Wednesday, December 26, 2007


my cowbabies

To quote Reba, "eeesh!" Six Christmas celebrations down. We came, we ate, we gifted - what more could you want? We started out the week with Brian's parents and managed the three ring circus that is entertaining extended family, managing three dogs and a cat, and keeping kids and a moderately good mood. Brian's sister was in from CO and his parents finally had the whole fam back - albeit for only a brief time. Four Christmases with them later we are spending time with my family where my parents have my sisters and I all under one roof again back from Northern CA, North Dakota, and of course TX. The grand-dogs are also happy to be reunited with family. What did they do without all this chaos? We have now had a total of three Christmas celebrations with them. Seriously - we are going to have to rent another Penske to get us home. We have three more days here and we haven't yet begun to touch on accomplishing all we wanted to do. I guess that's what return trips are for.

Here are some pictures to catch you up - crafting and gift pictures to come:

What a whirlwind. Jacob just informed me he was going to take a nap. I don't blame him.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Dog Pile

Fear not! I am still alive. We just made the 24 hour car ride to CA from Austin, TX. We are all still alive and kicking (each other). Brian apparently doesn't sleep well in cars and I got a whopping neck breaking 4 hours. We were FINE. The kids did great - and I really mean that. Surprisingly there were very few melt downs and the "are we there yet"s didn't start until we were a good four hours away - thank God.

We squished ourselves into the borrowed Durango for it's return trip home complete with Christmas presents for our families, Santa's deliveries (the kids don't know we are in cahoots with him yet), all our clothes and necessities for 8 days, and two dogs. We all rode in appropriate seats save for the dogs who, bless their hearts, piled on top of each other at Jacob's feet. We very literally had a dog pile in the car. If my camera hadn't been buried I would have taken a picture of this hysterical scene.

So, we are all here. We brought an inverter for an ac adapter in the car and both Brian and his dad joked that I would be sewing in the passenger seat. If I could have figured that out... Almost all projects are done and I can't wait to post on them AFTER you all have received them :-) For once in my life I am keeping a secret!

Merry Christmas to you all!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Adventures of the Bad Haircut

Bad hair day - a regular occurrence for me. Bad hair cut - a once every 10 years experience for me. Thank GOD! Bad hair day is one thing; a bad hair cut is a whole 'nother big bad thing. I went this morning (post ER shift) to get my hair cut for the first time since moving - it was a long stretch. My hair was way over due.

I walked in, got a reasonably good looking stylist with a decent do and plopped down in the chair with complete and udder trust for this woman. We discussed, we looked at pictures, mentioned a few requirements (like bangs I could tuck behind my ears) and she began. It started out fine enough. I believed that she would leave me with a better resemblance of myself. But then she was done. And, oh my. There were no words and no bangs, nothing as a matter of fact, that I could tuck behind my ears! Aack!

There are some hair cuts I just need to get home and style myself. Then there are those that no matter what I do they still will look bad. My only hope is my dear husband has agreed to highlight my hair now. We are half way through the process. I will update you later. In the meantime I am grateful that hair grows - just not fast enough.

Monday, December 10, 2007

ER nights

Sometimes I wonder about my sanity. Often I wonder about my calling. When it comes to my "for pay job" the two go hand in hand. Nights at the ER more often than not can be insane. We are often not staffed with the same amount of nurses or doctors as day shift. We will often see more patients in a concentrated amount of time. And we do it with decidedly less sleep. I have experienced an occasional freak night where we see few people and we sit around talking all night long. Mostly we run.

Two nights ago was no exception. We ran. It felt like we had a full ER, full waiting room and full ambulance bay all night long. We seemed to never catch up. Just when one high adrenaline thing would end, the next would start. You couldn't even think while sitting at the nurses station (that's provided you actually got to sit) because we had surrounded the station with people in beds out in the hallway. These were people that we needed to keep an eye on because they were either out of their mind, suicidal, or crazy drunk. One was covered in his own poop so if you dared to use the computer on that side of the station your eyes watered from the stench. The other computer was over looking the man that would yell obscenities at you and tell you to "get a job." That comment would make my blood boil considering how hard we were working.

12.5 hours, no break, no food, no time to even get a drink of water, 1 tech when we should have 3, 2 full blown - send them to the cath lab - having a heart attack patients, one so-sick-he-may-not-make-it 6 day old, 4 crazy people surrounding us, 4 suicidal patients, 25+ people through the quick care staffed by one nurse (me) in 6 hours, one patient who freaked out so bad he was hitting and spitting at nurses and security (diabetic with low blood sugar), and I wonder about my sanity. We all did... We made it though. Day shift came on and didn't even complain about the mess we made. The looks on our faces said it all.

I came home late, got dressed, went to church, came home, fell asleep. I was knitting last night in front of the TV thinking about the insanity of my life. What would it be like for me if I could just sew and knit all day/night long? Who would I be if I wasn't spending my nights at the ER? I wonder... I might like to find out someday.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Burnin' the Midnight Oil...

Literally. I went to bed with the full intent to sleep all night, but after sleeping all day after a night at the ER I was wide awake. Shoot. What can I do in the middle of the night? Most of my night time activities are limited to quiet things like blogging and uh... reading blogs. I caught up on all my favorite reads and, feeling very uninspired to write, revisited the dining room where I had left my sewing. I have 22 of one item that I cannot mention which I feel fairly brilliant about. 8 are now done leaving 14 cut out and waiting for me. I decided my sewing machine wasn't that loud and dove in to that project. 2 more down. Plus I finished a blanket I was working on for one of the kids' Christmas gifts. Check that one off.

Then I got tired of that, not tired, more like bored, and went back to the computer while I ate a peanut butter and honey sandwich because if I were working this would be about lunch time now (3am). While eating and trying not to drip honey on my keyboard I surfed into some NEW SEWING BLOGS! Eeeh Gad, I thought I had already seen the best ones! I am sew excited now! (Get it, sew - hah, I crack myself right up.) Anyhow I found this really cute and uber easy pattern I made one up right away. For those of you not clicking on the link it's another bag! Woohoo. I had recently got the bag bug out of me and I suddenly feel it coming on strong. This particular bag was a breeze to make a pattern for then to whip up. She gives the patchwork option. I totally would have done that if I were a little more motivated early this morning. Here's a pic of her bag. SOOOO CUTE. Mine is super cute too, but I am so not in the mood to tromp upstairs to download the pic. Call me lazy, whatever.

So, now it is about 8:30am. I am still up. Jacob is off to school. Brian is upstairs working. Reba and I are leaving in a few minutes for a play date at her new school that she doesn't know she is enrolled in yet. I will likely be up all day. All that craftiness this AM might lead to some burnout this afternoon. Oh well. The pitfalls of the night shift. If I didn't love it so much...

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Celebrating the Season

The busy schedule and the crisp air indicate that it is that time of year again. This year is a little different for us since we are in TX. This year we have to not only juggle decorating, children's schedules, and creating gifts for the masses in our families, we also have to TRAVEL to get there. We are only in CA for a week so more master scheduling is in order. Amidst all the chaos we have found moments for the simple pleasures like decorating the tree...

Please note the multiple ornaments on the low branches. I left it this way to remind me that nothing is perfect - much like how our tree looks - but everything is done with love - just how the children decorated.

He was too excited to stand still.

Look at these faces...

We also attended (and performed) in the annual church Christmas Pageant. I had a singing Shepherd and Cow! A mother's pride. This pageant has reminded the kids that Jesus' birthday is coming. They have rarely even mentioned Santa (save for the concern about how he's going to find us in CA - we are leaving a note on our door - coming down the chimney still freaks them out).

My little shepherd is in the last shepherd on his row - singing his little heart out. You'd never know he had a full blown panic attack at the dress rehersal and refused to do the pageant. He was as happy and confident as ever up there.

My cow is the one in the middle facing the wrong direction distracted by what all the children behind her are doing. She's probably also looking for her brother. Who knows, poor thing, she's so my kid...
Many projects are underway here, but I can't show you ANY OF THEM! They are ALL Christmas presents and most of you are on my gift giving list. This year I am particularly brilliant. Plus I will take pictures before I give it all away, so I will have something to post on later.

Merry Christmas!