Friday, January 30, 2009

Pagan No Longer

Lucy got some Holy Spirit when we were in Wisconsin.  

That was the primary purpose of our trip, in fact.  We figured, after much debate, that it would be nicer to have her baptized in Wisconsin around family than to have her baptized in our lovely parish here.  Well, one deciding factor was that I also know the priest at my mom's parish, so it wouldn't be a bunch of strangers not caring about this particular kid's baptism.  

You know you're in Wisconsin when 
the church is having a snow-blower 
raffle advertised in the narthex.

Almost all of our siblings made the trek to come to meet Lucy and be at her baptism.  The baptism itself was OK.  My mom had talked to Father M to set everything up and I had emailed him and the parish secretary as well.  The Bubba and I completed our faith formation classes at our parish here in Seattle and we got the OKs all around.

Lucy tried to do sit-ups to get out of the basin.  
Also, how many chins do you count in this photo?!

Father M decided that day the homily was going to be very hellfire and brimstone, which seemed a leeeetle out of place for a baptism. And the actual baptism only took about 6 minutes. Which was fine with me knowing that this was not our parish and not our regs.

Aaaaand, baptized.

It was fine and all, but next time?  I would definitely rather do it at our own parish where our friends know our baby and our own priest can do the honors. 

Monday, January 26, 2009

Aaaaaand I'm Back

I don't even know where to start anymore.  It's been so long and so much has happened since we last talked.  Things have happened!  I have news!  What to share first??

Let's start with the trip to Wisconsin, hmmm?  And the story of how NWA can suck it.

I very meticulously planned our flight out of Seattle for 9:00AM because that's Lucy's naptime.  And since we only live about a 20 minute drive from the airport, I figured we could still be there in time to check in manually (who does that anymore?) and check our luggage and not have to wake Lucy up too early or screw with her schedule too much.  The most I was worried about was that we've trained her so well to sleep in her bed that she doesn't go to sleep very well in our arms.

Well, I shouldn't have worried about that.  That would have been the least of it.  Tickets, check!  Luggage, check!  Security, check!  Waiting in line and boarding the plane, check!  Lucy fell asleep within seconds of boarding as the Bubba and I silently bowed to the baby gods of goodness.

Then we sat there.  On the plane.  At the gate.  For half an hour.  No one made any announcements.  No one knew what was going on.  I concentrated on keeping Lucy asleep for as long as possible (see: sitting as still as possible and making no noise even with my breathing) as everyone else in the cabin exchanged concerned looks and confused glances and nervous musings as to what could be going on.  Finally after 40 minutes, someone made an announcement that went something like: "There are mechanical issues with this plane that we knew about before you boarded, but we hoped we could just live with it, but as it turns out we can't.  So everybody off.  This flight's cancelled.  Oh, and here's an 800 number if you feel like rescheduling your flight."


No apology, no nothing.  The Bubba was on the phone before we even stood up in the aisle to deplane.  The noonish flight was already packed and with ba-zillions of standbys too.  So the soonest we could get on a flight to Minneapolis was 3:00PM.

We reserved seats on that flight and after deplaning we waited in a line of - oh- about a plane's worth of people to talk to a customer service person to get actual seats on the 3:00 flight and to make sure our luggage would still go through.  Several announcements were made "Don't talk to us about your luggage.  It will go to Minneapolis and if that's not your final destination, it will follow your original route and your bags will be waiting for you when you arrive at your destination."  Because the mechanical issue wasn't so bad that the plane was grounded.  It was going to Minneapolis to get fixed.  Nice.

But that would all be too easy, right?  The 3:00 flight was delayed.  And then delayed again.  And even though we were only 20 leeetle teeeny minutes from home, we were cajoled into waiting for 9 hours at the airport in Seattle before finally boarding a plane that was going to take us somewhere.

Lucy did remarkably well considering she hadn't taken a good nap all day and people were crabby and the Bubba and I were out of cheerful things to say to each other to keep ourselves from grumbling.  She melted down (and this is a Lucy melt down, mind you.  She's an incredibly laid back kid) for the first part of our flight to Minnesota and slept a little bit and played for an uncharacteristically long time with the in-flight barf bag.

Then she pooped so hard it came out of every part of the diaper.  Like a perfect storm of unfortunate events, the turbulence was bad and the fasten seat belt sign never went off for more than a minute or two of the flight.  So I changed her as best I could on my lap.  The poor child had wet poop t-shirt that I couldn't do anything about.

Then, because we got to Minneapolis so late, we had to sprint from our arrival gate to the departure gate of the last little puddle-jumper of the day that would take us to central Wisconsin.  We took the tram to the designated stop and then the Bubba took Lucy, put her under his arm and we ran through the people movers, through the empty-because-it's-10PM corridors, and arrived at the gate as they were about to close it.  The agent just said "Are you from the Seattle flight?  I'm glad you made it."  I was too out of breath for carrying two carry-ons and a roller bag and the Bubba was too mad at the situation to respond.  

There were five of us on the plane to Wisconsin crammed into the way back of a tiny plane in order to balance out the weight.  Blessedly, Lucy fell asleep and I sat very still in the contorted position I was in when she fell asleep for the 50 minute flight.

And that was that.   

Oh, wait.  Just kidding.  They lost our luggage.  

The luggage that we had to pay $15 for them to take.  We were told there was nothing they could do about it that night.

Saturday morning was the memorial for the Bubba's grandpa followed by the extended family Christmas party.  We went in jeans and t-shirts that we wore on the plane.  Lucy went in a poop stained onsie.  We called the customer service and luggage people on Saturday, and they said that our luggage had never even left Seattle. 

Eventually we got our luggage.  But the most frustrating part of the whole ordeal, and I mean everything, was that NO ONE was in charge.  No one knew what was going on, and no one was responsible for making decisions affecting us.  There was no one we could talk to to air our grievances because nobody cared.  I asked a man working the ticket counter who I could talk to about the ridiculous circumstances and horrible customer service.  He said "Um, well, I guess you could write a letter.  To, like, Customer Service."  Thanks, dude.  And then I dropped my ID and he (right next to me helping another customer with the check-in automated computer thingy) pointed at it and said "You dropped something." as I had to put down my purse, situate two bags and my daughter in my arms in order to bend down and get it.  Again, thanks, dude.

And then?  When we were flying home from Wisconsin and boarded the plane in Minneapolis/St. Paul, we sat in queue waiting to take off for an abnormally long amount of time.  While everyone looked around at each other wondering what the heck was going on.  And FINALLY the captain made an annoucement that there was an electrical malfunction with one of their gadgety do-dads in the cockpit and they were trying to get it to work.

This begs the question: does Northwest even have an airplane that works on the first try??  

So we taxied back to the gate to get someone to look at this gadgety do-dad, decide that it needed a new part, ORDER the new part to be sent to the gate, and install the part, and we waited.  And waited.  And waited.  Almost two hours later, we got back in queue on the runway.  No apologies.  No excuses.

Lucy had decided somewhere along the way that she had had enough traveling and that she was going to let everyone know in no uncertain terms.  And I couldn't have cared less.  " Cry, Lucy." I was saying to myself, "I know exactly how you feel.  You just scream."  And she did.

I have never in my whole life been so happy to get home.  And I have been carefully composing that strongly worded letter to NWA.  Oh yes, they will hear from me.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Just Get Me Through Today

Hey.  It's been a while.  I know.  I've just been trying to stay alive.

I've consumed maybe 700 total calories since Sunday afternoon at 3:00 maybe half of which has actually made it past my stomach into the rest of my digestive tract.  The Killer Flu - a little souvenir from Wisconsin.  

Thanks guys.

I told my Bubba that if I don't feel better by today that I would really just rather die.  And then I'd like to be cremated and stay in the closet.  And his new wife can hang her clothes next to my urn.

I'm alone with the girl today because there's no way the Bubba could take more work off (did I tell you about the layoffs going around??).  We'll just go ahead and see how that plays out.

Send some good thoughts my way, friends.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Quick Update

We made it. We're here. Some excitement getting here, but that's a topic for when I have more time to just let it all out.

Some fun facts!

-The high temp for today is NEGATIVE SEVEN. God help us.

-It was two degrees yesterday and the kids still went outside to play for the half-hour of recess. Then, I imagine, they all went to the school nurse with frostbite and phalanges falling off and things of that sort.

-The windchill today is NEGATIVE TWENTY TO THIRTY DEGREES and the kids still have school. Suckers.

-Lucy has somehow figured out how to perform an amazing blowout with every duce she drops. It's especially interesting when we're, say, in a really turbulent airplane that never turns off the seatbelt sign.

-My future imaginary house will have a big beautiful fireplace. Mmmmm. Delicious.

-Lucy is in absolute love with all her little cousins that entertain her. So am I. I've decided without a doubt that a baby should automatically come with a nine-year-old indentured servant.

-It the Bubba's THIRTIETH birthday. Happy Birthday, old man. Sure do love you.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Standard Miscommunication

I was making some calls for my biz the other day.  And I called a place that was called something like A-1 Cleansing Service or something to that effect (what?  I'm not going to give out free advertising!) to see if they foresee any cleaning positions opening in the summer for some students to fill.  This is kind of how the conversation went:

Lady: Hello?
Me: Could I speak with the person in charge of hiring?
Lady: ...   Hiring? ...
Me: (a little unsettled) I'm calling to inquire about any positions that may be open this summer.
Lady:  (long pause) ...  Positions? ...

I'm starting to wonder if I am indeed speaking English.  Um, I think I am.  Let's try again shall we?

Me: I'd like to know if you have positions opening in the summer.  I'm looking for jobs for students.
Lady: ...  I'm sorry .... ????

Ok.  Deep breath.  One more try.

Me:  Um, what kind of business do you have?
Lady:  Oh, I do psychic readings and home cleansings!

AH.  I get it!  Cleansings!  Not a janitorial job for sure.   Also?  How well do you read people, lady?  It took eleventy thousand years of uncomfortable pauses for ME to get us to ground we could both stand on.

Me:  Oh, well, I guess I can't help you.  I don't think any of my students have "the gift".

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

5 Months

Lucy is 5 months old today!  

I'm what!?

Seriously.  Where does the time go, people?  I know I say that every month, but REALLY.  She's growing out of her infant seat.  She's trying to sit up on her own.  She's a little PERSON.  

Her eyes are still blue.  We're still not sure how that one happened.  Our little genetic anomaly (I say that with such fondness, Boo).

Comere, bear!

She's started doing this singing thing when she's bored or wants attention that just cracks me up.  A high pitched "EEeeeeeeeeeemmmmm" while she closes her eyes and lifts her chin up.  It gets the job done, I suppose.  We started calling her Churtle.  Because she's a cross between a chicken hawk with that tuft of hair on her head that seldom lays down and a turtle when she sticks her neck out and straightens her chins.

She just keeps getting more and more fun!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

We're Leaving. On a Jet Plane.

I've got a busy week going on.  Not like there's something to do morning afternoon and evening (well, besides Lucy, Lucy, Lucy), but there's something to do at least every day.  And that's already a lot.

I'm trying to get organized for our trip to Wisconsin this Friday.  Ugh.  I can't even brainstorm a list of things to do before we go because there's just so much I want to do that I don't even want to see it written down.  I know only 2 or 3 things are going to be crossed off the list, so I have to make them count.

Laundry is number one.  I mean, since I have three outfits that fit me that I wear every single day, that's kind of important.  Also must remember that relatives have washer/dryers.  Other than that, I love to leave a clean house.  I'd love to have the time/energy/patience/motivation to change sheets and dust and move all the furniture when I mop the kitchen and bathroom or vacuum the rest of the house.  But who are we kidding?  

Maybe I'll put "sweep" on the list.

We're pretty excited to get back to the midwest again.  My Bubba is one of 7 children and I am one of 5, and it will be a kind of family reunion.  All of his siblings are converging in WI for his grandma's "Christmas" celebration this weekend, and all of mine are getting together next weekend to meet Lucy and for her baptism.  It will be the first time that our siblings will all be together since our wedding.  We haven't met our nephew yet and none of my brothers have met Lucy.  So it's kind of a big deal.

So then there's Lucy.  She's 5 months old tomorrow!  She's an active kid, too.  If she's not on her own kicking and rolling, she likes to be walked around.  Any advice from travelers out there about stuff to bring to keep her occupied on a 5 hour flight?  (Carrie, how did you keep Ethan happy?)

Monday, January 5, 2009

Promises, Promises...

I was sitting here wondering what I’m hungry for this week so I can make a list and go to the grocery store. And of course I’m doing this while watching Tyler Florence on the Food Network. I love him. I think I would love every single thing that he makes. And sometimes I convince myself that I have nothing better to do with my days than hang out in my kitchen and of course! I can make that super-duper labor intensive mediocre-looking meal!  Then I either get frustrated and sad that I’m actually a mom with things that I need to do and a crying baby that interrupts me or the fresh ingredients rot in their bags in my fridge before they become the masterpiece envisioned.

One of those infomercials came on for this fancy-pants peeler. You can use it either way! You can peel a two-by-four with it and then peel a tomato! It comes with a stand so now it’s a mandolin! And now put this attachment on and you make perfect julianned vegetables!

I want one of those infomercials to promise things like: Put on the hose attachment and BAM! your dishes are done! BUT WAIT! That’s not all! We will include a sous-chef that you can choose from a collection of online photos and profiles!  BUT WAIT! That’s not all! We will come to your town and find friends for you who will LOVE the way you julianne your vegetables and tell you how pretty you look while you do it!

Then I’d buy that shit for sure.

Friday, January 2, 2009

In Which I Play a Sexy Sassy Secretary

So!  About this New Years Eve party our friends threw.  It was a Mad Men theme party.  

Meet Lizzie as Joan Holloway:


Not too shabby, eh?  Well, maybe not quite as smokin', but I can try... 

And the Bubba was The Bubba In a Skinny Tie.  He doesn't watch Mad Men.

Then Lizzie drank too much champagne on an I-Forgot-To-Eat-Dinner-Because-I-Was-Excited-About-Dressing-Up-For-A-Party tummy.  And that means that the Bubba woke up with the baby and let me sleep for most of New Year's Day.  And then we ate junk food like pizza and Coke all day and were entirely too lazy to do things like dishes.

Here's to starting an already AWESOME 2009!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Year In Review

I consider this past year to be a success.  I'm fatter and poorer than this time last year, but I'm happy!

We went on vacation out of the country not once but twice.  I started blogging.  The Bubba passed his PE exam with flying colors.  We rearranged things so that I could stay home full time and work on the foundations of my business.

Oh, and, you know, we had a kid.  

I certainly have learned a lot this year.  Like snowshoeing is fun.  And when you work for yourself you have to be wicked motivated.  Or that it's amazingly satisfying to help your husband reach a goal.  And being part of a community like the one we found at our church makes all the difference between being lonely and feeling settled, finally.

And I learned things like being joyful about menial tasks repeated day after day is actually possible when it's changing diapers and feeding your own baby.  Also? Babies are expensive.  Don't let anyone try to convince you otherwise.  Also?  Babies are awesome.

In 2009 I'm looking forward to seeing family in the Midwest, watching my baby grow and develop and have her first birthday, getting my business going for realz, and sinking in to the life that we've made here.

I resolve to be healthy and happy and continue to grow and learn in my all of my various roles.

Happy New Year, friends.  I hope 2009 holds great things for all of you.