Friday, November 30, 2012

One More Reason To Love

It really is the little things. I received a text this morning from the husband asking me out. Granted it is short notice for tonight or tomorrow, but I will take it. Can you believe we have two evenings to consider? That is the way we roll around here. You go when you can and never make future plans.

But it is the gesture that follows that goes straight to the heart: he offers to call the sitter(s).

Finding a sitter is the task that puts a dark cloud over every potential date night. That single event has often discouraged me from even attempting to go out. Just because YOU are available doesn't mean THEY are available. That coupled with the fact that I do not like being told "No, I'm sorry I can't tonight" when I know the next time I am able to go out may be weeks or potentially months away. I can't handle the rejection. It is difficult to find a sitter on short notice.... which is why I contend we need to keep a sitter on retainer so when we call she comes. (I wonder if anyone has already thought of that as a business model).

So when he offers to make all the plans, including calling and finding a sitter for the evening I am a happy girl. Having that nasty little task removed from my list makes me feel like dancing and singing.

The pessimist inside me says not to get too excited because this has all just happened and an available sitter may be impossible to find. But in this case, it is the thought that counts. Knowing that he would do something (one more thing) I hate to do makes this another reason to love that man of mine.


Thursday, November 29, 2012


If you put a baby in a tub of warm water after dinner there is a good chance that he/she will poop. It doesn't happen every time (thank heavens) but often enough!

It is one of the reasons that I do not clean my bathtub on a regular schedule. If I clean it, the baby will poop in it and I will have to clean it again. And just when I think the baby has outgrown that particular phase I am reminded that just about every time the older kids get in the bath they all of a sudden need to get out to use the bathroom.

I remember the days when I tried to follow a regimented cleaning schedule. The one that says every Thursday I scrub the tub, or on the first Saturday of the month I wash the baseboards. You know, to stay on top of things. Ha! When you have kids it is best to be realistic, accept and move on. Children will give you ample opportunity to clean things so there is no need to do the job before it needs it.

Try it. Scrub the floor before it is dirty and someone will inevitable give you a reason to clean it. No use in making more work for yourself. I don't have the energy for it. If you do and it makes you happy I am happy for you. It just makes me crankier.

On the bright side, when the baby poops in the tub mommy gets a bath!

Our home has two bathtubs. The one in the kids bath is nearly impossible to use for assisted washings because it requires me to be closer to the toilet than I would like to be and there just isn't enough room to move. The only other bath happens to be my garden tub which is deep, wide, and much easier. Not to mention I can bathe a whole slew of people at the same time. Time saver.

What that also means is that my bath isn't exactly ready for me when I am ready for it. Kids are dirty! The last thing I want to do is scrub the bath tub. When I need to relax, making more work for myself isn't on the list. Now if someone else wanted to clean the bath for me (hint, hint).

So mama gets a bath after the baby poops in it. It works. Baby goes in. Baby poops. Baby gets out. Mom gets out the bleach. Baby gets back in bath. Baby goes to bed. Mom gets in the bath. Bath is clean. Mom is happy.

And guess who is on call? I may just spend all night in my nice clean tub,  just me and a book. I may even light a candle and add some bubbles.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Let the Bah-Hum-Bug Begin

It has been made perfectly clear to me that I am not a holiday person. It's just so much stuff!

The week before Thanksgiving people on our street were putting up lights, trees, and outdoor decorations. By the time the turkey was carved they had probably finished the insides as well. Our decorations are in a box somewhere. At least what we didn't give away is in a box. Remember we are traveling light.

I have a very observant son who noticed that we never do any outside decorations. He is right. He is also very bothered by that fact and has been giving me my daily scolding.

My excuses prior excuses have been:

1. It is too cold! Where we lived before the weather frequently dropped below freezing the week of Thanksgiving. I'm just not that interested in putting up Christmas lights in the freezing temperatures or doing it weeks ahead of Thanksgiving just so it gets done. It's not that big of a deal to me. I enjoy other peoples outdoor decorations.

2. It is dangerous! We are protecting our future here by not allowing our future doctor on the roof to hang lights. Period. I won't do it. A few lights on the roof are not worth the possibility of a slip or fall. And I am not doing it either!

3. It is clutter! I don't do clutter. Holiday decorations are just clutter in my opinion. When you live in small spaces with small people clutter is your enemy. It's more stuff to pick up, pack up, dust off,... can't we do with out it?

We don't currently have a Christmas tree. We gave that away too. It was a sad thing my husband had from before we were married. I don't know that I even want a tree. We have a toddler! Yes I could put it up on something.... but we are missing the something. There isn't a place to put it. Is that a lame excuse. I have visions of me finding the baby under a fallen tree. It is very likely to happen.

Somehow I have been talked into getting into the Christmas spirit when I don't want to. Yes I know it is technically time. But I don't want to bah-hum-bug.

After school today my son is expecting us to do some holiday decorating, complete with outdoor ornamentation. We don't have any. So off to Hobby Lobby I went, and $100 dollars later we have some stakes to put in the yard, a few new ornaments, a wall hanging, a wreath (that I should have made, it's just tinsel stuff), a countdown thing-y, and four tiny Christmas trees. I don't think anyone is going to accept that. We are probably going to have to buy a tree of some sort.

Have you started/finished your holiday decorating? Would you like to come do mine?


Monday, November 26, 2012

I Don't Shop Friday or Monday

Some people get really excited about the start of the Christmas shopping season. That person is not me.

I don't know if it comes from all the years I spent working the day after Thanksgiving, or if it never held any appeal for me in the first place.

Twice in my adult life have I gone shopping on Black Friday. Both times were a disaster and I have no desire to ever do it again.

The first was during residency and a friend of mine couldn't believe that I hadn't been Black Friday shopping as an adult. To her shopping was a sport and she took me along for the ride. I didn't have an excuse. My husband was home, and we were starting at 11:00 pm so the kids didn't need me. It could be fun, right?

Our mission: Toys R Us. For what I don't remember.

What I do recall is the freezing weather. Lines that wrapped around the building. Hot Chocolate. Crazy people.

When we finally got in the store we split up because it is nearly impossible to stay together. On my shopping list: Nothing. She couldn't believe there wasn't anything there I wanted! Trying to explain to her that we didn't buy our kids much for Christmas was like explaining quantum physics to a 5 year old. I can still see the baffled look on her face. I came for the experience and to enjoy watching my friend and the other lunatics who were there.

What ensued reminded me that saving a few bucks is all in the eye of the beholder. When you are with masses of people who are all stuffing their carts you take on the mentality of scarcity and before I knew it I had things in my hand I didn't really need. But I felt like I had better get something before they were gone. Thankfully, the hour wait in line (that is why I was really there - line place holder so my friend could shop more) I came to my senses and put my things down. I didn't need them!

For me saving money is more about NOT buying things in the first place than buying things that are on sale just because they are on sale. And that is really my mantra around the holidays. I don't go in for quantity. I don't feel the desire to load the tree with things. I don't think that will ever change.

To enjoy Black Friday shopping you have to have a certain special something in your personality. For me, I don't enjoy shopping in crowds. I don't enjoy feeling rushed. I don't like the energy of the crowds - people aren't nice.

Now, Cyber Monday. It is mid-day and I haven't bought a thing online. Since I am on the computer now, I may browse... but I haven't made a list yet so chances are good anything I buy will be something I don't need.

Are you a big holiday shopper? Love or Hate Black Fridays?


Friday, November 23, 2012

All So Exciting!

We have much to be thankful for and this week I have spent the time relishing in our "moment" and the good fortune that seems to be at our doorstep.

No sooner had the doctor stepped in the front door from his interview, he received a phone call from the man who will be his partner. It was the phone call you only see in movies. The one that starts "we really want you", and "what will it take to get you here".

That phone call was followed the next day by the surgical director saying they were looking forward to having him on their team, and that a contract would be coming shortly for his review.

I don't know if this is standard protocol but at the interview they gave him a contract! It was really a shell of a contract, but the only things that needed to be filled in were signing bonus and salary amounts. They gave him the equivalent of a new hire package to review their benefits. It is a long contract!

I have read it and reread it. It looks good. Still we are awaiting the real deal before I allow myself to get too excited about it. But from where it stands right now it looks like he (we) have a job that is a good fit, in the location we want to be, with the flexibility to do what he wants as far as research goes.

I should exercise more faith in this process. For the last 6+ years I was certain the possibility of our returning to our home state was nearly zero. Particularly when he decided to do a fellowship. There just aren't that many jobs to choose from when you start further specializing. I had resigned myself to the fact that we would always be away from what was happening with our families. That we would always find ourselves in an area that wouldn't entice our family to visit. They don't get out much. That we would always spend holidays and special occasions alone, or with friends - but not family.

And here we are, starring at what we thought was impossible, knowing that all we have to do is say YES and it will be reality. It is an exciting feeling and gives me every reason to be Thankful.

This is the moment we have spent the previous years waiting for! You never think it will happen while you are preparing for it, and then before you know it - it is here.


Monday, November 19, 2012

Wine and Dine

This may be the best part of interview season: The wooing. Knowing that they want you. That is a position we haven't been in for a while! So long in fact, I am not sure it has ever happened.

Potential employers make the travel arrangements and pay for them. Just show up. That would be enough, but they also book nice hotels and eat at fancy restaurants. My husband owes me big time. When is someone going to make my travel arrangements and pay for them, and make them fancy? Yes, I am jealous.

I should note that I didn't accompany my husband on his interview. I could have. Logistically it didn't work. We have kids. Kids have school. I know, they only would have missed two days. Had the interview been in a city I wasn't already intimately knowledgeable of, I would have considered making the necessary arrangements to be there. But there wasn't anything to see or do that I haven't already seen and done. In the end it wasn't worth the hassle. And by hassle I mean flying a babysitter out for a weekend. We aren't made of money.

To share some of the experience with me as I was sitting in my pajamas with a sink full of dishes he sent me photos of his hotel room, a grand 5 star hotel that is a landmark in the area. I have driven up to the hotel, but never stayed there! And my husband had two nights there, alone. I am not keeping score.

Then he tells me about the restaurant they went to for lunch. It was so nice, I'd never even heard of it. Throughout the entire process he was sending me texts and pictures. He probably knew I was nervous for him and that was his way of keeping me from pulling my hair out, or biting my nails.

And the icing on the cake, (or rather salt in my wound) he got to spend the next day roaming the city. To give me an idea of how well he thought the interview went, he sent me pictures of what he was shopping for. Can you say sport cars that cost more than our current annual salary, maybe twice as much. He must be very confident.

I don't blame him. The job is a perfect fit. He is a hometown boy. He shares authorship on a paper with the other surgeon, they were fellowship trained at the same location, and was basically told before he came that he was THE ONE.

I am not so secretly making my list of things I want when we can afford to pay for them. First on the list is a flight out of town for 1, 2 nights at a fancy hotel, room service and a day spa. I love my family, but mama needs some time alone occasionally. A mini vacation would certainly suffice.

And after the stress of this last week I could certainly use one.


Friday, November 16, 2012

My Midnight Panic

Warning: don't read this if your dreams are easily influenced by the dreams of others.

My husband left for his interview yesterday morning. THE INTERVIEW. The one that he wants. The BIG one.

So what do I do? I stay up way too late.

It was approaching midnight when I decided to finally call it a day and get ready for bed. I finished praying and just as I was about to get up felt a sharp pain in my head. Aneurysm, I'm dead. (This is what happens when you marry a doctor and are aware of the systems and outcomes).

Panic set in. My husband just left for an out of state trip. I usually talk to my mother on Sunday - that was three days away. I am not expecting any calls. We don't know anyone here. My kids don't know how to dial 911. It was a full blown panic attack.

I had the very awake nightmare seeing my dead body on the floor while my children were sleeping unaware for hours. I could hear the baby screaming in the morning when she woke up and realized I wasn't coming to get her, needing to be changed, hungry and that sweet face red, covered in tears and snot.

How long would I lay dead before someone would come looking for me? My husband would attempt to call that morning before his interview. He would leave a message if I didn't answer, and only later during the day would he get worried if he wasn't able to get a hold of me.

That would mean at least 12-18 hours before someone would even have reason to think that something might be wrong.

I decided that my kids would learn how to call 911 that very next day. They would learn how to call their dad and their grandparents from my phone.We would go meet our neighbors (at least four of them) and introduce our children. We would make a plan, so that I don't have to worry about what might happen.

I was finally able to fall asleep after I convinced myself that the pain I experienced wasn't a aneurysm or a stroke, and that I was fine. I am sure it was from dehydration, poor eating, low blood-pressure and staying up late. My children will be fine. My husbands interview isn't going to be cut short because I died. Everything was going to be alright.

The more I have reflected on this moment of panic I began to see it for what it really was. Good things are on the horizon and I don't know how to handle it. I keep waiting for something bad to happen, the other shoe to drop. This is the moment that we have been waiting for for years, decades. I can't even begin to comprehend a different reality. After all of this, is it possible that "this" will one day be over and replaced with something different?

I am trying to embrace and enjoy these next few weeks and months without giving in to my irrational fears. I know they are complete lunacy. I know they are. I know they are. I know they are.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Sometimes You Feel Like A Nut

This mama is ready for the crazy house. I can feel it starting to escalate and get a little... well, crazy!

Yesterday was one of those days that I would refer to as a comedy of errors, if it wasn't so frustrating.

My baby has started walking, and that means shoes. I didn't put shoes on her before because what is the point of shoes? Walking! 

Now we walk. Now she has shoes. And I did something I never did before: I spent more than $15 on a pair of shoes for a baby. I bought a cute pair of tennis shoes with Velcro straps and lights. They were $35 but I got them on sale. I felt like I was living in an alternate universe. 

After the first few falls, the shoes already had scuffs. But I was so proud of myself for not being crazy about it. But when it comes to losing them... that makes mama crazy.

We went running errands yesterday. First to Hobby Lobby to run in for a paper punch to replace the one my daughter broke. Ran in, got to the check out line and realized the baby was missing a shoe. So back tracking through the store looking for a small shoe. Found it!

Next to the grocery store to get food. A necessity. Again a quick trip. I knew exactly where I needed to go and what the get. We get to the check out line and I swipe my card to pay before I gave the cashier my coupons. I wish I had coupons with me before we got the store, (I don't have time for that anymore) but I peeled them off the boxes I was purchasing to use that day. So I go to customer service and give the lady my keys to scan my card and she gives me my $3 back in cash. I am a happy girl.

Run out to the car with a cart full of groceries, but I don't have my keys. Run back to the store, ask clerk if she has my kids. She does. I run back to the car. Open, and load the groceries and my kids. 

Off to the next errand: Walgreen's for some photograph prints. Unload the kids, and notice I have a baby who is missing one shoe, again! It isn't in the car. Great! That means it is at the grocery store!

Back to the grocery store. Locate the cart that we used, luckily still parked in the parking lot. And thank heavens the shoe was in the cart and I didn't have to go through the entire store looking for it and praying no one picked it up trying to help.

Shoe found. Off to pick up the kids from school! ARRHHHHHH. 

Hum, could something important be happening this week? Please pray I can maintain my sanity over the weekend.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Big Game Hunting - It's Interview Season!

Job searches begin during different seasons for everyone. There isn't one right time.  Hopefully, you have a job before you finish residency or fellowship. We have friends who have secured jobs 2 years before they are eligible to practice and others as short as 4 months. I told my husband long ago that I would prefer to be closer to the 2 year mark than 4 months. So much for my preferences.

But it is here. Interview season has called for us. We/he is up. This is the make or break point. This is it - THE ONE!

I am getting anxious just thinking about it. That either means that I will be on the computer more than I have been, or less. It means lots of blog posts, or a sparkling clean house. It means home-cooked three course meals with dessert, or take out. It means organized closets or piles of laundry collecting all over the house and no clean clothes to wear. It means lots of exercise or lots of chocolate. It is going to be a nail bitter.

We will have to see how this one shakes out. I am more nervous than my husband! This weekend can't come fast enough.


Friday, November 9, 2012

That's A Fun Surprise

I woke up this morning and had the nicest surprise! I have a guest post on the online magazine Doctor's Wives Living. I knew it was coming, I just didn't know when. It's an oldie but a goodie. You can read it here.

If you haven't been over to Doctor's Wives Living you should. They have a very unique format and some of the most intriguing titles:-) They have a little bit of everything for everyone. While the name my indicate that they cater exclusively to doctor's wives, their tag line is "For All Women Rich With Wisdom". There really is something for everyone whether you like to cook, decorate, workout, get dressed up, travel, support causes, or nurture your relationships.

Here are some of my favorite articles:

These Shoes Make Me Feel.... (I am a sucker for all things shoes)
The Savour Sisters Brussel Sprouts With Clout (I love brussel sprouts, give them a try)
Getting Rid of the Wave Pool (fitness routines for specific areas)
Where In The World (ongoing series that feels like a mini vacation)

Head over to Doctor's Wives Living and see what they have to offer! While you are there leave a comment for their editors - they do an amazing job.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

How Worried Would You Be?

I was feeling confident about the public education my children are receiving until messages like this from my daughters kindergarten teacher are delivered to my inbox:

It has been a long time since I was in school, but I am certain there are at least 4 errors that spell check didn't catch because they are words, just not the words they should be for the sentences to make sense. Not to mention the last half of an entire sentence that needs serious help. Hint: paragraph 3 contains all the lovely mistakes.

How worried would you be?  Maybe this is just further proof that spell check has made everyone, including our teachers, poor editors. That's too bad.


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I Voted!

It feels good to participate in the democratic process. I have done my civic duty, I have cast my ballot, I have exercised my right (a right that wasn't always available to women I might add) - voting IS a big deal. Regardless of who you vote for, we should all vote.

Between 1960-2008 only 50.1% - 63.1% of the voting age population turned out for presidential elections. The 63.1% happened in 1960, 2008 only brought out 56.8%. For elections held on off presidential years (every 2 instead of 4) turnout has been less than 50%. That is criminal! See source here. Go Vote!

Did your medical significant other get to vote?

My husband tried to vote before his shift today, but he started work before the polls opened at 7 am. There is always a chance that he could be at the hospital after the polls close at 7 pm. He is hoping to sneak away between cases to do it. This is where planning ahead would have been wise. We live in a state with early voting. Could have done that. Absentee voting wasn't an option because we only received our voter registration cards a few weeks ago. We just moved here and dragged our feet getting our driver's licenses. And there is something to voting on the day that the elections are held. It's exciting! We both like casting our ballots on election day.

Voting does require some advanced planning. And we should have planned better just in case. I looks like he will be able to get away soon, but somewhere there is a doctor who thought he would get to vote today but won't. I wonder if anyone has a poll for that?

Before he left he asked if we were going to watch the election coverage all night? YES, of course we are. It only happens every 4 years! And every year is important. This is about the last thing he wants to watch tonight.

Do you know your local politics?

While I am pleased that I have done my part, I am also reminded that I have failed. Looking at the ballot today I realized I only knew about 3 or 4 of the elect-able positions out of probably 20-25. I knew the big ones, but not the smaller local ones.

I have used the excuse that because we are most likely only residing in this state for another 8 months that it doesn't really matter. But it does. There is someone in another state that may share the same view of the world that I do that could be moving here when I leave. They could be affected by my vote or my lack of vote.

The truth is I haven't really been interested in local politics in my last state either and we were there for 6 years! Shame on me. I used the same excuse that because this wasn't our permanent location I didn't care what happened in the school board, my kids wouldn't be going to school there.

Politics really is local. These are the races we should be focusing on. These are the elected positions that will have impact in our schools, our communities, our towns. Just because they don't impact you today doesn't mean that they won't one day.

The national election certainly gets most of the publicity and it takes much more effort to find information on our local elected leaders, but it can be done. It's not that hard.

My resolve for this next election cycle is to pay attention to my local races and local politics. It would be nice to at least know the candidates names and positions before I go to the polling place. And then I can regurgitate it for my husband, because let's face it, he will never have enough time to study all the candidates positions at every level.


Monday, November 5, 2012

Medical Mondays

Hooray! It's Medical Monday!

Are you confused if you qualify for the party?

Do you work in healthcare?
Doctor? Nurse? EMT? Chiropractor? Vet? Dentist? Therapist?
Are you the spouse or SO of a healthcare worker/student?
Are you a nursing student? Medical student?
Intern? Resident? Fellow?

You get the picture, right? 


Our once a month bloghop for bloggers like yourself, where we can build a community of support and friendship, learn from one another and share our stories.

Here are the rules:

  1. Follow your co-hosts via GFC.
  2. Link up you medical/med life blog. If your blog name does not clearly state how you fit in to the med/med life world, please write a little intro or link up a specific post which clearly demonstrates your connection.
  3. Visit at least 3 other link ups, comment, introduce yourself, and tell the your stopping by or following from MM! 
  4. Help spread the word by using our button on your post or sidebar, tweet about Medical Monday, or spread the word on Facebook! The more the merrier for all of us!
And here's a helpful tip. . .

If you haven't turned of word verification, it's ON. Please turn it off. We'll all LOVE you!!
Not sure how? Click here for instructions.

Complete step one by following your co-hosts:

Want to be awesome? Help facilitate the hopping by grabbing this button and insert it on the post you link up. . .

Want to co-host next month? Shoot Emma an email at

Now, link up below and have fun! The link up is open through Friday, so be sure to come back during the week.


Saturday, November 3, 2012

Getting Ready for Medical Monday's

I know it isn't Monday, but it will be in two days! If you don't already have the first Monday of every month on your calendar marked as Medical Mondays maybe today is the day to make it a reoccurring event. We all need reminders and months tend to pass faster than we think they do. October sure did for me!

Check back here first thing Monday, and all week, to see who has linked up with us. Find new blogs, new friends, and new reads.

You know where Emma (Your Doctor's Wife) and I will be. Will you be joining us?


Friday, November 2, 2012

This Could Be Interesting

Having been a home owner before I am starting to see some of the subtleties associated with renting.

In the past, I would call someone and schedule things. Now, they call me and tell when they will be here. I don't like that arrangement.

Wednesday afternoon I got a call from our management company that said that they were sending an appraiser over Friday afternoon between 2-3 pm and wanted to see if I would be home or if they needed to send him with a key.

My first thought was WHY!

An appraiser at this point can only mean one thing: our landlord is refinancing. Why not? Rates are low, maybe she is thinking we need new carpet:-)

An appraiser at any other time is usually associated with the sale of the home. But because market conditions are always on the move, appraisals don't usually happen until the home has had an offer made. That would require a For Sale sign in the yard, and there isn't one.

And then I thought, maybe they call the person who comes over to make sure you haven't trashed the property an appraiser. It could be one of those terms like "domestic engineer" to describe my work as a stay at home parent.

I still have no idea what is going on, only that I didn't have an option to say "this isn't a convenient time". That is a first, and is mildly uncomfortable.

If it were my home, I could schedule it whenever I wanted. But it's not. And I am thankful that it isn't. Only 8 months until we get to return the key, pick up the deposit, and get out of town. What a change that will be from our last move. I am looking forward with delight to that day!

As for today, not much delight to be had. I live like a normal person... my house isn't spotless. I can get away with giving the idea that things are clean because only two rooms are visible form the front door. And I can count on one hand the number of people who have been to the door.  As long as no one goes upstairs, uses the powder room, or goes in my bedroom I can keep up the facade. And I make a point to keep those two rooms clean just in case. But an appraiser is going to be everywhere during the same visit. There will be no where to hide or stash.

That has given me cause to panic. Especially because I don't know why they are coming! Only that all my stuff will be on display. Time to remove the bras from the door knobs, make the bed, fold the laundry, sweep/mop and dust.

The only thing I did have the presence of mind to ask was what the gentleman's name was that would be coming over so I would know who to expect.