Saturday, February 28, 2009

My February Loves



DH:
That email you sent after reading my blogpost
Those flowers you brought me.
Being proud of those men who went and shoveled the snow at the church.
Doing all the dishes all the time.
Giving your new hat a chance.
Bringing us Valentine's Day Roses. 10 for me, 1 each for the girls.
Taking us to breakfast for Valentines Day.
Complaining about the girls' collective, constant, disgusting, lasting coughs.
Buying tickets for you and my Dad to go see a Duke game, and being excited about it.
Doing all your church and work duties....
escaping THE VIRUS...how DID you do that?
Keeping all your balls in the air honey...you do it ALL

Big Sis:
The pink in your cheeks after your first day back at school.
Loving your new button: Kiss Me! I practice!
Stealing Sister's brussel sprout.
You planning Dad's birthday dinner and going out just the two of you while Lil Sis and I were sick.
Wanting to save our Friday night waffles for your school movie snack.
Being so excited for your Valentines and party to go with it.
Saving your Valentines $$ to buy a hot dog.
Making Valentines Day cards for all three of us and setting them out on the table with chocolates to surprise us for Valentines Day. When I asked you the best part of Valentines Day, you replied: The surprise (referring to her Valentines surprise for us)
Letting Sister have the Dory match b/c you knew she wanted it so much.
Enjoying the visit with Grammy and Papa SO MUCH...being so let down when it was time to go back to school.
Planning a joke with Grammy and Papa. After seeing HOTEL FOR DOGS, having Grammy tell me the whole movie was in Spanish. And I believe you b/c you also got Lil Sis to talk in her version of Spanish.
Practicing your violin almost completely on your own on Thursday.
me: "How do you know what stratus clouds are?" her: "from my nonfiction research!"
Wanting to discuss the details of your birthday party a few times over.
Your reaction to the grown man you saw on the subway, reading a Junie B Jones book

Lil Sis:
Dressing up as Wendy and addressing me as Miss Dahling...two days in a row.
I love when "Helper Maria" comes to clean the house, b/c she always finds everything you have hidden.
I knew you were a packrat, but now you are officially a crook. Trident gum, right in the pocket, right out the store. Sneaky-kins
Getting upset when Sister stole your brussel sprout.
Asking to put the tree up, every time it snows.
Holding hands while we watched Anastasia when we were sick.
Hula Dancing.
Eating everyone else's breakfast when we went out for Valentines Breakfast.
Bringing me a coke and saying: Mom, let's share this coke.....come on....open it.
Requesting to remove your red nails and put on black with silver sparkles, so that you could look "fancy."
At dinner: "I smell something stinky!................(big smile)......It's ME!"
Returning the gum and saying: "I stole this gum. I'm sorry"
Hearing you say Go Fish!
Asking for the Dory card every single turn putting all other Nemo fish matches aside, b/c you wanted Dory THAT much.
Helping me with the Oreo cookies and the waffles...insisting on aprons
being brave at my casting and asking the monitor for some scratch paper, and asking a fellow actor to play with you while I went in to audition.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

You tube

I was working with a girl yesterday who was on a crest whitening strips commercial.

I decided to see if I could find it on youtube, but instead, I found myself...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

dum du dah DUM!

About 3 weeks ago, I took this photo of myself after a long day with my kids. My agents wanted to know what my hair looked like RIGHT NOW.

I was amazed that I booked a job off of that photo (apparently the portfolio swayed the client, because I know it was not that polaroid, as they kept calling it.) The head hair gal also thought this photo showed me to have about 4 hairs on my head. They were surprised at just how many layers back my hair goes.

So, since they agreed to cutting my hair the way I wanted it cut, I have been anxiously waiting and waiting and waiting for yesterday, which turned out to be a color-only day. DRAT. I had to wait ONE DAY MORE (can I get a Les Miz march please?)

Today we shot my now, OLD hair in a few different looks, and then it was time for the chop!


And there it is:


I am told that my posture changed after the haircut, that the haircut kind of revealed the true me. Well, I hope so, then maybe I can stop going to therapy!

If you live in Minneapolis, you can get the haircut by Renee at this salon:
REGIS SALON
MALL OF AMERICA
152 E BROADWAY
BLOOMINGTON, MN 55425
(952) 854-8484

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Prep Day

Some Foilage...


Yeah, I can't see a differenc either...

cut tomorrow. Can't WAIT!

Monday, February 23, 2009

NECKLACE!!!!



Anyone out there know who made this necklace that Ali Wentworth was wearing on Oprah's Friday's Live last Friday?

I LOVE IT.

Donations

Blogging has opened up a new world of donating/service. I have been the recipient of donations for the Love Scarf Project, Revlon Run/Walk for Women's Cancers and CD purchases to benefit Nie.

I am thrilled with the support of my favorite causes and I thank you. The current fundraising efforts are for Revlon, and this past weekend's donations have pushed me halfway to my goal of earning $500-. (reduced from 2K last year, due to the recession).

If you are interested, there are still a few months to donate, and the button on the right is always there (though it sometimes doesn't work, so let me know if it isn't, and I will spot check it as well).

Anyway, just reporting the progress and saying THANKS to all who support the causes that I advocate.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mom and me

Today at church everyone kept telling us how much we look alike:

My mom and I tried to recreate the crossing-eyes of the Sisters....we are definitely not as good as them.


But I did get this pic of mom this week....so pretty:

Mom, Dad, THANKS for coming to visit. Knowing you were coming helped us get through the February Virus Blues. And we are so happy to have spent a few precious days with you.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Pix from the Party

Good times with the grandparents. Lil Sis called Papa, "Grandfathuh" for much of the day today, and called herself Jo-Jo, which is not her name.




Lots of GO FISH playing...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Coraline

The parents are in town, and they suggested a movie..."How about Coraline?"

Ummm...I was sort of scared by the previews, maybe I should look it up....



IMDB Parental Guide for Coraline.

Huh....

yeah, don't think so.

1 Hour we did this....

Trying to get Cubs Tickets for our boy.


Grammy & Papa, IN THE HOUSE....

Grammy and Papa are here for the weekend.

So far we have...

played scrabble, go-fish, read almost an entire Junie B Jones book each (Grammy one, Papa, the other), watched Horton Hears a Who starring Jim Carrey, caught up on Top Chef, knitted our respective projects, worked out, ate a lot of homemade Oreo cookies, taken a few pix, made reservations for Alice's Tea Cup, gone to a Duke Game (Papa and Jason), and now we are getting ready to try to acquire the much-coveted Cubs Tickets. Wish us Luck!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Third Person Thursday



She was caught off guard when she saw the commercial for the Meningitis Vaccine. She felt the tears well up and then quickly and quietly tucked them away.

The tears were for this: What if I had had that vaccine? I would never have gotten meningitis and then epilepsy. What if the vaccine wouldn't touch viral meningitis, and it wouldn't have worked anyway? What's that they said about allergies to latex? well I guess I wouldn't have been able to get the vaccine anyway, because of my allergies. What if I didn't have all these allergies? What if.....

She reminded herself that it has turned out different than expected, but it's ok.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

First Job of 2009

Check it out, my hand is ALIVE!....you can squeeze the nuvaring with your mouse. My gift to you.....

Click here.

Gradually Going Thrifty: Birthday Gifts.

When I was growing up, the routine was to stock up on new clothes three times a year. We went school shopping, and then got some winter boost-of-wardrobe at Christmas time and then summer clothes for our spring birthdays (all four of us had birthdays right in a row in the spring). We also got our spring/summer Sunday dress on Easter Sunday. The point here is that clothes were always associated with a gift or event.

This family tradition makes perfect sense to me, but I have found myself in the habit of just buying clothes whenever I want, and also stocking up on a season, every time there is a new season. I just buy stuff and then throw it in the closet to wait until it's time to wear it.

So. The thrifty part, because so far this does not seem thrifty at all.

The thrifty part is that the recent stock up (which was less of a stock up then my over-indulgent past), is my kids birthday presents! I am not just hanging up the new clothes in the closet, I am wrapping them and giving them as gifts. This lessens the amount of presents I have to buy, and the presents have a practical use-wear these clothes!

I also saved a few Christmas gifts that I did not give to the kids, and will be giving them as birthday gifts. Rain boots and summer flats, on huge discount at jcrew.com... more practical gifts.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Pass the Serotonin Please...

I am like 97% healthy, after almost 2 weeks of fighting this virus. I worked out for the first time yesterday, and committed to getting back into my morning routine this morning.

I couldn't do it.

I just KEPT sleeping. And that after the day before, sleeping WAY in AND having a nap. And today I felt tired and like I wanted a nap again.

Yesterday my DH called me grumpy. I denied it of course. Today I felt edgy. Big Sis and I clashed a lot, which is not the norm, and Lil Sis and I had some RAM action at bed time.

I think the answer is to get back to my workouts. When I miss those, it's bad times....today I almost felt that fluish, achy feeling, which has nothing to do with the flu, it's just the depression trying to set in.

So, maybe if I write about it, it will happen. Tomorrow....the gym...me....and some serotonin puh-lease!

Gradually Going Thrifty

It was a tiny bit of a pain, but after about 45 minutes, I saved some cash.

My doctor told me I should enroll in the 90-day supply of meds program with my insurance. I was resistant for almost a year because I am fiercely loyal to my Steinway Pharmacists. Recently I couldn't find parking after a half hour of circling and they brought my meds out to me at the curb.

I will still fill a few prescriptions there. Don't worry.

I found the website for my prescription provider and it illustrated this great chart for me. Every 30 days I spend around 20 dollars at my Steinway Pharmacy for my meds, adding up to about $260- per year.

Then the lowEST cost alternative flashed on the screen. the generic equivalent of my drug would cost me less than that amount for a 90-day supply, saving me $180- per year. Ok, that's better than the Instant Breakfast savings. I remember discussing the newly unveiled generic with my doc, and we decided against it. I called the nurse, because this was just too good.

While I waited for her to return my call I saw a second saving alternative. Stay on the BRAND, switch to the mail-order 90-day and save $166 per year. Well, that is STILL a huge savings.

Once the nurse called back and explained that the FDA has approved 11 different companies to make my drug, with a 10% margin of error and that a study in Canada of patients who switched over to generic (by force of government), 17% of seizure sufferers switched back to brand, I was ok with the 14 dollar difference.

So I printed out the paperwork, filled it out, stuck a few stamps on it and now I am just staring at the $166.56 I am saving each year plus gas. Well, I will still be stopping by Steinway Pharmacy for other prescription needs, but if we lose our car in '09, I can always switch those prescriptions to my neighborhood pharmacies, and perhaps print out my blogs about Steinway and ask them to please consider being as great as Steinway Pharmacy. Please.

Total Projected Savings for 2009 (so far): $1092.00 (ok, most of that was the cable, but hurray!)



Monday, February 16, 2009

My new desktop photo

Don't tell the Bishop, but...

I snapped this photo during church. The flash was off, and I was in the back row, but I did feel a little guilty about it. This was a candid moment, and their faces, I just couldn't pass on it, so they had to repeat the moment, for my camera...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Booked!

I have barely squeaked in my second booking of the year...for Regis.

Whenever you do a hair job, they always want to change your hair, at least a little.

I requested my preferred style change, and according to my agents, they are down with it, so though I would love Frank to do it, in these economic times, it's good to be paid to have it done. I am sure I will need Frank to fix the color, or perhaps upkeep it if I like it, so we both win.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Thanks Aunt Kelly for the t-shirts:


Here's lots of love to my loves!

Age-defying

Yes, the past year the number of grey-hair spottings have increased quite a bit.

Today's offering was too bright white not to pluck it out. Isn't there an old wives tale that the more you pluck them out, the more grey hairs grow in?

Well, I don't believe it. Not after today. The hair I plucked out was black at the root for a few inches and then was white for about 3 inches, and then light brown for 2 more inches, with a white tip.

Clearly, I am working some magic on my grey hairs. If I think young, they reverse from white back to black. I am definitely going to patent this new think system, so don't even think about stealing it after reading it here.

It's hard to see here, but I tried, the root is between my fingers:



Valentine's Day Playlist

My Sister is playing Musical Chairs with some toddlers. I decided to try to find some good songs for that game, or freeze dance:

HEARTBREAKER
Heart Attack
Achy Breaky Heart
Young Hearts Run Free
L.O.V.E.-Ashlee Simpson or Kidz Bop
Accidentally in Love
L-O-V-E Michael Buble
You Give Love a bad name
Friday I'm in love
You Can't Hurry Love
Stop in the name of love!
Pride (In the name of Love) U2
I believe in love (barbra!)
I've got a crush on you
She's in love (little mermaid broadway)
kiss the girl

Thursday, February 12, 2009

So, THIS is how it's gonna be ~ TPT

Such a beautiful day yesterday! She didn't realize how beautiful the day was until she walked outside. She had finally gotten her shower, dressed in her audition clothes, makeup on, she was ready to go.

Lil Sis, after being cooped up for days and days and days was spunky when they left the house. She had loaded the ipod with her request: Christmas Episode of Yo-Gabba-Gabba, packed the lunch and briefed her on the plan: casting, and then possibly the park.

See, Lil Sis has had her eye on a newly constructed park in our neighborhood. It was finally completed during a stretch of our coldest days this winter, and she would not let the kids try out the new park, because of the weather. Today was a good day to give it a test-run.

At the casting, Lil Sis watched her ipod and chewed on her peanut butter and jelly sandwich while she went in and performed her industrial audition a few times. They made great time getting home and arrived at the new playground, just as Lil Sis' playschool friends were packing up to go back to school. She was excited to see her friends, but equally excited to have the brand new playground all to herself.

She watched Lil Sis explore and perk up, and at the same time, she was feeling pretty spent, not quite 100% healthy yet. She sat on a bench with her nose and eyes running, wishing she was feeling well enough to enjoy the weather. Then she got hungry. She spied her favorite bagel shop across the street and realized she had their number in her phone. She phoned in her delivery order. A few minutes later, the bagel employee crossed the street with her bag of food and she signed the receipt and just bought her daughter a few more minutes of play.

Of course they ended up sharing the sandwich and the grapefruit Mash, and she just kept fading and fading. She knew that after the shower and the beautiful weather that if she was still feeling like crap, that meant, she wasn't quite healthy yet. Pass the lemon zinger please.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Gradually Going Thrifty

Birthday Party Part 1:

Since I have half-heartedly committed to trying a year without scrapbooking (publishing blurb books and a snapfish album instead), I have lots of extra scrapbook supplies that need a second life.

So, I packed it all up in my bag and went to a friend's house who is a stamper/crafter.

She helped me put together a super simple birthday invitation, donating some 3-D stickers, envelopes and ink to the project (thank you). I then printed the back and adhered them and stuffed them in the envelopes.

I feel confident I could have come up with something equally as thrifty without the help of my friend, but she definitely added to the project with her cute Birthday Stamps and supplies and enthusiasm for all things stamps/cards.




I know these could have been even spiffier, but I wanted something functional, simple, that took little time and was almost-free.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ram vs Ram


When the Shrek 2 credits role, and the motrin has kicked in....



I am at the point in my sickness, where a nice long, hot shower would really push me over the edge and back into real life. We have been without hot water for now 30ish hours.

I am trying to remind myself that much of humanity has it a lot worse out there, but I am PMSing hard, my daughter is whining about Dora the Explorer and the Cadbury Mini Eggs have not been displayed at my local Duane Reade yet. This could be a real emergency.

Questions

Is it bad that I care more about what Big Sis is going to be for Halloween then the level and regimen of math she is getting at her school?

Should I be attending the two meetings fellow parents have set up, to explore extra-curricular math "games"?

Is it strange that I think doing any sort of math as an extra-curricular does not sound fun at all ("game" indicates fun no? or actually...competition?)?

Should I be thinking about my child getting into an ivy-league institute of learning when she is only 6?

I don't give into peer pressure very well, is that abnormal?

How many extra-curricular activities should my children be involved in? Is 2 each enough? or too much?

Is it strange that ever since I started planning and making dinner for my family almost every day, that my you're-a-good-mother/wife level has gone up a lot? And that attacking my daughter's math education does not add to this level at all?


Monday, February 09, 2009

Birthday Wishes for my OLD husband!


36!

My DH turned 36 today. Last year, on his birthday, we attended my Grandfather's funeral. We celebrated before we left, and the pictures say it all: DH has lost a lot of weight since 35!

This past year has been hard for me, I can't imagine the load my DH has been carrying: his family, his job, his calling as Bishop at church, and his getting-healthy plan. I am proud of you.

Jason has been wanting a hat, so I went out on a limb and picked one out for him. I hope he likes it. He took the tags off this morning, that's a good sign....although Nordstrom takes stuff back regardless...maybe not as good a sign as I thought!


The girls decided a birthday dinner at Pizzeria Uno sounded perfect. DH and I had plans for a great neighborhood Italian restaurant this weekend, which didn't happen because of the nasty virus. Big Sis is all set to take her Dad out to dinner, just her, tonight, since Lil Sis and I are still planted on the couch. My contribution (besides the hat), to the celebration are Coldstone's new cupcakes. I hope they're good!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

It Spread

Remember the virus?

Lil Sis and me.

both have it.

All the money I had budgeted for winter break was spent on:

humidifier
mucinex
lemon zinger tea
cepacol
halls

We surrender.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Gradually Going Thrifty

I was finally suckered into writing the 25 random notes about me on facebook and one of my random items:

I have had a Carnation Instant Breakfast for breakfast for the past 25 years, with a few exceptions: pregnancy and a short experiment with cornflakes.

I would add that I sometimes have what I call Second Breakfast if I have already had my CIB and then want cereal or some other breakfast item with it, this usually when I MAKE a big breakfast or after a workout.

Anyway, my friend sent me a link to a Craigs List add selling boxes of Carnation Instant Breakfast for $5.00 each. I would have considered this if it was the right flavor (anything chocolate), but the vanilla was not appealing to me, because I pay more than 5 dollars for a box.

However, it got me thinking, so I checked out Amazon. I found I could buy 3 boxes of Instant Breakfast for $13.82, making each unit about 46 cents each...and to qualify for free shipping I just got 6 boxes. My DH now participates in the instant breakfast ritual, so we go through it much faster.

My current grocery store price before tax (is there tax on food in NYC? maybe not....), has each unit at 58 cents each. If my DH and I go through 2 units a day, that's 6 boxes a month, so switching from my grocery store to amazon saves me $7.20 a month and $86.40 a year. That's like a new pair of shoes, a few trips to the movies, whatever. It's more of my money in my pocket.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Tickled.

I got a tickle in my throat yesterday. I knew it was the beginning of something.

My throat felt so scratchy that I bought some Halls so that I could get through therapy and lunch with a friend. As is usually the case with a cold, it got worse as the day went on. By the evening I was having a hard time catching my breath and was feeling tight in my throat.

I was tickled to have my agent call me for a vice over audition today. I do not audition for voice over very much, so I did a little research last night on voice over auditions. I was happy that I did that, nothing really new, but stuff I had sort of forgotten.

This morning I woke up and of course the tickle had progressed to a piece of croup from days gone by just sitting on my throat. Not only is my voice pretty hoarse, but it also just plain HURTS to talk. I am dismayed. My first voice over audition in a long time, might even name it my first official voice over audition, and I have voice issues....today of all days!

So, I have been eating halls and I plan to get some tea or throat stuff at the pharmacy this morning, hopefully try to squeak out the audition this afternoon.

This is so my life....am I right?

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Third Person Thursday

Her daughter usually clilmbs into her bed next to her and gently kisses her cheek or nestles in next to her, sharing her pillow. After a few minutes of this, she usually rouses and wakes up.

This morning, she saw a red flash behind her eyeball, over and over and over again. Finally she managed to say something: Please don't flash that in my face, GO!....but the damage was already done:


Wednesday, February 04, 2009

I am not Megan Paul...

...but maybe I wish I was?

From USA Today:


A lot (I mean a LOT) of people mistaken me for the Zyrtec Girl. I noticed she is on a Chilli's spot now. And also the Listerine:



Oh yeah, and tic tac and axe

and so yeah, maybe I do wish I was Megan Paul....

Gradually Going Thrifty

Voicemail: "Hi honey, give me a call, I have to tell you something, you are going to be so proud of me."

So I called him, and he told me what happened:

"I called the cable company and told them that my wife was threatening to cancel the cable because it is too expensive, and I was going to have to cancel it if they couldn't do something for me. They put me on hold and came back with a 24-month plan that was 41% less than what we are paying now. I said, sign me up."

And I was proud of him. And the amount we are saving is the exact amount of a recently added new expense that we have. Coincidence? I don't think so.

Now...who else can we call?

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Brain Check.

It's been about 335 days since the HB08. Yesterday I had my neurologist appointment.

As my doctor was digitally paging through my latest MRI I found myself getting a little teary. I gave myself a pep talk: You can do this. You can get through this appointment.

My doctor is way on top of things. She is my official third opinion and there was still more to learn today. I got a good, clear look at the frontal lobe bleed on the right, above my eye. I think that's when I got a little teary, because I had never really seen a picture of it before. And, she also found one on the left that had gone unreported. That one was smaller and off to the side, near my ear. She explained that these spots would always show up on my brain scan, so I guess that left spot could have been ages old, but she presented it as a result of HB08. The trauma was spread farther than I ever knew.

We spent a lot of time discussing the latest challenges I have been facing and the treatments I am pursuing through seeing other specialists. I was feeling a lot of anxiety about possibly changing AED's, but she answered all of my questions thoroughly and I felt much better about going forward with all the areas of treatment that I am embroiled in.

I left feeling: I'm not crazy...I'm just....crazy. Which felt just about right to me.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Cool as a Cucumber

"Cool as a Cucumber" is one of those phrases that my mom used all the time when I thought I was dying of some ailment growing up. She would feel my forehead and exclaim: Cool as a Cucumber.

Finally, after 6 straight days, Big Sis woke up from her (our) 3-hour nap yesterday afternoon and I could say: Cool as a cucumber. Actually, I think I said, with relief: YOU FEEL COLD!

And she stayed cold. And she rose her head off the pillow and pulled out a few barbies today. Playing for 20 minutes wore her out though, thus the 3-hour nap. My excuse for my matching nap: I'm medicated!

Unfortunately she was 101 before the coolness moved in and she did still require a long nap and she is coughing and deep snorting a lot. So, one more day at home I think. And perhaps a half day as her first day back on Tuesday. Perhaps.

I am so glad she weathered this nasty nasty virus.


Sunday, February 01, 2009

Jumping.


Can you tell the blogging has picked up? That would be because since Monday afternoon I have been trying to nurse Big Sis back to health. Basically this entails checking the heat on her forehead, dosing her up with motrin and changing the dvd in the player every few hours. There has been orange juice and soup involved as well, and lots of jammies and blankies.

I have managed to get out of the house a few times for a few castings, because of a friend who so willingly has risked getting the same nasty virus (105 degree temperature....my first time seeing that as a mom..no strep, no flu, just a virus urgh!), and relieving me for a few hours. The rest of the time I am just meal planning (hurray!), working on the website, mailings, networking, taxes, other financial priorities, organizing, laundry, 1st-grade yearbook, reading, and blogging. Ironically, I have had a little spring in my step throughout all this idleness. I have felt chipper. I am taking note of that.

I can't remember if I shared my mother's Christmas card last year but here it is. I called it Jumping for Jesus, but I think she captioned it Jumping for Joy. Obviously inspired by my bro Sam and his collection of jumping photos.

His latest sent home this week...man he can get high: