Sunday, June 27, 2010

Back. Reluctantly.

Well, we are back on the mainland and might I say, I hate the mainland. At least in comparison to islands.

For the last 8 days we floated in the Gulf of Mexico. The big, beautiful, 90+ degree turquoise water held us all day every day of our vacation. The weather was beautiful, the company, even better.

We saw a lot more wildlife this trip than in years past. Occasionally, there would be a dolphin or a manatee siting over the week, but this time we saw several every day. These dolphin (photo by Michelle) were so close we could have touched them right off the beach.

The manatee were out as well, and on the last day one came up and nudged us rather creepily while we were hanging out in the water. I ran up and got some cabbage we took out to feed them and the two big ole walrus's ate it up in a few minutes while we watched. Scrapping the Asian salad we were going to have for dinner was worth the show.

We ate dinner late every night so we could watch sunsets from Shark's Tooth Beach. This is one of my favorite things on the planet. We found hundreds of teeth this trip, and even saw some sting rays in the water. FIsh were abundant and so were the turtles, shore birds and pelicans.

I'm not sure if the oil spill had anything to do with the abundance of wildlife we saw this year or not, but it certainly reminded us all of what we stand to lose from this disaster. This was our 6th trip to the island, and I can't imagine what the 7th will look like if things don't change soon.

So I leave you with what it looks like today--unspoiled except for the visitors like us who get to enjoy it.

Friday, June 25, 2010


As the sun sets on our wonderful magical week at the beach, I wanted to jump back in and tell you where I'll be tomorrow.

Read about the details to the Tampa Better-Than-a-Picnic Picnic here, and be sure to join me for free food and fun while we help with the efforts toward saving our native wildlife from the oil spill.

You don't have to bring a donation, but if you care to contribute, check out wish list for items we will be collecting for their organization.

Hope to see you tomorrow at 11:30 in Ruskin.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

My human vending machine

Well, this was a new one.

One week ago, Jesso swallowed a coin. And by "swallowed," I mean she literally ate it. I heard her chewing metal, looked over and asked what she had in her mouth. She swallowed, gulped and struggled to get it down, but then finally after she said, "I have a penny in my belly."

And so, the penny pursuit began.

Of course, the actual ingestion occurred at 5:05 p.m.--just in time for my frantic call to go directly to the nurse's line at All Children's rather than my pediatrician's office so I got the added humiliation of that aspect in addition to being a moron. After determining that she wasn't choking, they told me that we would just "have to let it pass" in three days.

That's grossspeak for going through her leavings searching for a coin the same color as her, er, leavings.

Three days came and went. It was a weekend, so I gave it until Monday before I called back. Then Tuesday because I really didn't want to call. And then Wednesday came, and still no sign, so I took her back.

If after a week of stool samples the home edition doesn't yield any results, then an X-ray is prescribed to see where the foreign object has lodged. So we went to the hospital and got the insurance shake-down before going up to radiology where a team of doctors looked for a penny in Jesso's belly.

After 2 hours of waiting and testing and talking, the X-ray was clear.

Lincoln had left the building.

Sometime over the weekend, it "had passed" and escaped the radar of my plastic fork and gag reflex.

I think we just spent 1000 Washingtons looking for that Lincoln.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Packing light

I have an extensive and quite detailed packing list for our upcoming vacation to the beach. In fact, it's a list that I save on the computer from year to year and sometimes I open it in January just to cheer myself up. It's the only list I have such a powerful feeling for, until this one.

This is the list of things I won't be taking to our beach vacation this year.

1. Diapers. And wipes and swim diapers. Because for the first time in 15 years, all of my children are out of diapers. At the same time. The thought of not packing Pampers makes me almost as happy as my packing list.

2. Clothes. Well, a lot less of them anyway. I usually come home with stacks of clothes that we never wear because we live in our bathing suits. So everyone is getting an outfit in case it rains and their pajamas.

3. My flat-iron. In six years of this particular trip, I've never once used it. My hair is on vacation, too. (I list this as an apology to my friends as well--it's 80's hair time, ladies!)

4. Closed-toed shoes. If ain't a flip-flop, it's not welcome in the suitcase.

5. Negative energy. I'm going to my favorite place with my favorite people and so there's no room for anything but happiness.

I'm ready to go now. Too bad our reservations aren't.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


You don't know how long you've been tip-toeing until you finally let your heels touch the ground.

You don't know how long you've held your breath until you let it out at last.

You don't know how tense your muscles have grown until you finally allow them to relax.

You don't realize how long and hard you've worried when suddenly you're told you don't have to anymore. And you can believe it.

After a simple EKG, today I walked flat-footed.

I exhaled.

I dropped my shoulders.

I let a big worry go to make room for a whole lot of gratitude.

Happy Summer.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

The end is near

Tomorrow is the last day of school and I would know that even if we were not counting it down by the millisecond by these tell-tale signs...

I'm seriously considering breathing tomorrow but only after an afternoon cardiologist appointment.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Text this

Please consider texting "WILDLIFE" to 20222 to donate $10 to help oil-infected wildlife through the NWF. I just did.

Here's more info from the

Saturday, June 05, 2010