Friday, June 15, 2012


I've loved hydrangeas for as long as I can remember.  They're second only to peonies.  Which just so happens to be one of my favorite words to see in print or written:  peony.  

When we were looking at houses, I told people that I'd know the right house because it would have blue hydrangeas & a mimosa tree.  We found what I thought was the right house for us---4 bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths.  It had a formal living room, formal dining room, large L shaped family room, in a cul-de-sac, 2 stories & there was a large mimosa tree in the back yard.  And it was a great size yard.

Unfortunately, I was too busy looking at what was right with the house to see what was wrong.  The master bedroom & en suite bath were tiny.  Really tiny.  Our bedroom furniture wouldn't have fit.  Well, it would have but it would have been a tight fit.  And the master bath was the size of some apartment bathrooms I'd had.  There was no option of knocking out a wall to enlarge it as it backed up to the stairwell.

And the yard, well, it had holes in it.  They might have been made by the tenant's dog, or by a critter creating tunnels underground.  Or other things.  There were issues that our realtor pointed out to Hunter that I have since blocked because I was convinced that we were meant to have THAT house.

The more I raved about the house, the more Hunter would make faces & express his concerns.  Hindsight being 20/20, our realtor did us a favor.  We went on to bid on a different house & were outbid.  Two days later we looked at this house.  It was the first house out of 9 (I think, 9? Maybe 10.) that actually had him smiling.  "This house, I like!" he said as we walked up the driveway & into the garage.  There were negatives, of course, but he pointed out what minimal things they were, that the owner would pay to have them fixed & again, "this house, I like!"

But there was no mimosa tree & there was no hydrangea plant.

Or so we thought.  Our neighbor, Miss Jane, gave us a blue hydrangea as a housewarming/welcome to the 'hood gift.  Hunter's parents gave us a mimosa.  I was giddy when they both bloomed our first Spring here.

And I was positively bursting with joy when I realized that at the end of the hedge row in the backyard, there was a hydrangea.  And it was blue.  And it was magenta!  Two different color blooms on one plant.  Now, I'm not sure what kind of soil is going on in that part of the yard, but I'm glad it's wonky!

A week or so ago I was in the sun room when I noticed something blue & purple in the yard.  My hydrangea had bloomed.  Blue  & purple.  

I knew this was the right house for our family!  

Monday, June 11, 2012

An Open Letter To Insomnia

Dear Insomnia~

I feel we know one another well enough for me to speak frankly to you.  You suck & I am severing our relationship effective immediately.

I know this must come as a shock to you considering our history.  Yes, we flirted all those years that I was a night owl.  An "early" bedtime of 12:30 isn't early & it's much too late to go bed when you have to be up at 6, but we made it work, didn't we?  Oh! And the old weekend/going clubbing & getting to bed around 3 to be up at 6 back in my retail days---man, that was nuts!  Remember my "get me going for the day" breakfast on Saturdays?  Yep, McDonalds Bacon Egg & Cheese Biscuit, hashbrown & a large orange drink.  You'll excuse me for a moment while I contemplate the carbs in that one meal alone.

I also know that you had a hand in Sunshine's sleep issues her first couple months of life.  It's okay, admit it.  New moms are fun on 3 hours sleep.  Not fun for them, but for you.

Then something happened.  Your arch nemesis Mr. Ambien came onto the scene.  I was SLEEPING.  Granted some nights I was babbling incoherently to Hunter as Mr. Ambien did his work.  And there was that famous incident where I was on the phone w/ AM, crafting beaded earrings in anticipation of Hunter's homecoming.  It's okay to laugh.

You HAD to know something was up during Lent when I decided that rather than give something up for Lent, I would DO something instead.  And that something was get in bed by 10 each night.

Admit it, you didn't think I could do it, did you?  You thought I'd fail miserably.   But I did it.  And I continued to do so after school got out (for the most part).

And that little success of mine made you mad, didn't it??  And when I decided "hey, it's summer vacation---I don't need to be up at 6 so I'm not going to take anything to help me sleep.  I'm going to do this ON.MY.OWN" you became crazy mad.  So mad, in fact, that tonight (last night?) you decided to exact your revenge upon me .  "Oh, she'll be all wired from the season finale of Mad Men" you thought.  "She'll get in bed after 11, want to read a little, want to play backgammon on her Fire & that's when I'll show up"

Two can play at that game, sir.

So Insomnia, our destructive , no--single sided relationship ends.   I WILL get in bed at a reasonable hour on most nights.  I WILL beat you at your crazy little game that leaves me in dire need of caffeine.  (I'm not giving up caffeine here---let's not go crazy!)  I WILL get a decent night's sleep.  So HA!

Go find someone else to bug.



Friday, June 8, 2012

Two weeks into summer vacation

and we've settled in nicely.  There's much sleeping in, general laziness, swimming, thrift/antique store scouring, crafts and trip planning.

I've finally finished the training "program" for caregivers for the VA.  Yes, "program" in quotes.  It consisted of having a conversation with a VA rep on Hunter's condition and what level of care did he need.  There was a training "program" that could have been in person (thank you, Jesus that it wasn't) or online.  The online was bad enough.  The majority of it was common sense but there were a couple modules that did provide good info on support for caregivers.  Hunter had to submit a form saying that I have access to his medical records and yesterday we had a home visit from one of their reps.  Now we wait to find out which tier he falls into and what the monthly stipend will be.

We're also trying to plan our trip North.  We're hoping to bring Sunshine to Williamsburg as 2 of her American Girl dolls lived there (Felicity & Elizabeth) and are looking forward to Hunter's father's family reunion.  It'll be nice to see them again as we haven't been to one of their reunions since 2006.  We're also planning to bring Sunshine to Montreal.  Hunter has only been in the winter which makes sight seeing tricky as he may or may not had a wife in high heeled boots clinging to his arm for fear of wiping out on icy sidewalks.  Hopefully my mom will agree to watch our dogs overnight while we go.  If not, we'll make a day trip out of it. The American dollar is doing much better than it has been and is now worth more than the Canadian dollar.  Basically we'll get better rates on our hotel room & while shopping!

Today Sunshine & I are going to see Madagascar 3 this afternoon and then tonight I have a girls dinner with some friends.

Have a great weekend!