And the White Trash Award Goes To…

Over the last few days I’ve been wondering if it’s more white trash to have a couch so broken that it very nearly swallows unsuspecting individuals alive, requiring the owner of said couch to either call out a warning to guests and/or forgetful children or to be sure to swoop in and sit in the spot the most prone to human ingestion before anyone else unwittingly risks life and limb, or to have a couch that’s been fixed with a piece of plywood under to cushions, making sitting on said couch feel (oddly enough) like one is sitting on a piece of plywood with cushions over it.

And then I realized that when one’s husband is facing drug possession charges the question really becomes moot.

About a week and a half ago Sean the WonderHusband drove to Current Creek (pronounced “crick” naturally) to hand the Princess off to her grandmother for a few days of girly bonding fun or something.  On the drive back home he was pulled over for speeding.  This sucks but it’s not interesting or even unusual enough to bother commenting on so we’ll move on.  Now, the “highway” on which he was driving is a relatively narrow one, so despite the fact that Sean pulled over as far as he could and that the officer in question didn’t pull over quite as far, giving himself some measure of protection from passing vehicles, the patrolman still chose to use the passenger side window for collecting the license, registration and so forth.  Which meant that he was fairly close to the glove box in which resides the registration and insurance information (as I believe it does in most cars although I have been given to understand that this is not good practice and they ought to be kept elsewhere).

As a little background, let me explain that Sean, the WonderHusband, has chronic back pain and chronic headaches.  In an attempt to manage this pain and leave the WonderHusband in a condition in which he can do anything other than lie in bed groaning (which is not really conducive to being an effective husband and father) he’s on some fairly heavy duty pain killers.  And then to mitigate the side effects of the pain killers he’s on some other meds and so on and so forth.  (It’s not an ideal situation in any way and it’s something that we try to be really careful about as far as dosages etc. but that’s not really what I’m talking about here so I’m not going to go into it.)  Because he’s on these medications daily, and in most cases more than once a day, he has stashes of his medications in various places including in the car.  Specifically in the glove box.

I imagine that you know where I’m going with this.  The officer, of course, saw the bottle of pills and inquired.  Sean answered honestly, he does have prescriptions for all of his medications and is followed closely by his doctor, and the cop was very nice about the whole thing but he was unable to access the database that should have confirmed the prescriptions (who knew there was such a thing?) and so he issued a ticket, or more accurately, two tickets, one for speeding and one for drug possession.

When issuing the drug citation the officer assured Sean that all he would have to do was call the county in not less than 5 nor more than 14 days and give his name and they could then check the database and drop the charges.  And then he let him go on home (which is a lot better than hauling him off to jail which he certainly could have done).

(Except that he didn’t go home he went to my mother’s where I was, with my children and my siblings.  And then he related the tale of how he very nearly got arrested for drug possession to me while I was sitting at my mother’s kitchen table playing Boggle with most of my siblings and my father and while my mother did dishes not ten feet away.  Picture that scene for a second will you?  Put yourself in my place.  Fun huh?)

As instructed Sean called The Wasatch County Justice Court yesterday and apparently what the patrolman told him is not quite how this whole thing is going to go down.

So Sean scheduled an arraignment for August 15th when he gets to go to Heber and enter a not guilty plea after which, we are told, he will schedule a hearing at which he can present his prescriptions and the charges can be dropped.  He’s been assured that this is all standard and not a big deal and nothing to worry about.  And yet I find that it feels like kind of a big deal to me and I’m a little worried.

The bright side is that if he goes to jail then I’ll have and extra car so I can finally have one up on blocks in the yard.  And I’m sticking with the plywood couch.

Premiere Week

Here we are, premiere week, the week that all our favorite TV shows start again for the year.  On the DVR to start recording this week I have House (which I missed the first episode of because my DVR somehow lost our recording info for that one), How I Met Your Mother and Bones (David Boreanaz, be still my beating heart). Which I think is a respectable (read not too long) list of shows.  Of course, that list does not comprise the entirety of our TV addictions, just those that follow the regular season.

On the DVR for future use we also have Burn Notice, White Collar (Oh TBS, how I love your shows) So You Think You Can Dance, Last Comic Standing and… probably a few more that I can’t think of at the moment.

And that’s not all we’re watching these days,  Over the past two weeks or so we’ve been watching Veronica Mars.  I LOVE the Veronica Mars!  We love it so much, in fact, that we have yet to watch the episode of How I Met Your Mother that we recorded on Monday because we’ve been watching VM.  (I also really really love NetFlix and their watch instantly shows [including VM] so that we can watch as many as we want as fast as we want for free.)

I don’t, however, love Veronica so much that Bones will spend more than an hour or so on the DVR (we have to get the kids to bed before we even try to watch), I love me some Bones.

When all is said and done we watch a lot of TV around here.  Probably more than we should.  I would say that we’re working on it but the fact is… we’re not.  The thing is that Sean and I have never been a couple to go on the regular date night that is so frequently recommended.  We don’t have the cash for a babysitter and we don’t really have a lot of interest in trading babysitting. (In all honesty we have a lot of interest in having someone else watch our kids, it’s just the watching some other couple’s kids that screws the whole thing up for us.) But what we do do is have a little mini-date just about every night.

I have a sister who has trouble sitting down on the couch and watching TV without doing something else at the same time.  I have no such problem.  Once we get the kids to bed it doesn’t matter what else needs to be done around the house, it doesn’t matter that the sink is full of dishes and the kitchen floor is makes that thwock thwock sound when you walk across it, It doesn’t matter that the front room, in which I’m sitting, desperately needs to be vacuumed, nothing’s going to get done.  I’m done being the mom for the night, which means I’m done working for the night.  (The one notable exception is Tuesday night when all the laundry that Sean washed throughout the whole day [usually 6 or 7 loads] gets folded.)

Sean and I get the kids down for the night and then we climb onto the couch and watch TV (and eat ice cream).

The way I figure it, if we were going to go on a date once a week we’d probably go to dinner and a movie (we’re not very imaginative around here).  But the way we do it we have dinner together, with all the kids, and then we watch the equivalent of a few movies over the course of a week (or sometimes when we’re out of TV to watch [I know, but it does happen] we do watch movies) so it’s like going on several dates.

It’s my understanding that this sitting and watching TV together every night is somewhat unusual.  I don’t understand that.  What do you do at night if you don’t sit with your spouse and watch TV?

Also, what shows (preferably shows that are now over and available on NetFlix) do we need to watch?  There are only 3 seasons of Veronica Mars afterall.

Dishwater Salad Dressing

I’m starting this post with the punchline because there’s no way around it. You’re going to know what it is before we get there anyway. But it’s still a story worth telling.

Friday was the HERA climb for life. The climb that you guys helped me raise money for with your very generous donations.  In fact, I raised more than my goal amount which makes you about the best readers anywhere and I think you should know it.  You’re awesome!

But that’s actually not the point, the point is that I spent the day climbing and freezing (the cliff we were climbing left us in the shade at the top of a mountain) and then I locked my keys in the car so by the time I got home I was pretty tired. And starving.

It was time for dinner but there was nothing ready so Sean started heating up leftovers and I made a green salad.  Then I went to the fridge to get the dressing.  Now, around here we eat the make it yourself salad dressing (you know, you buy the packet of seasonings and fill the cruet with vinegar up to the line with the v and then add water up to the line with the w and then oil up to the o line and then you shake whole thing up) but the cruet was almost empty.  I poured what little was left over the salad and took the cruet to the sink to wash it out.  I don’t always wash it out between uses, I’m just making more of the same stuff in there after all, but it had been a while since I had washed it out so I did this time.

I put some water in the cruet and set it on the counter with the dish scrub brush thing (the kind with the soap in the handle) sticking out of the top while I got the lid cleaned, which takes a little doing given all the cracks and crevices, and was just turning my attention to the cruet, when the Infantile Delinquent came in to let me know that the (not so) Baby had gotten into my swag bag from the climb, which I had (stupidly) said that he could play with, and made a mess.  I left the kitchen to go to the entryway to assess the damage.  It wasn’t as bad as it could have been but the (not so) Baby had gotten into the one thing in the bag that one could possibly make a mess, the chalk (used on the hands to increase traction).  He had broken up the block of chalk and sprinkled it around the entryway and front room.

Did I mention that Sean had cleaned my house while I was climbing? Well he had.  (He really is the very best.)  And now the (not so) Baby was sprinkling chalk all over the place, and then the Pea and the InfaDel started running through the chalked up area and…. You know how it goes.  So I forgot about dinner, and turned my attention to preventing the spread of the chalk.  It didn’t take long but by the time I got back to the kitchen Sean was pouring the oil into the dressing and shaking it up.

I should mention here that Sean and I make the dressing differently.  I make it with cider vinegar and he uses white.  It’s a small difference, resulting in a slight difference in taste but it’s not a big deal.

We sat down to the table.

I wasn’t really that interested in any of the leftovers so I served myself a huge helping of salad, sprinkled some tuna, and some salt and pepper, over it and poured on the dressing.  I had a few bites but found that I couldn’t really taste the dressing.  I poured on some more.  My salad still wasn’t very good but I was really hungry so I ate it.

We had a slightly harder time than usual getting the kids to eat their salads but well, they’re kids and it was salad so we didn’t think too much of it.  The kids ran off to play and I sat at the table for a few more minutes trying to decide if I wanted to eat more.  I decided I was still hungry.  I served up the rest of the salad, doctored it up, poured on the dressing and took a bite.  It tasted almost sweet.

I dipped a finger into a drop of dressing n my plate and licked it off.  Nothing, it tasted like nothing.  I looked up at Sean, “what kind of vinegar did you use in this?”

He looked at me like I was crazy, “I didn’t put the vinegar in it, you did. I just put the oil in.”

After spending just a minute digesting that (and trying not to throw up my dinner) I said, “no wonder the dressing wasn’t good tonight, you used the soapy dishwater that I was cleaning the cruet out with as the vinegar.”

I spent the rest of the night with a greasy dishwater taste in the back of my mouth.

In his defense, apparently the dishwater had filled exactly up to the v line of the cruet and he had known that I was working on making dressing and… Well, these things happen.

So what’s your favorite kind of salad dressing?

More Proof I’m an Idiot

Note: The raffle is closed (although there’s still a book left so if you want to buy one I guess that’s still ok).  I haven’t gotten around to drawing names for the raffle winner yet.  Expect an update soon(ish).

We’re pretty hard on our vacuums around here.  For the last year and half or so we’ve had a very nice Eureka upright vacuum.  It has a “power paw” attachment which looks great but that I’ve come to realize is completely useless.  But altogether, it’s not a bad vacuum.  It’s not bagless but it came with several extra bags and I don’t really see how emptying a canister is so much better than tossing a bag, so I don’t really care.

About two weeks ago, after having spent 3 hours cleaning and organizing the playroom (yes it was that bad), I was vacuuming and then the vacuum just stopped.  It didn’t grind to halt.  It didn’t squeak or squeal or smoke or make any kind of funny noise.  It just died.

I believe that my first thought was something along the lines of “awesome”.

I messed with it for a few more minutes, turning it on and off, with absolutely no result.  “Super Awesome.”

Sean tried messing with it.  Nothing.

So we sighed, put the vacuum outside the back door next to the trash and moved on with our lives.

For about a week we went without a vacuum but let’s face it, I have four kids, I need a vacuum.  So Sean went to costco and bought a new one.  (Yes, Sean buys the vacuums, don’t question the division of purchases in the Wonderland, it doesn’t even make sense to me.)  He didn’t get the top of the line, he did not get a dyson, but he did pay $150 or so for a Hoover, wind tunnel, blah blah blah vacuum.  It’s a fine vacuum.  We used it for about a week and it worked very well.

Then last Friday, after doing the bills, I was going trough the filing cabinet and I came across what I thought was the owner’s manual for the old Eureka (which was still standing right outside of the back door because we’re not organized enough to actually put it out on the curb with the garbage on garbage day) it had a small trouble shooting section.  I read through it.

“Hey, it says here that there’s a fuse of some kind in that vacuum,” I said to Sean. “That is kind of what it sounded like, like a fuse just blew or something.”

“That’s not the owner’s manual for that vacuum, that’s the one for the last one .” Sean said. (He was right, it was the owner’s manual for a Dirt Devil of some kind or other. Did I mention that we’re pretty hard on our vacuums?)

But he went to the backdoor and grabbed the vacuum anyway.  Plugging it in, he turned it on only to have it start right up.

He then turned it off and pulled the front off, discovering that the bag was completely full.  So full in fact, that the hose thing leading to the bag was jammed full.  We cleaned it out, changed the bag and the vacuum has not given us one more minute of trouble.

That’s right, we spent $150 on a new vacuum because we weren’t smart enough to change the bag on the old one.

Awesome.

The One Where I’m Stupid (because that totally narrows it down)

For those who haven’t read it yet, check out my last post.  There are still two copies of my book for sale.

As I mentioned last week, Friday was my anniversary. 12 years.  It’s been a great 12 years, but that’s no what this post is about.  I still love Sean like crazy, but that’s not what this post is about.  If I had to do it again, I would, without hesitation, but that’s not what this post is about.

What this post is about is this:

Currently I only work one normal day shift per week, usually on Wednesday, but I’m still full time.  I’m full time because on Fridays Saturdays and Sundays, from 7pm to 7am, I take call.  For each of these call shifts I’m paid for 8 hours whether I go in or not (sometimes this works out fantastically well and I’m paid for 8 hours to sit on my couch and watch “White Collar” and then to climb into bed, snuggle up to my husband and drift off to sleep.  Sometimes, most of the time, it doesn’t go quite like that.)  It’s a great schedule, it works out well for my family, I can attend the classes that I need, etc. the problem, in case you didn’t catch it, is that I’m on call all weekend (nights) every weekend.  That’s not too big of a deal, I’m married (have been for 12 years) I have kids, it’s not like I was going to be going clubbing, in general I don’t mind.  If I pay attention I can even request the evenings that I need off ahead of time.

Unfortunately, the last time request calendars went out I was not paying attention.

I failed to request my anniversary off.

Now this isn’t exactly catastrophic.  There are options, I can get someone to cover me.  Usually.  Unfortunately (that’s a word that’s going to feature prominently in my tale, I’m just warning you now) the gal that is usually my first choice to cover me couldn’t, she was headed out of town.  Kristen, the girl who is usually my second choice works until 11:00pm on Fridays so I didn’t even bother to ask her.  She did however, hear about my dilemma and offer to take the shift from 11:00 on.  That was fantastic (and incredibly nice of her) and I told her so, but I told her that I’d see if I could get someone else to just cover the whole thing.   (Also, despite the incredible niceness of her offer, Sean had to be to work at 6:00am Saturday morning so no matter what we did, we weren’t going to be up very late so after 11 wasn’t really the part I was worried about.)

I tried (to get it covered).

I was unsuccessful (I thought).

My follow-up was not what it could have been.

So Friday rolls around and, as far as I know, I still don’t have anyone to cover my call from 7-11 and I’m not sure whether Kristen is planning on taking after 11 (There’s paperwork that’s supposed to go along with covering shifts that did not get done and while that doesn’t necessarily mean that the shift’s not being covered, it’s unwise to assume that it is if the paperwork has not been done).  Probably (definitely) I should have called the hospital and talked to Kristen or anyone who could look at the schedule book or… well, I should have done SOMETHING, but I didn’t.

I did nothing at all.

So Friday night I made dinner early enough that I could go to work if I needed to (mahi mahi and rice, it was fantastic) and then we did the usual Friday evening stuff, the kids ran around outside, and then we called them inside, cleaned them up, put them to bed, watched an hour or so of White Collar, we went to bed… all this with the pager (more or less) on my hip.  Because I just didn’t know.

But I didn’t get called in.

This morning I found out that not only did Kristen cover my call from 11pm-7am, Mary, a girl in the OR whom I’m not sure I’ve even ever talked to, took my call from 7pm-11.  That’s right I had the whole thing covered.  I got the email about it this morning.

PS. In my defense it’s not like we had a sitter for the kids and these days we can’t really afford to do anything, even just dinner, anyway [probably I’ll tell that story later this week] so even if I had somehow not been on call it wouldn’t really have changed what I did that evening.

PPS. The email was sent last week, I just didn’t see it (possibly because I didn’t really look) until today.

I Have Got to Stop Doing This

The first problem is that I let myself go weeks without blogging.  That may not be a problem for any of you (in fact, I’m willing to bet that there are a few of you who are a little relieved when I don’t blog (you’re welcome for this summer BTW) ) but for me it’s a problem because my goal was to blog at least once a week and for those of you non math majors blogging every three (or four) weeks is not blogging once a week.

The second problem stems from the first.  Any time I’m not blogging pressure is building up.  When I’m blogging regularly I don’t notice so much, very little pressure builds up in the course of a day or two.  Even a week is not too big of a deal but by the end of three (or four) weeks there is considerable pressure.  What pressure you ask? (Yes, I’m aware that you don’t care) the pressure to write a really good post.  After three (or four) weeks I feel like I have to have something really good to blog about something that will, ideally, explain my absence but more importantly, explain why I’m back.

I feel like I have to have this post that’s great, that makes you laugh — or chuckle at least — or better yet, makes you cry.  A post that makes you realize that I’m a fantastic blogger and that you’ve missed my wit and wisdom terribly and that blah blah blah.  My returning post can not be about my workout today (which was really hard so hard in fact that I only did half of it which was a little sad because I have in the past done more than half of it (although I’ve never actually finished that particular work out) but today I did do it harder than I’ve ever done before (squatted lower, jumped higher, did all the push ups on my feet rather than dropping to my knees) so I’m actually not too disappointed.  Especially when I factor in the fact that I noticed today that the helper girl (you know the two people who stand behind the “instructor” and do the workout all with perky smiles on their faces) was totally phoning it in!  Her squats were not deep, she was hardly jumping at all (she did not drop to her knees but I’ll bet (I have to bet because I find it hard to watch the TV while I’m doing push ups) her form was not good) I don’t blame her.  It’s a stinking hard work out (as evidenced by the fact that I did not finish it) .  But I thought it was funny.)  See?  That’s not a good retuning post!

Neither is the one I was thinking about about the fact that the deadbolt on the back door broke –luckily when we were all inside so as to not be locking someone out (although now that I think about it I’m not sure how (or) why being locked in in so much better than being locked out) — and after pulling it apart and deciding that it could not be fixed, Shaun went to fairly great lengths to replace it (after having spent the day just using the front door) so that we can have a back door that looks like this: Let’s move past the dirtiness and the marks on the door left by the venetian blinds (yes, I know how to fix that I just don’t really care) and look at the fact that on this door, right next to the lock, I have not one but two broken window panes that have been expertly “repaired” with cardboard and duct tape.  Yeah, we’d better hurry and get a new deadbolt in there, we wouldn’t want to leave our house exposed.  (In our defense (pun intended) that is corrugated cardboard and there are two layers of it.  We’re totally safe.)  See?  Again, not a great blog post.

I also though about posting about the very nice guy on the Jordan River Parkway Trail that I was riding yesterday who helped me with my tire (I had a flat) and perhaps to mention that while what we tried (pumping it up) didn’t work,  (because the problem with my tire wasn’t something that could be repaired on the trail, or indeed at home, it can only be repaired by throwing that particular inner tube in the garbage) I appreciate the effort just the same.  And I got  a lot farther than a I would have if he hadn’t helped me out which was good because I still had to walk a fair bit.  Also that I really need to start carrying a cell phone with me when I ride.  And possibly that I got really lost on the trail but I love that I live in Utah so I always knew that I was going in (more or less) the right direction and that I would eventually end up some where that I could identify.   And I did.  I just have no idea how I got there.  (I’m very visual and I can’t find anything without a mental map.  Unfortunately I can’t get my ride yesterday to coincide with my current mental map.  Good thing I can map my ride it and see an actual map and then I’ll be fine.)

I really should blog about the Pea’s 8th birthday, which is today, but honestly I’m not really a fan of birthday posts (except for yours, I love yours) so I’ll probably just say Happy Birthday to the Pea and leave it at that.  (For that matter, I could blog about my 12th wedding anniversary which is tomorrow but I probably won’t, I hit the anniversary once –read it here, it’s good– and that will probably do it for the next few years.)

The third problem (I’ll bet you forgot that I was listing the problems I’m having with this blog) is the layout.  I’ve had numerous comments on the layout here in the Wonderland and they’ve all been positive (which I love) and honestly I really really like the layout, I like the colors, I like that it’s feminine without being overly feminine and I used to love that the text portion is wide.  Now… not so much.  See the wide text thing is great if you’re going to write really long posts, or if you’re going to, say, post chapters of your book as blog posts (which is the reason that I wanted the wide text thing in the first place.  And I’m sure you’ve noticed how often I’ve posted chapters of my books as blog posts…) but if you don’t have much to say it can be daunting.  I write what feels like a decent length post and then post it only to click over and see that it doesn’t even fill the screen.  (Right there, I can see the next (last) post peeking up at the bottom of the screen.  I can see its title, I can even see the first line or two.  Heck I’ve hardly written anything at all. *Hangs head in shame.*)  So I’m thinking about changing it but, that’s a lot (and by a lot I mean some) of work, I’m not sure I’m up to it.

So there you have it.  The reason that I’m not blogging, or that I haven’t been blogging or that… oh forget it.

A Poll

But not a real poll because I’m too lazy to figure out how to put a poll in (and no, I don’t want you to tell me how easy it is, I’m perfectly happy in my ignorance).

And we meander back to the point, which is:

What are your thoughts on your spouse remarrying in the event of your untimely demise?  (See, that doesn’t work as a poll anyway.)

I was chatting with one of my Dr. friends the other day and he says that on the rare(ish) occasion that he has this discussion with his wife, she’s not a fan of the idea of his remarrying.  I’m given to understand that this is a normal reaction.

Apparently I’m not normal.

The idea of Sean remarrying is not even a little worrying to me.  The thought of his not doing so on the other hand… Well, that’s no good.  I want my kids to have a mother.  (As long as I’m around they’ll have to make due with me but if Sean gets another chance I ‘d love him to pick someone who’ll do a better job with them.)

I want my husband to have a wife. I adore the man but he is prone to be a little moody and occasionally he need some one to tell him to get over himself, that’s the wife’s job.  It happens to be a job at which I excel and I don’t really expect him to find someone better than me at that but he ought to find someone who’ll at least try.

I asked Sean the other day if he thought he’d remarry.  He said maybe but that he wouldn’t be sealed to her.  But that’s a whole other post and I have homework to do.

Happy Tuesday.

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