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DONE!!!!

Home!!

Kids v tired/crabby/whiny but they had a good time.

Felt good about test but I won't tempt fate by discussing it much.

Sort of irritated with friend who bailed on dog sitting two hours before we left on Friday. Found a replacement but the dogs were v. happy to see us.

Watching friends dog until Sunday. Nice dog but she is v. wary of Frisco and curled her lip at him. This scares me.

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Half way done for today. Feeling pretty good. Resisting strong urge to look up answers.

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Ho-hum

Feb. 22nd, 2010 08:57 am
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We got another 2-3 inches of snow last night.  It's so pretty outside, even if all the snow is a pain.  Yesterday, there were half-inch long ice crystals on everything - branches, signs, mailboxes, etc.  The combination of the snow and the foggy/filtered sunlight gave the mountain this amazing depth this morning.  I was able to see ridges and outcroppings that had always just blended before.

Sunday morning at 3:30, Ellie woke up and puked everywhere.  I changed all the sheets (without waking up Frisco  - a real accomplishment) and we all went back to bed.  She woke up again at 5:30 puking, but after that, she was fine although she obviously didn't feel well all day Sunday.  Then last night (or this morning, I suppose), I woke up at 3:30 feeling nauseous and hungry at the same time.  I finally ate some cereal at 7 because I was so hungry.  Amazingly, the nausea has gone away although my intestines are still telling me that somehting is not quite right.  I'm taking encouragement from the fact that Ellie is feeling better.  As long as I'm fine by bedtime tonight, I don't care.

Joe and the kids and I are leaving for Denver tonight after work.  They are going to hang out at the hotel tomorrow and Wednesday while I take the test.  Joe didn't want to keep them overnight on his own (well, mainly Frisco since he's still nursing) and I actually think I will be much happier and able to sleep better if the kids are there.  I've never spent a night away from Frisco and I don't want to lay there all night thinking about it/him when I'm trying to get rest.
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If I fail this test next week, nothing bad will happen.  I will re-take the test in July.  It will cost me $600, and I will lose the $200 from the hotel, but that's it.  I will re-sell my books that I bought and won't need next time around.  I will still be licensed in NC and I will still be able to do the job that I want.  My husband, kids, and friends will all still love me.

Someone told me I need to be more optimistic, and I get their point, but the truth is, what I need to know is that it will be okay no matter what happens.  And now that I've worked that out, I've freed myself (as much as possible) to just take the test.

I don't actually think that thinking through the "what-if" worst case scenario is bad or borrowing trouble or whatever.  Both times Joe was deployed, it helped me some to think about how I would handle it if he died.  I didn't *want* him to die, but I just needed to know that I would be okay.  I realize that it would probably be more awful than I realize, but I  don't like the implication that I'm a downer or something because I'm mentally preparing for less than happy outcomes.

Anyway, back to the acceptance part.  I don't want to fail, but if I do, I'll just take the test again in July and I will be, by default, more prepared.
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I took a brief break from studying today to go pick up Ellie's kindergarten registration packet.  Turns out that our "full-day" kindergarten here is really a half day kindergarten plus half day "enrichment" (but with her teacher in her same room).  The difference is that we have to pay $1800 a school year for her to be in full day K that ends at 3:00.  Do you see where I'm going here?  There is no after care program at her school.  So while I want her to do full day, I have to find someone to watch her from 3:00-4:00, which is when I'm usually done working, assuming I find enough work, but that is a different post.

I called Ft. Carson's after care program since we are so close.  They do after care (only $140 a month so $1260 for the year) but they won't go get her because they don't bus outside their district.  We could, perhaps, send her to school on Ft. Carson but we live in a better district and we are planning on staying her, so that's not really a long term solution.

Next up - meet our new neighbors and see if she can hang at someone's house for an hour after school.  I actually have a possibility (our friends live two blocks away.  Their son is 11 - will he still be in elementary next year, i'll have to check.   I think Ellie could walk home with him and they have an au pair at home.  Ellie loves being at their house (they have cats) and Ellie loves their son, but he's a little weirded out by the attention from a 4 year old girl.

Names

Feb. 11th, 2010 06:26 pm
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Ellie's class:

Rhiannon
Daniel
Sonny
Reagan (girl)
Layla
Celina
Nicholas
Jayden
Christine
Kylie
Ellie
Dmetrie
Jayden
Alex
Joshua
Eleina
Kayla
Jonathan
Ella
Jada
Akayla
Thomas

Frisco's class:
Makai (boy)
Khloe
Alejandro
Ember
Aurora
Jayden
Elam
Maxxx
Leland
Sendoa (boy)
Jaihden
Frisco
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Ramblings on Scoring and Studying ) Today's plan:

8:45-9:00 - review T&E outline
9:00-10:00 - property and evidence MC questions
10:00-12:00 - Contracts lectures
12:00-1:00 - lunch, fold laundry, watch White Collar
1:00-3:00 - more contracts
3:00-3:30 - walk dogs; more contracts
3:30 - breathe for a moment before I get the kids
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So, job interview tomorrow. Of course, Frisco came home clingy which quickly motphed into sleepy demands to nurse. He fell asleep at about 5 and slept till 8. At 8, I did everything the doctors have suggested for his occasional dry cough. (I think it's a post RSV thing. I'm certain he had it in PR months ago.). Of course, as usual nothing works. We nurse/cough/doze in a daze until I finally had had enough. I drove to Walgreens in my pajamas and got some Delsym. ( Not to be used on kids under four although it was still approved when Ellie was born.) I gave him the Dr. Sears recommended dose and now, finally, he's asleep in my arms.

He gets this cough often and nothing works but the good/bad stuff. But he'll never get better if he can't rest. And now, to bed myself. I'm just praying he wakes up well enough to go to school. At least until 1, although Joe will take him if Frisco is too sick.

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I'm supposed to be studying for the bar exam but I keep being interrupted by flashbacks and memories from the last time.  I'm plugging away, sort of, but I'm just not as motivated as I was the last time.  Of course, there are several reasons for that.  First, the last one cost me over $3K, mostly because I took a bar review course. I think for this one, I'm up to maybe $800.  Five years ago, Joe was deployed, Ellie was a newborn, and my dad put off heart surgery so my mom could stay with me while I studied.  So, you know, lots of pressure.  And this time, the stakes aren't as high since I'm already practicing law and the kind of law that I like.

But the main reason is the whole flashback thing.  Every time I open a book or answer a question, I'm flooded with memories of our house in North Carolina, looking out the back windows at the huge green canopy of trees, being 9 months pregnant with Ellie, sitting on the couch with a dog on either side, listening to a lecture, watching the Tour De France with my mom each day before cracking open a book, and on and on.  And of course then I find myself remembering how alone I was before my mom got there, Joe in Iraq (where he's headed again), a little tiny baby who changed my life, and so on. 

Overall, I'm so much happier than I was five years ago.  I wish I could explain how much giving birth changed how I view myself.  I just felt broken and like such a failure post-miscarriage.  I don't know why it hit me so hard, but it was huge.  And I was so angry.  I wanted nothing to do with babies or nurturing or anything soft like that.  And then I spent those nine months I was pregnant mostly alone.  Joe was deployed and I really turned inward.  But inward at that point meant Ellie - I didn't know her yet, but I had this amazing baby growing inside me and it saved me.  I don't know - I suppose it sounds kind of hokey, but I really think that having Ellie brought me back to who I was.  Now, five years later, I feel like me again.  Life is way more chaotic and messy, but I like it.  And passing the bar or not passing won't change that.  Which is maybe why I'm having such a hard time focusing.  But I really don't want to not pass so I guess I need to get cracking.
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1.  Ellie and Joe got back from Florida on Thursday night.  It was fun having them gone, but it was really nice to have them back.  The house is a mess again, but I'm actually sort of encouraged to know that the mess is not due to me (seriously, the house was picked up and clean the entire time they were gone), but is due to the fact that I live with three people who can't/aren't very interested in keeping away the clutter.

2.  We watched the extended version of Return of the King yesterday.  I've always liked the book/movie, but I'd only seen the movie maybe twice.  Anyway, I liked the extended version a lot.  The new scenes added to the characters and I loved the music.  I enjoyed recognizing themes I would have missed the first time around.  Also, it was fun to introduce Ellie to Eowyn.  Ellie was a little worried that Eowyn was going into battle "without her daddy" (I suppose she meant Theoden, but daddys protecting their little girls is big around here), but Ellie thought it was cool when Eowyn slew the Witch King and that was fun for me to see.

3.  I could write a long post about the US military and Haiti.  I guess it comes down to I'm glad that our troops are doing something that I personally can be proud of.  Not that I'm not supportive of proud of those who currently serve, but I'm not 100% behind the mission, as it were.  I was telling Joe that if he had to go spend a year in Haiti, I'd be feeling pretty positive about it.  Like we'd miss him but feel like our sacrifice was serving the greater good. I just don't feel that way about Iraq.  He understood my point and agrees with me, I think.  I suppose I should say that i don't really think the Army is the best tool for nation building/peacekeeping (see Iraq), but how nice to go to a place where you are actually needed and the people want you there.

4.  I will now get offline for the rest of the day.  I'm supposed to be studying for the bar.  It's just not as scary this time around so I'm not as motivated to get studying. 

5.  Oh, and I found out that I have to drive to Alamosa (3.5 hours from where I live) on Frisco's birthday.  Frisco doesn't know it's his birthday and I should be home in time to pick him up, but I'm sort of bummed about it.  Plus, I'm going out of a sense of obligation, and I will learn stuff, but I'm just going to be observing something (since it's not immigration court and I haven't passed the bar in CO at this point), instead of actually representing someone.  That's a long way to drive on a pro bono case for a hearing in which I will mostly just sit.  But I feel like my sense of professionalism requires that I go, so I'm going.

6.  Okay, one last thing.  I've been riding my bike to pick the kids up/drop them off at daycare.  We live on the side of a mountain so it's basically downhill for 5 miles t drop them off and them 5 miles back up to get home.  I do it in the morning so I don't have to pull their extra wait up the mountain.  But the cool thing is that I'm really enjoying it.  I had been running but was just totally lacking in motivation.  But the bike I love.  The view is so great (Cheyenne Mountain and then the city of Colorado Springs below) and I get to see foxes and deer.  So i'm going to keep doing that as long as it's above freezing in the morning.

Irritated

Jan. 9th, 2010 01:01 pm
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Generally, I get along well with my parents. Over Christmas, I took my computer and power cord when we went to visit. I never took the cord into the house but I assume Joe did because it wasn't in the car. When it came time to leave, my dad insisted that all the cords laying around the house belonged to them. (we all have Mac laptops.). I had never brought mine in or seen one I thought was mine so I assumed that mine was in a bag somewhere.

When I unpacked, no power cord. So I called and my mom thought they had an extra but my dad said no, they were all theirs. They were on their way to see my brother so I asked them to check when they got home. I called today and asked my dad if hey had an extra one lying around. He said no, ifthey sent me one, they would have to go buy one. Well, I don't want that; I just want mine back.

Joe and have been sharing since we got back but Joe is headed to Florida tomorrow. I'd be happy to just buy one but they are $80 and money is tight until next payday. But I need my computer for work, although we do have a desktop downstairs.

But I'm sort of mad at my dad because last September he visited and left with my power cord despite swearing that he didn't have it. And I asked him twice.

The one lesson learned is that when I do get a cord, I'm putting my name on it with permanent marker.

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Tired

Jan. 6th, 2010 09:57 am
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For some reason, Frisco was up last night from 2-4:30.  I t started because the dogs were whining to go out, but usually he can get back to sleep.  We played choo-choos, ate raisins, and then I dozed on the couch while he watched Diego.  I was in awe of him - three episodes of Diego in the middle of the night and barely a yawn.

This morning we went and had his second cavity filled.  I got to see the whole thing, which was cool.  It was fairly deep and then, *I* spotted a very tiny spot on another tooth, so they filled that too, free of charge!  There were a lot of tears, but it went quick and he was fine afterward.
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For my thoughts (ok, not actually *my* words, but words that express my thoughts better than I could) on End of Time, (click here.) 

Two notes

  *one, that's a link to the DW account of one of my favorite DW fic writers.  Plus, she has lots of awesome screencaps.
  *obviously, there are many spoilers.
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We are having a big party here tomorrow afternoon and part of my goal today was to clean the house. But our vacuum has been not working well for a while. Joe came home with a new vacuum - a cheapie - and it was awesome. I vacuumed the entire house (three floors) even though I was planning on waiting until tomorrow because it worked so well. When I was done, the entire canister was filled with dirt, dust, and dog hair. I was sort of shocked because I hadn't realized how much crap was on the floor, although I should know after living in a tile floor house for three years.

The only bad thing - I dropped the canister on my big toe and now the nail is turning black.
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Two night ago, I didn't sleep well. I have no idea why but I was awake every hour or so. Then last night, I fell asleep just fine but then at 3:37am, we got a phone call. Since it's totally conceivable that someone might actually need Joe at 3am, he got up to see who had called but it was a wrong number. We sort of grumbled for a few minutes about a wrong number at 3am and then Frisco woke up. He never wakes up at night (or if he does, he's always happy to nurse back to sleep), but by 4, he was up and chatting with me about cereal, a new diaper, and his choo-choo. So we went downstairs, changed his diaper, had a snack, and then he played with his train until 5:40. At that point, he was tired so I sat on the couch with him (no pint in sleeping myself at that point) until 6:40, when I got Ellie and Joe up. It wasn't a terrible night, but I sure feel like crap today.

Movie!

Dec. 25th, 2009 07:59 pm
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Joe and I went to see Sherlock Holmes tonight. It was a lot of fun - both the movie and the fact that we had a chance to go out. RDJ was, as he often is, sexy and a bit crazy. And a little gay.

Here's my non-spoilery reaction to the movie. I know House is based on Holmes, but House never reminds me that much of Holmes, except on an intellectual level. But watching the movie tonight, I couldn't stop being reminded of House and Wilson. Anyway, it was a fun movie.

(And did I mention there was hotness?)
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So, despite brushing his teeth twice a day with fluoride for the last four months, I saw a tiny black spot in the center of one of his upper molars. I took him in and he has 3-4 cavities including one on the same tooth that caused Ellie so much trouble.

We have an appointment with a new dentist (ellie's sedation dentist couldn't see Frisco until late Jan) next Tuesday. He's a little small for sedation but thedentist seemed to think it was best for so many cavities.

I, of course, feel like I suck, although this time I know I have been doing everything short of flossing a one year old's teeth. I will, however, be working hard on night weaning since I'm now convinced that, at least for my children, night nursing has at least contributes to the problem.

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1. I came down with a cold the day before Thanksgiving. The cold stuff went away after 5 days or so, but I've had a sore throat since (now over two weeks). I'm fairly doctorphobic, but I finally went to see my doctor (who I love) on Friday and he told me I have...post-nasal drip. Wonderful. So there's nothing he can do, but I am so tired of feeling like crap. My throat is dramatically worse at night which means that I have no motivation to run in the morning because of how crappy I feel. And I really miss running.

2. We had a fun weekend. Joe bought me a new bike on Saturday. It's beautiful. I can't wait for enough snow to melt so I can go ride it. Sunday, we had four events scheduled outside the house - a lot for the kids. We had church in the morning, followed by a Christmas social with the JAG here. That was a lot of fun - I met some new people, talked law with some lawyers, and ate yummy food. Then Ellie's choir sang in church last night. Frisco was not the best behaved. Actually, he was really excited about it, but he wouldn't stop yelling "Ellie!" the entire time she was up on the stage so I had to take him out. After the concert, we had dinner at a friend's house. This friend, L, we knew in Puerto Rico and the kids really like her. It was a very kid-friendly dinner and all the guests were parents/grandparents/great-grandparents, but the low point was when Ellie puked onto her plate. (Thankfully only the on the plate.) No one made a big deal about it and Ellie was only slightly embarrassed, but it was a long day. Mostly fun, but long.

3. As part of Joe's job, he has a lot of contact with people who are dissatisfied with one thing or another. Through his job, he met two women, one who has a 2 year old and the other has a 15 month old, and he has invited them over for dinner tomorrow. Both of these women lost their husband in Afghanistan recently. I'm very happy to have them over for dinner. But I know nothing about them other than what I've written above. And I'm not really sure how to relate to them. It seems callous not to acknowledge their very recent loss, but I don't want to dwell on it either. And it seems like almost any topic would tangentially relate. Future plans, what are you doing here in Colorado, raising kids, it's all affected by now facing their lives without their husbands. You know, you always hear about how people who have lost someone often feel shunned. Which has always sounded so cruel to me, but I have to say that I get it. I'm not close enough to these women, obviously, to think they might want to talk to me, and yet are meeting only because their husbands are dead. I think I'm capable of just going with the flow and I hope our home can be a warm and brief break for them.

Book Club

Dec. 10th, 2009 09:44 am
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SO, it's that time of year again where I try to find gifts for my nieces who I rarely see. Their birthdays are Jan 2 and 6. I got them clothing gift certificates for Christmas, but I want to do some sort of book-of-the-month club for their birthdays. ANyone have any good suggestions about this? (Or other gift ideas for a 5 and 9 yo who I like but don't know that well or see that often.)
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I'm really dying to post all my (brilliant, right?) thoughts about Doctor Who, but instead, I'll be brief.

1. There is a lot of snow falling from the sky and it is cold outside. I think we have gotten maybe 6-8 inches since Saturday. NOt really that much but it just keeps coming. My one complaint is that they don't seem to plow here. Ft. Carson is full of plows but all the civilian plows I have seen are just spreading sand on the road. Nice, but not super helpful. I'm all for the rugged individualism of the west, but it's moments like this that I want to capture to show hard core libertarians that sometimes, government is good.

2. Relatedly, I love my Honda. It has been awesome in the snow and I feel like I'm using it to its full potential. That car has just made me so happy over and over again. In not so great news, Joe was in a tiny accident yesterday. Basically, he skid into a curb going maybe 15 mph. But the steering/tires are all messed up. He thinks the parts alone will be $800 or more so I guess we will be making an insurance claim.

3. I'm fairly certain they will be closing the post soon. Probably the safe thing to do but it means that I have to go get the kids which means I will not get any work done today. Which means that I should be working now and not playing on LJ, but there you go. What I really want to be doing is watching David Tennant on my TV some more but I guess that will have to wait.

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