Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A peek inside my sketchbook...

I'll give you three guesses what we watched last night... and who I absolutely fell in love with...

Here's your first clue...

Heh, yeah, I know, how much more obvious could I be??

Thought I'd better practice them for lunch notes, and I'm also practicing Master Chief from Halo.

Oy, who knew armor could be so darn hard to draw?? All those planes and reflections... and I'm trying to do that at 6 a.m. with little caffeine? Am I crazy??

Oh, wait... I am. Never mind.

Anyhow, Tangled was better than I expected, and didn't take itself too seriously, which I liked, and whoa, could Rapunzel wield a frying pan or what??

Okay, off to bed now. Just thought you'd like a peek at my sketchbook...

Monday, August 29, 2011

As Jo's Family Turns...

You know, my blog is beginning to look like the synopsis of a very bad soap opera! No, seriously!

Okay, so... two weeks ago, the Husbandly One came down with the shingles. Which... is weird, because it makes it sound like he was covered in roofing tiles, right? I even had a dream about that, that he was covered in roofing tiles and he was blaming me for it, and I was all O_o???

Anyway, he had the shingles, which is a variant of the same virus that causes chickenpox. It was painful, we both lost a lot of sleep, and he's getting over it.

How is this significant?

Well, last night, the Impossible Son came to me and asked me to scratch his back and get him an ice pack.

I frowned. "Um... sure, I'll scratch your back, but... why do you want an ice pack?"

"I have such a bad headache, I need an ice pack," he said, grimacing and squinting at me in a very familiar way. "I think I have a migraine."

Oh, crap.

So, I got him an ice pack and he said, "First, scratch my back?" and pulled up his shirt, and I started to oblige and stopped. "Um... Little Man... where did you get all these bites? Did you fall into an ant bed or get into a lot of mosquitos or something?"

"No," he said, frowning. "There's no mosquitos. Drought, remember?"

"Yeeeaaahhh," I said slowly, and the Husbandly One came in and went, "Uh-oh... that looks like chickenpox."

Crap, crap, crap, crap....

So, we inspected him and took his temperature, and he had a fever, and he had spots popping up, and yeah, lots and lots of fun.

Here's the thing: he's had the chickenpox vaccination. But not the booster, which he's due to get next year. And... it's only about 90 percent effective, anyway. However, having the vaccine is supposed to reduce the severity of the virus and also reduce the time he'll have it.

But... it's the second week of school!!!!


So, Dr. W. checks him over, and as she's examining him, little spots are popping up!! She brings in Dr. R., who has lots of experience of chickenpox over his years of practice and at first, he said, "Oh, these are insect bites! There's no fluid in these spots!" And then... he notices more popping up in places where there were not spots as he is looking at him and says, "Um...hmmmmmmmm... this perhaps is chickenpox. Has he had his shot?" And when I said yes, he frowned and said, "Let's get bloodwork, to be sure."

At which point the Impossible One howled, "NO!! I DON'T WANT TO!!!" and every variant in between. Both doctors were rather shocked because Mr. Impossible has always been very cooperative for them, and I had to explain why he was so upset over his protests.

And just to make things even more interesting, Mr. Impossible did have an insect bite on his forearm that the doctor looked at, because it was swollen and red, and I was worried about it being infected. She frowned and said, "Um... how long has it had this red circle around it?"


I looked at it and said, "That wasn't there last night."

"Have you been camping recently? Hiking in the woods or the state park? Had any deer munching on your bushes?"

I knew where this was going. "Not been camping or hiking, and if there are deer munching on our bushes, I haven't seen them. I find droppings, but deer droppings and rabbit droppings kinda look alike, you know?"

"Uh-huh," she said, frowning even more at the red ring around the bite. "Just to be on the safe side, let's do a Lyme titer."


"Can we just cut to the chase and go on doxycycline now?" I said, remembering my own close call with Lyme disease and four weeks of doxycycline. Woo-hoo!! All kinds of fun!!!

"Let's just see what the titer shows. I mean, I'll probably put him on it, but let's get him through the chickenpox first!"

Okay, cool...

So, he's home, ensconced on the couch, playing Halo, and asking for something to drink every five minutes.

The good news is... exposure to my son having chickenpox is supposed to reduce my chances of getting shingles later. That's perfectly okay with me, because seriously, shingles looks very painful, and I don't want it!

Now, to prepare for the Impertinent One to come home from school. Yay, whoopee, yay!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Where's the cooler weather when you need it???

It's official. This... is the Worst. Summer. EVER.

Want proof??

Yeah, that's a high of 42, a low of 25 today (for those of you across the Pond) and a high of 43, with a balmy low of 25, for tomorrow.

I am NOT leaving this house!!! Well... we might go to Krause Springs tomorrow, which are freezing cold, and I plan to spend the entire time we're there in the water!!! But today, we're supposed to go to a birthday party, and... I'm going to be sitting indoors, in the air conditioning, clutching a glass of ice tea to my chest, wearing the skimpiest clothing I possess!! Because... no, I do not like being overheated, no, no, no. I don't mind getting sweaty, or a little hot, but feeling like I am boiling alive in my own juices? Not so much.

Oh, did I mention? Austin broke a weather record. See, before this week, the longest stretch of triple digit days was 69, set in 1925. We broke that this week with 71 days. So far. The way it's looking right now, we're going to be having triple digits all the way through September!!!

We got a teeny bit of a break on Thursday, because it was cloudy and then it rained, but... it was barely .01 of an inch, which was just enough to cool things down and raise the humidity. It only got up to 88 (31 C) on Thursday, and it actually got cold in the house, because the air conditioner wasn't having to work so hard!!

And the poor Impertinent Daughter! Soccer season isn't until January, but they're working on conditioning and strength training right now, and... the Athletics period at her high school is during the hottest part of the day! They have plenty of access to water, but it's hard on them to work outside in this heat. I feel really sorry for the football team, because they're out there working in full pads and helmets! By the way, they won their game last night, 34 to 9! GO LIONS!!!


And on the medication front, my doctor and my pharmacist are duking it out with the insurance company. *grimaces* You know, if I wasn't already convinced that my acid reflux issues were driving my asthma, I'd be convinced now. I haven't hurt like this since December, and... I thought this was all my asthma's doing. It's the damn reflux. And let me tell you something, Gaviscon doesn't even cut it!

It sucks.

All the idiots who've been protesting universal healthcare because of "Death Panels?" WE ALREADY HAVE THEM

Oh, someone asked if my medication was so very expensive. It's $5 a pill, so a thirty day supply is $150. Which is small beans compared to things like... the pain medication my father was taking for his cancer. That was a little over $26 a pill, which came out to a whopping $800 for a thirty day supply. His insurance refused to cover it, so he and my mother had to pay out of pocket for it, and that depleted their savings rapidly.

Blue Cross Blue Shield, the insurance my husband's company was using before Humana, absorbed $90 of the cost for the Dexilant I was taking, so we only had to pay $60 for it. I have a feeling that if I keep insisting (which I will) on taking the Dexilant that I will be paying the full $150 for it. Whoopee. $150 a months, so I can breathe without pain, so I can eat, so I don't keep coughing my lungs up. Yeah, it's worth it, but man, that's going to be a drain on our resources!!

Oh well, we will see what we will see!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Not. Happy. At. All.

Dear Humana Health Care,

After finding out that you've refused to cover a medication that I very much need, a medication that has pretty much given me my fucking life back, I have only one thing to say to you.

Futue te ipsum et caballum tuum.*

No love,


*Fuck you, and the horse you rode in on.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Another Looooooooong Day...

If you remember, back in June, the Impertinent Daughter looked like this...

We'd colored her hair twice more over the summer, using Manic Panic. Last week, she went to the high school to pick up her schedule. The Tall Blonde had asked if she could take her, because her daughter, Super Goalie, was nervous and the Impertinent One has a settling influence on her. I was cool with that, because really, I wasn't looking forward to listening to Impertinent/Impossible bickering, you know? So... I wasn't with them when Miss Impertinent got confronted about her hair.


It was funny, she got her locker assignment, got her schedule, went walking all over the school to find her classes, and no one in the office or the classrooms said diddly squat to her about her hair. However, when she walked into the library to take a picture for her student I.D., one of the student helpers looked up and said, "Oh, you can't have your picture taken with blue hair."

And immediately, a staff member turned, saw Miss Impertinent's hair, and said, "That has to be gone by the first day of school or you won't be allowed in class."

Well... here's the thing. It was for the summer only. We knew, when we took her to get her hair dyed, that she would most likely not be able to keep it that way when school started, despite the fact that we regularly saw kids with wildly colored hair on campus, kids who weren't being suspended or harassed about it. I'm thinking of one girl in particular who had bubble gum pink hair, a la Tonks. And the boy with green hair (not to be confused with the movie). The girl with bleached blonde with magenta tips. There were more, but those are the ones who stand out in my mind. Still, Murphy's Law being what it is, we decided to just limit it to the summer. So you can imagine that I really resented it when this ... person jumped on my daughter about her hair.

So... I made an appointment to have the color removed from her hair. Let me tell you something. The first dye treatment she had in June lasted maybe three weeks. The second, Manic Panic Midnight Blue, lasted maybe a week. The last one, Manic Panic Shocking Blue... hung on like grim death.

This is what her hair looked like after two bleachings to remove the color...

Ms. Stylist had to do two more, using foil on the last one in an effort to get the light mint green color off the ends of her hair. It took three hours! And it still didn't come completely out!!

I'm telling you, Manic Panic Shocking Blue is ... shockingly resistant to being removed!!!

Ms. Stylist had to recolor Miss Impertinent's hair, and now, she's back to the strawberry blonde she was when she was 3...

Ms. Stylist suggested that if Miss Impertinent washes her hair over the weekend and some of the new color comes out and the green tinge shows, to just tell any complaining school official that she went swimming over the weekend and there was too much chlorine in the pool.

The thing is... why should this be an issue at all? Why should a kid's hair color be a problem any more than the color of their shirt or shoes? Truthfully, no one paid any attention to the Impertinent Daughter's hair until an adult started making a big deal about it. Even after the student helper said Miss Impertinent couldn't take her I.D. picture with blue hair, no one paid attention to it until an adult made a big deal out of it.

So... it's not distracting to the students. Or even most of the teachers, who said nothing to my daughter, or even batted an eye at her hair earlier in the day, including the principal. It's only distracting to specific teachers and staff people, who are in the minority.

Life in a small town. Don't even get me started...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


Add this to the file of Things I Am Not Ready For:


The Impossible Son... has fuzz on his upper lip.

*flail flail flail*

No, it's not cat hair, it's not chocolate syrup on his upper lip... it's hair. Stiff little hairs.


I'd noticed this a few weeks ago, actually, but tucked it away neatly in my Denial Drawer. Nice big roomy thing, my Denial Drawer. Lots of room for stuff I'd Rather Not Think About™

Anyhow, I'd noticed this... subtle shading on the corners of his upper lip. It was really apparent when we were at the beach, and I had actually pretended at one point to be rubbing sand off his chin so I could take a better look in bright sunlight and... promptly shoved what I'd seen in my Denial Drawer. But I couldn't help noticing it again, and again, and again.

Finally, tonight, in our poorly lit bedroom (we had the lights low to encourage sleepiness), it was unmistakable, and I got the flashlight and put on my glasses and took a really good look... then got the Husbandly One for corroboration, and... yeah. Fuzzy Lip Syndrome.


Where did my baby go????

And while I'm going through this emotional toss up of my Denial Drawer, the Husbandly One says, "Oh, yeah, I started shaving when I was TWELVE."


Don't mind me, I'll just go curl up in the corner with a paper bag over my head, rearranging the contents of my Denial Drawer. While singing. Loudly. And NOT thinking about the hair on my son's upper lip. And his legs.

*sticking her fingers in her ears and singing "LA-LA-LA-LA-LA-I-CAN'T-HEAR-YOU!" loudly*

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Long day was LOOOOOONG....

I am tired, I am hot, and I am very crabby.

*random grumbling noises*

The Impossible Son had a dental appointment today and was wound up in anxiety about it. Why, I don't know. Seriously. He sees a pediatric dentist and she is wonderful! I wish she was my dentist! I mean, seriously, they have never hurt him. Never. And he's had dental surgery to remove the root of a broken tooth! So, that's saying something! She's the type of dentist that will sing to her patients to calm them down, or tell them stories. So why he was anxious to the point of throwing up, I have no idea!

And you know, I told him several times, "It's just a cleaning, son. You're just getting your teeth cleaned."

So, he's sitting there, clinging to me when the dental nurse comes out and calls him, then looks at his chart and says, "Yep, just a cleaning today."

He blinks, sits up, and says, "Wait... that's it? I'm just having my teeth cleaned?"

"Yep," she says cheerfully.

"Oh! Well... why didn't you say so??" He shot an accusing look at me and went happily along his way.


Of course, it didn't last. He had a spacer that needed to come out. Nothing complicated or painful, just pop it off the tooth and clean the glue away.

He had a complete meltdown.

I almost said, "Who are you, and what have you done with my son?" when I saw him. I mean, this is the same kid who sits quietly to have his blood drawn!! Did we have the spacer removed today?

No, we did not.

We're going back in two weeks, and Dr. L. will have to use nitrous oxide to calm him down before popping it off. However, she did lay the groundwork, preparing him for work that will need to be done in order to correct the fact that his lower jaw is growing faster than his upper jaw. And this will prepare him for the idea of braces later on.


He actually handled that a lot better than the idea of popping that spacer off. The good news, however, is that he had no cavities whatsoever. How, I don't know, because getting that boy to brush his teeth is an ordeal in and of itself.

Once that was done, we stopped by Sally Beauty Supply and bought more blue hair dye for the Impertinent One's last coloring of the summer. Dunno if they'll allow her to have blue hair at the high school. We'll just have to see. Then we came home, and I pretty much have not sat down for more than five minutes at a time since. Until now.

I am sooooo ready for school to start. Totally.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I'd like you to meet my husband... Fabio...

Well, in this picture, he kind of looks like him, don't you think?


It's the way his long hair is blowing in the wind, you know. And if you're wondering, that cute little fish was his catch of the night. He'd taken the kids salt water fishing for the first time, and while the Impossible Son caught the biggest fish of the night, and the Impertinent Daughter caught the second largest, the Husbandly One caught... the smallest. And no matter how hard he tried to catch something bigger, for the rest of the week, everything he caught was... pretty much the same size as that cute little Gulf cat in the picture. Heck, for all we know, it was the same fish the entire time, following him all around Rockport and Fulton, throwing itself shamelessly on his hook for one more look at its long haired hero! ♥ ♥ ♥!!

Oh, come on, I had to say it!

I find this an extraordinarily entertaining photo, on so many levels, and I'm proud of the Impertinent Daughter for taking it. She got a good shot of her papa!

I wanted to write more, but I'm just too tired to concentrate. School starts in three weeks, and... I can't wait.