Monday, June 26, 2006

Monday Morning Catch Up

The unpacking continues apace. It is rather amusing when you consider the logistics of moving. First, I spent weeks obsessed with boxes. I wanted good boxes. If you have ever moved, you need sturdy boxes that are not TOO big, but not too small either. And what is really nice is when you can get most of them about the same size, it makes stacking so much easier. I spent MONTHS packing things up. One day, and EVERYTHING changes. Now I hate those boxes I spent so much time lovingly and obsessively collecting, and I want them OUT of my space. This is a good lead-in to a cute pic of Little Man among the boxes

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So my life is the opposite of what it was a couple of weeks ago, now I am expending much energy UNPACKING those very same, gosh darn, boxes I spent so much time packing.
We have a deadline to get the living room and other bedroom finished. Friday. That day, pygmy Child returns from Ecuador and Brown Boy follows quickly on her heels the same day to stay with us through the fourth of July. By the By, Pygmy Child called the other day and said she is enjoying the translating for Operation Smile, but she isn't getting enough fresh fruits and veggies and is tired and is looking forward to coming home.
My computer unpacking is coming along, we purchased a new puter desk, so the puter is off the kitchen table. Now I need to hook up the wireless part so we can unplug the phone cord that is snaking down the hallway and tripping the unwary. I obviously got my camera to unload, (with a certain amount of disappointment, I was hoping it was broken, I really want a new one, but can't justify the expense.) So here is the picture I promised of my funny needle felting class I took last Saturday. He is funny little man and I call him Figaro.

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Can't you just seem him tossing a pizza or serenading you at an Italian restaurant?
And Taaa Daaa! We managed to get another washer and dryer without breaking the bank. They are old, but they work and they cost very little. No more laundry room for me!
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We shan't discuss WHY we had to get another washer and dryer since it involves a certain bald someone in my house making a decision I disagreed with. I am just so glad to have them again, I am not griping!
JJ is having a hard time right now emotionally. He is angry and shutting us out. I am sure the presence of the brain mass is a part of what is going on for him, but he won't say. He refused to do the EEG and at this point we don't have a way to force him. I am hoping some time will help him do better and we are working on getting him into some counseling and hoping it will help.
Little Man is doing okay in his summer program. I must admit some amount of frustration with the staff. This is a program specifically aimed at helping children with disabilities and they are sometimes so clueless on how to handle him. He is enjoying some of the activities he has done, like swimming twice a week and bowling. Me? I am just enjoying the luxury of hours a day of me deciding what I am going to do with my time! Bum, bum, bum, de bum, I am a bum and I love it!
And finally in spite of the fact we moved about 7 or 8 miles away from the kids, my fear of not seeing as much of them has evaporated. With the addition of a pool, cable TV, high speed internet and central air, we are seeing them MORE than when we just lived 2 miles away. Sometimes too much. I had to kick them out last night so I could collapse in bed. A final picture to share. Miss Pea, who already knows what to do with a phone!

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Hoping you all have a great beginning to your week too.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

All in the Family

Okay internet peeps, I was going to blog about something else today. It is rather a conundrum when you have a post all outlined in your head. Thinking about it as you are going to sleep and when you wake up in the night. (I don't think I have dreamed about blogging yet, but I expect that will come with time.) Then something else pops up in a pressing manner, BLOG ME, BLOG ME! And what do you do Bloggy Darlings? Do you stay with your plans, slow and steady wins the race, staid and plodding along? Or, do you be spontaneous and free spirited, blowing about in which ever way the wind takes you? Today I shall be unrestrained because I can't resist.
If you have never read Sarlive's blog then you must. After I had read Sarlive for the first time, imagine my surprise to discover Sar's sister is non other than the infamous Jul, aka And if that just isn't enough fun for all of you, much to my delight and astonishment (insert raised eyebrows and a mouth shaped like a rather large O) I find out there is another sister and, gasp! Even their mother blogs!
So this post takes precedence over the one I planned. A bloggy family. What a beguiling, pleasing morsel to enjoy on hump day. I present to you this literary, silly and not a little bit crazy family. Enjoy!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Mondays Are Great!

Oh what a lovely morning, I could just sing and dance and twirl in the sunshine. Imagine Julie Andrews twirling on the green hillside, singing her heart out. Why, you ask, why is our Jo so happy this morning?
Jo is happy this morning on many counts.
1. Little Man restarted his summer program. He left at 8:45 this morning and will not return until 6ish tonight. (For information's sake, Little Man has what is called a Medicaid Waiver, all states have them, they are used to help keep people from being institutionalized. We were on the waiting list for FIVE years and we are just approaching our first year on the program. The afternoon program he attends 4 days a week, 2 1/2 hours a day, costs 60$ a day! GULP! The program is aimed at Little Man having fun while learning social skills and getting along with other children and adults in appropriate ways. They work on his behaviors and he has goals to help him along. But the added benefit is that Mommy gets a break. A BREAK people! I finally caught one)
My happy attitude is in spite of the fact this child has decided 10:30 is a good time to fall asleep and 5 is a good time to wake up. Doesn't work for Bald Man and I though.
2. Jo is sitting at her puter on HIGH speed internet. Already I am losing the patience I had learned with dial up. I want that webpage up, NOW! But it is lovely, so fast, so instant for the most part.
2. Jo is sitting at her puter, with high speed internet, even though she is tired, with a Mountain Dew at hand. Guaranteed to fix the sleepies with a high dose of caffeine. (Mountain Dew, Elixir of the gods, bane to good Mormons.)
3. Jo is sitting at her puter, with high speed internet, with Mountain Dew at hand, in the coolness of her Centrally Air Conditioned comfort of her apartment. (My house had a swamp cooler, which isn't nearly as nice)
4. Should Jo decide she is bored, she can switch on cable TV, (free with apartment) and loudly complain with 100 channels there still isn't anything to watch. (or go swimming in the pool she doesn't have to maintain, or go work out in the exercise room, or continue the unpacking process. None of those things sound the least bit interesting to Jo currently)
Jo will continue to see if she can get her digital camera to work, for some reason it won't unload pics which is a shame, since she has a cute one of Little Man sitting among the boxes, and of her project from the Needle Felting class she took on Saturday.
Mondays are great, don't you agree??

Friday, June 16, 2006

New! And Improved!

Thinking about it, I don't suppose you will notice much of a difference in my new HIGH! SPEED! INTERNET! But oh my heck, I am sure noticing! It is fast, oh so lovely and fast. I want to kiss my new DSL modem. I could hardly wait to unpack the surprisingly small box it came in and set it up. And it is! As I mentioned before, Bald Man and mostly myself were fairly early Prodigy users. And I will confess I got hooked early and fast. My first dealer was one of my best friends, who I will call Sunny, she was the one who showed me the ins and outs and most of all that sound, that incredible sound. The sound of the internet hooking up. The high and low tones, the clicks, oh my gosh! That amazing, fanastic sound. When I first got Prodigy in about 1992 or so, that sound would give me butterflies in my stomach and my fingers would tingle. I wish I was kidding, but I am not. I was addicted. To the high, the connection, the amazing amounts of information and downloads, free downloads! The newest drug of choice at the Tangled Household. High Speed DSL. With wireless, so Bald Man can use his laptop whilst I am surfing the net at obscene speeds. The most likely noticible change might be more pictures, but maybe not. I was extremely patient with Photobucket and how slow it loaded for dail-up. Mostly I am just so excited. Whoooo hooooo! Here I go! Sorry no pics at this time, I can not find my cord to connect my camera with my puter. I looked, but could not stay away from the high speed for long. But you can expect them! Soon!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


Hey Bloggity Little Lovelies, I am still alive, sort of. If I had gotten a moment sooner to post, I would have said that I was physically exhausted. Sore, yikes, my back, my legs, my arms, too too tired to live, shoot me now please. BUT! I got to go to Wal-Mart by myself and suddenly I am not as tired as I was. Hmmmm, very interesting. That means I am not just tired in my body, but also my spirit. Big surprise to none of you I suppose, but huge surprise to me. What? You mean trying to move practically by ourselves, with no break from our very demanding little man is spirit sapping? SURPRISE! Yup! Add JJ's brain mass, Pygmy Child leaving for Ecuador today, Oldest Son and Girlfriend's car breaking down yesterday, Pea catching a cold and being very cranky, me being so very sad about leaving my house behind, to say nothing about delaying my entrance into grad school and you have a Jo, tired in both body and spirit. But alive. And being an unfailing optimist, there are so many things to rejoice over. Our apartment has a pool! That I don't have to clean. We are getting high speed internet on Friday! Whoo hoo, after being dial up since 1993, Prodigy, people, (does it even exist anymore?) for you oldsters out there, we are going high speed! I can hardly wait. Plus we have cable. Wow. Many fun things. Some not so fun stuff, but we won't go into that at this time. This post is to laugh that I am still alive and enjoying the bennies of apartment living. Chat at you soon darling Bloggies.

Saturday, June 10, 2006


I am supposed to be packing, but no, I am writing to you, because I missed you my Bloggity Bon Bons. I will make it short and if Bald Man comes down the stairs, I am so pretending I am cleaning out the desk... shhhh....
I can not figure me out sometimes. Guess what came in the mail today??? My free
Swiffer duster! And here is the bizarre juxtaposition that is me. I LOVE cleaning products. Whenever I see a commerical for a new, oh say, cleaning wipe, disposable toilet thingy or whatever, I WANT it, I lust after it. Sometimes I give myself permission to buy it. But with free stuff, I can indulge myself in my love/lust for cleaning products without feeling guilty about the money.
But, I HATE cleaning. Yuck. Unless I am trying out new products, then I enjoy it. You should have seen me with my first Mr.Clean cleaning eraser. Insane I tell you!
So go find out if you can get a free Swiffer Duster, so far I am impressed with the product. Watch this space for other free cleaning product updates.
Now back to your regularly scheduled dead time, filled at our crazy house with much cleaning and packing.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

5 Kinds of Mormons

Since I don't really want to discuss the current suckitude of my life, I am tired of whining! I will instead share this little piece that I have been saving to share with you. I think it is hilarious, although I do think some of the humor might be due to my intimacy with the Mormon culture. If there is anything you don't "get" feel free to ask and I will be glad to share why this article is so dang funny. Nothing like laughing at yourself, you will never run out of things to laugh about.
For your reading pleasure, let me introduce you to Robert Kirby, Mormon and Mormon Roaster.
5 Kinds of Mormons
by Robert Kirby


With thirty years in the LDS Church (10 states and four countries). I think I am something of an expert on Mormons. Enough of an expert in fact to know that I'm going to catch hell for this. Here it is. In the entire world there are only five kinds of Mormons. Basically.

The first kind of Mormon is the Liberal Mormon, this includes all Mormons who attend church only when they feel like it. Liberal Mormons anywhere to the left of the Republican Party, are not rabidly pro-life and don't think every word that falls from the lips of a General Authority represents the actual personal opinion of Jesus Christ. Liberal Mormons are going to hell. Just ask any of the other four kinds of Mormons. On the other hand Liberal Mormons think the intolerance and naive stupidity of other Mormons is more of a threat to mankind than Russian missiles, wheat weevils or 'R' rated movies.

After Liberal Mormons come Genuine Mormons. Nearly every Mormon thinks this is the kind of Mormon he is. In reality, Genuine Mormons are about as rare as, oh say, angels or golden plates. Genuine Mormons are unimpressed with themselves and their opinions. They are affable, easy going and keenly interested in the well being of others. They live various lifestyles and when compared to the more outlandish lifestyles of other Mormons, tend to be dang near invisible. A friend of mine says that this is because they have all been translated. He is wrong. My studies have proved there are only 11 Genuine Mormons on the face of the earth. Two of them live in Utah, three in the remainder of the United States, two in South America, one each in Japan, Canada, Samoa and Spain. There are no Genuine Mormons in California or Idaho. One doubles as a Liberal Mormon, of the remaining ten, four are the Three Nephites and John the Beloved.

The third kind of Mormon is the Conservative Mormon. These kinds of Mormon are the suit and flowered dress crowd you see at church. They tend to be a little overweight and Republican. They attend church 95% of the time but may, if pressed hard enough sleep through General Conference. They pay tithing on their net income and have 4.5 children. The homes of C.M's are decorated with Relief Society nick-knacks. Conservative Mormons humor Liberal Mormons because after all, they are God's children too. 75% of the LDS church is C.M. and 99% of all Conservative Mormons were born into the church.

Fourth are the Orthodox Mormons. Orthodox Mormons would not miss church for the death of a relative. Left to their own devices Orthodox Mormons would eventually make the bringing of dry cereal and Tupperware bowls to Sacrament Meeting a gospel ordinance. Orthodox Mormons have 7.8 children - not because they enjoy them but because somewhere it says that they should, and because even abstinence is an intolerable form of birth control. Orthodox Mormons are scared of Russians, MTV and accidentally partaking of the sacrament with their left hands. They believe Liberal Mormons are the children of the devil. Orthodox Mormons pay tithing based upon their gross income and believe Diet Coke is part of the Word of Wisdom.

Finally there are the Nazi Mormons. 10% of the LDS church is Nazi Mormon. Of that 10% 90% live in Utah and most within shouting distance of BYU. Nazi Mormons are prone to wild claims in testimony meeting about things which cannot be proven. Nazi Mormons claim Diet Coke is the same thing as heroin and heaven is a multi-level marketing system. Nazi Mormons always want to have private talks with you about either golden futures, alien landing strips or soap. Nazi Mormons believe french kissing is cause for excommunication, they routinely take the advice of General Authorities and even improve on it. If no single dating until 16 is good, no single dating until draft age is better. Nazi Mormons pay tithing on their gross income including the stuff they get from the Bishops Storehouse.

There you go. Remember, it is possible to fluctuate between levels. In truth one could find himself swayed from the Conservative Mormon level to the Orthodox Mormon level by a particularly powerfully fireside speaker. This only applies to one-level jumps. A Liberal Mormon for example, could never drop four levels to Nazi Mormon.


Tuesday, June 06, 2006


The visit with the neuro went OK. On one hand I feel reassured and on the other, not. That was an enlightening statement, wasn't it?? The neuro feels reassured that this is "just" a cyst. I was NOT, it is HUGE, like 2 or 3 inches! IN. MY. KIDS. HEAD! Now I know he doesn't use his brain for much now, but someday we would like to think he might... The neuro thinks the seizure and the cyst are not connected. Not connected? My kid hits his forehead, has a massive seizure, the place where he hit his head was not hit hard enough to leave any kind of mark, bruise or bump, and somehow this is unconnected.(They did say, that is odd) I am not buying that. And to top it all off, the place, (posterior fossa) where the cyst is located means it is supposed to be congential. Well JJ had an MRI at the age of one and there was NO HUGE cyst in his head. You would have to be a blind idiot to miss this. The doctor even said he had never seen one this large. And if it was too small to be seen, then it has GROWN, hugely! Anyway. More tests, more doctors.
And JJ. He won't even talk about it. He was silent the whole way home from the doctor, except to answer my question if he was upset with a grunt. Won't talk about it now. I guess he needs time to process. And here is the deal. He is nearly 17. There is nothing we can do if he refuses more tests and/or treatment. He needs to come to this on his own and we need to allow him the time to do it, even if it not as we wish it. Angst. Mine, his, ours.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Guess What?

I am sure you don't want to play that game right now, who knows what sort of drama might be hiding behind those two simple words?
Okay, I won't keep ya hanging. Oldest Son and Girlfriend are back together. I am so glad to have that sweetie back officially in our lives. Now things can go back to the way they were, and I liked it like that.
Of course, we need to do the big Sunday dinner thing tomorrow, but guess what? Pygmy Child packed my kitchen. I will have to do some unpacking to make that happen.
I got a nap today WOOT!
Poor poor Little Man, his anxiety is through the roof. I can't even move to another room in the house without his frantic calling, where are you mommy? If he hears my keys jingle, oh heavens, it is the end of the world and depending on how he is doing, it can become hysteria in just minutes. Never ask a child of limited cognitive ability, (like my PC way of saying that?) with autism and anxiety disorder to have his world turned upside down. He is not handling this well. We are using his Ativan PRN, (as needed) every day, and it has been a LONG time since we have had to do that. Poor little guy. I am doing my best to do the good mommy thing and being sure to read him lots of stories and to always have room on my lap or next to me to help reduce his fears. There ya go! My saturday. Calming my youngest and trying to get something done. Drank my fortifying drug of choice, (Mountain Dew, elixir of the gods) and I think I am ready to actually do something. Thank you for all your support and love, it has made a difference.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Geez That Was Dumb!

Bald Man and I sought one of the most common forms of entertainment to be found when you don't have a babysitter. Renting a movie. The first one we picked out, I think it was called Avalance, the clerk, who I know quite well, said " I don't think you will like that one" So when I pulled up Queen Latifia's movie, Last Holiday, she said it was funny so we rented it.
Not 15 minutes into the movie Queen Latifia is being diagnosed with a mass in her brain. Uhhhh..... Bald Man and I turned off the DVD player, I went to go check my email and he watched the news. Go figure! What do you think the chances of that happening are? Suddenly the movie wasn't funny and we didn't feel like watching it anymore.

Cloud Break

Yesterday. The morning was filled with trauma and upsettingness. ( I know it isn't a real word, but I mean what it says) Confirming the mass in my child's brain. While he is under the impression he is almost a grownup, he will never understand or know, he is still just my little boy. All I want to do is curl up with him and pretend that none of this is happening. How I wish mommy's magical kisses could make this boo-boo disappear.
The downside to being an incredible internet searcher, (my friends in school always ask me to find the stuff they need because I can find it quick and find lots about it) is that I now know WAY more than I wanted to about what is going on with JJ and his mass. Even if it is "just" a subarachnoid cyst, the fact it didn't show up on his first MRI at age one means it has grown. Things growing in your posterior fossa are bad because there just isn't a lot of room in the back of your head. While I had hoped for some easy answers, the brain is still a very unexplored space and there will be no quick, easy or even definitive answers for now. More tests, more doctors. The neurologist on mon.
Enough about that, I am sure I will be writing plenty more about that in the weeks to come.
An Aside: Just so you peeps don't think I am some sort of a drug addict, I didn't steal any of Little Man's Ativan yesterday. In fact I had never taken Ativan before in my life, but honey, I needed it the other day. Grateful it was there, saved me a trip to the doctor's office to get some of my own.
The afternoon came and I was still very teary and upset, we signed the final papers on the house and closing day is supposed to be today. But the house is NOT finished being packed. Tell me how we are supposed to do that? Even with help, I could tell this was not going to be happen'n.
Bald Man and I are slowly working out the money issues and honestly folks if money was the only reason I stayed, we would have been divorced many years ago. Yesterday and today things are tender and tentative, but we are talking and trying to find a way to bridge past the hurt.
We had to go hunt for apartments. The problem is the apt we LOVE and want, won't be ready to move into until the 12th of June. Bald man called the real estate agent and even though I thought there was no way the buyers would agree to it, they took pity on us and our horrible circumstances and they said we could wait til the 13th to vacate. What a kind, wonderful, giving thing to do. I am flabbergasted by their willingness to inconvenience their lives for our sake. I feel like someone took the weight of the world off my shoulders.
Then I got home and checked my email. R, you know who you are and what you did and more than the gift, the kindness and caring behind it means the world to me.
Add to these two incredible gifts, my day being punctuated by calls of concern and caring for our family and my friend dropping by with her two kids to help us pack, my two oldest packing and running errands for us, my email and blog had many messages of prayer and love, the sun finally is shining again.
When the bleakness is so oppressive and formless, there is no way to know how much of it belongs to which part of my current unhappy status. But with the cloud break, I understand that some of what I was feeling had to do with not having a place to live and feeling like there was no way humanly possible to do what was being asked of us. Part of the weight is off and for now, I feel like I can do this. I was starting to wonder.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Beyond Tired

I was going to do this big long post for you, my bloggiest dears, but I am too tired to. Let me tell you that the worst parts of this current suckfest seem to be behind us. I will give that all to you tomorrow when I am not falling asleep at the puter.
It seems as though there are no quick and easy answers with brain stuff. Even though I knew that intellectually ( I am trained as a medical social worker) I wanted with all my heart a quick and definitive answer. Alas it isn't to be. The MRI confirms a mass, which may or may not be a cyst, (even a cyst in the brain is not a GOOD thing). We have an appt on mon with a neurologist. Promise, promise little Bloggy Cucumbers that I will post everything tomorrow. The best part is I am back to feeling like I can get through this.