Monday, August 25, 2008

First Day of School




"It's my first day at school, and I'm a little scared, there's a lot to do, but I'm prepared, to brush my teeth and comb my hair, get in my seat, mom takes me there. Gonna wave bye bye, go through the door, learn a little somethin' that I never knew before..." The Imagination Movers, First Day of School

As I dropped both kids off at school today, this song by the Imagination Movers popped in my head. Here I was, dropping my two babies off at school for the first time. Both of them.

Jack was so proud to have his sister there. He took her to his classroom and showed her all around. Then, he introduced her to his teachers and they both shook hands with her. Next, Jack took Eva to her classroom (his old one) and he signed her in. It was too adorable for words.

How did I do? Well, after I literally hid in the bushes for a few minutes watching Jack in the classroom, I went on my way downtown to work...alone.

Sniff, sniff, sob, sob.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I Like to Call Them "Quirks"

My friend, Laura, at Catholic Teacher Musings, tagged me today to discuss "Unspectacular Things" or quirks as a meme. Usually, I'm not so into meme's because I feel like I talk about myself enough on this blog BUT, this one is about quirks and on this subject, I have plenty to say.

The job is to talk about only six of them so I'll have to limit myself.

Here you go:

1) I don't eat mushrooms because I saw a Mr. Rogers episode where he went to a mushroom cave. All the mushrooms were growing directly out of manure and that freaked me out at 6. I have never gotten over it. I'm sure they taste fine. To me, they taste like doo doo.

2) I have a very OCD quality about making sure that things are spaced appropriately. This will apply to my wall hangings, things on my desk, etc. I am a human measuring tape.

3) I have a melt down when I'm sitting at a table and everyone places their silverware in the wrong place. The fork goes on the left. The spoon and knife go on the right. What is wrong with you people??!! While on the subject of forks, I can't handle it when I'm given a fork at a restaurant that has the tongs bent out of place. I have to adjust it until they are correct.

4) I can split my tongue in half. My mother used to say, "white man speak with forked tongue".

5) I sleepwalk and talk in my sleep. I used to do it alot more before I got married but Jon tells some pretty funny stories about my sleep antics. I did used to scare some roomates, though!

6) I can't put eyedrops in my eyes. Totally freaks me out. I mean, FREAKS me out. Bad. Ooooh, get the heebee jeebees just thinking about. Man, have to stop talking...

Since you then have to tag six people, I'll tag Jana, Amy, Nancy, Vicki, Daddy, and Cher. Here are the rules:

1. Link the person who tagged you.
2. Mention the rules on your blog.
3. Tell about 6 unspectacular quirks of yours.
4. Tag 6 following bloggers by linking them.
5. Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger’s blogs letting them know they’ve been tagged.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Confession Tuesday

Greetings phor another round oph the confessional!
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On my status on my phacebook, I wrote the other day that I am suphering phrom OSD (Olympic Sleep Deprivation). That's really true. I can't turn it oph! My phriend, Theron, wrote that it was as iph someone had been able to "televise crack". That's the truth. I'm all Olympics, all the time.
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Phor that matter, I'm going to break my usual rule oph hating when people change the letters oph things and let me just say, I'm a Phelps Phan!
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Ok, I'll stop. But let me just say, that when I recently stated that all life events can relate to the musical Hairspray, the song, "Good Morning, Baltimore" never had more meaning!
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AWESOME OLYMPIC MOMENT! Back in April, I wrote about our time at Jazzfest and how Cheryl, Hannah and I went to Fest by ourselves and assumed our alter twenty-something (well, at least early 30-something) egos, Shug, Coco and Doz. Anyway, the reason we did that is because we had met these cute boys who I immediately identified as swimmers. We hung out with the cute boys and just danced and partied all day. The next day, we ran into them again, with our husbands, they were like, SHUG! COCO! DOZ! Jon just shook his head, as usual. Anyway, Hannah/Coco called me on Friday night to tell me that one our cute boys won the gold medal in the 50m Freestyle! Way to go Caesar!
******
As I said in yesterday's post, Jon and I celebrated our seven-year anniversary last night. For our anniversary gift, we had given each other a great vacation to Napa Valley in July.

Over the weekend, all Doziers gathered for my brother Nathaniel's (we call him Nippy) wedding. On Saturday night, my parents took my kids so Jon and I could have some alone time. So, last night, when it came time to do the actual celebrating (going out to dinner, etc), Jon and I just were spent from the weekend. So, we cooked a delicious dinner at home with our kids. It was really nice to do that, I must say.
******
To make the day better, we have had rain for the past 48 hours (a very unusual occurrence in Dallas in August). Anyway, just after Jon and I finished our dinner and most a bottle of wine we bought in Napa, Jack came and asked if he could go play in the rain. I said yes. So, Jack, and then of course Eva, stripped down to their naked selves and ran out the door. Jon and I went chasing after them (fully clothed, mind you) and the four of us splashed around in the puddles laughing away until we could not do it anymore.

It was the best possible way we could have celebrated our big day.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Seven Years Ago, Tonight

Tonight, we had a rare occurrence in Dallas. It was driving rain in the summer without thunder and lightning.

I was immediately thrown back to another rainy night that took place seven years ago, tonight.

Jon and I got married.

Seven years ago, tonight, I arrived at my wedding wearing shorts and teva's because there were so many puddles that I did not want to get my dress and shoes wet.

Seven years ago, tonight, we had to delay our wedding because all the streets were flooded and none of our guests, including our officiant, could get there.

Seven years ago, tonight, Jon and I stood in a hallway instead of a beautiful rose garden and said our vows in front of all our friends and family who could finally arrive.

Seven years ago, tonight, our friend threw down a phone book for Jon to stand on to kiss me because he was shorter than I.

Seven years ago, tonight, our 95-year old officiant forgot our last name and pronounced us as Mr. and Mrs. Kristi.

Seven years ago, tonight, our wedding cake went crashing to the ground as it was being presented to our friends and family.

Seven years ago, tonight, my brother almost dropped me while I was sitting in my chair during the hora.

Seven years ago, tonight, Jon and I had the best wedding we could possibly imagine.

I would have not changed one minute of that day nor one minute of our seven years together.

Happy Anniversary, my love.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Confession Tuesday

It's a confessional of Olympic proportions!
******
I've been saving that for a while. If you have not guessed, I LOVE the Olympics. I've so enjoyed watching them this past couple of days. I have so many hours recorded, it has almost filled my DVR. Since I'm not sleeping, anyway, I love the fact that the games are on all night long! Love it!
*****
What do I love most about the summer games? Water polo. Now, that's a sport! I first fell in love with water polo when I lived in Atlanta in the 90's. Atlanta was gearing up for the big games and they were able to host the world cup water polo finals in '95. A friend said, hey, let's go, it's, like, $3 and we get to see the new natatorium that they have built. I figured that I would never be able be able to see the Olympics, so this was the next best thing. I was hooked. I watched the entire series over several days. Just kept going back and back. LOVE that water polo!
*****
When the Olympics finally arrived, I WAS able to see MANY games including the medal round for water polo. It was amazing.
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What sport do I dislike? Beach volleyball. Now, let me just say that I am a volleyball player. I even play beach volleyball. But, honestly, is this really an Olympic sport? They are taking away baseball and keeping beach volleyball?'
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Ok, I admit it, every time the US wins a gold medal and they play the National anthem, I tear up. I have to hide it from Jon because I'm sure he'll make fun of me. No need to risk humiliation.
*****
Michael Phelps. Rock on with your bad self.
*****
I've been in a bit of a dry spell with my writing recently. Dry spell on the blog, dry spell in writing to my friends, dry spell at work. Guess it would help to sleep from time to time to get the creative juices flowing. I guess. Maybe soon, all will be well.
*****
Ok, one final thing, Jack LOVED seeing his sister on the blog. He thought that was the greatest thing. Of course, he BEGGED me to let him dance.

Jack is obsessed right now with robots. We have robot light fixtures, robot sheets, robot pictures in his room, robot toys. Robots everywhere. So, when Jack busted this move out the other day COMPLETELY on his own(!!!) and I nearly cried laughing. Of course, I told him that he needed to do it to appropriate music.

Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto!


video

Monday, August 11, 2008

Eva's First Day of School

Today, was Eva's first day of school, EVER.

She's going to be going to the Mother's Day Out program at Jack's school a couple of days per week for the morning hours. I had wanted Eva to have a bit more socialization other than her brother, who can be a bit rough on her. For example, I wanted Eva to learn that when you want a toy, you don't walk up to someone, rip it out of their hands and clock them in the head. You know, things like that.

This morning, I told Eva that we would be going to school (to Jack's old class, Ms. Carmen). Wearing her new dress, she ran over to get her new Dora bag (both courtesy of her Grandma Phyllis) and proceeded to follow me around the house rolling her bag until I was ready to go.



I thought that when I dropped her off this morning, I would be in the parking lot sobbing my head off. I mean, it's my baby girl and EVA no less going off into the world at 22 months. But, I seemed to do just fine. Jack had to go to camp so he went with me to show Eva around her new classroom.


Almost all kids in Texas go back to school on the 25th, and that will include Jack.

I'm sure on that day when I drop both of my children off at school for the first time, I'll be hiding behind a tree in the parking lot, peering into their classroom windows and sobbing my little head off.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Quiere Bailar?

Last night, we attended the wedding of the brother of our former nanny, Maria.
One of the many cool things about having a nanny is that these people really do become a part of your family and you theirs. Maria left us because her husband started a restaurant and needed her there. It was the saddest day. We are fortunate, however, to have found Delfina about a year ago.

A couple of weeks ago, we were having dinner at Maria's restaurant and she asked if we would attend her brother's wedding. We were VERY excited and honored to be asked.

So, last night, we all set off to The Crystal Ballroom in a part of town we never go, for a night of amazing food and mariachi bands! We had a ball!

First, my kids were in their element. I may have mentioned this before but Jack is EXCEPTIONALLY bilingual. Eva only says about 20 words but 18 of them are in spanish. So, to watch Jack just turn it on and to watch Eva, was so much fun.

The food was incredible and the music was just terrific. Best of all, the bride and groom looked SO happy.

Here are a couple of shots.

Jack and Maria

Jack took this picture of the three of us.

Jack watches the dancing!

Eva and Delfina

Jaime and Nancy

China-Pa-Looza

Ok, let me just start by saying that I have written about 5 posts this week that I have just deleted. Just did not get in the writing groove. All of the posts were related to my love of the Olympics and how terribly excited I am for the games to begin!

Friday morning, I could not contain my excitement one more minute. I told Jon that we were going to have China-Pa-Looza! I would order chinese food, put the kids in their chinese outfits that we have, we'd all sit on the floor and watch the opening ceremonies. I had this dream that we would have the globe in the center and as the parade of athletes went along, we'd all learn geography.

Well, as you can imagine, things did not go according to plan. It started off well enough! But, of course, Jack kept walking on our "table" and HATED the chinese food (what? no chicken nuggets???), Eva wanted to dance the whole time and would throw her food at the beat of the music, and Jack had NO interest in learning ANYTHING about any of the countries.

The highlight did have to be Eva beating her chair almost at the same time as those amazing drummers!

But, overall, how AMAZING was that opening ceremony???

Alas, I think we'll go back to the China-Pa-Looza that we are comfortable with, Hong Kong Phooey.



Jack on his "chair"

Eva and the drummers


Our "table"

Dance Party!

video

As I have often written about, we like to do dance party at our house most nights after dinner. Well, tonight's dance party was a very improptu dance-off between Jack and Eva in the middle of dinner. Jon suddenly broke into the song Car Wash and the kids just thought that was hilarious. I found the song on You Tube and well...

Jack was running around the house when I shot this but thought you all would enjoy seeing Eva shake her thang!

And don't ask why Eva is only wearing a diaper, Jack and she snuck off for about 30 seconds while I was cooking dinner and ran through the house doing "naked racing". I finally got them to agree to put on underwear and a diaper for dinner.

Oh, and sorry for my brief singing. I realized the sound was on so I stopped for you!

Monday, August 04, 2008

I Fought the Law and I Won!

Last December, I was heading into downtown for a meeting. I remember sitting at a stop light and seeing this LONG line of cars all pulled over by police.

As I turned left, I was thinking, oh man, another "sticker compliance" sting by the Dallas police. As all my stickers were up to date, I tried to veer around the LONG line of cars.

Officer Friendly signaled for me to get in the LONG line of cars and wait my turn. Ok, I was not speeding, I have insurance, my tags are up to date, this is a minor inconvenience but whatever, they'll let me go.

APPARENTLY, you were no longer allowed to turn left at the light where I turned and APPARENTLY there was a sign telling me I could not turn left. APPARENTLY, this sign was SO clear that seven cars ahead of me did not see it and the seven cars behind me in the line did not see it. AND that was just one light cycle!

Well, let me tell you, friends, I was not going to let that ticket stand. I applied to have my day in court to fight it. So, back in December, they sent me a court date of August 4.

Although I felt ok after leaving the doctor's office today, I have to say that generally speaking, for the past five months or so, I've had a don't-eff-with-me sorta scrappiness going on. Don't eff with me Officer Friendly, I'm ready to take you on. My kid has cancer and I'm not messing around, anymore!

So, no kidding, I park my car and as I was walking into the court house the only thing I kept thinking of was that Public Enemy song, Fight the Power. It was just ringing in my head.

I sit down in court, they check me in and dismiss us all for an hour. I went to the hallway to review some work I had brought. A few minutes later, a jubilant fellow ticket protester came out saying that they were dismissing all the cases, Officer Friendly had taken vacation and was not in court to serve as a witness. Case dismissed!

While ecstatic at the result, I am sort of sad that I did not get my scrappy self in front of the judge. I was ready, I tell ya. Fight the Power!

Appointment Update

Well, it certainly has been an information-filled couple of days.

As you know, we met with Dr. Zage at MD Anderson last Thursday. He was just terrific and really gave us some direction. We felt so good leaving there and if we lived in Houston, that would be our first choice of care for sure.

Armed with new information and ready for a discussion this morning with our doctors, we left for the appointment.

Dr. Goldman said that Dr. Zage had called him after we left on Thursday, which we really appreciated.

There was much discussion, chemo vs surgery vs careful watching. None seem like such a great option, to be honest. The problem with the chemo is that it may cause damage her heart, among other things. It could also change the tumor type to where it will not spontaneously go away on its own as some nb tumors do. Surgery is risky for many reasons generally, but to up the ante on this surgery, the tumor is located on the side of the heart. Careful watching could be fine except for, again, the location of the tumor which is, as Dr. Goldman showed me on today's xray hugging the spine. Which also means that there is a shot that it might not be able to be removed ANYWAY!

Oh, and her catecholamines were normal today. But, as Dr. Goldman showed me, the were rising each month within normal ranges. We are right at the edge of normal so next time, we'll probably be high. What does that mean? Well, it just means we have a bit of time to make the right decision for Eva, but not too much time.

Bottom line:
We are scheduling a CT for three weeks from now. At that time, we will take a look at our options.

In the meantime, Dr. Goldman is sending Eva's file to Dr. Brian Kushner at Sloan-Kettering just to get his opinion. Dr. Kushner is THE MAN when it comes to neuroblastoma. Of the 600 kids diagnosed with nb a year, his clinic sees 300 of them.

Also, he is meeting with the radiologist and the surgeons to discuss our next move.

Obviously, as I have mentioned, the hardest part is the fact that there does not seem to be a clear cut position. But, I am comforted by both Dr. Zage and Dr. Goldman who have made me feel better about Eva's outlook.

One thing that my mother pointed out. She said that from speaking with me, she feels very comforted by the fact that at every level, each doctor we seem to be coming in contact with, has put Eva first and foremost. There does not seem to be any ego overwhelming the situation. I believe that she is absolutely right. We are truly lucky in that regard.

Jon and I are ok. We're both worried for Eva but feel ok about the direction of her treatment. I think that in some ways, I am have a bit of advantage over Jon when dealing with this situation. When I was dealing with my own leukemia, you learn that things change every minute with cancer. Every plan is not written in pencil, it seems to be written in sand and just before high tide. I think that has been hard for Jon but, God bless him, he's doing very well.

And the beat goes on.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Well, That Was Weird!

Last night, I noticed that my blog had shut down.

Turns out that after some research done by my trusty pal, Laura, the sitemeter was crashing everyone's blogs!

So, I removed it this morning and it works fine.

Scary feeling when you think you've lost all your work for the past several years!

Whew!

Friday, August 01, 2008

Bad Haiku Friday Festival!

Each Friday, my friend, Laura, over at Catholic Teacher Musings writes her Bad Haiku Friday poems. This week, she has called for a Bad Haiku Friday festival! Although I read hers with envy, I have no talent for it.

But, not one to ever give up on a challenge, here's mine, with apologies to my many ACTUAL poet friends!
I wrote this on the four hour drive back from Houston, yesterday.

Kettle corn, so sweet
Fills my tummy and my hips
A real truck stop find
Feel free to give it a whirl on your site and let Laura know!