Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Clint will be in the air for the next 15 hours or so. He's flying from New Orleans to Memphis. Memphis to Amsterdam. Amsterdam to Aberdeen. He has horrible motion sickness, so most likely it will not be a pleasant trip.

I wish he didn't have to go anywhere. It's not a good time.

Veronica had her 18 month well visit yesterday. She weighed 25.5 lbs and measured 33 inches tall. I bet she will be taller than Valerie!!! We're behind on her shots since we missed her 15 month check up. The doc suggested we start putting Roni in time out when she misbehaves. Even though she may not understand it, she will catch on. The biting, the hitting, and the throwing things need to be stopped before it gets out of control. Sunday Roni whacked me across the bones in the back of my hand with a metal rod as hard as she could. I thought she had broken it for a little while it hurt so bad! And of course she laughs and laughs and was taking aim to hit me again. I know to her it's all a game, but we need to teach her that is not acceptable behavior. When she's sweet she's adorable, but when she's bad Look Out!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Lightning McQueen

Here's my latest Freecycle find:





Yes the hood is missing and the reverse doesn't work - BUT it was free! I've been wanting to get Val a motorized car for a while. She had the best time zipping around the yard. Free sure beats paying $200+ for one!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Daredevil

Veronica is turning into a holy terror. I'm at my wits end about what to do with her some days. For some unknown reason, she has decided she does NOT want to sleep in her crib. She has always been a fairly good sleeper. For the past 3 nights, all she has done is scream bloody murder the second we turn towards her room. I don't know what happened. She screamed for 3 hours the other night until finally we put her in the pack n play in our room. She literally just fell over the second I put her there and slept all night. Today she balked at her nap in her crib, but I left her in there and she fell asleep. I hate to just let her cry it out, as she will scream for hours. And also it upsets Valerie when she's screaming like that.

Her daredevil antics are scaring the daylights out of me. We can't go in the front yard because Veronica has learned that if she runs for the STREET Mommy or Daddy will run after her calling "NO NO NO!" And Roni laughs and laughs. We drag her back to the porch, and off she goes again and again and again... giggling and laughing. We can't go in the back yard because Roni runs straight for the swing set and climbs the rock wall to the platform up top. She lays on her tummy and scoots and dangles her legs over the edge. That would be a nasty fall. Inside she is forever getting on my dining room chairs. Not too bad, EXCEPT she attempts to STAND and balance herself on the arm rest. She does the same thing on the rocking chair while trying to rock it back and forth. She has climbed on my kitchen table. Remember that we have very hard ceramic tile floors??? Another nasty fall waiting to happen. She fell off our cedar chest the other day and smacked her head on the tile.

I have a baker's rack stacked with cookbooks and glass cake plates. Veronica's new game is run to the baker's rack, grab it, and SHAKE it as hard as she can so everything rattles. I'm Terrified all that stuff will fall on her!! I move her away from it and she runs right back....

When she touches something she shouldn't, we started grabbing her hands, looking her in the eye and saying "NO" or "NO touch." If she keeps doing it, I tap the back of her hand and say "NO" louder. Veronica laughs. And does it again. Then holds out her hand to be hit again!!!

Aside from just getting rid of all our furniture.... I have no clue what to do with her. She's only 18 months old and I know she doesn't comprehend the concept of dicipline yet.

I need to take pictures of her antics. I am not making this stuff up!!

Leaving on a jet plane

Clint was just told he is going to Aberdeen, Scotland again. Get this - he has to be there MONDAY. Four days from now!! Gee, Halliburton, thanks for the "advance" notice. And he doesn't know how long he will be gone. Ugh - I hate his job sometimes.

I really don't want to be all alone right now for weeks either.

Friday, September 19, 2008

At times I wish I could feel something because mostly I feel nothing. Just numb. Just... Blank and empty. Every day I go through the motions and do what needs to be done. When I do feel something, it's just complete sadness. Maybe with a flash of anger. But over all I feel nothing. Sometimes I feel like I need to cry an ocean of tears to let it out, but there are none. They just aren't there. There is nothing else to do but sit here alone. I wish I could get away. I wonder if I will ever feel like me again. Nights are harder than the daytime. The only time I can grieve is when everyone is asleep. The house is quiet and sleep doesn't come easy for me anymore and my mind wanders. I think about the toys we found tucked away that my Mom bought to give the girls 'later.' I think about the bags of Christmas things she bought on clearance last year do decorate for this coming holiday season. Her clothes hanging in the closet with price tags attached. She asked me to buy her some towels. So I did - pretty soft pastel colored bath towels. I found them still in the Walmart bag. Untouched. I don't know why, but I keep thinking of those stupid towels. They were the last thing I bought for her and she never got to use them. And it makes me sad and angry. Stupid towels. I miss having someone to chit chat with about the mundane daily things. What's for supper. What I bought at the store. Who I saw. What silly thing Val or Roni did. Random spur of the moment details that no one but my Mom cared to hear. Sometimes it seems like it is all a bad dream. I know my Mom was technically elderly, but she didn't look or act it. Her sickness came on so suddenly and she went downhill so fast. No one knew she only had weeks to live. I haven't been to the cemetery yet because I just think about seeing her name on the mausoleum... and... I just can't go there.

Photo book

I ordered a photo book of my Mom and it came in yesterday. Partly for me, partly for Val and Roni. I have a few books with their baby pics in them, and they love to flip through them over and over. They love for me to "read" it to them and tell the story behind each picture. I'm hoping this will be a good way to help Valerie hold on to her memories of MeMe. And for Veronica to know who she was.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Giggle of the Day

Phone rings. I look at the caller id - telemarketer. I pick up the kitchen phone and don't say anything. In the mean time, Valerie is yelling "my turn my turn!" and runs to grab the bedroom phone.

Val picks up and says, "Hello?" in her little girl voice. It sounds more like "hewwo?"

Telemarketer: "Hello....?"

Valerie pauses.... "Hi, it's me...... Cinderella."

Telmarketer: Silence. *click*

Thursday, September 11, 2008

No internet!

Our cable TV and our internet have been down since Monday!! I'm going nuts. Thank God the kids are happy watching DVDs. We are switching our internet to DSL since it looks like it will be a WHILE before Comcast can repair the outage in our area. It seems every few months it has been going out anyway. Hopefully I will be back online soon...

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Hurrication

Last night I gave Valerie and Veronica their bath then let them play in the tub a while. Out of the blue, in the saddest voice ever, Valerie says, "I miss MeMe." She's said that before or sometimes it's, "I'm worried about MeMe." I just told her I missed MeMe too, and that she could still talk to MeMe when ever she wanted. All she had to do was look at the sky. Val grinned and leaned her head back as far as she could to look at the ceiling and said happily, "I Love you MeMe!!!" Sigh. Then Val tells me, "Momma don't be sad." How can I not?

If there is a positive side to Hurricane Gustav, for me I'd say it kept me occupied and I had something else to focus on. My birthday came and went, mostly unnoticed, which is fine. Most everyone was busy doing hurricane prep and evacuations. Clint forgot for a little while. My Dad forgot completely. And that is okay too because I really didn't want to celebrate. My Mom was the one who always got me a cake, gifts, and planned a birthday dinner for me. I was dreading it since it wouldn't be the same with out my Mom. Being stuck in traffic for 9 hours was a distraction for sure.

Anyway, here's our Hurrication recap:

Friday, August 29: Clint boarded up the house just in case. I cleaned house some. We were still undecided on leaving. We had reservations in Houston, but the forecasted track kept saying it was possible for Gustav to make landfall farther west. We decided to go east.

Saturday, August 30: My birthday! We got up really early and I called my Dad to see if he was evacuating with us. We made reservations in Gulf Shores, AL. I tossed the necessities in our bags, and by 10:30 we were on the road. The traffic going west was unreal!! Going east, the interstate was empty until we got to Slidel. From then on it was bumper to bumper, stop and go off and on the rest of the way. A 4 hour trip took us 9 hours. Clint and my dad sat up front, and I was squeezed between two car seats in the back. FINALLY after what seemed like forever we got to the house I had rented.
Sunday, August 31: Got up, made breakfast. Valerie wanted to go to the beach by all means. It was windy and the sand stung our legs. Val didn't like that at all, so we didn't stay long. We got dressed and headed to town. The traffic was unreal! We had lunch at the Longhorn steakhouse, which was where I wanted to eat my birthday meal at. After we went to Target to get some supplies and groceries. We stopped to get gas, and the attendant told us there was an evacuation in progress. What?! Literally from a block or two up from where we were staying down to the beach was being evacuated as a precaution. So, again, do we stay or do we go?? We decided to go. Clint called a guy he works with for suggestions on where to go, and the guy invited us to stay with him in Pensacola. I can't ever thank Don and Debbie enough for their kindness! People we barely know opened up their home to us and saved us hours on the road.
Monday, September 1: Sat around all day watching the weather channel! Pensacola had some wind and rain, but nothing bad. Debbie and I did a little shopping late in the afternoon.
Tuesday, September 2: We decided it was time to move on and get out of the way. I found a Holiday in in Biloxi with rooms, so we decided to stay a little closer to home. Luckily the traffic wasn't bad at all.
Wednesday, September 3: Clint and my Dad made a day trip to our houses to check on things and the animals. We had left our two cats and my Dad had left his dog. Clint bought a generator and set it up. Me and the kids stayed at the hotel. Clint's Nanny came to visit and we grabbed lunch and drove around town for a while. It was pretty late when Clint and my Dad got back to Biloxi.

Thursday, September4: Another day of sitting at the hotel. We needed to wash clothes since we had no idea when we would have electricity at home. The machine was tied up, so we had to wait and wait for our turn. It seemed we waited all day!!! Valerie was having the BEST time. I swear it was like we never take her any place. I was going stir crazy, so once the laundry was done we headed to the mall. We grabbed dinner and bought groceries to bring home. Lots of other people had the same idea because many of the canned goods shelves were empty.

Friday, September 5: Home at last!! There was some traffic, but no major slow downs. Even with no electricity, I was still so glad to be at my own house. Clint took the boards off the windows. We had to clean out the fridge and freezer - yuck. I hated throwing all that food away. Clint went to town to look for ice but there was none. He did get two cases of MREs though. It was HOT, but at least we had the generator to keep a fan going and to plug in the fridge and chest freezer. My dad called about 7:30 and lo and behold his electricity had come on!! If it hadn't been so late, we would have gone over there.

Saturday, September 6: Luckily it was cloudy and cooler. I washed dishes and we started cleaning up the mess. About noon we heard a loud POP! Clint ran outside to see what it was, then ran back in... "We have power!!" When they energized the line there was a tree branch touching it, and that was the POP. Yippee!! I waited a little while before turning things on just in case. (My dad lost his fridge and computer due to power surges.) So we are back home and with electricity!!!

Pictures:
Valerie kept asking me if I was having a pinata for my birthday, so I made one!


Birthday flowers

Our House boarded up


On the beach in Gulf Shores



Me and my birthday cake (yes I evacuated my cake too!)


Of course you can't visit Alabama and not visit Lambert's!



A little damage on the way home. There were lots and lots of signs down.


Our fence, which thankfully was the worst we had!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Home sweet Home!

We got back to our house about 11:00 yesterday. AND as of 12:30 today ~~ WE HAVE ELECTRICITY!!!!! A huge difference from the 4 weeks we were told it would be. Hooray!!!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Home

We are planning to return home tomorrow. Clint and my Dad made a day trip yesterday to buy a generator and check on the houses and animals. Our house is fine. We lost our gate and two juniper trees in our flower beds. The gate wasn't made right to begin with and I hated those trees, lol! My dad has a huge tree across his entire back yard, but no house damage. Of course, there's no electricity or any utilities. Water is running, but it's under a boil advisory. One grocery store is open and very few gas stations that we know of. I'm sure next week more things will be back up and running.

So... I will update again when we can! It will be a few weeks before power is restored.

We do have reservations in New Iberia for a few days next week in case it is too much being with out electricity even with the generator.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Quick Update

We are in Pensacola, FL and heading to Biloxi, MS today. It is undetermined when we will be able to return home. Hoping for Friday if not earlier.... No clue about damages in our area. We heard many fences and sheds were lost in our neighborhood.

My dad won't be able to go home for a while. Morgan City lost all utilities - electricity, water, and sewerage were hit by tornadoes.