Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Kids These Days

"Aunt Femme, why can't we ride Space Mountain?" my four year-old nephew asked, his baby hand clasped trustingly in my own. "We can't ride because you're too little and I have a little, tiny baby growing in my belly," I told him.

This caught his attention as he regarded my stomach. We were in line at Disney World, waiting to board some sort of kiddie spaceship ride. Sweat was pouring from our brows as the sun beat down on us yet he was doing everything in his power to be a good little boy. I love my nephew as if he were my own.

Still thinking about the news I'd delivered to him, he reached over and patted my stomach. Then, he lifted the hem of my shirt ever so slightly for a peak underneath. Finding nothing of interest, he released my shirt and went back to patting my belly.

"There's a baby in there?" he asked in his innocent, little boy voice.

"There sure is," I told him eagerly. "Aunt Femme is going to have a baby in a few months!"

He thought some more and then...

He reared back and punched me in the gut.

I guess that's one way to knock out the competition.


Same scenario but this time I'm at Epcot by myself on a park bench waiting for Husband to get off some G-Force ride (I don't speak space lingo so forgive me if I worded that incorrectly). Since I have nothing better to do than people watch, I people watched my head off.

A mid-forties couple crosses my line of site and they look like something out of an ad for a Disney family vacation. Mom's got the "mom shorts" (loose fitting khakis that fall to her knees and rise to her naval) coupled with a modest, tucked-in polo shirt and a white sun visor. White socks and Keds top off the ensemble. Dad's wearing similar attire. These parents have "Ultra Conservative Bordering on Nerdy" written all over them. Their idea of kinky is using tongue. And their teenage daughter?

She was sporting a half tee, short, Catholic schoolgirl skirt and knee pads.

Something tells me that her parents didn't get the implication...

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Not-Exactly-a-Baby Bjorn

I realize that I am seriously challenged in all things baby and my complacent attitude hasn't helped matters any (I haven't read more than a few pages of the 20+ baby books that my wonderful friends graciously lent me) but I must admit that I am outright annoyed by how complicated most baby gear is. Usually I can just look at something and figure out how it works. Not where baby gear is concerned! The other morning I decided to take my Baby Bjorn for a test drive using The Little Rabblerouser as a model and I failed miserably. I couldn't instantly figure out how the straps connect so I just made up my own (extremely incorrect) way of connecting them. The result was a rather unhappy, uncomfortable, lop-sided passenger:

Not to be crude, but since only adults read my blog I will make an exception: Husband took one look at this picture and remarked that I need to "trim the hedge", so to speak. We're so classy.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

A/C Update

Something's terrbly wrong when the region's record temperatures are actually occuring inside your house.

Thermostat reading this afternoon:

Thermostat reading this evening:

Somebody needs killin'...

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Terror at the Dog Park

"I've been shit on!"

Thinking I was hearing things, I turned to see Husband standing thirty yards away, under a patch of trees. The tree limbs sagged as a flood of grackles lit upon them. It was feasible that I heard correctly, however, something seemed off..

Husband remained rooted in place, staring at me plaintively. Then he took the hem of his shirt and began wiping his face with it. Hoping that it was just sweat from the 90+ temperature, I ran to him anyway.

"I've been shit on." Husband repeated calmly. "It hit my forehead, then down my nose, then on my chin." He continued angrily wiping his face and head, then glanced down at his soiled t-shirt. "I look like I've been working on cars all day," he grumbled.

Once per day I find another reason to admire my husband. This was today's incident. Had I been shit upon the face by a bird, I would have freaked the holy hell out, cut off my head, dropped it in a vat of boiling bleach and screamed for a portable shower.

"Let's walk over to the park," Husband said. Then he looked around. "Where are the dogs?"

In the excitement of the bird plop incident, all three of our dogs had disappeared. We weren't too worried because we were almost at the dog park but still...our dogs have a way of horrifying us and it usually happens when our guard is down.

Heading in the direction of the park, we began calling our dogs. One by one they materialized out of nowhere and joined our grand parade.

Running merrily ahead, Helicopter Butt spotted some potential dog friends and ran off to join them. Husband, Le Pooch Grande and Little Rabblerouser raced ahead to the field for a game of fetch. I moseyed along behind them, content to enjoy the breeze coming off the lake.

Twenty yards later I spotted Helicopter Butt. He had planted himself firmly between a couple who was sitting on a blanket, enjoying a picnic. Helicopter Butt started rooting around the picnic spread, obviously looking to steal food. Embarrassed by my dog's rudeness, I considered running over to intervene. Right then three other dogs joined the mix. "Serves them right for having a picnic in dog park." I thought to myself. "Who does that anyway?" Still, I picked up my speed as I headed towards Helicopter Butt.

Just as I got within ten feet of the blanket, Helicopter Butt lifted his leg and peed on their picnic. Horrified, the couple reared back, then swiveled their heads like periscopes as they looked for his owner.

And I? I kept walking, right on by.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Seven Day Forecast? 100 Degrees Every. Single. Day!

"...and the temperature went from 101 to 92 degrees after the rain showers so that's good news for those who needed a break from the heat."

"Break from the heat?" I asked the TV newscaster from my new permanent post in our sunroom. "Who are you kidding?"

I am bitter, of course. Ninety-two degrees is a break after the triple-digit temperatures we've been experiencing lately but I have a hard time seeing it that way due to the oven-like temperatures emanating from the second floor of our home.

Sunday night I started up the stairs to get ready for bed and was met with a wall of heat as I turned the corner on our landing. "What the...?" I asked myself as I hurried over to the upstairs thermostat. It read 78 degrees. "That's odd," I thought to myself, "I have it set to hold at 70 degrees (I can't sleep if it's over 70)--how can it be all the way up to 78?"

Then I remembered last Summer...

It was the day before our wedding, to be exact. We woke up to blue skies and birds singing and...a really hot first floor. Fortunately, we have two A/C units (one for each floor) so at least the sleeping floor was cool. There was no way I was going to sweat the night away on the eve of my wedding (not to mention that we had house guests). I set Husband-to-be on the arduous task of scheduling a repairman and thought nothing more about it. The next day the guy came and informed us that we had a broken compressor. "Yeah--I see this all the time with this model A/C unit," he told us. "Have you replaced the compressor on your other unit? If you haven't, you will soon!"

"Soon" came almost exactly one year later as I discovered this past Sunday. "Husband, come here!" I called. Husband walked over to the thermostat where I was standing. "See this?" I asked, indicating the temperature displayed on the thermostat. "This is a broken compressor problem. This is exactly what that technician warned us about last summer."

"'s definitely not the compressor." Husband replied, ever the all-knowing macho man. "I can hear air blowing and that wouldn't be happening if the compressor were broken."

Of course I argued with him for a while. As a field technician, I learned to quickly troubleshoot problems by identifying patterns. There was definitely a problem and it mirrored last year's broken compressor scenario. Husband grudgingly agreed to call the repairman the next day and we slept that night on top of the blankets and sheets.

The next day I was sick and slept most of the day away. I was feeling so bad that I called Husband at work and asked him to come home at 4 and wait for the repair guy because I couldn't get out of bed. He gallantly obliged.

Two repairmen came and spent over an hour looking at our A/C unit and compressor. I can't put my finger on why I felt this way, but at some point I got a vibe that they weren't very competent. At 6:15 pm they informed us that we had a faulty compressor and that they would need to order a new part. This was no problem since the upstairs was cooling partially--at least enough for us to sleep. We went about our night and thought nothing of it.

At midnight, I ascended the stairs, turned the corner on the landing and was met with a wave-like wall of heat that was stifling. I rushed over to the thermostat. It read 91 degrees.

"Holy crap!" I exclaimed. "Those bastards broke our A/C unit completely! No wonder they were in such a rush to get out of here!"

And so began our night of torment. We tried sleeping on top of the covers again, but it wasn't happening. Instead, we had one of those long, soul-searching conversations like the ones you have when you're first dating (it was fun!). At 2 am we relocated to the downstairs couch (Husband) and the sunroom couch (me). I tossed and turned but couldn't sleep for more than 20 minutes at a stretch (Husband slept just fine, thankfully). I needed my bed.

I mounted the stairs and braced myself for the heat. The thermostat read 85 degrees. I don't think I fell asleep, rather, I believe that I simply fainted for six hours. A least it was enough to get me through today.

I spent two hours this morning searching for a company that rents out portable A/C units but found none. Someone is missing out on a HUGE business opportunity. This is Texas, after all, and A/C units break all the time here. I called our A/C repair company and harassed them for a while. I even played the pregnancy card with the sweet, 20 year-old customer service rep which got me *nowhere* (she can't empathize--she's never been pregnant). Finally I resorted to making myself feel better by 1) leaving the house, and 2) complaining to anyone who would listen.

Tonight Husband is going to gallantly carry a mattress down the stairs (the thermostat now reads 92) and place it in the sunroom for me. Who knows how long it will be before the A/C unit gets fixed?

Of course, first thing tomorrow I will be busy harassing our repair company. I might even have to shed a pregnant tear or two.


Husband duly hauling The World's Thickest Mattress out to the sunroom.

My new sleeping quarters ala Princess and the Pea. I practically need a step ladder to mount the damn thing.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Alas, I get to keep my head!

Why can't I be Anne Boleyn right now? If I were Anne Boleyn, I would have the most prestigious title in the land not to mention the affections of a gluttonous King Henry. Most importantly, I would be producing an heir.

That's right, Little Husband is indeed a Little Husband--we're having a BOY!!!!

I do believe that Husband stood four inches taller as we left the doctor's office this morning. Once in the car Husband turned to me and said, "I don't know if I want to give our son my name after all. I want him to feel like he is his own person, like he's got his own identity."

I must admit, this took the wind out of my sails a little. I really, really like Husband's name. Either way, I immediately decided to resort to trickery in order to get my way (much like Anne Boleyn).

"No problem," I told him, "How about 'River'? I always wanted a son named River!"

"Er...I was thinking something more along the lines of David or Steven." Husband replied, ever the diplomatic one.

"No--too boring (apparently I'm not diplomatic at all). We need something cool, something interesting. How about Colt? Durham? Ireland?" I could tell Husband was horrified as he shook his head "no" at my suggestions.

I intend to keep this tactic up until I get my way...