear about the Caylee Anthonys but what about Tangena Hussain? I can bet not one person outside of Michigan has heard of her. I cry just about every time I go here, but I think it is important. If just one person stumbles on this site and sees one of these kids in their neighborhood, and says "Hey that looks like the kid from that website I found on TQ1s blog, maybe I should call the police." Or if it is too late for the poor baby, that is one more person who has heard of them and they are not forgotten.

I found this one on my friend The Beach Life's blog (you should visit this blog because her pictures are AMAZING and she is funny), the blog is called 911 Apparently Not Just for Emergencies. I find this funny for a few reasons: 1. People really are that dumb. 2. I come from a family who does fire and rescue and police work.

You may ask why I don't feature The Beach Life in my FNBT it is because I like to concentrate on it and make comments. (Shh don't tell her but I want to buy some pictures from her for my new place.)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

By the numbers

I am going to preface this by saying my heart breaks for anyone who has struggled with infertility. Not that it matters but I fully support responsible IVF procedures.

We have all heard of the octo-mom. While I had thought she was irresponsible I was indifferent to her for the most part. She is a freak whose poor kids are going to suffer for her irresponsibility. But for some reason I am FURIOUS after reading this article: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090212/ap_on_re_us/octuplets . I guess maybe I needed to see the numbers broken down for me.

Some months we can't even make ends meet, why in the hell should I have to pay for this woman and her litters? I understand needing WIC, food stamps etc. But if you need assistance for 6 kids why would you knowingly implant 6 more? I can understand an oops baby. But an oops IVF? Ooops oh my goodness I just tripped and fell on your turkey baster?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

We have an IRS answer

We need to mail everything in. They will contact us if they need to. It will take a minimum of 6-8 weeks. Why can't anything ever be easy?

Not my kids?

So I got everything straightened out with my paperwork (thank you BBC lady) but my taxes were actually rejected because according to the IRS my kids are not my kids. Interesting. So based on what the lady on the phone said we are going to refile online and then wait and see. Then if rejected again even TT can't help us we have to mail them in.

If they aren't mine can I give them back?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Please excuse the following language

I have just had an example of Douchebaggery at it's finest. One of the few things your job entails is to make sure payroll is processed properly. Well thanks to Mr. Idiot accountant mine wasn't.

Back story - I work for the same company as my mom. Usually it is great because I can work from home and save money for day care. I can put in as many or as few hours as I want. Sweet deal all in all. HOWEVER twice this summer they forgot to take taxes, FICA, social security etc out of my check. Not a big thing. I held out about what the total would have be and put it into a savings account.

Well the idiot in the accounting office sent me the wrong forms. He filed my stuff with the IRS as if I was self employed for those two checks. And he sent me W2s. So now instead of my super easy 1040, I have to fill out two different forms and I don't think I can file online anymore. If any of you wonderful readers know anything about filing with 1099-misc forms let me know.

Friday, February 6, 2009

The News so far

Well Cole has been at the doctor's since 1130 this morning. His blood work has all come back normal so far so it can't be cancer right? I mean if it is like humans his blood work wouldn't be normal. But his liver, kidney function is normal. His thyroid is fine, his glucose was high but vet said that if he was nervous that could impact it.

I just want to thank my friends who comment on here. I don't think you all know how much you mean to me. I truly, truly value you guys.

I also want to thank my friend TrickyTechieGirl (not her real name, but her Xbox SN) she watched my kiddos today and let me borrow her car so I could take him to the vet.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Some good news

We found my iPod. It had gotten trapped underneath our grocery bin. (Vues have these built in grocery holders and it got trapped between the carpet and the plastic.)

The Big C

Well the emergency vet says he is 80% sure the mass in Cole's belly is cancer. He is positive Cole does not have FIP (which is good). But he wasn't sure enough that it was cancer to put him down without more tests. The problem?

We can't afford the tests. He needs a ton more blood work, another x-ray, a sonogram, an endoscopy, a biopsy and all the testing. We spent $400.00 last night on just the emergency vet visit, one x-ray and a CBC.

But he said the mass could be nothing. So I don't want to put him down if the mass is nothing. But I also don't want to prolong any pain he is in.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Another hard choice

We had to put a cat down in 2006 for something called FIP. They say it is highly contagious among cats, but there is no way to treat it so as long as they aren't showing symptoms we let them be.

FIP is fatal 100% of the time once they start showing symptoms. Well Cole is starting to show symptoms. Cole is our "special" cat. When we got him they told us he would never be a lap cat. For the first week we had him he hid. Well Big Man went out to his friends place for a Friday. Cole came out of hiding and he and I bonded. He became my cat. Slowly he started to come out of his shell. Now he is the biggest lap cat. He is great with the kids and an all around good cat. He always threw up. The vet couldn't explain why, we tried a thousand different foods and we couldn't find anything wrong with him. He would only do it once or twice a week so the vet said as long as he eats and drinks he is ok.

Well now he is throwing up 6 or 7 times a day, barely eating and excuse the TMI having really stinky, runny poops. I called the vet and we are bringing him in on Friday. I think we are going to have to put him down.

I am heartbroken because he has come so far. He has become a member of our family. Banana's first word was "Cole", it just really stinks.

Final Countdown


Talk me down off the ledge

I am having baby fever BADLY. I have been watching the Baby shows on TLC and I see all the cute squishy babies and I want one. I know mine aren't old, but I miss the cute little bundles of cute babyness.

I know we won't have one for another 4 years, but I want one. I am trying to talk my friend into having one so I can live through her. But I look at my two and will enjoy them now. Sigh I guess little Samuel Scott (the middle name is up in the air) or Brigid Grace will just have to wait a few more years.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A perfect World

We did our taxes last night. We are getting a hefty refund. I have decided I am going to live in a fantasy world for a while. Where none of our money has to go to bills or moving. Here are a couple of things I would like to buy:

An iPod Touch Big Man left mine in the car after his accident and it wasn't there when we got the car back. Jerks.


This
dutch oven. It would match my green kitchen. I didn't get my dutch oven for Christmas so this would be nice.

I have always wanted to make creme brulee. While I know I don't need a special kit. It would be nice to have a cool looking kit.

We seriously have almost $1000.00 worth of wine. I can never remember to put it in the fridge. This would solve that problem.

I just want a 12 inch skillet.

I would also like a cast iron skillet.

I like this bed set

That's about it I think. I am sure there is other stuff out there. But that is what I would REALLY like.

Life unscripted

Upon threat of junk punching I am updating lol.

We have had a busy month. The biggest most exciting news is we are moving! We are breaking our lease but I won't go into why, except to say 897 sq ft is way too small for a family of 4.

I am now in the stages of picking paint colors and planning on redecorating the kids' room. Banana is getting a "Tinkybell" bed for her birthday and I am trying to come up with a theme for Little Man's side of the room. I am thinking pirates, because then it will be like a Peter Pan themed room with Tinkerbell and the Lost Boys. But I am having trouble finding pirate bedding that I like. I guess I like them but I am not sure how well they would match. The Tinkerbell is purple and green and the pirate is red and blues. I guess it doesn't really matter does it? Any suggestions would be awesome because I have eyes bigger than my budget.

I am painting our kitchen dark green which is not my first choice. I want to paint it dark red, but all our kitchen towels are green and purple (our "theme" is wine". I am trying to convince Big Man to let me paint the living room and our bedroom too. All he wants to paint is the kids room and the kitchen. I am also picking out decorations for our two bathrooms.

I am really excited about the kitchen though. It is huge compared to the one we have with a TON of counter space. I finally have room for all the cooking gadgets I have.

We were given Rock Band 2 for Christmas and Big Man and I have been playing that just about every night together. It is kind of nice to have this time with him. We have actually done a lot of bonding while we play.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Friday Night Bloggy Time

I have decided to start a segment called, you guessed it Friday Night Bloggy Time. It is where I feature a blog that is a good way to kill a Friday night. I don't know if you are like me but Friday nights are nights when I stay up kind of late.

I want something to entertain me as I watch my DVDs like Dexter (is it bad I think a serial killer is hot) or Supernatural (is it also bad I think a guy who has been to hell and back is super hot). So I want a blog that doesn't require a lot of attention and I don't feel I need to comment or anything.

Tonight FNBT is Fuck You Penguin. It reminds me of my brother. I am not sure why, I think it is the usage of Fuck and Penguin in the same sentence.

http://fuckyoupenguin.blogspot.com/

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Where do we go from here?

Well we had the MRI on Tuesday. And they found.... Nothing. His brain is totally ok. I am relieved and frustrated at the same time. Relieved because if there had been a problem, I don't know if we could have afforded to fix it. But frustrated because we are back at square one. He seems to be getting better each day though. So it is a good thing.

This morning we were at Bob Evans, my husband, Little Man, and I (Nana Banana was at Oma's) and there was a little boy who was in a wheel chair, and he had a lot of problems. I wanted to cry. I felt bad for thinking "at least we don't have it that bad." And then I felt guilty for thinking that because that little boy is a blessing. I know the last thing I would want anyone thinking about Little Man is that.

So now we go back to just having PT and I don't know where we go from here.