Monday, March 23, 2009

Crystal & the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Morning

So today had to be the worst morning ever. No kidding. I am starting to get to a point where I think I can laugh at it so I figured I would share for the amusement of all. I got up this morning for a normal Monday and started getting ready. After my shower, I wasn't feeling great, which is not terribly unusual for me at that point in the morning. I managed to make it to breakfast and typically I feel much better after I eat my cheerios. Today, though I was still a little iffy even after breakfast. I gagged a little on my stupid horse pill of a prenatal vitamin and almost lost my breakfast but managed to "hold it in"- yes Robin, I can do that sometimes, and continued on with quickly getting ready so I would not make Tommy late to work. I hurried into the car, the new car by the way, to finish my hair and makeup on the way to work. A few minutes after leaving, I started really feeling bad again so I laid my seat back and closed my eyes for a little bit to try to feel better. About half way through the drive, I seemed to be feeling better so I sat back up to try to get my makeup done before we got to work. 30 seconds later, I realized that I apparently was not feeling better and tried to lay back again to salvage myself. Apparently, it was too late. I yelled at Tommy to pull over, and poor guy tried, but when you are on N 287 in the fast lane with a tiny left shoulder, there is only so much you can do. I couldn't hold back any longer, and threw up all over my work clothes, Tommy's car, and my purse. He did manage to get pulled over in time for me to get my 2nd & 3rd wave out the side of the car, hoping none of the zooming cars going by was going to take off the car door or my head. Some stupid jerk actually honked at us. Why do you honk at the poor pregnant lady puking out of the side of her car? Like anyone does that intentionally!
At that point, we decided we would need to turn around and go home to clean up. Since our friends, Aubra & Andrew, that Tommy works with, saw us on the side of the road, Tommy didn't need much of an alibi. I tried to clean myself up as best as possible with a few napkins that Tommy had in his car but there were just not enough napkins. I spent the 20 minute drive home (with the window cracked for Tommy's sake) afraid to move, because I was afraid I would just spread the mess. Tommy thought that I should probably just stay home after all that and by the time we got home, I decided he was probably right. To make matters worse, when I was trying to get all my stuff out of the car, I accidentally dumped my makeup bag out into the vomit... and I broke my only eyelash comb. :-( In assessing the damage, I determined that a simple handwashing and changing clothes was not going to cut it. I was going to need a full shower, wash my hair, everything. Basically my whole day had to be reset. Showering again starts the getting ready process over and I would need to try to eat breakfast again since I had lost everything I had eaten that morning. By the time I rinsed my clothes out and got them in the wash and did all that, it would be 10:30 or 11 at the earliest by the time I could get myself back to work. On top of all that, I still wasn't feeling great and would definitely not be moving at my fastest.
I decided it would be a better use of Cook Children's money to pay me for a day of earned vacation/sick day rather than pay me for a whole day when I was only going to get in 5 hours or so of actual work time. I also wasn't completely sure if this was just pregnancy sick or if maybe I was actually sick. After breakfast was a very unusual time for me to be so sick, especially the last couple of weeks since I have been feeling so much better. It would be hard for me to commit to coming in late not knowing if I was actually going to feel up to going at all. So I called in and took a sick day. I feel a little guilty, but I have done very well and not taken any days off even when I was so super sick early on in the first trimester. I was pretty sure that I wouldn't be leaving much work for my team members that couldn't wait until I go back tomorrow. So I got myself cleaned up and got my clothes in the washer and tried to eat something. My appetite is not quite back today and I really haven't felt great but I haven't been throwing up again. I took a long nap and have been lounging around, trying to redeem the rest of my day. Hopefully, the excitement is over for today and tomorrow I can go back to my typical second trimester self, not throwing up out the side of cars. Tommy and I will probably be looking for a good car wash today, someone that will shampoo the interior perhaps. Tommy did his best to clean up the car, but I am a little concerned that it will never quite be the same.

On a happier note, everyone has been asking when we will find out the baby's gender, so I thought I would go ahead and share that we should find out at our next sonogram on Good Friday, April 10. We will definitely update you all as soon as we find out. Here's hoping that tomorrow will be better!!


Saturday, March 21, 2009

Smallz in the City: Part 2

Alright, so I was hoping I would not have to update this quite so quickly but the drama with Smallz has continued. Today, we decided that the training had been going pretty well with the electric fence and we decided to put the dogs outside while we ran a couple of errands close by. As Smallz had barely been brave enough to leave the deck, we were not terribly concerned that he would try anything. Of course, as we have been so many times before, we were wrong.
As we were completing our errands, Tommy got a call from a random number on his cell phone. I was on the other line and didn't click over since I didn't know who it was. Tommy checked the voicemail a few minutes later, and sure enough it was our neighbor that lives behind us. They have gotten to know Smallz pretty well over the last couple of weeks, so we are on a first name basis now. When we called, she confirmed that he still had the shock collar on and Tommy was so angry! He was in the car ranting about how we wasted all that money on the electric fence and that Smallz will never leave his kennel again. I wasn't quite ready to give up on the wireless fence myself. When we got home, Smallz was tied to our back fence on the neighbor's side, still wearing the collar. Tommy tossed the collar over to me and I examined the back fence to figure out how he escaped. We were able to figure out what he has been doing. He has figured out that he can just push out the back chain link fence at one place where he had previously dug it out of the ground. He doesn't even have to dig anymore and I am sure he can get out in less than 30 seconds if he wants to.
While checking the fence, I noticed that the collar did not seem to be working. I brought the collar inside to try to check the battery, thinking that maybe Smallz's escape had run it down really quick. As I came into the house, I remembered that sometime in the middle of the night, I had turned the receiver off because the red light was in my eyes. So, we went to the bedroom to check it and sure enough, it was still off. So much for consistency. My bad...... So, we are somewhat relieved that he didn't just push through the shock out of sheer stubborn will, but I am sure he is more confused than ever now that we have it on and it is shocking him again. Last time he went outside, he tried to go to that back corner again but he high-tailed it back to the deck as soon as it started shocking him. Now he is afraid to go outside. So tomorrow, our friend Joe is going to come over and help Tommy fix the back fence so he will no longer be able to escape in that particular way. We won't leave them out there again unsupervised until that is fixed. So, between the electric fence and the real fence, hopefully we will be able to keep him in the yard again. Tommy called it "first line of de-fence" and "2nd line of de-fence." So, back to the kennels for the doggies today while we are out. Hopefully, Smallz won't be mad and poop in it again. I am pretty sure he is just about the craziest dog I have ever known. He's sulking now because we won't let him escape.
All the while, we have been watching everybody else's dogs because we don't get a spring break so of course we are still in town while a lot of our friends got to get away for a few days. We have had some challenges keeping our friends, Shaun & Lauren's dogs in their yard as well. They have a beagle-pug mix that is every bit as smart as Smallz and just as keen on escaping. Crazy beagles! She managed to figure out that if she ran fast enough she could get her chain that was keeping her tied off to just unlatch and let her free. We managed to get her back and had to wrap the chain around her collar twice and attach it to itself and she has not been able to get that off yet. Hopefully, we will have no more escaping dogs this weekend. We have had quite enough.....
Hopefully our next post will actually be about the baby as I am sure that most of you are much more curious about that. Here's hoping that we will finally be able to solve this problem permanently!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Smallz in the City

Hello World! I have decided to join the blogging world with our own personal blogspot to record the daily happenings of our growing family. I figure with a baby on the way, I've got to start doing mom things, right? So here goes...
Many of you have met or at least heard stories of our infamous dogs, Smallz and Maximus. We got Smallz first, bought and paid for a full-bred beagle... What were we thinking? Maximus was an unexpected addition as our friends found him as a tiny puppy, alone on the side of the road, and we (as if Tommy had a say....) decided to keep him. Smallz has had many escapades and adventures in his 4 short years and I am pretty sure he's got a few guardian angels that stay busy keeping him out of danger. Some of you may remember his travels in Abilene, to include a visit to the county hospital (running loose in the hallways), a grocery store, a trip to Anson, and a very focused study of a yellow plastic road marker in the middle of Ambler with cars dodging every which way to avoid him. Things have been fairly quiet for Smallz the last couple of years and he has become a bit overweight and complacent over time. But no more! Smallz apparently made a new year's resolution to have some more adventures and was able to successfully escape our yard at least 10 times in a 2 week period. He has met several of the neighbors and even found some other dogs to join in one of the adventures with him. He also got to spend several afternoons at the grandparents' house (Tommy's parents had to rescue him for us multiple times) and an afternoon showing our friend Landon the weaknesses in his yard.
Where is Max in all of this, you ask? Chilling at home in the backyard. He has apparently figured out that when Smallz gets out, he waits for no one, and thus had been left behind in a strange place one time too many. Max is the ever obedient man's best friend. I am certain that Smallz has called him a goody-2-shoes at least once.
We have spent a lot of time the past few weeks trying to patch up Smallz's escape routes, each time thinking we had it fixed, and each time coming home to a yard with only one dog. Smallz has some serious Navy Seal ops going back there, even digging under barbed wire without scratching himself. His most recent escapes have been very houdini, with no obvious signs of where he could possibly have gotten out. We hate that we are having to put both dogs in kennels for 9 hours a day, so we broke down and bought an electric fence. We went for the wireless one for the convenience of easy set up, but it was not cheap. Smallz has a collar that beeps and then provides a static "correction" anytime he gets too close to the boundaries. The boundaries are a bit odd as you have to set it up in a radius with the indoor receiver in the center of the circle, but we have managed to block his access only to the back few feet and the fenceline of one side of the yard where he has tended to escape most frequently. We started the training today and Smallz definitely did not like the "correction" he received. Now he's a bit nervous to even leave the deck but we are trying to show him where he can safely go. I know it sounds cruel but it is much better than getting hit by a car. Hopefully, this will work, but I am still nervous that he will be so stubborn that he just pushes through to get out, or he may figure out a way to get that collar off. We will keep you updated. I have been trying to tell Smallz that he has given me quite enough material to write a series of children's books about his escapades and we do not need any more chapters, but he tends to have selective hearing. I guess he is just preparing us for kids.