Thursday, September 11, 2008

Seven years ago

I forgot what today's date was until I was driving to work this morning. They were getting ready to observe the moment of silence marking when the first plane hit the WTC. I remember seven years ago today like it was yesterday. I found out about the World Trade Center when the alarm on my clock radio went off. It was set so the radio came on instead of the buzzer. I think I had hit the snooze the first time, because the first thing I remember hearing was the DJ saying this couldn't be an accident. Two planes couldn't hit the same building only minutes apart.

I ran into the next room and turned on the TV, then picked up the phone and attempted to call my best friend, Jen. She was living in Manhattan at the time. I was pretty sure she wouldn't have been in the building, but I just needed to be sure. She was inbetween jobs at the time, and sometimes she went to the half-price ticket booth on the ground floor for Broadway tickets or to go to the bank. The only time I was ever in the twin tower was with her to buy tickets to a Broadway show.

Of course, I couldn't get through to her. Getting calls through to Manhattan that day was nearly impossible. Not knowing what else to do, I went to work and listened to the radio coverage as events unfolded -- the plane hitting the Pentagon, all planes being grounded, the plane crashing in the field in Pennsylvania. What was going to happen next?

Jen e-mailed me that afternoon to let me know that she and her boyfriend Jonathan were safe. They had watched the towers fall from the roof of their apartment building on the upper west side. I sat at my desk and cried when I read the e-mail.

That night and the days to follow I watched the TV coverage for hours. I knew we would never be the same. Everything had changed one Tuesday morning in September.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Things my grandma taught me...

My grandmother isn't doing very well lately. My mom and my uncle moved from assisted living into the nursing home last week. I sounds like she may not be with us much longer. She sleeps all the time, and only eats a few bites at each meal. Scott asked me if I wanted to go see her, but I've decided not to. It's a 6-hour drive, and it sounds like she wouldn't really know that we are there. Besides, I think I'd rather remember her the way she was. Maybe it's selfish of me, but I don't want my last memory to be of her lying in a bed at the nursing home.

Needless to say, I've been thinking about my grandma a lot lately. I've started putting together a list in my head of things my grandma taught me when I was growing up.

My grandma taught me ...
  • How to pluck a chicken, gut it, and cut it up to fry
  • That it is okay to reach at the table as long as you keep one foot on the floor (farm hand manners 101)
  • How to make three meals out of one (never waste the left-overs)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Mean Mommy

My mother-in-law thinks I'm a mean mommy. We decided it was time to move Jack out of his crib this weekend and into his new "big boy" bed. We have been trying for weeks to convince him that he is a big boy, and that big boys sleep in "big boy beds." His response -- "Mama, I'm a baby. I sleep in there" (as he points to his crib).

So on Sunday, while he was busy playing, I had Scott take the mattress out his crib and hide it in the basement. When it was time for bed that night, I told Jack he had to sleep in the new big boy bed because his old bed was broke. He, of course, didn't believe me and ran into the nursery to check out the crib. He wanted in the crib, so I picked him up and set him in on the bare springs, and said, "See it's broken. You can't sleep in there or you'll fall through."

Jack didn't like that one bit. He began to wail. He was absolutely heartbroken. He kept sobbing, "My bed broken." I felt terrible. He calmed down after a few minutes, and was resigned to sleep in his new bed. So, he grabbed a few of his favorite bed-time toys from his old room, and went into his new room. We tucked him in, and he slept all night.

The second night was must easier. He went into his old room to see if his bed was fixed, but just shrugged and said, "my bed still broken," and climbed into his new bed. He is, however, convinced that a monster lives in his new room. He doesn't seem too afraid of it, but he tells me each night when I turn out the light that there's a monster over there (as he points to the corner). I told him that when he see the monster, just to tell it to go away. He seems okay with that for the moment.

Needless to say, my mother-in-law thought it was terrible that we tricked Jack into sleeping in his new room. Guess I'm just not as patient as she is. Jack's so stubborn he'd probably have slept in his crib until his legs hung out the ends.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Bold move

We are in the process of renovating our kitchen. No new cabinets (too expensive), but we stripped some really ugly wallpaper off the walls. Of course, when the wallpaper came off it took half the old paint with it. So instead of just being able to paint, we had to patch and sand the walls first. That took most of last weekend. Did I mention we have been working on this project off and on all since June?

Anyway, today it was finally time to buy paint. I must have looked at over a 100 paint swatches and idea books the past week. Apparently, it is now the style to choose coordinating paint colors for adjoining walls. Like it isn't hard enough to pick one color, now you have to pick two or three that all go together, and they have to still look like they go with your kitchen countertop, cabinets, and the trim. In my old house, every wall was painted off white, so painting walls colors is a big step for me. While I can help anyone decorate their homes, I am terrible in choosing things for my own.

Scott, being a typical male, was no help. His selections were all either way too dark or just plain ugly. So, I took the plunge, grabbed three paint swatches that looked good in one of the idea books, and marched to the counter where they mixed up my colors.

I guess we will just have to wait and see how it goes. If we ever actually get the paint up on the walls, I'll post the pictures!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Half-way Shopping

I spent the day doing what I call half-shopping. I spent half my time shopping, and half my time keeping track of my husband and 2-year-old son. It's not very productive to say the least. We drove over an hour into the suburbs to shop at IKEA. If you've never been to IKEA, it's three levels of everything you could possibly need for your home. Style is modern, prices are cheap. As far as I'm concerned, it's pretty close to heaven.

I don't get to go there very often, so I'm not happy unless I get to walk through every inch of the store and fill my cart with cool new things. To my husband this is torture. He likes IKEA, but he wants to speed shop. Have the list of things you need ready, run through the store and throw it in the cart, get in the shortest check-out line possible, and be back on he road home in less than an hour. Jack complicates things by wanting to run around and jump on all the beds and play with all the toys in the kid section. Makes it hard for me to shop and makes my husband want to leave even sooner.

Well to make a long story short, I did end up buying most of what I went after, but would have like to spend more time looking. We stopped at the outlet mall on the way home. More half-shopping at Children's Place. Lots of bargains, but I was just pulling shirts and shorts off the rack (next year's sizes) and shoving them into the shopping bag. I spent around $25 can came home with a full bag, but I'll have to dig them out later to see what I bought.

Followed up Children's Place with about 10 minutes at Lane Bryant to buy a couple shirts for myself (it's end of summer, and I feel like I wear the same clothes over and over again). I hate having to shop at Lane Bryant, but ever since I've had Jack I haven't been able to lose any weight. I'm tipping the scales at around 215 these days. I wasn't exactly light before the pregnancy, but I was well under 200 lbs. I didn't even gain a lot weight during the pregnancy. I kept the weight gain around 30 lbs even with gestational diabetes. It was after I stopped breast feeding that the big gain started. It was like I blinked and all the weight I lost having Jack was back and then some. Arghh!

Oh, and I almost forgot, we stopped at Trader Joe's to buy a few things we can't get at the grocery stores here in town. I love that store -- wish we had one closer!

My day of shopping ended around 3:30 pm. It wasn't exactly leisurely, but I guess it will have to tide me over for a while. I'll be lucky if Scott lets me step foot in another store this weekend!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Something new...

Thought I would try something new and start my own blog. Don't really think many people will read it. Just feeling the need to express myself in a different way. Guess I'm getting old, because I'm starting to feel like life is passing me by. I haven't kept up with all the new website software and social networking sites. I've been busy the past three years getting married, having a baby, etc. My house is a mess, my life is disorganized -- and I've lost touch with most of my friends. Lately I've been feeling lost -- I'm not Sara anymore; I'm just Jack's mom.