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I went in for my usual 6 mos dental check-up.  They complimented my “home care” which made me feel sneaky and smug because I don’t floss.  And my teeth were so shiny that they didn’t even ASK if I did, so I was spared my shameful bi-annual floss lie.  Plus, I have this drive to be a Good Patient, so if I can get a gold star without even doing the work…well, that will make it just like school, won’t it?  But that drive to be a Good Patient also caused me to find myself in the lobby of an oral surgeon, finally making an appointment to get those wisdom teeth extracted.

Back in my grad school days, before I’d developed my healthy terror of all things dental, I responded to a call for volunteers to have wisdom teeth removed, free, in exchange for participating in a pain-relief study.  Yeah, no chance in hell I’d do that now, but at the time it seemed like a great deal, given my lack of insurance of any kind.  It turned out that I had two teeth that were just coming in like good little teeth and no big deal and two that were headed in sideways.  They chose to remove the easy ones.  I’ve been toting the problem teeth around for about 20 years.  Typing that just gave me sadness.  I’m old.

At most every dental visit since, a dentist has told me those will have to come out.  One is still inside the gum, causing trouble only in that it might be pushing on its neighbor and causing sensitivity (that’s the bully  tooth).  The other one, on the bottom, is partly through the gum, creating a nice place for food to hang out and cause the tooth to decay and they’d have to go after little broken bits of tooth and ACK!  I brush that tooth and care for it like it was a Fabrege egg, albeit one that sometimes smells like cabbage.  But I know it must go, before things get ugly.   But oh the anxiety.  So I have ignored and put it off until today, when I made the appointment for the intial xrays and consultation.  I’ve met the surgeon, he goes to the kids’ synagogue, he seems really gentle (as opposed to gentile), but I am not calmed.  I was not helped by the word find stacked on a clipboard at the appointment desk.  First two words: Anesthetic and Bone Graft.  My heart kicked it up a bit just reading that.  Thanks, Doc!  How about Dry Socket or Suppurating?  Insurance Denial or Nausea?  Mouthful of Blood?



Hope you had a Merry Christmas and that your last night of Hannukah is wicked awesome.  We had a lovely visit to Delaware and my folks’ house.    My kids had been looking forward to cousin-based chaos for ages and they were not disappointed.  Thank heavens the house is so big and that it contains a finished basement.   That crowd would have brought my house to rubble.  Not that it’s all that far off already…  Oh, and it smells apparently, I found this sign that Lily had posted before we left:

It says “Ben No tootng or frting Julianna”  It’s still up, of course.  That’s a good sign to have.  Luckily, my name is not on it.

We had our big meal on Christmas Eve afternoon, when everone was able to be there.  The kids exchanged cousin gifts then as well (we draw names.  I can’t afford to buy for all those youngins).  Julianna had made Mikayla a pair of skull-covered jammie pants and was so excited to give them to her.  She’d even used the serger–with about as much confidence as I have when I use it.  I swear that thing makes me feel like I’m keeping a pet tiger–if all goes well it’s a wonderful thing to have, but chances are it’s gonna end in tears.  And maybe blood.  Kayla got her the Beatles album “Rubber Soul” so there was much happiness there.

We got everyone together for a photo.  As usual, it takes several shots to actually get everyone, face forward, not blinking or yawning.  You’ll note that Justin’s kids are in a suit and matchig jumpers.  Tash’s kids are all tidy and neat.  And mine are wearing stained and grubby clothing and appear to have combed their hair with hay rakes.

Why yes, that IS Hazel on Kayla’s lap.  And yes, I have more pictures of her…

She thought that Julianna’s puffing-out-the-cheeks-and-then-slapping-them (also known as Bluto’s “Look!  I’m a zit!) trick was brilliant.


She’s really that cute.  And then some.  Also was rather determined to eat/squish the elaborate Playmobil dolphin and penguin exhibit we’d set up the night before for the kids.  That’s when I remembered what it’s like to have a baby and have to constantly be hovering around the chokey-filled crap the big kids have and moved it all upstairs.  It looks like a fine thing to be a baby surrounded by big kids.  They were all quite taken with her and she was handing out the hugs to them.  *I* didn’t get any.  Sniff.  But the cousins got quite a lot.  Also, Justin’s stupid dog won’t let me scratch his ears and went and put his head in Steve’s lap even though Steve doesn’t even LIKE dogs.  Hmpf.

I ate waaaaay too many cookies and too much pie.  We always have far, far too many cookies and even with a blind eye turned toward the amount the kids are eating we still have scads left over. My high school friend, Gabi, came over with her son and I meant to push some on them (since they have the metabolisms of rabbits and Gabit is almost entirely unchanged physically since age 18. grr.) and totally forgot, so I ended up taking home nearly as many as I brought.   I, however, am on a no-cookies, no-cheese diet for a bit here.  My innards are askew.  Which might make that sign come in handy…

If you want to see all my pics (which are, admittedly, shoddy), go to my Flickr stream.

I don’t really need to post every gift my kids get, I just wanted an excuse to show you what I gave them yesterday…Monster hot water bottle covers!

Julianna named hers Weemo:

Ben named his Joe:

Lily named hers Larry:

Yes, I agree, they ARE pretty awesome.

Tomorrow morning, we pack up the menorah and pressies and cookies and head to Delaware.  I likely won’t be able to post until we return.  So have a good Christmas, or a happy holiday, or just sit there and be a grouch.  Meanwhile, here’s our view on Sunday:

…my mommy gave to me:

1–pair of slippers
1–ugly Bionicle thing
1–package of little dogs with giant heads

This conceit won’t really hold up as they aren’t getting 2 of anything tomorrow. And, I suppose, technically, Julianna got 2 slippers and LIly got 5 dogs, so it all falls apart right here. Well, I hope you’re happy now, you’ve ruined it for everyone.

Hannukah is late this year and overlaps Christmas, so it’ll be a present-palooza in these parts. I prefer it to come earlier and stretch things out a bit–and avoid the menorah schlepping and the extra present-schlepping. Not that anyone NEEDS any gifts b/c we’re already neck deep in crap here. I’m the grinchiest girl in the world.

In case they’re readers:

Please do not release another live mouse onto my arm while I am sleeping. Croaking out load meows around the mouse in your mouth is not sufficient warning. I will not understand you and I will not take it well when a mouse squeaks and runs across my body.


Julianna has become a full-on Beatlemaniac.  She is almost 12.  Those of you who knew ME at 12 will be most amused by this.  Further amusement for you:  She asks me “Who is the best Beatle?” (a rather Dwight Schrute like phrasing, but still) I, being a thinking person of taste replied “John.”  She said “Yeah, I kind of like Ringo.”  So she came to that on. her. own.  She did not know that I had allied myself with “the funny Beatle” lo those many years ago.  Granted, I was left with Ringo after my greedy cousins had snapped up John and Paul and at 12 I was in no condition to choose “the weird one” over “the funny one” (and, okay, let’s be honest, I still choose that way), but I was wholly loyal from that point on.  I even bought Ringo Starr solo albums. I enjoyed “Help!” the movie because Ringo was kind of the star of it.  I dated a large nosed drummer in high school.   I felt a bit embarrassed recently when Ringo declared he would no longer give autographs because he’s sick of the lot of us.  I committed, people.  And, apparently, burned it onto my DNA.  So, young persons, know your power. Know that your seemingly innocent flirtation with Kanye West or jelly shoes or leggings could be passed on to your as-yet unconceived children.  Beware.  And have better taste than that.

You sit on my lap so warm
Your weight brings me great comfort
Let’s go to bed now.

This haiku could also be used to praise cats or strippers. Feel free to use it as you see fit.

Snowity Blowity
My house is drafty
There is no subfloor
And oil is quite dear.

The builders were short a bit
and so I find that I’m
freezing my rear.

Double dactyls in the hizz-ouse!

Jinkies!  I can say that because I have a puffy orange down coat that makes my children call me Velma.  I have yet to aquire white knee socks, however.

So I asked Lily about the wish list.  She tells me that the first item–“my mybu/ mebyuns” was an attempt at “My Meebas”–that one I knew b/c that’s the only thing she’s asked for.  Yes, I’ve already bought it.  After that, she was able to identify “chicken and seal”–we knew it as “chicin owo seel”–and meant the Webkinz of those creatures. The rest of the list?  She has no idea.  She’s at that weird developmental stage where she can read pretty well, but hasn’t quite caught up with the writing.  I’ll just pretend it says “homemade pajama pants with poodles on them and a hot water bottle cover” because that’s what she’s getting.

Message to–QUIT CHANGING THINGS!!  It is very, very confusing to the old people.  It’s hard to cling to my illusion of being A Blogger when you send me reeling with all these curve balls.  I’ll go back to a manual typewriter and stamps, I will!

Or I’ll do this:  Embroider all my entries

Lily’s wish list that she just slipped me before heading off to bed:


I’m hoping to get a translation tomorrow. any guesses?

I’m busy this week, sewing for a handbag “show” at my in-law’s house this weekend.  But I needed  to take a moment for my yearly complaint about Christmas music.  I’m certain there ARE people who are grateful to hear nothing but Christmas music in every single store, but I don’t like those people.  Let’s assume for the moment that I enjoy Christmas music (I don’t.  I worked in a mall one holiday season. It broke me.  I never want to hear any of them–except “I want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” and “Oh Holy Night”–ever again.  But you know what I really, really, really don’t ever want to hear again?  That wretched “Christmastime is here ” or “Christmas time again” or whatever song from Charlie Brown.  h.a.t.e it.   It could suck the joy out of a puppy carnival.  It’s a depressant.  It’s Zacorp.  It brings me DOWN, man.  Hate it.  Stop playing it.  Thank you.


December 2008
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