Yes, I wish for that, too.
One of my FB friends had a nice post about how she decided to channel her sadness and her need to reach out somehow into two different charities for children. I'll share it on FB.
Jen, I just wanted to say that I'm so sorry to hear about the medical expenses that you are facing right now. That's potentially a big expense, but I think you are doing the right thing to try and get all that information up front. DH and I have a similar self-employed individual health insurance, and it's sometimes so stressful to have to think about and plan for things. It seems that there is no single point of contact, and the bills keep rolling in from different providers who were involved in some way. It certainly does add up. He definitely plans to do his next out-patient procedure in Germany. Kind of a drag to schedule a vacation around a colonoscopy, but the savings are huge.
I took my older DD out with me to a very lonely stretch of gravel road out in the Francis Marion National Forest to cheer for runners on a 50k trail run. There were only 3 water/fuel stops along the way, and other than those, we were the only spectators. People were sure happy to see us and our cowbell.
Anyway, I am so thankful to know of all you strong and sane ladies out there spread all over the continent and the world.
Poppy, I'm glad for slightly better news. Sending you all kinds of good vibes on Thursday.
I've done a remarkably good job of avoiding media coverage and sadness right now. I know I just don't have it in me at the moment. Today we went to my daughter's violin recital, cut down a Christmas tree and joined a spontaneous tractor ride/caroling around the farm and came home to make a Christmas banner ("It's Christmas, get jolly!") for the window. The neighbours likely think I'm running a brothel, since our holiday banners this year started with "It's Valentines Day, get happy!" and included "It's St. Patrick's, get lucky!". All slogans have been chosen by the kids, and though I have recommended a different format for next year I haven't stopped them from displaying them. Now we are listening to Graceland, the kids are folding laundry and I am about to make the paleo pancakes for dinner.
As a follow up to the gendered Christmas concert we had a very disappointing email from the principal. He said we had chosen our lens through which to view the concert, that that this was not the time and place to critique the "superstructures" of society and that he was immensely proud of everything that had happened the night before. He included a link to the video for "all you need is love". My husband did school pick up (I was working) and spoke with our teacher, who was quite upset about the whole situation, and he eventually had a bit more satisfying phone call with the vice principal who was less dismissive. We'll see. Next week is a homeschooling "compass week", but we will be at school one day for meeting/review with the teacher.
RR- Bootcamp yesterday. I saw the chiro Thursday afternoon and my pelvis feels better than it has for weeks (months?), but tailbone is now very sore. I'll go again on Tuesday and see how it goes. I'm hoping to go climbing tomorrow with the kids.
Yeah, poppy, it's definitely a better number than the earlier, way bigger one, so that is a percentage less suckiness. Still, I really hope this goes smoothly and simply and perfectly well in every other way, and turns out somehow less expensive even than that. I sure hope. I also get that crummy feeling of not believing anything I hear over the phone when it comes to the insurance company. And that's with "decent" coverage.
MelW, I am with you on the concert. And I think the principal was simply out of line. Of course, I am that mom whose kids don't do the Christmas concert for religious reasons...and I guess that decision might actually eliminate a whole mess of other things to deal with.
Jennie, I am happy to see you here. I hope James can start to find his pace again. Those beginning years can be so trying, but he will figure it out. I thought of you and lofty yesterday when, possibly for the first time every, my body craved, and I mean really craved, yoga.
We're feeling insulated and a little disconnected from the situation in the US right now. I mean, we're living in a place where rights and freedoms are so not what they are there, but neither are public threats. I could see a lot of wheels turning in my kids' heads, and our hearts are breaking too. It's so huge and heavy.
Love to you all.
Poppy - I hope that's the biggest number you ever see and that you don't see it again. Also still imagining you and A high-fiving as you get the news of the all-clear afterward.
I just heard that my SIL's water broke this evening and is awaiting the new shift at the hospital for her c-sec. I'm kind of relieved for them that things sound under control and the baby has decided to head out a little ahead of schedule. They had been planning to pull him on Dec. 21. This year that just doesn't seem like an auspicious date. But, any spare thoughts of health and happiness that y'all can send their way in England I'd appreciate. They could use some breaks.
Plady ~ thoughts and prayers for your sister-in-law and her new little one today. Hope it all went smoothly.
Jooj ~ my kids still don't know what happened on Friday. I guess I should tell at least Jacob, who will certainly hear about it at school. But not Kirsten. The children killed were exactly her age. I can't saddle her with that kind of fear. Yoga sounds wonderful, by the way.
MelW ~ what a shitty response from the principal. Geez....
Mel38 ~ what a nice thing to do with your daughter and for the runners out on that lonely section of their race. I know they appreciated it.
RR ~ I have to walk/run today. If only for my own sanity and internal peace.
NRR ~ we hosted the children's Christmas party last night and WOW, are 17 kids loud! There was much trampoline jumping, a few tears (mostly DD1's who gets overwhelmed), way too much sugar consumption, but still a ton of fun. Some of DS's friends were a little too crazy, to be honest. I kept finding reasons to go out to the garage for a minute of peace. I think I took out the trash and recycling about 10 times! Now to concentrate on wrapping gifts for Christmas Day. But first I have to teach Sunday School this morning. Honestly, I am really not in the mood for 10 crazy 5 year olds after last night's mayhem.
Real ~ hope you see this. Tomorrow night is the first meeting of our tax levy referendum group. If the levy doesn't pass, all elementary specials and junior high extracurriculars will disappear. All the specials teachers and workroom aides got RIF notification last week. No PE, no music, no band, no junior high sports. Our taxes are already huge ($3.15/$100 assessed value, and that's just for K-8, there is another tax for the high school district), but I can't sit by and watch our school crumble even further. We already have no GATE, no art, no librarian. I'll pay the additional $.49/$100EAV to save that stuff for my kids. Not to mention protect the value of our house if we ever decide to sell and get the heck out of here (please, oh please)! This whole issue could get ugly here on the homefront, because DH is adamantly anti-tax.
It's lovely to be receiving holiday cards from some Dingoes and see the dinglets growing up. Thank you!
Poppy, I hope everything goes well with your test. I can commiserate with the insurance woes. We went for years without any health insurance at all and it was terrifying. We still have some debt from that time. Sigh. Praying that it all works out easily and everything is clean and negative!
Plady, sending good vibes and prayers for your SIL!
JayGee -- that is truly awful about the cuts in your kids' schools. I just don't understand the lack of priority for education and the failure to really get that education is not just about performance on tests or book learning. It's disappointing on such a deep and fundamental level and speaks volumes about our culture. Hoping things go well for you this time...
Jo, miss you.
I forgot what else I wanted to write.
I'm having an odd few days. I am heartsick over the tragedy on Friday. My kids know something really awful happened but I can't/won't tell them because dd1 has tremendous anxiety and sensitivity. Dh actually worries about something like this happening to me as a high school teacher and although I brush him off, the truth is sometimes I wonder about it. There are kids with a lot of rage...even in the 'best' neighborhoods and schools. And of course I worry about my own kids, about having them in school at all (when I have wanted to homeschool for so long and not been able to make that choice), about getting to them in case of trouble, etc. etc. It brings up all my own anxieties and fears and then I start thinking about the little ones and what they went through and I can't stop crying...
Dh bought us a new bookcase unit. I've been wanting one since we moved here as we sold off our old Ikea/Home Depot bookcases before we moved from Florida. This one is a solid wood three-case unit (the kind where the center unit is bigger/deeper and the side units attach). It's very pretty -- a bit more ornate than I would have picked out. He got it through Costco (online) of all places! I was torn between being somewhat aggravated I was not consulted and feeling guilty about that, and happy we have it (he wanted to 'surprise' me). In any event at least most of the books are now shelved somewhere besides piles on the floor.
RR: slow long run this morning. I broke out a new pair of shoes and the difference was awesome -- you know, it was like all of a sudden the other day I realized my shoes were 'done' right in the middle of my run. Still I kind of felt like I was moving through molasses this morning. I think I'm getting sick.
I did just roll out the mat in my room and do some yoga. Not enough, not good enough, but better than nothing.
It's actually a cool and rainy day here. Mid-60s, and might make it to 70 today. It's supposed to be our park day with the homeschoolers this afternoon, but if it continues to rain, we might not go. In either case, I am thinking of eating lunch early and spending the early afternoon at the gym. Ds is working on verb tenses, dd is doing poetry exercises, and I have started writing again on my personal work in progress. But I need some quiet and down time like nothing else. Tomorrow is another school day, and then Wednesday, dd is having her friend over for mani-pedis and high tea. Dh left this morning for Turkey and will be missing dd's birthday.
JayGee, I frankly can't imagine a school without specials. So many kids survive the school day because of those hours. And so many parents don't have the means (in many ways) to provide the supplemental ed to their kids, at home or otherwise. Definitely not setting them up for a healthy, happy, productive life. I'd sacrifice a lot, I realize now more than ever, for my kids' education. I hope things favor the kids when it all works out. Good luck. And may you be blessed for hosting the party. I think most of the tears would have been mine!
Oh, Nic. I giggled at the bookcase and the being torn over it. This is how things like this play out for me, and I usually don't just dislike, but hate what dh comes home with. This week, he decided to take down a gorgeous blanket we hang on the wall, and replace with his work-related certificates (!!!). I talked him down to just hanging the foyer full of them (mind you, my Phi Beta Kappa is on the shelf somewhere, and no family pics are hung), and instead we'll be putting white boards (and I hope, re-hanging the blanket to cover them when not in use). And Newtown gave me serious pause about the long-term plan for our kids' education. I am starting to question putting them back in school, ever. Like, maybe by the time they are in need of serious labs, we could just have them use the local tech school for certain subjects? But then, it seems all one has to do is be in the wrong movie theatre or mall. Or bus or plane or federal building. Or here, walking on the wrong pedestrian crossing, or riding your bike in front of the wrong local on the street. I suppose the biggest lesson is to be present in the time we have together, and hopefully over the long term, if more of us are, we can prevent so many of the root causes of mass violence. Being the change every day, I guess. I don't know. But I do know we need to build a peaceful home, because that's the foundation.
Plady, I hope your gifts leave your brother and SIL feeling supported, and I hope recovery goes smoothly for them. I hope they feel loved.
Lofty, I am kind of psyched to have the downtime of Winter Break for getting ahead. I am hoping that dh might be inspired to take us or send us to Turkey next month (a dear friend will be there), and I'd love for the kids to be ahead enough to take the time totally off and just soak up the experience. I'm sorry about the car. Hope it's minor. Fingers crossed.
Sleep well, Dingoes.
Loft, I hope that the car light is something minor (I have a somewhat-reassuring story about a catalytic converter that set off the check engine light periodically for over 4 years before I finally needed to replace it). I also hope that your kids work hard and uncomplainingly on school until your trip, and are rewarded with iPod fun for the journey.
jo and nic (we cross-posted earlier), I'm laughing at the wavering between frustration at not being consulted and the gratitude for a gift. I may have had that reaction once or twice before.... ;)
real, a bleating toddler is about the cutest thing I can imagine.
RR- Two hours at the climbing wall today. I was determined but still failed to climb a route I have tried the past couple times- maybe next week. My arms are so, so sore. There is also a lot of snow falling at the moment and I will have some major shoveling in the morning.
NRR- I stayed up late tonight writing grad school applications. I'm about half way finished. This is year two of applications, and this time I'm actually going to start school (assuming that I get accepted, that is...)
Thank you for your thoughts for SIL. I hear through my mom that all is well, baby was 8 lbs and a bit and brother is happy. That's all I've heard. I didn't call because I didn't want to be the low point of an otherwise happy day.
Lofty - I'm so sorry about your car! I hope it turns out to either be nothing or cheap.
MelW - Snow! We had a dusting in the hills here but nothing shovelable. I am glad that dh and I reinforced the donkey's shed. We made her a little nook to snuggle into and closed up the drafty bits and put her coat on. She seems happy enough and the gale that was forecast didn't seem to get as bad as predicted so that's nice.
Gaye - I loved looking at your pics of A Basin! That's where dh and I met and it was fun to show the girls the pictures.
Real - I agree, it's time to get very vocal. I think there is finally a real opportunity to drown out the voices of insanity and maybe make some headway against the gun toting free-for-all in this country.
Nic - Yup, btdt. How hard is it to get the right present? Honestly! Of course, that said, I don't have the tiniest shred of an idea of what to get dh for Christmas. And I've expressed my own disgust at not being given anything in the past so I feel like I'd better do unto others as I'd have them do unto me.
ETA: Sparkle Congrats on your A+! That's so great, for you and for your kids to see and for dh to see as well. As for untrained dogs, I feel your pain. In fact, my morning off today is slated to be spent washing the carpet upstairs to undo some of the damage done by our past-her-expiration-date dog. Good luck with the pooper.
I want snow. Sorry Nic, I know you hate the cold but I love snow, having the woodstove lit, walking and snowshoeing in the woods across the road from me, snow days with my kids (within reason, of course), snowmen and making igloos in the front yard - and the prospect for any of that looks bleak, just like it was last year. Just because I don't want to get stranded in any more blizzards like I did a few years ago doesn't mean I don't want any blizzards at all!! It is the week before Christmas and h raked the lawn this morning. Raked. Not dug out the car or skied to work, raked. My neighbour cut his grass last week. Ugh.
In the spirit of doing everything I can to minimize the stress I do have some control over through the upcoming holidays, h and I wrapped the kids' Christmas gifts this morning. He usually likes to wait until Christmas Eve and it is late because he doesn't get home until nearly midnight most years. I am relieved he agreed to do it and it was a nice time together, something I don't take for granted. Now it is done and everything is tucked away so I can focus on baking with the kids and dealing with the stresses I don't have much control over without worrying that getting stockings ready will be the thing that tips me right over into insanity.