Wednesday, October 29, 2014

jebediah heidi

 recent goals have included trying really, really hard to be fun because i have been so incredibly lame over the last few months. thomas has started to refer to me as "jebediah atkinson" of saturday night live weekend update fame because of our similarities in disposition and personality. google his SNL commentary on the tony awards. right now. i'll wait. we're twins. and he's right about cats. 
the day i brought home a few meager gourds and miniature pumpkins with which to decorate our entry table, thomas even commented on the upswing in my mood. "look at you, not biting off the heads of harmless bunnies AND decorating!" it was a good day, indeed. 
today's adventure in fun included the local grocery store halloween party. our publix halloween party in simpsonville last year was lights out awesome so i was hoping that our local kroger would be more of the same. unfortunately, we got off to a rocky start. i got posed pictures with the two tolerable kids. reagan was a bit angsty because he was so worried about being late and missing all the candy. i assured him that the party was supposed to last from 4-7 and that we would have plenty of opportunity to get candy if we arrived at 5. 

scarlett is a dream who recognizes that chaos often reigns and she needs to stay my rock of composure. poor thing also thought the layered skirts that i made for her costume were the bee's knees even though i failed to do a bit of finishing stitching on the waistband and said to heck with everything on the hem and just cut all skiwampous to finish it. 

blythe required manhandling to have her stinky diaper changed, further manhandling to put on her costume and the always effective knee-to-the-shoulder technique to force on her shoes. 

it was so crazy bad that i didn't dare take the time to change my own clothes and i committed the egregious sin of wearing my maternity leggings as pants in public. for shame. (however, i was not the only one at kroger guilty of this offense, but i was the only one who knew it!)

at this point as i was driving down the street and AC/DC's "for those about to rock, we salute you!" was blaring through my speakers and i could not think of a more apropos song to describe what we were about to do to kroger. 

kroger halloween party disappointments
1. i had to search out the party upon entrance to the store. it was not readily apparent where all the fun was being had and therefore it indicated that not much fun was being had. 
2. there was no employee costume dress code. you would hope that the adults in charge of a children's party would be able to make the distinction of appropriate and inappropriate but the employee wearing the slutty bumble bee costume with NO PANTS and fishnet tights and a saggy elasticized strapless top had never had the thought of appropriate costume occur to her(and yes i did try to get a picture but gollum was climbing all over me and making that crucial snap impossible.) bumble bee's boyfriend was assisting her and his costume was that of sweaty lawn mower operator. i'm glad he was in charge of passing out the cookies, which he was also stingy about.
3. only about 3 pieces of candy person child. the mom in me didn't mind but it did make reagan a bit of a prophet with amount of candy concerns.

and then the scariest part of the halloween party arrived home, stripped off her shirt and ran around the house as happy as could be.  

and then she ate a corndog.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

i am kate middleton

i'll spare you the pregnancy test with positive symbol on it (because no one really wants to see a stick that i've peed on) and just come out and say," i'm PREGNANT! and having a baby too!" 

  • bullets dodged- being pregnant during the summer. baby #4 is due march 20th. 

  • direct hits- 1. TIRED. the kind of tired where you sleep and sleep and it's never restorative. it's like having a dead cell phone battery that you still need to use so you plug it into the charger but now cannot move from that corner in your kitchen without losing all energy again. 2. and BLOATED. as bloated as former toronto mayor, rob ford. 

  • and here's my gender reveal party(that you also have zero interest in being invited to) he's a boy. pretty clearly. release the blue balloons! cut into the blue cake! his name will be herschel. i'll call him hersch for short. you don't have to like his name, but you sure should pretend you do. i've certainly pretended to like all your kids names. reagan is over the moon at the prospect of having a brother and plans on calling him, gus. he also wanted to call athena blythe, gus. i can't break that kid's heart one more time so i'm sure we'll quickly adopt that nickname too. 

i actually discovered i was great with child two nights before our moving van was set to depart from simpsonville. you can't make this stuff up people. surprise #1- athena blythe surprise #2- herschel as we are planning to relocate? typical simpson live comedy. we're excited. we're on the cusp of being a "big family". i'll get stares and sympathetic looks whether they are warranted or not. 

  • while i've been pretty vomit free, my sciatic nerve has caused me incredible pain. i've kept up with my running and weightlifting until two weeks ago when i woke up one morning and i couldn't even walk. the worst day was 2 sundays ago and i was reduced to having to call thomas on the phone from the upstairs bathroom because i could not get off the floor. i even started wearing FLATS to church! perish the thought. if i can't wear heels once a week, i might as well just start wearing elastic-waisted everything and get a rascal for when i've got to grocery shop! i've been to the doctor and then a physical therapist and it looks like a possible explanation is that my nerve has somehow slipped between two muscles due to the hormones and weight gain. talking about my weight gain is my favorite so that explanation was most pleasing to me. i was prescribed "no running for a month and a we'll see after that". (i'll show that physical therapist what i think of that and never go back for more therapy ever again!) after that appointment, i went and sat in my car and cried for a while(because WHY NOT?). i texted thomas with my news. you know you married the right person when they immediately call you back and listen to you cry about not being able to run in a 10k you had been planning on for 6 months. we've got a special thing going on. i realize it's not the end of the world, but when i'm feeling like a zombie-elephant, it's the little things like running that i miss the most. i will be back with a vengeance. i will OWN you local 5Ks!
  • in other news, this week i was deep cleaning out of desperation to stay active(if i can't go to the gym i guess the least i could do is clean this place. quel horreur!). i was laying on reagan's bed trying to retrieve all the items which have been lodged against the wall for the past 2 months. this also happened to be the first day i busted out my new maternity pants to accomodate my increasing girth, and i BROKE one of the support boards on the lower bunk bed. i'm going to save the broken board to show other people in case anyone gets the hair-brained idea to comment on my increading size(because some hapless male ALWAYS does) and i will BEAT them with it.  this means only one thing: i am absolutely in competition with kate middleton as most fashionable and lithe pregnant woman due in spring 2015. i'm sure the exact same thing happens to her when she deep cleans. 
we're practically the SAME PERSON!

  • my saving grace has been progresso tomato basil soup and a grilled cheese sammich for lunch. then later, a bowl of frosted flakes at 9pm because i am STARVING about that time every night. hopefully i can soon add to my food repertoire, but so far meat products and i are on the outs. pun intended.

this child should absolutely be an older sibling:


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

what's the frequency, heidi?

i can't let september get away without a bit of an update.
a month or more in review, told in bullet points

  • blythe's outdoors nap while the movers finished unloading the truck which was a brilliant idea in theory. ridiculous in practice.

  • whatever

  • tom petty and REM are constantly on the radio here. till you puke.  REM, i get it. they're local. but their popular music repertoire isn't very extensive, so it's a lot of the same. tom petty has a much bigger selection, but he's on at least once an hour. scarlett has even learned to recognize him and will mimic me, "really, another tom petty song? has it been more than 5 minutes?" 

  • new gym- meh. 

  • it's hot- the-wearing-a-bra-debating-level-of-hot

  • atlanta traffic- it's as bad as you think. then worse. 

  • new ward- already found out about my piano playing "talent". or not-talent, more like willing to help with certain stipulations met. people don't get how important it is to understand the on the spot pianists need to be able to veto songs they cannot play. nothing more annoying than someone asking you to just try when they themselves can't try at all. and you already know it will be a musical disaster. respect the pianist. i'm super bad and i'm not kidding about it and i'm sensitive to it because of an incident waaaay back in 2003 when an arrogant organist in tuscaloosa was so condescending to me. and it doesn't mean i hate the church or i'm unwilling to serve or just plain wicked in my heart if i reserve the right to not play the piano for something.

  • unpacking. i have about 8 large boxes that i refuse to unpack. hi from ruffy! still going strong after almost 30 years of loving. the viagra of wonderful childhood toys.

  • primary program sunday- went off perfectly and reagan did not give his lines in spanish. which is great because he does not speak spanish.

  • we had to stop taking pictures of blythe at this point. she's a good girl, loves her mama. blythe loves Jesus and america too. she's a good girl, crazy about doc mcstuffins,but she doesn't do a dang thing she doesn't want to and that's where the tom petty lyric similarities end. 

  • that's all. we're alive. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

last train from simpsonville

last meal at our favorite mexican restaurant, papa's and beer. (no, mom. they don't make you drink beer.)

last run on my favorite treadmill at the ymca where i received my last inappropriate comment from the unofficial ymca inappropriate comment maker. some compliments you don't want.

scarlett running her last lap on the indoor track, right before we went to her last ballet performance.

last time heading the down the "scary" stairs that reagan used to crawl up and down when we first moved here because the opening sides freaked him out so much.

athena blythe's last day as ruler of the ymca childcare. her loyal subjects sent her off with a balloon, a farewell card and TWO presents. there will never be another ymca like this ever again.

last view of my "other" house of worship in greenville. 

last view of the local strip club that i always had to drive by on my way to our doctor's offices. my wish of tinting my car windows really dark and parking and watching who goes into platinum plus during their lunch break will never be realized. (lunch shift strippers? they must have a great buffet.)

last oil change at my favorite lube shop, jesse's on main street. i never had to wait more than 20 minutes. ever. 

last swim at our neighborhood pool with our neighborhood pool friends. 

last hug with reagan's tutor, mrs. steele. i want her to move in with us and my our sisterwife. but just the sister part and in charge of all the tutoring. (this is how autistic kids show affection.)

very natural smile, reagan. 

last get together with friends, which felt more like cleaning my empty house because it was cleaning my empty house. service until the very end. i'm a lucky gal.

holly, the snookie to my jwoww.


julie. my dear julie. who just does and serves and loves and humbles me. she should write a book on how to befriend an autistic kid and put up with his mom. she does it right. 

last week of weather:
great for being outside, not that great for loading up.

last look at one of the bathrooms thomas and i painted together. true love paints together, even if they hate it.

last look at my piano going out the door. i had to go hide upstairs so i wouldn't have to listen to it squeal. thomas surprised me though and it made it here in one piece and no one threw out their back lifting it.

last look at my house, with all my little hostas that i planted out front that i'm sure our renters are going to stomp all over or ignore and the grass that thomas worked so hard to grow when he was given a barren patch of dirt to work with. the house we never really liked beside the white and black exterior, but we loved our ward and our town and our neighborhood and our friends so much.

last hugs with sammi jean.

reagan's last look in his room.

my last look at simpsonville includes my love, who i will follow to the ends of the earth, hitching up my pathfinder in the pouring rain.

the end.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

welcome to atlanta where the players play

we're here.
 the most dreadful parts of moving are completed. 
i was stressing BIG TIME about getting the kids ready for school. the house we chose to rent we specifically chose because it was located near the best rated school we could find. i don't love this house, i just wanted school to be an easy homerun. we arrived in georgia friday morning and school started the following tuesday, august 5th, so i had to scramble to get the kids registered ASAP. i showed up at our zoned school with my giant shoe box of school paperwork and IEP info and birth certificates underarm, looking like death warmed over and the kids looked and acted like unloved street urchins and i felt like we were treated accordingly. it was a struggle and we left with scarlett possibly registered at our zoned school and the uncertainty that reagan could not be placed there because they did not accommodate autistic students, but "they would let me know" his potential school. needless to say, i went home and cried a lot and then made about 213,412 phone calls trying to figure out where reagan would be going to school. school districts love crazy phone calls from concerned parents on incoming students right before school starts. by tuesday morning, i still hadn't heard any updates, so i loaded up the kids and thomas and i took them to the local school because we were going to have kids in school THAT DAY, come hell or high water or thomas's imposing lawyer stare. 

the only reason i could find any of our first day of school stuff is because i did all my school supply and back to school clothes shopping before we moved and i packed all first day of school stuff in its own box and i never let it out of my sight. scarlett and reagan put together their outfits themselves. 

at the school, they put scarlett in a classroom and she had to sit at a side table until a desk could be located for her. she was so brave and i could tell it was hard for her to go to this new classroom full of strange faces and not even have her name on the door or have a space set aside for her.
then the rest of us went to the library and waited until reagan was sorted. thomas made prolonged, imposing eye contact with administrators and reagan worked on math problems that i wrote down on scrap paper i had in my purse, which he was surprisingly compliant about. blythe opened reagan's lunch and ate it. i tried to remain positive but i was feeling streeeessssss about reagan. we had been assured that gwinnett county is great for special education, i just hadn't seen it yet. 
after about 90 minutes of waiting and feigned patience, reagan had a school assignment! and it wasn't the one we were at! we headed home to repack reagan another lunch and headed over to reagan's assigned school. once we got there, i was met at the front office by the assistant principal and the autism specialist for the 3rd graders! 
reagan was placed in a mainstream 3rd grade classroom that includes 6 other autistic students! there is always at least 1 paraprofessional in the classroom during instruction time to assist with learning and whatnot. PLUS, they have an autism resource classroom just down the hall for one on one schoolwork help, social therapy, occupational therapy and decompression(2 trampolines!). tender mercies of the Lord. i was so relieved to find that reagan would be in a great school situation. 
the next issue was getting scarlett reassigned to the same school as reagan so that i would only have to worry about one school drop off and pick up and never worry i would not make it in time. atlanta traffic is no joke even out in the ultra suburbs where we live. 
poor lamb, i went back to her school, had her withdrawn and listened to her bawl her face off about having to have 2 first days of school. imagine the anxiety of having to be brave another day at another brand new school when everyone else already had their first day anxieties the day before! she pulled through though. 
and she really liked her 2nd day of school outfit so i think that helped a lot. i know new clothes really help me feel better.

i was worried that blythe would miss buddy and sissy too much while they are gone at school but she doesn't seem bothered at all by their disappearance. in fact, she seems downright pleased to have me all to herself and not have to deal with the big kids constantly bothering her and playing jokes on her.

and no one changes the channel on her when she watches her favorite shows.

each new day is a new chance to defy death.

final notes-
scarlett has a new neighborhood friend with whom she can be weird. 

and blythe had the MOST EPIC tantrum/meltdown at the local kroger. it involved kicking me in the stomach, stripping off her dress multiple times and running away and hiding.

Yo, Yo.. Yo..Yo, Yo,
Welcome to Atlanta where the playas play
And we ride on them things like every day
Big beats, hit streets, see gangsta's roamin'
And parties dont stop til' eight in the mornin'

Sunday, July 27, 2014

a singular sabbath and some dollar summer movie quotes

today was our last sunday at our ward in simpsonville. 
*reagan's snake of the day was a rattlesnake, for those keeping track of his personal snake collection. 
 it was a sad day. i said the opening prayer in in relief society so i would avoid end of church crying and i still bawled and gasped and sputtered and it was em-barr-assing(said in a multi-syllabic sing song voice). but for realz, i'm also ready to roll. let's do this. i will go, i will do. let's not drag it out by wallowing, right?

i'm so glad we lived here. i'd love to come back to live here again someday. it's been a wonderful place for our family. everywhere we have lived has helped us progress and come closer to Christ. i'm not who i was 4 years ago and i'm glad. my testimony has grown and i have felt love and my testimony has grown some more. "we rise to the amount of love we're shown." i heard that quote that while suffering through the smurfs 2 at the summer dollar movie. a dollar well spent! i've learned that sometimes to feel love you have to realize that it's not necessarily how you think you should receive it. we can't dictate what people should do for us or how they should love us. we will never be satisfied that way. that's selfish love. we have to accept love how it is given. i've learned more about having gratitude in all things. that's how i feel happiest. i feel most natural complaining about everything, but happiest when i choose to see the good. without gratitude, "we are filling a cup with no bottom"- kung fu panda 2! pow!

i hope it doesn't take the almost requisite year to discover my next batch of friends who love my kids and tolerate me(because being tolerated is all i care about if my kids make good friends). the people who have truly loved and served my children have done more for me than they probably realize. my cup runneth over. they have been an answer to prayers. not just prayers, but pleadings for love and accpetance. knowing that there are people who see the need to include my children when it is not always easy or convenient has blessed me and inspired me beyond measure. it has also shown me that i can do so much more for others than i currently am. talking about unity is all lip service until you are truly extending yourself to the lonely and friendless.  
(steps off soapbox,
back to regularly scheduled programming)

why is athena blythe so dang difficult during sacrament meeting? at one point i had her propped across my biceps and did some curls just to keep her from running out of the building. probably not the most reverent of activities but neither is the whisper yelling i was doing or rest of the stuff she wanted to do. she wholly rejects all quiet, religious based church activities or toys.

i finally broke down and let her go get her latest favorite obnoxious toy from the car, a naked, male army doll riding a horse. thomas jimmy-rigged the doll to stay on because that had become quite the issue.

scarlett's post church snack plate:
i later made a pan of my mom's famously fantastic blondies. there is no evidence besides my overstuffed stomach. 
the end.