Friday, August 27, 2010

Hurricane Katrina 5 years later

I remember that August well. My oldest was 15 months old and I was hugely pregnant with my daughter. Mike was playing with a Hot Wheels track and I was watching super hottie Anderson Cooper on CNN while folding laundry.

That was Anderson Cooper's epic coverage of the Super Dome in New Orleans, with all the stranded victims of Hurricane Katrina. As he talked to the camera a hugely pregnant woman shuffled behind him. I gasped. Here I am cool, comfortable, safe and well-fed watching a woman as pregnant as me sweating, with no access to food or water. I started bawling.

Michael is the emotional barometer in our home and he was immediately concerned. Just then my husband opened our front door which faced our living room. And this is where it gets funny. My dear husband saw his crying pregnant wife, holding his son and Erik actually took one step backwards. He stood on the threshold of our home, one foot in and  one foot out, and stole a quick glance over his shoulder. He was thinking of making a run for it!!  Erik was struggling hard to think what he had done to make me cry and how he could escape punishment. What a chicken.

I explained to him why I was crying, and it wasn't until he realized he was not guilty of anything that he felt safe walking into the house and shutting our front door. In his defense I was a little psycho when I was pregnant.

Now I have a 6 year old, an almost 5 year old and a 3 year old. I am so happy to not be pregnant during another summer! But I still wonder about that other pregnant woman. Did she and her baby make it?  Is her child going to start Kindergarten next year like my daughter Bekah? Does she, or did she have more kids?  Does she still live in New Orleans? I can only pray that she is safe now.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

My Summer Vacation by Charlotte

I took some major time off from my blog and I missed writing, and offending and entertaining my friends. I'd like to give you a run-down on my summer before I go back to my usual erratic posts.

*  Kids did great with their swim lessons even though Jake and Bekah's class was monopolized by some helicopter parents. That means they hovered over the pool and bossed the swim coach around. All 3 of them: mom, dad and grandmother. The poor little boy was wearing a swim vest and goggles, neither of which fit properly. It was killing me! Poor little guy. My only advice to the swim coach was, drag Jake's ass into the pool if he tries to run away.

* Took my savages to Disneyland for their first time. Lots of family joined us and we dominated the park. My daughter is fearless, my sons are wimps. Mike heard the first chord of organ music in The Haunted Mansion and ran screaming for the door. Jake was catatonic for an hour after going on The Pirates of the Caribbean. Bekah went on Tower of Terror twice!  She's 4 years old.

* Husband was on-call Fourth of July weekend. Super suck.

* Took my 3 monkeys to the county fair by myself. Hot and expensive but I am not afraid to hit the beer booth. Best money spent was shooting water balloons out of a sling-shot, at each other. I have better aim than they do (evil laugh) that's what they get for waking me up at dawn.  Jake was on my team and Bekah and Mike had their own, ineffective team. We drew such an audience of people laughing that the booth's owner kept giving us free water balloons. We got him a whole new line of customers. It was really fun. One woman was laughing so hard she had to sit on the grass so as not to pee her pants.

*Kids did sports camp, craft camp, no girls allowed camp and a music class.

* I decided to take the kids camping for a weekend by myself. Not really, my Dad and Step-mom and other family were there to pick up some slack. My reasoning was that Erik would have a lovely weekend by himself and would be refreshed.

*We spent the whole weekend in the lake swimming. Jake practically hyperventilated when I tried to swim out to the buoys in the middle of the lake. I started to turn back and my dear Dad said,"No! Spend 5 minutes by yourself he needs grow out of this!". Thanks Dad. It was so nice to swim out past the pee warmed water and shiny slick of sunscreen,to the middle of the lake where it was nice and cool and quiet. Totally cleared my head.

* I was exhausted the next day and packed up camp around my sleeping kids. I then poured them into semi-clean clothes and packed them into the van. I told them we would stop for milk and donuts if they let me drive home with no stops or fighting. I was so excited thinking that I would dump them on my refreshed husband and take a giant nap. When I got home Erik was laid up with a sprained rest for the wicked.

*Mike flooded our downstairs. Our cat drinks from the bathroom sink and Mike turned it on full-blast, plugged the sink and then came back upstairs to snuggle with us in bed. While Erik and I are laying in bed listening to our 3 kids sing songs about farts we had no idea our bathroom was flooding beyond the walls and onto the hallway carpet. Such a lovely thing to come downstairs and see before I have even had a cup of coffee.

*Keep your records updated, I called the number my husband gave me for our insurance guy and it was phone sex chat-line!

*Happy ending: home owner's insurance is buying us new downstairs carpet.  I have decided to let my 6 year old live. Then I had a huge good-bye to the old carpet playgroup here with my friends and all their kids. At least 15 kids were here. Good times.

August (last weekend of July)
*My brother Bill and his woman, Ari,  came to spend a couple of nights. They were trying to catch a military flight out of Travis Air Force Base for Europe (the long way). Bill is a Navy Seal. Lots of family in and out all day feeding them brunch, lunch and grilled a couple of tri-tips. Tons of fun.

* After they left their travels took them to Spain and Morocco. They stayed here on there way home for a couple of more nights. I love having them here because they are very hands-on with the kids and not only are a huge help but really tire out my kids!

*The same day Bill and Ari went home Erik's grandmother came to stay a couple of nights. She came with me to Mike's camp talent show and Mike booed a little girl and made her cry. I wanted to fucking die!!  I dragged him out of the room and told him how he had hurt her feelings and was never allowed to boo again for the rest of his life. And he said,"Even at a football game?". And I said maybe. Then I made him apologize to her and by that time he was in tears.

*I took Grandma-in-law and kids to visit a cousin of hers in Marin. They were super nice and had 2 kids of their own. He is V.P. of Wordpress so I didn't mention I had a blog on Blogger and I told my Grandmother-in-law not to say anything either.

*The next day tons more family came for a bbq and then sister-in-law took her grandmother home with her.

*Erik was on-call this entire time. It sucked.

*Hooked up with friend of over 30 years and took our kids to Gilroy Gardens. Fun!

*Jake has taken to climbing the outside of the stairs. Like a rock wall. The first time I found him I couldn't even reach him  because he had climbed so high. I ran upstairs and dragged him over the railing to safety. I have weaved a crib bumper through the spindles but that's just slowing him down. Any ideas besides barbed wire or broken glass?

*Last night bbq here, tonight bbq at friends, tomorrow more bbq at friends. And then back to school on Monday. Three different schools, three different schedules.........wish me luck.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Awards and Why I don't Do Them

I am not one of those mommy bloggers who gives cute stuff away and awards their friends with heartfelt awards. Why?  Because I suck. I am lazy and unorganized.

This chick Angie who has her shit way more together than I do, gave me an award and I am very grateful. Please check out her blog, she's cute, sarcastic, is funny and drinks.

Coming soon: My kids will go back to school and I will have time to blog.  I want to tell you about my summer and otherwise bore or entertain you, and indulge myself.

Right now I have the news on and I guess our troops are leaving Iraq. My bro, who is a Navy Seal, was supposed to go to Iraq next month. Now I wonder if he is still going. It would be great if he stayed home and impregnated his wife instead of going to a shit-hole and getting his ass shot off. I think this calls for a cold one.