Friday, December 30, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 14

More sleepy sleep. Yaaaaay! Thank goodness. I wore baby girl out at the mall yesterday. Went to Cherry Creek to play on the breakfast food. It creeps me out to see huge sausages lying around on the ground, but I get over it for my girl. (In the link, that is not a photo of my's just a photo I found, as a point of reference to those who do not know of the giant breakfast food.)

Today I am spending the entire day at home with my girl. Well, we might go somewhere, but if we do, we will have to take the bus. Papa took the car to go pawn shopping in Colorado Springs. He and his friend Bam do this every so often--apparently the pawn shops down there have different stuff than up here in Denver.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Time Passes<<<<<<<<<<<<<

We didn't go anywhere. I'm still waiting for papa go come home with the car, so I can go to Costco. Gotta get snacks for tomorrow night. We do not go out for the new year festivities. We do not even capitalize the new year festivities. We stay home and play games. With Steve.

Anyway, I'm sittin' here, feeling weird, because I just located a couple of friends from college, with whom I haven't spoken in a long time. Well, one of them a long time, and the other a loooooong, long time. And it's got me all nostalgic and weird, because I knew them in college, and that was a very weird and exciting time for me. I've changed a lot since then, hopefully for the better. Some things for the worse, I guess.

I guess that weird feeling is called "regret," which is really a wasted emotion, if you think about it. There is absolutely nothing I can do about the past; I can't fix it, change it, or otherwise modify it. It is what it is. I can just hope that these folks will correspond with me, at least just to say "hey." The other probably will, but one of them?

I'm not so sure.

Day 14 grade: A- (for the weirdness)

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 13

Lots of sleep. Sleep, sleep, sleepy sleep. Love it. Got a lot of it last night, which was warranted. Little Monkey slept through the night. Hoo-ray. She need to repeat this habit, nightly. No more of this 3am business!

I'm all paranoid, now.

So, today I had some "me" time. I went to see Harry Potter. Yay! It's awesome. If you've read the books, I bet you will enjoy it. They had to leave out a LOT of details, of course, but I don't think they detracted from the story. Fabulous time.

I'm now off to the library to pick up a DVD that I'm borrowing: WalMart: The High Cost of Low Prices. Ought to be interesting. It's only 3:38pm right now, but today is shaping up nicely.

Two movies in two days. It's been a good vacation. Oh, and I got a soap order last night, too. Made some money, saw a movie. Yep. Good day.

.............Time Passes..............

Stayed at home the rest of the day. The little dog dug a hole under the fence and ran away. Had to go get him in the car. Watched that WalMart movie. It's fabulous. I recommend it to everyone who even slightly thinks that they don't like WalMart, but they can't put their finger on why. The movie will tell you why.

Day 13 Grade: A

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 12

Today's blog starts in bed. At 3am. Approximately. Yes, once again, cutie woke up. This time, however, she climbed into bed with us and fell asleep. I, however, did not fall asleep immediately, because she was sleeping on the edge of the bed, on Papa's side.

This was disconcerting for me, and any mom out there will understand why: even though she was with her Papa, there was always the danger that he would fall asleep, lose his grip, and she would fall out of bed. And our bed is higher-up.

Papa finally put her in the middle of the bed, between us, and right at that moment, I fell back asleep, knowing she wasn't going to fall.

We all woke up around 8am after that, and our day was a plain day, until 2:30. Before 2:30, I read the paper, played with Cutie, shopped for groceries. Then Papa joined me, and we went to the bank, washed the car, and went to the post office.

And then we went to the movies.

Okay, I wanted to see Harry Potter. I've read all the books and seen all the movies, and love it all. The Man was going along begrudgingly. He wanted to see a movie, but thinks the Harry Potter series is for kids. Anyway, when we got to the theater, it turns out that the online movie times that I checked were inaccurate. There was no showing of Harry Potter at 2:30. Luckily, there was another movie showing at 2:30:

King Kong.

Oh, how I love that Peter Jackson. I didn't know just how much I would love this movie. I have not seen any version of King Kong, not the original and not the one from the '70s. My man has seen both several times, so he knew what to expect. I knew a bit of the story, so I knew a bit of what to expect. I will not spoil anything for you, but I'll tell you this:

I'm aerobically worn out after seeing it.

Day 12 grade: A+

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 11

Well, finally, cutie slept through the night, so today was a better day all around. We just stayed home and did little projects. I moved the microwave oven to a different spot. Did some dishes. Helped cutie with her train set.


That's about it. Huh.

Day 11 grade: A

Sleepytime update

I kept the monkey up until 10:30pm, to ensure her fatigue. I was also thinking that, if her sleep is no longer at the 11-hour stretch it used to be, then when she wakes it will still be at a (relatively) reasonable hour.

She came and got me out of bed at 8am. This means she probably woke up around 7:45am. Which means she slept for 9 and 1/4 hours.

Which means we need to remember this, when putting her to bed, so she doesn't wake up at 3am.

Any. More.

Monday, December 26, 2005

I finally understand.

My parents made a relatively big deal of Christmas. They always gave us gifts that they knew we would like, and I remember them sitting on the couch, drinking whatever they drank in the mornings, watching us play. Dad would sometimes play with us, if the toy required assembly, etc. They would sit and watch us, at some ungodly hour of the morning, as we played with our new toys.

As a kid, I always thought that adults got the shaft. They would just sit around, watching us, and they didn't get anything from Santa. I didn't understand how they could be so happy.

Today, I do.

Today, I assembled a train set for my daughter. It was not difficult, as it was manufactured by Fisher-Price. It has tracks that include a hill, a windmill and a factory, and two engines and 4 cars. Okay, here's the cool thing: the main, larger engine is battery-powered, and there is a remote switch that controls it. After about 10 minutes, my daughter is now making the train start and stop around the track. Every time she makes it stop, she says, "huh?" even though she is the one who made it stop, and she knows it.

Oh, and now she has just figured out the manual switch on the tracks, to make the train go up the hill, instead of under it. Smart girl.

And just a minute ago, I was standing there with her Papa, smiling down at her as she played with her new toy, and I was completely overjoyed.

I think parents give gifts at Christmas so that they can see pure, unadulterated joy in their children's eyes.

Vacation Log: Day 10

Aaaaaaaand she woke up around 3:30am, again. Aaaaand the dog was barking outside at that hour. I asked TM to bring the dog in before someone called the cops. So he did, and she cried in her condo for about 20 minutes. So, he put her back outside and she was happy. I cannot win. Right after the dog was put back out is when LM climbed into bed with us. We spent some time quietly with her in our bed, but she did not fall asleep. I do remember asking her if she had a diaper, and she said, "Yes!" So Papa changed it and put her back in her bed, but she came back to our room about 1/2 hour later. We tried to get her to sleep. Didn't work. Put her back in her bed. Didn't work. So I got up with her, and I got dressed. I was going shopping early today, anyway.

So I took the cutie with me. There we were, outside the doors of Target at 6:55am, and she was jumping up and down, having fun. We shopped at Target and at Linens 'N' Things, and after that I thought she would be hungry, so we went to a diner for some breakfast. She was NOT hungry, and pretty much tormented me the whole time I was eating.

Got home. I tried to put her to bed, because she was obviously tired, but she would have none of it. So I got Papa to watch her so I could finish my shopping. He did, and I did. When I came back, I got LM something to eat. She was very tired, but adamantly refused to go to bed. I desperately wanted her to go to bed, so that I could nap, which is something I never do. I could hardly see straight. Nonetheless, I read the paper, read a magazine, read books to LM, and waited.

At about 1pm, I heard her calling me from her room. I looked in there, and she was on her changing table. This is a pretty clear indicator that she needs a diaper change. So I did--and while I did, she STARTED FALLING ASLEEP. Right there. Her eyes would droop, and fly back open, droop, back open. So I picked her up and put her in bed. Of course, she started throwing a fit again, but this time she didn't have the energy to fight longer than 10 seconds. She was out.

And so was I. I took a solid 1 and 1/2 hour nap today. It was awesome. I still feel a little groggy, but at least I can get through the day in some productive fashion.

To wit: I assembled LM's train set! It is cool! It has a wireless switch that makes the train go and stop, and it has a feature where, when the train drives past the windmill or the factory, the gears work the mill/factory so that things spin, whir, move, etc. and you have to flip the switch for the train to move on. It's really cool.

So now we are just hanging out at home. We're keeping her up until 10pm tonight, so if she gets up after 8 hours, it will still be a somewhat reasonable time to rise. At least for me it will be reasonable. We've got to get her on her regular schedule. No more of this 3am nonsense! Except, everytime it happens, she has a diaper. So it's not like she just wakes up--I think she wakes because she is uncomfortable, and then simply decides to stay up.

Grade for day 10: B- (because of the horrible "no sleep at all" feelings)

Vacation Log: Day 9

Today was Christmas day.

I let The Man sleep in. I got up at the same time as Little Monkey, and we just hung out. She played with her toys (still very excited about her trains), and I read the entire Sunday paper. This is a treat for me--usually I don't have the time for it. I made us some breakfast/lunch (we got up late), and after the paper was finished, I got dressed, got cutie dressed, and we went to the park.

Yes, the park. On December 25. It was well over 60 degrees outside. Lovely, lovely day. For the first 1/2 hour, we had the park to ourselves. Most folks were spending time with family, I guessed. It was a great time--we spent about an hour there, basking in the sun, sliding on the slide, and LM spent a lot of time on the swing. Some days she loves it, some days she hates it. Like most of us.

We went home and had some dinner. It was around 4pm, and I suggested that we try again with the Christmas lights; we knew LM would want to see them. So we got in the car much earlier than yesterday, and went straight for the retirement community where they do up the lights.

Well, LM fell asleep AGAIN. This time, we were undaunted. We woke her up when we got there. She woke right up, and was happy to walk around with us. And walk around, we did. She was enthralled by the displays, and walked right up to some of them and sat on the ground, mesmerized. It was very cute. I think we went there more for us than for her; it was so much fun for us to see her so happy, because of pretty lights.

We got home, and we ate again. I made sure LM had a full tummy, so that she would sleep well. She had her bath, and I put her to bed, and she fell asleep quickly.

And so did I.

Grade for Day 9: A

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 8

I wish I could say that today was uneventful, and hardly worth writing about. That's how it started out. I spent almost the entire day in my jammies. I played with Little Monkey and her new toys. I fed her. We hung out. The Man slept in, and after he had eaten, he took care of LM so that I could soak in the tub, which I did. After that, I read my book in bed. In my jammies. I got up in the late afternoon to prepare some dinner.

After dinner, we drove around town to look at the lights. We wanted to get over to Windsor Gardens, a retirement community, where the holiday light displays are always spectacular. By the time we got there, LM was sound asleep in her carseat.

So, we got home, and put her to bed.

I started feeling depressed, because I miss my mom and dad, and I suppose I was feeling this way because it's Christmas. So I was crying when I went to bed.

I got about 3 hours of sleep and then I woke up because TM was helping LM with a diaper. She was awake. Of course. She fell asleep at 7pm. So now she's awake, and won't fall back asleep. I stayed up, reading my book, to make sure she didn't get out of bed and start wandering the house. After two hours of this, when TM came upstairs to go to bed, the Big Dog started whining. When she does this in the middle of the night, I have unfortunately learned from experience, it means she has diarrhea. So, I was letting the dogs out to pee, one of them on a leash because he digs holes under the fence and runs away, when Big Dog rushed up to me to pet her.

And she smelled like, you guessed it, Dog Diarrhea.

I couldn't handle this new development. Her entire butt was covered in diarrhea, and the stench almost made me vomit. She is my dog, however, so I got an old towel, wet it with hot water, and went outside to wash the dog's ass. It was much more extensive than I originally thought, so I put the towel down outside and left the dog outside, too. It's not that cold, and she's shaggy. One night shouldn't hurt her. And when I think about that stench filling up my house, I don't feel bad about it. I'll deal with her tomorrow. Or, uh, later today.

After coming in from my 3am dog grooming exercises, LM was still going strong. So I decided to fight fire with fire, and started making

Mac and Cheese.

Oh, yes. Not even my little cutie can resist the soporific effects of a full stomach. So she danced around the kitchen while I made her a meal (don't know what to call it, it was 3am), and she happily ate a whole plate of it. I wiped off her face and hands, got her into bed with some juice, and read her a story, just like our regular routine. (Well, usually she takes a bath before bedtime, but it still felt like it.) When I read her story, I used my best "fall asleep" voice.

It's now 3:58am. I'll check on her in a few minutes to see if my ruse was effective. In the meantime, Al Franken awaits.

Grade for Day 8: B-

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 7

What a great day!

I still had cleaning to do, but got up relatively early to do some of it. Cleaned the bathroom thoroughly, cleaned the hardwood floors, cleaned off a ledge that collects weird, unassociated items. The Man went for groceries that he didn't get yesterday, and I started cooking.

We made shrimp with linguine in cream sauce, a prime rib roast, salad, glazed carrots, roasted vegetables (eggplant, peppers, oninos, and jalapeƱos), (purchased) rolls, and had chocolate cake, pumpkin pie, and apple pie choices for dessert. I made the cake--the other pies were brought by our guests.

And you should have seen the children. My Little Monkey was never so happy with a toy! She received both a Thomas and a Percy train, where you push down on the driver, and they they shoot across the room. Excellent. She just walked around all night, with those trains in her hands, and as I knew she would, she took them to bed with her. She enjoyed other toys she received, too, but none as much as the trains.

Getting her to go to sleep was another matter entirely. She was overtired and worked up at the same time. She had her trains there with her, but just kept crying and crying, because I said it was time for bed. It took her almost an hour to calm down--I had to call in Papa as a reinforcement. She then woke up at 3am with a huge pee diaper, which I changed, but she kept calling me back in for various reasons--she didn't fall back asleep until 4:30am. I employed the previous tactic of Papa, and it worked again. Of course, I'd given her some warm milk by that point.

As a result, I am very sleepy still, but I had to get up because my aunt is stopping by this morning to drop off a gift for Little Monkey. I'm going to be in my jammies, because I can. And, because I received new jammies as a gift from The Man. So I'm wearing 'em, all day today.

Day 7 grade: A

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 6

What a party we had last night! Champagne...dirty dancing on the tables....strip


Okay, that didn't happen. But the party was very fun for a couple of parents who never get out. The food was great, and we did have some wine, and The Man had a bit of beer, too. Games were played and a movie was watched, and the worst thing that happened was the kitty swiped Little Monkey's arm as she was walking by. A few tears, but she was otherwise okay.

It was really fun. And a really late night. LM went straight to bed when we got home, although she still insisted on a story. I went to bed right after that, and woke up tired at 8am.

Today was slow-moving, yet still full, while I did laundry, stripped the beds and put on new sheets, cleaned the heinous, threatening-to-take-over-the-whole-kitchen pile of CRAP that's been there the entire year. I am not even exaggerating. I found my Valentine's day card in the pile. It was time to clean it. Shit, we've had a busy year, if I can't find time to clean The Pile until the winter holidays. Damn.

I suppose selling soap and writing a book and teaching at the university and teaching full time will do that to a person.

In any case, I'm very tired, and I'm considering taking a bath. I should get to bed early, so I can get up early for tomorrow. We have The Man's family coming over tomorrow, for Christmas festivities. They'll be here at 3pm. Still a lot to do.

Day 6 grade: B-

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 5

This day is shaping up to be much better than yesterday. After a mostly sleepless night, however, it didn't feel very productive. I still got the cards sent out, and wrapped packages and mailed them, and bought a couple more gifts, and called back my friend Sherri.

I also went to the grocery store, got some stuff that was on sale, went out to the car, got a call from The Man, who told me we were out of juice, so I had to go back in and do it all again. Which I did.

Then I gassed up the car.

And now I'm sitting here while LM eats her dinner, before we go up to Boulder for a cocktail party. Yay!

I'll be too tired to post later, so I'll grade today right now: A-

Vacation Log: Day 4--nighttime.

Last night was a "doozy." (Whatever that word actually means.) LM got up at 4am, yelling for "Maaaaaaa maaaaaaa!" Papa went in instead and changed her diaper. He gave her a little something to drink, and then put her back to bed. Then he came back to bed.

***5 minutes later***

Patpatpatpatpatpatpat. We both heard her. "Little Monkey?"

Right next to our faces: "Hello. How are you?" And she climed up into bed with us. That would have been fine, and we made a valiant effort to both ignore and snuggle her, but she was having none of it, and stayed awake. (As an aside: The softest, gentlest, most loving touch I have ever felt is my daughter caressing my face at 4am.) We tried it for a little while, but then I put her back to bed, with some warm milk. This worked for a longer while, and then more shouting: "Maaaaaa maaaaa!"

I guess Papa had had enough, because he got up and went to her room. And then I heard the funniest nighttime conversation, ever:

Papa: *stern* Do you have a diaper?
LM: No!
Papa: *stern* Then it's time for na-nights.

And that was it! Granted, it was probably close to 6am by this time, but at least she stayed in bed and fell asleep.

On to today's activities, which include:

  • delivering a soap order
  • mailing more cards
  • wrapping, packing, and mailing gifts
  • shopping for gifts
  • cleaning the house
  • going to a party!
Yay! I'll recap the day for you later.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 4

Today was supposed to be better.

Today was supposed to be fun.

Instead, I made an insensitive comment.

And now, all I can do is try to be kind, and hope everything turns out okay.

Day 4 grade: F-

Vacation Log: Day 3

'Twas Monday, and the slithy toebs
did gire and gimble in the wabe...

....wait a minute.

'Twas Monday, and I got up early. (That's better.) I had to go to Auraria Campus to finish my grades, and return all the finals in a box. 80% of the students won't pick up their hard copy of their final, and I'll have to throw them away at the end of the semester, when I drop off the new finals. Whatever.

I got to Auraria to an almost-empty parking lot, as classes were out. I wheeled my Geek Box into the building and got up to the office. Triple-checked my grades, one last time. Entered them in pen, then pencil, and signed in pen. Done and done.

After that, I drove to the bank to deposit some money. I thought that 11th street would take me across town. I was wrong. HOWEVER! Did you know that some of the most GORGEOUS homes in Denver are in the block surrounding 11th and Humboldt! Seriously. Absolutely incredible. I could almost see the original owners wandering around in their Victorian attire, bemoaning the fact that Denver was developing up all around them.

Finally got to the bank. Then went to a different bank after that. (Don't ask.) Then went home. And in 30 minutes, I:

1. Made Little Monkey her lunch.
2. Pulled, packed and addressed a package of soap for an order.
3. Went looking for our vagabond dog.

After which I took off for Lunch With Becky. I hadn't seen Becky in literally months, because she is doing her Master's degree in social work, and has no time to even think. Her classes are out for the semester now, though, and we met for lunch, which was lovely. She's engaged! It was a lovely lunch.

This was all before noon. Rather busy for a "vacation" day. So, when I got home I sat in the living room, reading the paper, while LM climbed all over me. We read books and played with toys and I read the paper when I could. I lounged around pretty much all day, except for when I did some cleaning in the kitchen.

I guess I thought I was being rather lazy, because I decided to go to Bikram yoga class that evening. Thank god it was only a 1 hour class. I almost died. It was good to sweat, though.

Took a shower. Got LM into bed. Did some online marketing. (Gotta sell that ebook:

Finally got to bed around 10pm. Slept very snuggly after all that Bikram.

Grade for Day 3: A-

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 2

Yummy. I got about 9 hours of sleep last night. I was awakened by doggy whining. They are so pent-up--literally, because it's so cold outside. Poor doggies. Quiet, doggies. Quiet! Oh, all right, I'll get up.

I got online and began checking my email, sorting old email, etc. Did some Yahoo IM-ing with a friend. Wondered if he wanted to go out with us for pancakes. The Man and Little Monkey were still sleeping at this point, but pancakes on Sunday morning is a pretty good bet. While I was still talking to my friend, LM woke up. And so did The Man. So I made the appointment for pancakes at 10:30.

Our pancake place is very popular, so we had to wait for a little while--about 15 minutes, I'd say. Not too bad. LM polished off all of her eggs, and most of her bacon, and hardly any pancakes. This is strange for her, to ignore pancakes. I did not ignore mine.

After breakfast/brunch, I took The Man home, and I took LM with me to Costco. I wanted to get a couple more gifts for The Man, which I did. I also got 3 books for LM, for when she is older: Wizardology, Dragonology, and Egyptology. They are so cool! I've started building up her library, for when she discovers the wonders of reading. She's getting there--she likes to read the books to us after we've read them to her. She usually gets one or two words correct per page. She's going through the motions.

I just shuffled The Man off to Bikram yoga. He's never been to it, but I predict he will like it, because it's very macho. I'm betting he will love it, and then I will be in the poorhouse.

So I'm just sitting here, blogging, while LM eats popcorn. I plan on taking a soaking bath later, during which I will read the book I checked out from the library. It's been another great vacation day, full of nothingness.

Grade for Vacation Day 2: A

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Vacation Log: Day 1

*inhale* fffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

*exhale* haaaaaaaaaaaah.


Finally, I am on vacation. This first semester almost killed me this year. I am somehow grateful for being a teacher right now--not everyone gets the vacation we do.

Of course, not everyone fears death after working for 17 weeks.

Aaaaaaaaanyhooo, it's vacation. Here's my daily log:

7am: Wake up. I went to bed at 9:30pm, so this represents the BEST SLEEP EVER. It was awesome.

7:30am: Little Monkey wakes up. We eat a cinnamon roll for breakfast.

8am: I go downstairs with LM. She watches Thomas the Train and then Elmo, and I write and address all of our holiday cards.

10am: I wake up The Man to watch LM, and then I take off.

10:30-1:30: Amy's Time. I went to the post office, for starters. Some woman in front of me didn't know how to use the self-serve kiosk, and got pissy. I think my cheerful mood pissed her off even more. I was delighted by the stamps that I purchased from the kiosk--they were all Santa ornaments. Yay!

After the post office, I treated myself to a trip to the library. I owed them money (fines! fines! I am a terrible human being), and paid it off. I picked up a DVD that The Man had on hold, and then I perused the (gasp!) fiction section. I checked out two novels from Dan Patterson. That should hold me for the duration.

Next, I went to Cherry Creek mall. This could have been a mistake, but I was coming off a good night's sleep, and I was by myself, so there was no worry. It was crowded and a bit ridiculous, but I did alright. I bought an external hard drive for The Man's computer, and after that, upgraded our cell phones. Check it out here.
1:30-9:30 Made myself some lunch, talked to my mother, read the paper and some magazines, etc. Around 7:30pm we had popcorn and hot cocoa for dinner. Then it was bathtime for Little Monkey. Then bedtime for Little Monkey.

And then bedtime for Mama.

Day 1 grade: A-

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Interpret my dream

Some dreams are difficult to figure out. They are filled with best friends who really arent, houses you live in which you really don't, and strange situations involving dragons and pop tarts.

This morning's dream, however, is a little easier to figure:

I dreamed that my colleagues and I were in staff development. The assistant principal kicked me in the stomach, in front of everyone. She then proceeded to get angry with ME when I protested.


Saturday, December 03, 2005


I just joined a new Yahoo group. I'm a member of, oh, about 53 groups, but I only post regularly on a few of them. Obviously. Otherwise, I wouldn't have time to eat and sleep.

This new group came about because another, larger group exploded. Lots of dysfunctional shit going on there. Anyway, the new group is going strong, has about 70o messages in its first day, and is full of great people.

If you are a writer and a mother, and want to join this wonderful group, you won't regret it.