Wednesday, August 31, 2011

My Kid Has a Peanut Allergy

Dear Moms and Dads,

Your whispers and eye rolls did not go unnoticed.

I saw them.  I noticed them.  And, I even understand them.

You see, five years ago, I was you.

I sat in a classroom listening to another mom in my oldest daughter's class plead for the life of her son.  Her son had a peanut allergy and any exposure to peanuts or a peanut product would cause him to go into anaphalactic shock.   The mom begged us not to send in any treats that contained nuts so that her son could be safe.

The thing is, I can clearly remember thinking, "Oh, give me a break!"   Her words echoed in my head, "He could die from a peanut."   The actual idea of it just sounded so ridiculous. A peanut?  Really?  I thought about how Abbie would not be able to bring in her favorite treat, peanut butter cups, for her special treat day.  I thought about the fun tradition of making fall haystacks with chow mein noodles and peanut butter and chocolate that we would not be able to share at the classroom Halloween party.  In short, I thought about how no peanuts would affect me and my own kid.

I was selfish.

Never once did I think about that other mom or her fears for her son's life.

And now . . . I am that mom.

My kid has a peanut allergy.  And just last week, I had to stand in front of you parents and explain how my Ellerie, my little full of energy, sprite-like ball of smiles, could be taken down by just one little peanut.

I emphasized.

I pleaded.

I even begged.

But, even in this day, when there are many kids that have life threatening allergies, I saw you roll your eyes at me as if to say, "Oh no!  Not another kid in my kid's class with allegies. . ."

I get it.

I really do.

Because I was you.

I was selfish.

But now. . . I am not.

Now, I am depending on you. . .

to help keep my 3 year old baby safe,
to keep my girl peanut free,
to keep my Ellerie alive.

In short,  I am entrusting her life to all of you. . .

And I am praying that you have an unselfish heart.



********************linking to Shell's PYHO***********************

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Friday, August 26, 2011

I Am One Hot Mama . . . Until . . .

I am one hot mama. . . until I glance in my rearview mirror and realize that I am not cruising in my imaginary jeep with the top down but instead am driving 17 kids in a dented mini van and that there is no way that driving a mini van will ever be considered hot.

I am a laundry queen . . .  until I forget to turn on the dryer and leave a load of wet clothes sitting for two days.

I am a domestic goddess . . . until I unload the entire dishwasher on auto-pilot and realize only as I am sorting silverware that the load of dishes is, in fact, still dirty.

I am a financial whiz . . . until I realize that we only have .97 cents in the bank until payday . . . 10 days from now.

I am one sporty mom . . . until I run 3 miles, in new running shoes with too short socks and cause myself blisters that are so monstrous and oozing that I can hardly walk without wincing for the next day.

I am one sex kitten wife . . . until hubs points out that my stained pj's with the flowerpots on them are at least 10 years old and less than, ummmmm, desiring or inspiring.

I am one school volunteering mom . . . until I realize that in order to actually bake for the school bake sale in October, you have to take a class with a real-life baker, in order to produce "pretty" bake sale items. (Side note . . . No.  I am not kidding.)

I am one culinary master . . . until my kids inform me that daddy's hamburger helper is waaaaaay tastier than my made-from-scratch fettucini alfredo.

I am one hot bodied lady . . . until the sales clerk at Victoria's Secret politely explains that they do not carry my size any longer.


It's a good thing that I am not in the coroporate world.

Even I would fire myself.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Days of No More . . .

I am a little torn here.

Ellerie starts preschool today, and I don't know how to feel about it.

Part of me wants to do the happy dance at the thought of 2 hours that are mine, all mine, each day of the week.  Picture Daffy Duck with his duck arms laden with gold shouting obsessively "Mine! Mine! MINE!  All Mine!!!!"  Yep.  That would be me.

Daffy Duck in Ali Baba Bunny . . . Looney Toons . . .

But there's another part of me that will miss my little imp.

No more will I get to have a lunch date with my girl where we share a ketchup and dip our fries in at the same time so that they touch.

No more afternoon butterfly kisses or backyard picnics with 72 barbie doll babies.

No more choke hold hugs of excitement when I propose an afternoon walk or bike ride.

No more Ellerie to color my afternoons.


I am smack in the days of no more and it's enough to make me curl up in a ball and cry under my blankie until I remember . . .

No more will I discover permanent marker tattoos on her booty when I have to wipe her bottom.

No more will I find her "sharing" her afternoon pudding cup snack with the dog.

No more will I walk into the bathroom to find her plastering panty liners to the wall and declaring it artwork.

No more will I find crayola marker pictures on my floor to ceiling mirrors.

No more will I ever find Ellerie in a sea full of bubbles just after she poured bubble soap down the heating vent.


No more afternoon hurricane Ellerie.

I think that I could get used to this.

And I better line up one great gift certificate for her teacher. 

She is going to need it.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Call the Discovery Channel!

Call the Discovery Channel because in the last week I have discovered . . .

-57 unmated socks.  I have been using mating the unruly pile as a form of punishment for the kids.  Yes. They hate it.

-Ellerie using Paul's back massager in a very unorthodox and Sex in the City's Samantha-like fashion.  On the bright side, at least she did not resemble Linda Blair.

-the puppy chewing on my favorite pair of red sunglasses.  And no.  I do not care if I look like Sally Jessy Raphael.

-that my car smells like Easter eggs after I gave it a thorough cleaning with white vinegar and then proceeded to spill the entire gallon of the white vinegar in the trunk space.

-petrified dog poop in my storage room.  Yes.  I gagged.

-that Ellerie will cry at pre-school, but only when I pick her up because she does not want to go home.  Go figure.

-that I am looking forward to 2 hours a day with no kids for the first time in 10 years.  To fill this time, I have approximately 17 projects lined up that I am sure I will not complete including (but not limited to) painting the exterior of my home, installing granite in the bathroom, tiling the basement floor, and training for my second half marathon.  No.  I have not been smoking crystal meth.  I am serious.

So, Discovery Channel?

Don't you think that this could make a great reality show?

Any titles out there?

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Monday, August 8, 2011

Signs, Signs, Everywhere There Are Signs

I don't write about God very often here.

I try to keep my writing light hearted and uplifting.  I hope that I can make you laugh  . . . or spit out your coffee.  Because of this, you may think that God is not a part of my life.

And, you would be wrong.

My relationship with God is one of my sturdy and steadying forces in my life.   In fact, many days I recognize that He is talking to me.  But before you go off thinking that I am hearing voices or speaking in tongues, I am talking about how God uses signs to speak to me.

Signs, signs, everywhere there are signs.


You don't believe me?

Try this.

This weekend, the family traveled to Western Pennsylvania for hub's family reunion.  We were approximately 6 hours from our home.  We were supposed to stay with one of hub's relatives, but we decided against it.  Instead, the plan was to drive a few hours down the road, grab a hotel, and make the rest of the trip the next day.  Except after driving a few hours and calling hotel after hotel,  we were out of luck. 

Everything was booked.

The kids were getting sleepy and hubs and I decided to grab some coffee so that we could just drive through the night home.  I pulled off at the next exit, and as I did, I noted that we were actually in my dad's hometown.  And, while I had never lived there myself, I had spent many a summer there with cousins and family, and this little town always felt like home. 

 Weird, right?

So, I drove to the nearest gas station, which hubs promptly rejected.  "They don't have good coffee, "he explained.  He directed me to the nearby BP and I maneuvered the car up to that gas pump.

It was then that I noticed the car at the next pump.  It was a cute, little, 4 door sedan with personalized plates, and there was a petite blond woman pumping gas. 

It was my favorite Aunt Joanie.

She was on a break from work,  and she had decided to get gas in her car to get away for a bit.

We ended up at the same gas station at the same time . . .and she wanted us to stay at her home.

A God moment, right? 


Except I didn't see it that way right then.  I just thought that it was a great coincidence.  We exchanged hugs and kisses, laughed about the situation, and then we went on our way home.

And in the dark, with my family sleeping and hubs driving, I watched cornfield after cornfield zip  by the car window and I realized I had been blind.


Apparently, in order for me to see a sign from Him, God would have to emblazon a billboard with a flashing arrow and my name, because all the subtle little coincidences didn't do it.

My family had been in need, God had provided for us, and I had not recognized the signs.

I felt like an idiot.

But a humble idiot that will now try just a bit harder to listen to that little voice inside me and to open my eyes to the signs, whatever they may be.

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