My Real Life

January 16, 2011

Contest Winner!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 9:17 am

In all the hubub of labor and delivery and resulting bedrest, I completely forgot to pick the winner of our most recent contest!  My deepest apologies!

And the winner is: (drumroll, please!)

With the use of (a random number generator) – Bonnie!!!

Bonnie, I’ll get your $15 iTunes gift card to you ASAP!

Thanks for playing, everyone!  They were all great captions!

January 15, 2011

I’m Judging You

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 4:13 pm

If you look back at the pet peeves question from my Five Question Friday, this week, you will see that it is about people making comments on my size, this pregnancy.

However, another pregnancy/parenting related pet-peeve is when people feel the right to judge the way others parent.

I came across this blog today and it hit the nail on the head, perfectly.

Disclaimer, I still can’t wrap my brain around the kids on a leash, but that’s my issue.

Still, excellent post.  Some language may offend more sensitive readers, but still worth it.

January 14, 2011

Five Question Friday!!!

Filed under: Five Question Friday — Amy @ 5:34 pm

1. What movie could you watch over and over again and not get tired of?

There are a few.

  • The Holiday – Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Jude Law, Jack Black
  • Three Men and a Little Lady – Ted Danson, Nancy Travis, Tom Selleck, Steve Gutenberg
  • A Few Good Men – Tom Cruise
  • Any of the Lord of the Rings movies

I’m sure there are others, but this is all that comes to mind at the moment.

2. What’s your biggest pet peeve right now?

Right now?  It would have to be people who feel the need to make comments about how large I am at this stage of pregnancy.  And, these aren’t strangers.  These are people I work with and see every day.  “You sure you don’t have twins in there?”  “Watch out…wide load coming through!”  “You’ve achieved the waddle.”  “Are you sure you should be at work?”  “Careful…I’m sure your balance is off with all that weight in front.”  Really people?  Really?

3. If you had to describe your best friend in five words or less, what would you say?

Real Man is: brilliant, hysterical, handsome, loving and loyal

4. If you did not have to worry about money or go to school what would you do for a living?


5. What is your one “splurge” item, that you will always buy, no matter the cost?

I’m in baby mode, right now, so the answer is Pampers diapers.  I’ve tried other brands, tried bargain brands, as well as other name brands, and the only kind my wonder-pee-rs don’t seem to leak through are Pampers.  So, forget the price…it’s what I will use, once again.

If I’m not thinking baby, then probably books.  There’s always money for books.

How I Spent My Day…Otherwise Known as “Good Times”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 12:17 am

So, last night, around 5:30, I was thinking about making dinner (note that I was not actually making dinner…just thinking about it) when I started having some sharp, excruciating pains in my lower abdomen.

I have a ridiculously high tolerance for pain, so when it actually took my breath away, I panicked.

A little.

I called Real Man and left a message saying “Honey, I just got your message.  Yes, I would LOVE for you to pick up subs on your way home from work, and I can’t believe you remembered that I’d love a small bag of Fritos and a Cherry Coke as a little treat!  Thanks so much!”

Within 3 minutes, he called back and said, “I’m kinda bummed.  My phone is broken.”

I was surprised because he takes good care of his toys.

“Oh no!  I’m so sorry!  What’s the problem?”

He responded with a dry, “Apparently, it’s been calling people and leaving messages that I am NOT leaving.”

He’s funny.

He’s also awesome and picked up dinner so that I could lay down.

By the time he brought dinner home, I was in more pain, and so I actually skipped it and just kept lying on my left side, which is what the internet said I should do, and I get ALL of my medical advice online.

(At this point, I’d like to point out that the biggest grammatical Achilles heel is knowing when to use “lay” and when to use “lie” and as I did a lot of “laying” or “lying” around throughout the course of this vignette, if you know the difference, just play along and try your hardest not to correct me.  I’ll look it up and learn it for next time.  Promise.)

After an hour, it was down to a dull ache, so I went upstairs and ate, then came back to bed.

By 9, it was all good and I slept a good, sound sleep.

The alarm went off at 5:45 and I bounded out of bed, full of enthusiasm for the bright, shining day of new experiences ahead.

Okay, let’s rewrite with a little more truth.

The alarm went off at 5:45 and I hit snooze 4 times, then spent three minutes trying to get this enormous belly into a sitting position, swung my legs off the bed, sat there for a minute, then started the rocking motions in which I now need to engage in order to stand from a sitting position, and got up.

Guess what.

As soon as I stood, the pain was back.  8 on a scale of 1 to 10.  Ow.

However, there was no lying on my side to make it go away, because after 4 snoozes, I need to get this butt into the shower so I can get to school on time.

Showered, dressed, helped monkeys get everything together for the day, and went to school.


It now wasn’t subsiding, even when sitting while driving, and by the time I got to school, I was walking like a 97 year old woman who has lost her cane, but is hunched over anyway, since she’s used to walking that way because she’s had the cane since she was 75.

I got up to my classroom and called the doctor and left a message with the service.

Now, you may wonder why I went to work when I knew I was in that much pain, and the plain and simple answer is, I’m a teacher.

My “clients” need me.  While I firmly believe that if I’ve done my job well, they don’t actually need me to learn, because I’ve been working very hard at facilitating their independent learning this year so that they can apply this skill in every area of their lives, both academic and personal, but they do count on me being there and the structure to their day that my presence helps to create.  So, unless I’m vomiting, I go to work.

The doctor called back within 5 minutes and said that with my placenta issues, I was to head over to Labor and Delivery immediately.

So, I left plans on my desk, told the office I needed a sub and called Real Man and told him not to leave yet, cuz Mama’s comin’ home.

I got home and we dropped Baby Monkey at daycare (who was absolutely delightful in the car…kids a character) and went to the hospital.

They gave me a gown to put on, and I headed into the bathroom to change.

I couldn’t remember if she said open in the front or open in the back.

This happens to me every single time I have to wear a hospital gown.

Not that this is a common occurrence, but when I do, I always, always forget, despite repeating the mantra “Listen to what she says about the gown, listen to what she says about the gown,” while being given directions.  Perhaps that is why I miss it every time…the mantra overshadows the directions.

Anyway, I finally found a little pocket on the gown (why, I don’t know) and figured that the pocket should probably go in the front.

Mystery solved.

Open in the back.

I go back to the room and they hook up a fetal monitor and take my blood pressure.

I’m good to go.

And so, I lay there and chat with Real Man for about three hours before the doctor gets there.

She says that she thinks it’s muscle pain, but she wants to get an ultrasound to check the placenta and wants to do a fun test to determine whether I’m going to go into labor in the next two weeks (due in 8).

So, the fun begins.

I’m not going to describe the test.

I’m also not going to describe the two different types of ultrasounds.

They were…thorough.

The ultrasound results were instant.

Placenta, still low-lying, partially covering the cervix.

Translation, not good.

Since I’m having a c-section it is less not-good for me because I don’t have to deliver around it, so that’s good news!

The bad news is that it is laying directly on the scar, which was what they’ve been worried about for a few months now.  Could get ugly in surgery.  I believe the words she used in our original meeting about this were “Not good”, “bleeding out”, “chance of death to the mother.”

Good times.

However, those were worst case scenarios, and I have to be honest, I feel like I am in superior hands with my crew of doctors, so if that’s the case, they’ll do what they have to do and I’ll make it sound funny and blog about it later.

Moving on.

Then, we waited for another two hours before the results came back.

Tests take time.  I get it.

Neither Real Man nor I had eaten since 6:45 am.

It was now after 2 pm.

We were about to start eating the medical equipment that didn’t appear to have a purpose in the room.

We were also exhausted and decided to close our eyes for just a second.

We both fell asleep.

Which is exactly when the doctor returned with the results.

And, the funny part of that is that, not 10 minutes earlier, Real Man said, “Hey…what embarrassing thing should I start doing to guarantee that someone comes in the room?”

Falling asleep wasn’t one of the ideas we came up with, but it worked like a charm, apparently.

So, she said to us, “Well, I’m actually surprised.  The results are positive.”

Needing to be reminded I said, “And this was testing if I’m going to deliver in the next two weeks?” my voice rising in substantial increments as I spoke each word and my anxiety kicked in.


So, apparently, it’s not 100% positive that I will deliver in the next two weeks, but there is a high percentage chance that I will.

So, let’s find the silver lining.

The ultrasound measurements showed that the baby, as of today, 8 weeks before my due date, is 5 pounds, 5 ounces, so if it comes, it’s actually a healthy size and shouldn’t have to stay in the hospital.

However, the lungs are the last to fully develop, so she said she was going to send the nurse in with a steroid shot.

She leaves.

I’m panicking about the new possible birthday of this baby, but feeling fine about the shot, because as allergy girl, I’ve been getting 3 shots in each arm, once a month, since I was 8.

Real Man looks at me sympathetically and says, “Um, honey…you know where you are getting that shot, don’t you?”

I say, “Of course…in my arm.  I’m the queen of shots.”

He reaches out and takes my hand and informs me that this shot ain’t going in any body part other than the one I’m currently sitting on.

Excuse me?

At this point, the nurse comes in with a needle I would imagine one might use to give an elephant a shot and I say, “Where exactly are you putting that?”

She says, “Sorry sweetie…stand up and turn around.”

Good times.

I almost break Real Man’s hand, but I take my shot like a pro.

And then she says, “Now, here’s the shot for tomorrow.  You need to come back at the same time tomorrow afternoon, and we’ll give you this second shot.”

Excuse me?

Looks like I’m set up for some more good times in the morrow.

So, the doctor comes back and I say, “So, I’m good to go?  I can go back to work tomorrow?”

She looks at me like I’ve grown a third head and talks to me like I’m the 16 year old I was when I first met her.

“Uh, no, sweetie.  You are going home to lay on your bed and do nothing for at least 5 days.”

Excuse me?

So, end result, for the time being is that I had to take Friday off, but we already have Monday off, and I’m clear to return to work on Tuesday.  I have an appointment that afternoon and we’ll see where we are from there.

Bedrest and a mother of three don’t really go hand-in-hand, but we’re making it work in our own little way.

I like to call it “modified bedrest.”

So, I’ll let you know how Tuesday goes, but for now, I’m laying low.

Or lying low.

Who knows?

Who cares?

Bottom line was that the baby looked fantastic and healthy.

I’m the fly in the ointment, here, but I’ll do whatever needs to be done to keep the newest monkey safe and cooking a little longer.

Good times.

January 12, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Filed under: Wordless Wednesday — Amy @ 11:07 am

January 11, 2011

So Happy Together

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 8:28 am

A little Turtles this morning, anyone?



Moving on.

Sunday was one of those days.

Meaning, a great one.

We went to bagels at my father-in-laws house after Real Man and the big monkeys were home from church.

They played nicely with their cousins.

We came home, they all played some strange game they concocted, together, in the living room.

They all wanted to play in the snow together for over an hour, despite the temperature.

They all wanted to put their warm jammies on when they came inside.

They all wanted to watch a movie together in the basement.

When the movie ended, they disappeared, and Real Man and I went looking for them.

No surprise, they were all in the kitchen together, playing a 3-way multiplayer game on their DS’s.

I could have done without Baby Monkey actually laying on the table to be near his siblings, but gotta tell ya, it just warmed my heart.

Sunday was a day that made me wish that I had had siblings growing up.

Instant playmates.

Best friends.

Good to have.

PS…Don’t forget to enter the caption contest from yesterday’s post!!!  Contest ends tomorrow!

January 10, 2011


Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 5:27 pm

It’s been awhile since I’ve run a contest at the blog.

However, I was going through old photos on the computer last week, while helping Monkey Girl find pictures for a timeline project.

I came across the photo below and realized it was begging for a caption.

This photo was taken over the summer.

We were dancing, although I think that there are a few things going on in this photo that could be fodder for some very interesting captions.

So, give it your best shot!  Contest will run through Wednesday evening.  Winner gets a $15 iTunes gift card!

10 Simple Truths

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 1:38 pm

One of the people I follow on Twitter is Alyssa Milano.

Yes, I follow Alyssa Milano.

I’m a fan.

Move on.

Anyway, she posts a lot of interesting links to very interesting articles, and today, I found this one to be particularly interesting.

(Not sure if it’s grammatically correct to use the word interesting that many times in a sentence.)

Not parenting related at all.

Just a good reminder to rethink how we often do things.

January 8, 2011

Push Presents

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 2:08 pm

I realize that I run the risk of offending people with this particular post, however, it’s a risk I’m willing to take today.

I have been frequenting a few pregnancy forums throughout this pregnancy.  I’m a glutton for punishment.  Although I’m always looking for reassurance, I always find a million posts about things that can go wrong, thus feeding my ever-present, though well-concealed to the public, anxiety.

There are also a lot of posts that are pregnancy-related, yet not health-related.  Many times these posts make me giggle or roll my eyes, but I’ve recently come across a bunch of posts that have made me strangely irate.

It started out innocently enough.

Someone wrote an initial post asking what people were hoping to get for their push present.

I had no idea what they were talking about, so I kept reading.

Apparently, there is a relatively new phenomenon where women expect to get presents for giving birth.


As they discussed past push presents they had received for older children, I was stunned.

Diamond earrings.

New television sets.

Tickets to a broadway show.

A few even mentioned getting a new car.

Again, I say, huh?

Then, of course, there were the threads discussing whether women who wind up having c-sections deserve a push present because they didn’t actually “do any work.”


I’ll share my c-section with no anesthesia story and you tell me me if I didn’t do any work.

And even still, after all of that, Monkey Girl was the absolutely best gift I could have ever imagined and I would have gone through that a million, gajillion times again if it meant that the end result would be her.

Someone actually mentioned that the baby was their push present and I rejoiced and then watched this woman get blasted left and right as these other women said that they had “suffered” through nine months and then had to give birth and they deserved a gift.  They said that a baby wasn’t a gift.


I don’t know.

I honestly cannot wrap my brain around the idea that women feel they deserve a gift for giving birth.

You want a child?

You give birth to the child, if you are able.

There are a lot of women in the world who would take the “suffering” of pregnancy and childbirth in a heartbeat so that they might be able to have a child.

And you want a gift for a natural human process that you are lucky enough to be able to carry out?

Gimme a break.

When did we become such selfish, self-involved people that we can’t see the brand new human we are holding in our arms as the gift?

The greatest gift of all, truth be told.

The New York Times actually wrote an article about push presents if you want to read a little more about it.

Here endeth the lesson.

January 7, 2011

Five Question Friday!!!

Filed under: Five Question Friday — Amy @ 12:18 pm
1. What is your current favorite book, and why?
Good question.  My favorite book is usually the one I’m reading.  However, in the interests of self–promotion, I’m going to say that my favorite book is The Follow Through.  This book is currently unpublished, but is written by a fantastic author.  Perhaps you’ve heard of her…Amy Bozza?  Oh, let me direct you to her writing web page and you can read a synopsis of the book.  Her site can be found here.  She’s awesome. 🙂

2. Do you go to the dentist regularly?
I try.  I do.  I’m better about getting the kids there every six months, as opposed to getting myself there.  If I go when they go, that’s 4 appointments we need to sit through and there is no one to entertain the kids while I’m in the chair.  However, if I go separately, I need someone to watch the kids so I can go.  Feels ridiculous to get a babysitter so I can go to the dentist.  After the baby is born, I’ll go.  Promise.

3. What is your worst memory from High School?
Hmmm…I don’t know.  Junior High was way worse than high school.  So, I’ll give you the Jr. High memory of walking through the lunchroom and having a group of boys throw little pieces of bread at me because they thought I looked like a duck.  They also quacked while they threw the bread.  And now I teach at that school.  Glutton for punishment, I guess.  Fun memories when I walk through the cafeteria.  Good times.  Good times.

4. What do you hope to be remembered for in your life?
Being a good mom.  Not like a cookie-baking, home-home staying, organic, making all my kids clothes good mom, but a mom that helped her kids achieve their full potential, who made her kids feel safe and whose children always knew how very much they were loved.

5. Are you superstitious or do you have any superstitions?
Not really.  My nephews will read this (no they won’t…they are teenagers, they don’t read their aunt’s blog) and say, “Oh, contraire, Aunt Amy.  Perhaps you forget the whole Candyman debacle?”  Yes, yes…when I saw the movie Candyman, I went through a brief period of time (2, 3 years?) where I freaked out if someone said Candyman three times near a mirror.  Why tempt fate?  However, I’m over it.  Candyman.  Candyman.  Candyman.  See.  I’m so brave.
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