Thursday, May 29, 2008

Stalkers are such fun

I have a stalker. A phone stalker. A cell phone stalker.

A stalker that calls me by name....

Before leaving dirty, scary messages.

I'm scared. I have a home alarm and I'm not one to mind being home alone. My husband travels all the time.

But this stuff is starting to worry me. It makes me worry about blogging, too.

I know bloggers have addressed this before, but how do you allow yourself to feel comfortable putting all your personal stuff out there? Especially knowing someone might use it against you somehow?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Sharks, cake and Hello Kitty...



























Once again, my friend Daniel Milnor, famed photographer, captured the festivities. Check out his website here.
















Monday, May 19, 2008

Ready for kindergarten?

Yes, we survived the party. Yes, we are still recovering. Yes, the house is wrecked. Including pink cupcake frosting staining the antique tiles in the dining room. Yes, it was a HUGE success.

Miss CC was in heaven and all 100 kids who came had a blast, too. Highlights were Hello Kitty coming and wandering through the house with Miss CC and Miss R holding her hands and also the aquarium exhibit where kids could touch baby sharks. More later when I get pics.

Today was Miss CC's interview at kindergarten. And to answer how it went, well, it was an accurate interview. In other words, CC showed her amazing abilities, but she also showed her weaknesses, too. This is a good thing. This interview will determine which kindergarten teacher she is placed with. And let's face it, there is probably one of the three that is better with challenging kids.

Because we have elected not to disclose her Asperger's dx at this point, we came armed with a letter (written from her perspective) highlighting her attributes but explaining her quirks.

She excelled on all the academic questions (shapes, numbers, letters). She even complained that they were "baby" questions. She spoke of her interests: the color purple, her best friend J, our cat...She was very talkative and not her usual slow-to-warm self. I was proud of her.

But the teacher also asked her to draw a picture of something she liked. This is right up Miss CC's alley as she is constantly drawing or making art projects. However, when it was time to go, she did not want to leave the artwork with the teacher. There was a bit of a power struggle for a moment...I knew a few more minutes would trigger a meltdown for sure. But the teacher negotiated with her and agreed to make a copy of the artwork for her file and let her take her original home. CC questioned her several times about this. The teacher assured her that she always kept her promises.

As we left, the teacher said, "CC has a strong foundation for kindergarten and will be fine."

Yes. I just hope the kindergarten teacher will survive, too.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

the mom the other moms hate...


yup, that's me.

I'm the one that throws the over-the-top birthday parties. The HUGE crazy birthday party.

And the part that really irriatates the moms? I don't care that the moms hate me.

I have always been this way. I adore hosting parties. I love to plan all the activities, decorate and put together the favors. I don't mind spending money either on vendors like balloon ladies, face painters and characters. And by the way, I was this way when I didn't have a dime to my name.

(Case in point: big birthday party for an ex - I flew in his sister to surprise him and got a Target credit card to pay for all the food and decorations because I had no cash.)

Many bloggers have discussed this at length but primarily from the simple-and-frugal-is-better perspective. I totally get that, especially about not making the emphasis on birthday presents. But part of my personality is to entertain. And my daughter has inherited this quality, too.

Although she is much more introverted than I am, for weeks prior to her birthday parties, she plans where all the balloons will go, fills every gift bucket or sack (this year 100!) and decides all the crafts and games to play. Every morning she wakes up and says, "X more days!!!!"

We are asking that attendees donate to the local children's hospital in lieu of a gift. Family members will still give Miss CC gifts, so I am sure she will have the fun of opening some gifts. But we certainly don't want tons of presents coming into the house. She helped me wrap a huge empty box in Hello Kitty paper for donated toys.

Anyway, the countdown's on. The big party is this weekend. This year we have two themes: sea life and Hello Kitty. The aquarium is bringing a truck with tanks of fish, lobsters, starfish and even baby sharks! And Hello Kitty herself is making an appearance. (Miss CC sent her an invitation.) My house if full of fish-themed games and shark-themed crafts.

And my little girl is beside herself with glee.
P.S. The photo is from her third birthday (Strawberry Shortcake theme).

Monday, May 12, 2008

I love this holiday

I love my mom. I do. She drives me batty, but I do still love her. And I encourage my daughter to love her Nana.

BUT Mother's Day never meant a lot to me. I know that sounds harsh, but I did show my mom appreciation in other ways - not neccessarily on Mother's Day through the years. So it wasn't an emphasized holiday in my life. That is, until I became a mother myself.

Now I live for the obscure crafts my girl makes for me at preschool. I can hardly wait to see what card she (and her dad) pick out for me. I love going to brunch together and everyone saying, "Happy Mother's Day" to me.

I wanted to be a mom for so many years. I wished for my daughter. And now I relish every single Mother's Day. Every single day in fact.

Monday, May 05, 2008

The big FIVE


Five years ago today was the absolute most important day of my life. It was the most amazing day of my life.

And it was probably the hardest day of my life. I can definitely say I experienced the most pain of my life that day.

It was the day Miss CC was born.

But born doesn't seem like the right word. As Miss CC always says, she was always in the world. But her body arrived on May 5, 2003. A Cinco de Mayo baby. Time to celebrate! And at the very least, time to have a stiff drink.

You see, I wanted an unmedicated birth. I wanted a midwife-assisted birth. I actually had the audacity to want a homebirth. And it all began with lots of research. I had the best team, the best laid plans. And I had the drive and the belief and as my daddy used to say, the gumption to do it.

Not to go into all the details, but here were the hightlights:
water breaks just as going to bed
labored at home all night - contractions every 2 minutes
Miss CC was turned face up
midwife manually turned her twice
(did I mention no meds?)
little dialation
trip to hospital for epidural
epidural does not work
ooo, but the feet were numb (but nothing else)
getting close to 24-hour mark after water breaking
C-section imminent
sudden placental abruption (massive bleeding)
no time to re-do epidural
C-section without meds (they tie you down and cut)
displaced pain in chest (think I'm having heart attack)
go blind from oral meds
(give my "goodbye" speech)
CC arrives!
CC has swallowed blood - gets tummy pumped
CC brought to me but I am still blind so can only smell her.

But CC is OKAY!!!

Suddenly, my eyesight returns and I am stiched up and in recovery room being encouraged to nurse Miss CC. And then I'm in my hospital room with everyone swooning over my beautiful little girl. (no further mention of trauma to me)

And within minutes I was sure I would do it all over again in a heartbeat just to have my girl. My old soul girl. My little miniature Mr. C (seriously, she's Mr. C in a dress). My already oh-so-serious CC. My newborn baby with the furrowed brow already trying to figure life out.

Five years later, we do get moments of glee and a quirky sense of humor. But overall, I'd say she is just as she was when she was born: reluctant to go somewhere new, a serious soul and obviously something to celebrate.

Happy Birthday, my precious girl. I adore you.