Monday, June 30, 2008

I lost my train of thought . . .

So. During the return address from my little unscheduled hiatus, I had several other posts floating about in my head--all I had to do was write them. But somehow in the intervening hours they've gotten lost.

They'll come back. Soon. Probably.

In the meantime, I'm just going to share pictures.

Last weekend I had my first Sunday off in many, many months. It was idyllic. The weather was warm. The sky was blue. The water was relatively temperate. All the kids were home for the day. We jet skied. We swam. We ate. We had drinks with the neighbors out on their dock.

Mama had more than one drink. Mama had a drink and a half!!! I was a little tipsy and didn't want to drive to the store. Number One's girlfriend offered to drive me. She hopped into the driver's seat of my car and commented that she didn't have to adjust the seat or mirrors. The seat that is set to my preferences fits her perfectly. One more way in which she is like me. Son is chagrined.

Did I share with you all that Number One has finally discovered that he is dating his mother? Every time his girl and I are together he sees more and more similarities. This disturbs him. His girl and I see the look on his face and simultaneously scold, "You're going to hurt her feelings!"

Did I already say that Son is chagrined?

heh heh

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Hi, again!

So . . . . . it's been awhile, hasn't it? Lots has been going on but I haven't had time to sit down and make anything of it. And just between you and me, I haven't felt the burning impulse either. I think lots of bloggers are feeling the summer doldrums just now.

Two women at work had babies in the last two weeks which means I'm working full time now to take up the slack. It also means there are two brand new, beautiful little people in the world. It is not, in fact, all about me : )

With my accelerating schedule and Youngest's summer activities taking him away from home much of the time, I don't feel like I have seen him much lately. He's feeling the lack of connection too. Last night he came up from the neighbor's beach to eat dinner before returning to camp out overnight in the neighbor's yard. As he left for the night he called out, "Thanks for having me over for dinner, Mrs. P!" Hilarious.

Number One Son is in the midst of a summer internship which was sold to him under slightly false claims. It was purported to be a job specifically for a mechanical engineer. It isn't. It is, however, with a demolition company and is a good mix of office work and field work. His excursions are interesting and educational. And he gets to help plan the demolishing of buildings. What boy wouldn't eat that right up?

On weekends he's with the other woman. The girlfriend. The wonderful young woman who brings out the best in him and who we adore. But geez, come home once in awhile?

Hubby and I are old. He had his 46th birthday just after my 41st. We're feeling it. His on-going back problems continue to complicate his life. There will be no more water skiing for him, among other activities that are now lost. Maybe it's for the best that we're running out of kids to do all those activities with anyway.

And Beautiful--she's brimming with pregnancy beauty : ) I can't resist a photo. This is her--6-1/2 months pregnant with Lily--along with the boyfriend, Dan, and his 3-year-old, Little Guy. All seems to be going well.

I have missed you all so much! I'm pleased that some of you are still checking in : )

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Y'all are invited!

Today marks the first anniversary of my 40th birthday!

Please, join me for some cake, won't you?

Or maybe you prefer cheesecake:


Perhaps pound cake is your passion . . .

But I would sell my children for mere trace of this--the most divine birthday cake ever crafted by mortal hands . . .

(Thank you, Clarice!)

And on that note, please join me in a rousing chorus of song! Not the birthday song though. How 'bout a song that never fails to bring a smile to my face.

Sing on, people! And happy Kristin-is-41-Day : )

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Gearing up to celebrate thirty-eleven

Thursday is my birthday. At work we celebrate everyone's birthday with cake, usually food, gift cards. A fun little birthday tradition, it is.

I worked Monday and I don't go in again until Friday. I didn't know whether we would mark my special day before or after the actual date. I was thinking maybe before--on Monday--because parties after the fact aren't the norm and also because there are more of us there on Monday. It made sense.

This also happens to be the week in my cycle when I'm blue. Everything makes me sad. It's a miserable week to be within a 6000 mile radius of me : )

Monday wasn't a great day. Work was fine but little things were unsurprisingly getting under my skin. Plus, I was having difficulty with my hair. Who could blame me for being emotional?

During my lunch I was on the phone with Beautiful. She was patiently listening to my complaints. "I just want to cry," I admitted to her.

A few seconds later I whispered to her, "Wait! I've changed my mind!" I was all chipper and happy.

During the intervening moments between wanting to cry and being all upbeat, Pharmacist Rob had walked through the lunch area holding a cake. It meant we were celebrating my birthday that afternoon and that's all it took to cheer me up.

Ten minutes went by. A smile on my face for 600 consecutive seconds. I clocked back in and returned to work.

Fetching a fax from the machine, I saw the cake a little more clearly. I could see that there was writing on it. "That's different," I thought to myself. "We don't usually have birthday messages on the cakes." The idea that Rob had gone the extra mile to have the bakery personalize my cake just tickled me that much more.

Until . . .

I had occasion to walk right past the cake and I could see the writing up close.

"Welcome back, Tracy!" it exclaimed in loopy, lavender frosting.

Cake contact high dissipated.



That . . .

Friday, June 6, 2008

Bid for 'Mother of the Year' award, Volume # whatever . . .

Alternately titled:

Yet Another Public Service Announcement

After doing various errands while your husband and youngest son are busy with a project at another residence, do not drive into your driveway, turn off the car, open the car door as though you're going to get out of the car but instead stay seated in the car and continue your cell phone conversation with your daughter.

Particularly if your cell phone conversation with your daughter goes anything like this:

"Mom, I don't have your genes and I'm not going to age nearly as gracefully as you are--so stop complaining to me that you found 11 gray hairs. Who cares?!?!?!"

"I care! And speaking of who got what in the genetic crap shoot, you ended up with blessings I didn't get. Which reminds me, I want to get a boob job."

"Mom, you can't afford that."

"Yeah, but if I offed your dad, the insurance money would more than . . . Youngest--where did you come from? And how long have you been standing there? And did you hear me discussing the untimely demise of your father so I could collect his insurance? {Oh please don't tell me you heard me yelling "BOOB JOB"} Don't sneak up on me like that!"

Monday, June 2, 2008

my life as a profiler

Our pharmacy serves both of the local Native American tribes. We bill their primary insurance and their secondary, however, some drugs don't get covered right away. When there's a co-pay, we don't charge the individual tribal customers, we tear the little perforated section off of the paperwork and put it in a special file to be hand billed later.

When I first started working there I was told that I would recognize who was tribal and just to ask the customer which tribe they belonged to so I'd know what to do about the co-pay. I felt like that was bordering on racial profiling just to assume by someone's appearance that they belong to a tribe.

Instead, I politely say something like, "It looks like there's a co-pay for you today." The customer is only too happy to tell me they're tribal. That feels like a diplomatic solution to me.

But the longer I work there, the more accurately I can guess what a customer is likely picking up just based on the way they look.

Within the first week I was able to tell a certain class of people who are there to pick up Vicodin. Yes, it's a socioeconomic class. Sure, there are people from all walks of life who need Vicodin, but the chronic users (borderline abusers) tend to have a certain appearance that's easy to pick out. Maybe it's because they're more likely to have physically demanding jobs that cause injury over time?

Then there are the young, well put together, slim, very good looking girls between 15 and 25 who I can spot from a distance. They're there for birth control pills.

Older men come in for lots of things--Lisinopril, Amlodipine, Coumadin, Simvastatin and invariably Flomax. Lots of Flomax going on with the older gents.

Lately I've noticed another group of men who I can identify while they're standing in line. I can look at a man--usually in his 40s, tall, slender, brown hair, professional--and guess that he's picking up his Viagra. I don't know why men with that particular physical description seem more prone to needing that medication.

Of course there are lots of other men who take ED drugs--older men, much younger men, men of all physical types, but there's something about the tall, successful, 40ish ones that stands out. Something about them that tells me exactly what they're there for and prepares me not to make too much eye contact and to keep the transaction as quick and painless as possible.

And speaking of conducting a non-judgemental transaction, there are the Sunday morning women. Usually in their late 20s to early 30s. They look hurried. And uncomfortable. And embarrassed. And they're coming to us to purchase Plan B. And I always think what a difficult decision they're having to make with very little time to consider it all. So I try to act like there is absolutely nothing special about what they're buying. As though I don't even know what it's for . . .

One drug that I'm not in tune with? The drug that cuts across all lines--gender, age, economic class? Valtrex. You just never can guess who is coming in for Valtrex based solely on their appearance. Herpes is everywhere. You've been warned ; )