Friday, November 12, 2010

Quote of the Day:

Last thing my son said to me this morning as he got out of the van to go to school: "Of course, death by ants would be the absolute worst kind of death...." {van door slams, fade to black....}

Thursday, November 11, 2010

My Job!!

I realized when one of my readers asked me what my job was that I haven't actually done a real "update" on my employment situation.

In September, I got my old job back - I am back teaching Childbirth at the hospital where I have worked since 1999. Those who have been reading a long time will remember that I quit this job to take care of my "then" husband who had been diagnosed with a chronic illness - and 2 months later he demanded a divorce and moved out of state to live with his on-line girlfriend, leaving me unemployed with 6 kids to care for alone. I had been keeping in touch with my old workplace ever since and as soon as they had an opening and the hiring freeze was lifted, they hired me back.

Getting my job back has been a HUGE blessing! I only work part time [until my children are all in school, I can't actually *afford* to work full time because my child care costs would vastly exceed any income I can generate working full time], but it has really helped us make ends meet.

It has also been really good for my sanity. For over a year, I was pretty much sitting at home alone [I haven't really met people in my community or made any friends, and my kids & I were always sick that first year after the separation and couldn't go anywhere even when we had invitations]. For all that time, I rarely saw another live adult except my dad once a week or so. My whole life was just caring for my children and trying to get them stabilized. [Which was necessary actually, and I don't regret it].

Now, I am back at work, My parents and sister are babysitting for me, or I wouldn't be able to afford to go back to work at all.

Things are good - it is good for me to see actual grown ups and get to talk to people who are old enough to vote.

And I LOVE my job - working with expectant couples is just the best job. I love it. And I feel like I make a difference doing it - beyond what I do in my own home [where I definitely make a huge difference with my children], I feel like I am affecting the world at large in a positive way.

I am continuing to write as well - I do sincerely hope that once my children are older I can turn that into a full time career - only time will tell on that though.

But either way, childbirth education is something I love and I am SO very grateful to be back at it!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

What Is A Life Worth?

My job requires that I maintain a CPR certification for healthcare workers. I like that - I am happy that I know what to do if someone needs my help.

But I am stunned every 2 years when I have to take the class to re-certify. Because every time, the instructor says something like "If you don't have personal protective gear [ie: gloves and a breathing mask thingy], you will have to decide whether you want to risk yourself and help the person who is injured. Many people choose not to help in that situation."

And she always says this like it is reasonable and "cool" to stand by and watch someone die when you have the power to save their life.

And it always freaks me out a little. [Well, a lot.] And it makes me sad.

Here is the reality: we live in a world where a person might very reasonably go out to a bar and pick up a complete stranger and then have sex with that stranger. They may do this several times a week. "Hooking up" is a socially acceptable pass time in our culture.

This person would have no qualms about exchanging every bodily fluid known to man with this "hot" stranger they picked up at a bar.

And please - don't talk to me about "Safe Sex" - that is a ridiculous thing to say. Condoms are only reliable at preventing pregnancy 61-80% of the time [depending on which study you read] and the HIV virus is much smaller than a sperm cell - so if condoms fail to prevent pregnancy that often, how often do you think they are failing to prevent HIV transmission? And that's when they are even used correctly or used at all - as we all know, in practice many, many people don't bother.

So, we have this socially acceptable and quite common "hooking up" thing going on - even though we know it is extremely risky behavior. Even though we know people DO contract HIV, Hepatitis B, and all manner of other nasty little viruses through this type of contact. On a regular basis.

And hey, you know what? If you want to do that, it is not my business at all. I'll never say one word to you about it. Good luck with that.

But at the same time, we have a situation where it is ALSO culturally acceptable to stand aside and let someone DIE because you don't want to risk "exchanging bodily fluids" with them.

Even though there has NEVER been ONE single documented case of someone contracting a disease from performing CPR to save someone's life. [I asked about this, I wanted to know]. Even though "deep kissing" is considered very low risk for HIV transmission [if a risk at all], and CPR involves MUCH less contact/exchange than "deep kissing".

Does this make anyone else out there want to SCREAM at the lunacy?

It just blows my mind.

But I want you to know World: If *I* am the one who comes upon you during your cardiac arrest or after your car wreck, I will do *everything* I possibly can to save your life. Whether I have gloves or a breathing mask or not.

And if, by some bizarre fluke, I am actually the first person EVER to contract a disease and die from doing CPR, then I will die PROUD that I did the right thing.

You could come to my funeral and throw a flower on my coffin and enjoy the rest of your life knowing I was glad to have saved it.

[But don't go asking me to hook up with you at a bar, cause that ain't gonna happen. ;) ]

God Help Us All.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Quote of the day:

Monkey4 [5yo] walks up to me and says in a very sweet voice "Mama, sometimes BabyMonkey [2yo] kinda makes me want to throw up, cause she eats off the floor."

[it is true, what can I say?! BabyMonkey is the "floor eatin'est" baby I've ever seen....]

Our New Favorite Recipe:

Old-Fashioned Soft Pumpkin Cookies


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Glaze (recipe follows)


PREHEAT oven to 350° F. Grease baking sheets.

COMBINE flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in medium bowl. Beat sugar and butter in large mixer bowl until well blended. Beat in pumpkin, egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto prepared baking sheets.

BAKE for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges are firm. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Drizzle Glaze over cookies.

2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons milk, 1 tablespoon melted butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in small bowl until smooth.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Strawberry Muffins

OK, this started out this morning as me trying to make Alton Brown's blueberry muffins. However, I quickly realized that I didn't have half the stuff I was supposed to use to make his recipe. But... I *really* wanted to make some muffins for breakfast.

So, I sorta "made up" this recipe using stuff I had in the house. Which is kinda scary. BUT, in this case, it worked out GREAT!

My kids and I loved these muffins, they are very tasty and very soft, fluffy muffins. These were a hit with ALL of my kids [I didn't tell the one that "doesn't like strawberries" about them having strawberry, and that kid ate 3 muffins and couldn't stop bragging about how delicious they were].

So, here is my creation:

Strawberry Muffins

- 1 cup sugar

- 1/2 cup canola oil

- 1 egg

- 1 cup yogurt [I used the "Oikos non-fat Greek yogurt" and it was great]

- 1 cup strawberry all fruit [I used "Smuckers Simply Fruit strawberry" - jam or jelly should work fine too I bet] Divide the strawberry all fruit into two 1/2 cup portions

- 2 cups of unbleached self rising flour [you could substitute 2 cups all purpose flour, 2 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt if you want]

Preheat oven to 375.

Mix sugar, oil, egg, yogurt and 1/2 cup of strawberry all fruit. Mix well.

Add flour and mix just until moist. Add remaining 1/2 cup strawberry all fruit and just swirl it in a bit - leaving streaks of strawberry goodness in the batter. Do not over mix.

Place in greased muffin tin [I use "Pam" cause I am lazy, it works fine]. Don't over fill the muffin tin because these rise a lot.

Bake for 20 minutes.

** I plan to try this with other flavors too, like blackberry all fruit. I bet they'll be good with any fruit flavor.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

And The Winner Is:

Most ridiculous sibling conflict of the evening:
"Mama! Monkey2 stole the baby from us! We had her first!".
[Yes, they were talking about their ACTUAL baby sister. And it became a HUGE drama with tears and wailing and tearing of hair - well, I was the one tearing my hair out, but still....]
Next I'll be hearing "Moooooom - He's breathing my air!"

I'm Laughing....

Last night for dinner I made shrimp. I made this especially for my 5yo, who LOVES shrimp and always asks me to make it.

We had enjoyed a pleasant dinner together and the other 5 children had already been excused from the table. Little Miss 5yo was finishing her second huge helping of shrimp and asked me to get her more ["thirds"].

I got up and started putting more shrimp on her plate. She comes over to stand next to me at the stove and says "Thank you Mommy! I LOVE shrimp! Shrimp is my favorite food! Because it is SOOOO Yummy!". I smile and say "Good! I'm glad!".

She gets quiet for a minute, very thoughtful suddenly, and then asks me "Mommy, is shrimp an animal?"

[Now, I must admit that briefly I considered saying "NO, shrimp are really like sea bugs - kind of like the cockroaches of the ocean". Which would have been completely true. But I felt it would be prudent NOT to share that fact at this particular moment... .]

So I replied "Well, yes."

Her eyes got as big as saucers and she said, in a completely horrified voice: "! Is it really?! I'll never eat shrimp again!"

And I just had to laugh. She left her plate [of "thirds"] untouched and ran off to tell her older sister, the 7yo [animal rights activist], that shrimp are really animals and that they could no longer eat shrimp.


However, I must note - she did come back and pick at that plate later anyway - all the "animals" were gone from the plate by bedtime!


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

No, I'm Not Voting Today.

So, my facebook feed is going crazy with all my friends saying "Go Vote! Vote Now! You MUST Go Vote!". I've seen all sorts of things posted to try to instill in me a burning desire to go vote today - including Friends who posted pictures of dead babies. [which, you know what? That SUCKS. Thank you for completely traumatizing me before I even had coffee this morning.]

Well, I love my friends, but I'm not going to vote today. [And I am also laughing, because all my friends are telling me to vote on opposite sides - "Vote today or THEY will". Hell, half of "them" are my friends too! ]

Y'all all go on and vote and just cancel each other out, OK?

Part of this is logistical - I never changed my voter registration when we moved last year [yeah, 16 months ago now....]. But I *could* have changed it. I chose not to.

You know why? Because I'm SICK of the illusion that we "little guys" can do anything to affect politics in this country.

I have been a rabid voter since the day I turned 18. I served in the military, I have voted in every election since I turned 18 [even the little stupid elections that nobody else turns out for]. I have been proud of my freedom to vote. I love my country and I am a Patriot. [In the true sense of the word - not as some co-opted motto for this or that fringe group....]

But somewhere recently I realized how futile voting is and that took the wind out of my sails.

A bunch of incompetent, bought and sold Piles of Crap run this country. Today, you have the great privilege of voting for more incompetent, bought and sold Piles of Crap to run this country. You can have a green one or a red one, but you are still voting for a Pile of Crap with sprinkles on top.

There ARE no good choices.

Now, I don't personally fit neatly into any "category" of voter. I am pro-life [my biggest voting issue - because none of the other rights and privileges make a damn bit of difference if you are dead before you take your first breath]. I am pro-legalized recreational drugs [tax those puppies to hell and back and shut down crime all at once - isn't that a win/win?]. I am pro-small government. I am pro-military [because you only get to vote because our stick is big enough to keep anyone from coming to take that Right away from you]. I am pro leave people the hell alone and let them do what they want to do as long as they aren't hurting anyone else.

So, none of those Piles of Crap with sprinkles on top represent me and my beliefs anyway.

But even when I suffer the delusion that one of those Piles of Crap represents me - I am always sorry I voted for them in the end. Take old George W. Bush. I voted for him because he was Pro-Life and had the balls to say he was actually going to do something about it. I voted for him with great excitement and enthusiasm. Great HOPE, in fact. "Save the Babies" and all of that.

You know what the Pile of Crap did? He didn't change any meaningful abortion laws [not that I've noticed at least - it is still legal and still shockingly common], but he did sneak that Patriot Act in there. He took away the very freedoms I was willing to die to protect, and he did it without even giving us a vote on it. THAT certainly wasn't in his damn platform when I voted for him.

I voted for "not Obama" in 2008. Heck, I can't even remember the guy's name now.

I didn't vote FOR him so much as AGAINST Obama, because I thought then [and I think my point has been proven since then] that Obama was an idiot, idealistic academic without the experience to lead a nation. He was also gruesomely pro-abort.

And Obama has lived up to all of my expectations for him. He sucks. Just like George W. Just like Billy Clinton. [Hey, at least I could probably let my daughter be a White House aid safely under Obama. If nothing else, Michelle Obama looks like she'd kick the life out of him if he tried pulling up some poor little 18 year old kid's skirt. So, there's that, that's progress I reckon].

It IS cool to have a black president though, and things suck as much as usual, so I guess it all came out a wash.

Today you get to vote for the guys who had the MOST money to back them so they made it to the polls. That means they also OWE the most money to those "silent partners" who are bankrolling their campaigns. THAT is who those guys are loyal to - not YOU, dear misguided Voter. You and your silly ideas about Democracy and having a voice in things. Tut tut.

And whatever their platforms are, they are just made up lies anyway. You vote for what you THINK *they* might vote for, and it is all meaningless. You don't control what they do once you put them there. [See "Patriot Act" above].

So, you know, Y'ALL go vote. I'm not voting. Have fun picking your Pile of Crap with sprinkles on top and revel in your false sense that you have ANY good choice at the poll today.

They day a decent human being who can be trusted runs for office, I will vote again.

[I don't expect to ever vote again....]

"It's terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged."~ G.K. Chesterton

[And now I know you all want to smack me; sorry about that. You know I love you anyway. :) And I apologize for cursing like a Marine in this post - but politicians are the only thing I know of that are worth cussin' about these days... :) ].
[And if you have any relatives or loved ones who are running for office today, please know that I mean that ALL politicians are rotten Piles of Crap EXCEPT your loved one - I'm sure they are the exception and are wonderful human beings. ;) ]