Saturday, May 28, 2011


I'm sick. Fever started Friday at work, and ended up at 104.6 on Saturday. Feels terrible. Hope it gets better soon, because I have no health insurance and no sick days... just can't afford to be ill right now. Feel some pain when I breathe deeply, so I'm praying it's a muscle issue and not a lung issue. Boo.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Dance Fever

We had such an awesome weekend... first, we got to spend time with my niece, Leila. Then, we got to out to San Francisco on Saturday and dance like we haven't in ages, to DJs we haven't heard in forever, surrounded by the types of people who we never ever get to see in Modesto. It was so wonderful!

We went because I was looking at website of DJ Dragn'fly, a DJ we heard and absolutely loved last June at the Burning Man Pre-Compression event. I was just checking out her page, because she sometimes offers free mixes and lists events where she'll be spinning-- and I found the Strategik 3 Year Anniversary was going to be happening on May 22nd at 550 Barneveld.

I checked the space out online and read tons of reviews, and they were pretty mixed. It's called Space 550, and it's in the industrial section of Bayview, a kind of sketchy area in south San Francisco. Still, we really wanted to see her, and when we found out that we could get a babysitter we finally decided to go. And I'm so glad we did! It's funny how much it rejuvenates the spirits to be around like-minded folks, and being around Burners does that for me. I loved the whole thing-- the music, the venue, the people, the bartenders, the ambiance, the bathrooms (trust me, that can be very important in its own way), and just the whole kit and kaboodle. Loved it. LOVED it. And can't wait to go again.

Friday, May 20, 2011


Joel has been very sweet with me lately. I mentioned that I needed to get a watch because (a) I don't own one, and (b) I have to take minutes at meetings and don't want to bring out my cell phone to keep time, and guess what he did? Yep, he went out to get me a watch and chose this lovely Skagen women's watch for me. I know he has good taste, but even I was surprised at his choice; it was very classic, yet modern and stylish.


Then, yesterday evening he comes home and he has this crafty look on his face, while holding his hands behind his back. I said, "Please don't tell me you spent more money on me, Joel..." I know, I know-- how ungrateful of me! But it's so hard to accept gifts from him when we are struggling with money issues. It feels very irresponsible, even when I know that he earned "extra" (!) money through an outside contract job this week and the money spent isn't taking money away from paying our regular bills. Still... it's so hard to be gracious about it. I tried, though! Anyway, he whips out my latest gift-- a Kindle! He already downloaded some free books on there, like Sense and Sensibility and Emma, so now I can read wherever I am without lugging around a bunch of books. Can't wait to get started... and buy a cute cover/stand for it, too! I hope he understands that I love him even without the gifts, expensive or not. :)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


My mouth hurts. Over the years, my tendency to develop canker sores every so often has turned into a tendency to get them on the slightest whim, as in when I taste pineapple or drink orange juice or God only knows what else... I haven't had more than a week free from sores for at least two years, possibly longer. The last time I remember not having them for a week at a time was when I was in Burning Man in 2009. Sometimes, like now, I have up to seven or eight at once-- right now I have four on my tongue, two on the inside of my lip/cheek area, one in the inner corner of my lips, and one on the back of my throat. I can hardly speak without pain, and it sounds like I've got dentures or something. Eating and drinking are quite painful, and forget about kissing. I can hardly remember what it's like to kiss, actually; that's probably the worst part of this whole thing. :( I can't wait for health insurance, so that I can find a doctor who can help me resolve this problem and get back to normal. Hell, I'd settle for mostly normal-- anything is better than dealing with this 9.5 days out of 10!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Independence Days

Ethan is really yearning to establish his autonomy and independence lately. He wants to feed himself, using his own silverware, and pour his own drink into his cup. And back out of it, and then repeat until most of it is all over the table or floor. He wants to keep his pajamas on all day and wear them to daycare, and has major issues with us wanting to change his clothes-- unless we can point out that they're dirty and need to be cleaned, at which point he'll lift up his arms and allow us to remove the offending article. He's getting very particular about having things happen in a particular order and style, such as me holding my arms around him at just the right angle, and resting my hands in one special way on his legs when he's sitting in my lap.

This is just the beginning... it means that he's growing up and turning into a boy. He wants to learn how to do everything himself because he needs to, as part of the process of becoming a self-sufficient person. It's sweet, and sad, and a little bit frustrating for both of us, but I just hope he lets me hold him and snuggle for a bit longer... I miss my baby boy already, even though he's just starting to grow up and away from me. *sniff* This motherhood thing is harder than I thought.

Monday, May 16, 2011


Writing a paper about motivation problems at work has really made me see my workplace in a whole new light. I'm starting to realize what a beneficial experience this will be for me. Yes, this job may be temporary in that I don't plan on making a career of being an administrative assistant for $14/hour. But it is teaching me so much about what it's really like to work as a secretary, and what it's like to deal with situations in the for-profit world as opposed to schools or non-profits. I'm going to be able to use a lot of experiences as real-world case studies for school, too, which is going to be so helpful for my MBA program. And, last but not least, I'm learning more about what works and what doesn't in terms of working with a smaller company as opposed to the very large organizations I worked in before this. And that's not even getting into the fact that I'm getting a paycheck that helps support my family at the same time! :) All in all, I'd say I'm feeling pretty motivated right now. And proud of it!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Monday was a rough day for Ethan... he started off with a day at daycare that was apparently pretty chaotic and "exuberant," to say the least, thanks to the antics of four 2-year-old boys. The daycare provider said they always act up when it's windy or stormy, and the weather was pretty crazy that day. Unfortunately, this lead to a major meltdown that started the minute I picked him up and lasted until around 6:30. It was terrible! I'd never seen him throw a tantrum that lasted that long. Usually they're more like a minute or two, and then he either gets distracted or calms down, and it's over. This time it just kept coming in waves of tears, screaming, tossing his arms and legs around, and just generally being defiant, resistant, and refusing to cooperate at all. I kept wondering who had kidnapped and brainwashed my child, it was that out of character for him.

He finally started to calm down when I started washing the dishes, and he said "Help you?" while dragging his stool over to the sink. I slowly transitioned myself out of the space and left him in front of the kitchen sink to play in the water, pouring cups of soapy bubbles back and forth over a large bowl, and it seemed to work as a calming activity. After about fifteen minutes of self-play, he looked up and said "Pizza?"-- his new code word for "I'm hungry and want to eat." We ate some dinner together, took a nice bath, and he finally went to sleep. I felt like passing out too, it was such an exhausting evening with him! The next day, Tuesday, was the exact opposite. He was helpful, obedient, calm, brightly curious, laughing and engaged with me and other people around us (we went to the store), and just generally more like my son than the day before. It was so nice to get that time with him; it made up for our not-so-good Monday. I guess the "terrible twos" are here now, but I hope we can find some ways to mitigate the negative episodes so that we can all survive this sane, happy, and positive. God give me strength! ;)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Ways Ethan Has Changed...

This weekend, we're going to a first birthday party for the son of one of Joel's college buddies. We've been racking our brains for a good, appropriate, useful gift, rather than just another toy, and you'd think we have a seventeen year old instead of a two year old for how much memory work this little exercise has required. We dragged up some old memories of what he used to do back when he was just a year old, a whole year and a half ago, and here's what we came up with...

- Raking, sweeping, and general yard work: This kid loved being outside!
- Garbage can attack man: He was always trying to get the lid open and stuff little items inside, so we had to attach a latch to keep him from throwing away everything in reach
- Speaking of latches, we had to lock down the entire kitchen, TV stand, and bathroom cabinets. We actually just kept the bathroom doors shut, too, to keep him from opening up the toilet lid and doing god knows what in there...
- Hoses were like a gift from god straight to our boy. He loved them.
- Walking, crawling, walking, falling, running, and walking some more.

I'll think of more later... but he's only changed a bit from this, in that he's much more controlled about what he tries to get into and so on. He talks a lot more, he sings and dances, he interacts differently with the world around him, he's friendly and loves playing, he likes to read.... he's growing up!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Last Nerve.

For some reason, everything Ethan did today was testing my last nerve. From the moment he woke up to the minute he laid down for bed (minus my day away at work and his time at daycare, of course) he was pushing the limits and basically doing everything he could to exert his independence. Unfortunately, this also happened to be a day that I didn't have much patience to deal with his shenanigans. Right now, as I'm typing at 8:30 p.m., he is in his room throwing toys around, kicking the wall, and yelling. I'm so annoyed and frustrated!! Not only at his behavior, but at my reaction to it. It's like an instantaneous response to raise my voice when he blatantly disobeys by hitting at me or dumping food/drinks on the ground, and I don't want to be one of those parents who flips out and screams at their kids. I know my own tendency to overreact and get highly emotional about things, and I don't want to take that out on him just because he's being a typical 2-year-old. SERENITY NOW! I need a breather. Maybe I'll skip homework tonight and focus on relaxing instead. Glass of wine, much-needed break in front of the TV, maybe even (gasp!) some light reading of my "fun" book instead of a school book...

Yep, that sounds good. I'm out!