Thursday, August 30, 2007

Sleeping on the couch

I have a few bad habits. One is gnawing on my fingers around my nails. Another is eating food I am craving to great excess. A third is sleeping on the couch. My mom always did this and now I do.

I get so tired at night while watching TV, the thought of dragging myself upstairs to wash my face and get in to bed is overwhelming. Silly, I know. It doesn't happen every night, but at least a couple a week.

Last night, true to form, I rolled over on the couch to call it a night. I have about an inch of studio make-up on. It is horrible. I always get so mad at myself when I wake up on the couch with my eyes stuck together and my makeup smeared.

T begged me to come upstairs for a few minutes, but I remained in a tired heap. Around 5:00 a.m. I finally managed to drag myself upstairs for a good face-washing. Why does something so small seem like such a huge deal?

Q was particularly precious this morning. He has taken to saying, "Bah, bah" as he waves. I kept picking him up to squeeze and kiss on him. He would complain and writhe away to continue on with whatever he was busy with at the moment. Sweet little guy.


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Inside-out and Upside-down

Every time we dress Q lately, it's a big production. There is a lot of squealing and twisting, and also Q doesn't like it. We have taken to strapping him in and after a quick wrestling session he is attired. However, things were easier today. It was Wacky Backwards day at my mom's group, so the kids were meant to look a mess.

I love the sweet smell and softness of babies, so I just cringe every time Q crawls off to roll in the dirt. It is just impossible to keep him clean at these play dates, so I just watch helplessly as he covers himself in dirt and then grinds it into his hair. He even managed to stain his feet with blueberries today. I need to give in to the dirtiness of boys, I guess. It just means a few rushed baths before we jet off to daycare. I don't think she would appreciate it if I deposited a Pigpen clone in her playroom.

I mentioned yesterday how annoying babies can be, but there is something much more annoying.

Especially the one of the right. I was trying to catch a quick nap this afternoon for about half an hour, and that cat is purr machine. She kept laying on my chest and rubbing against my cheeks and my hands. That is a needy cat. I was close to throttling her, but finally she let up and did what cats do best. Napped right with me.


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Eyes keep changing

I went to my Lasik appointment this morning with fingers crossed hoping today would be the day that I get the blessing to go forward with my surgery. But, no. My eyes changed quite a bit from the last time. In one eye, I went from a -4.00 to a -2.75. Not sure entirely what that means, but they were all exclaiming about it, so I guess it is a big deal. They need to wait until they stop changing before they can proceed. I wish they would just stop already!

I was fairly let down, but the doctor said with my eyes improving, they can actually get my vision better when it is all said and done. Today after the long process of "This one? Or this one?" I could actually make out a few letters on the 20/15 line. That is saying a lot, since the big "E" is blurry for me without glasses or contacts. So, I go back in three weeks and could be seeing clearly by the end of September. I can't wait!

Eye exams always stress me out. They make me feel vaguely dumb for some reason, since I can't see the stupid letters. I am always straining and want to squint to pass the test! Today, the doctor was asking me whether the red ones or green ones were thicker. I kept straining to figure it out, and finally decided the red one was thicker. This went on for several rounds, until I finally said, "These all look the same to me." He said that was the right answer. That there was no difference. Why must eye doctors trick you? My sister once barfed on an eye doctor's shoes. I think that is the appropriate response.

T had his melanoma surgery today. They gouged out a big chunk of his back and stitched it up. He says it feels tight and sore. Hopefully that is our one and only experience with melanoma.

On a final note, babies are wonderful, sweet, life-changing creatures, but they can also be quite annoying. Q has taken to pushing the buttons on the TV. I like to watch a little CNN or Food Network while getting ready for work. Q likes changing the channel or volume or turning the set off all together. This morning when I turned my back for about 15 seconds, he had emptied an entire dresser drawer. He also likes pulling everything out of the trash and climbing into the wet shower. Not to mention throwing all his uneaten bits of food on his high chair onto the ground or rubbing them into his hair. Does this annoying phase pass??


Sunday, August 26, 2007

Stressful relaxing weekend

So, I'm not going to Argentina. I talked to the head of the selection committee last night, and she said it was very close, but I am not one of the chosen ones.

To backtrack a little, we went on our anniversary weekend on Thursday. We stayed at a beautiful lodge along the Columbia River Gorge in Southern Washington. T and I both got massages shortly after we arrived. My mind was racing, and I felt like I couldn't relax my body, but it was still very enjoyable.

The next day we hiked to the top of a waterfall. We have this new backpack apparatus that a friend gave us to tote Q. I mistakenly thought it would make it easy to carry him. That was not the case. It was ridiculously hard. The hike was a mile up, and I was trying to carry Q the whole way since T hurt his back. I was breathing so hard and my back and legs were aching. T carried him for a bit, and I managed on the way back down. This place right below my hips is now very sore. I can't wait till that kid can walk!

On Friday we also went to some tiny wineries and visited a huge dam up there and saw the fish swimming through the fish ladders. On Saturday, we had to leave early so I could make it to the ill-fated Argentina interview.

It was about a 3 and a half hour drive, and I had a nice sick, nervous feeling the entire way. When I got to the hotel where the interview was held, a woman greeted me in the lobby. Then she led me into the judgement room. It was absolutely the most intimidating interview I have ever had. Fifteen people were seated at tables in a horseshoe shape facing my little table.

When I sat down, the first question was in Spanish. The woman was so far away, and I haven't used my Spanish in a good six years. I couldn't understand her. My heart started beating faster and my stomach felt a little sicker. I asked her to repeat herself, and still couldn't understand all of what she said. I answered what I thought she might have said, but I may have been way off the mark. Another question I didn't do particularly well on involved what all I knew about Argentina. T suggested maybe I should have researched that a bit more. Good point.

They went around the room asking a total of 21 questions. When I left, one interviewee said I did a very good job. Apparently not good enough though.

I nervously waited for the call and heard around 9:00 p.m. last night. I definitely wonder why I wasn't chosen, and why I wasn't good enough. But, to be honest, a huge part of me is relieved. I knew I had to apply because it was ideal for me, but I'd hate to leave my family for a month, and my boss didn't want me to go. Plus, I have something else in the works for next summer, and this would completely get in the way of those plans.

So, I think it is good that I tried. That horrific interview was a good experience because nothing could seem intimidating after that. I put myself out there and gave it my best shot, but things are working out as they probably should.


Thursday, August 23, 2007

Selfish at work

November sweeps is coming up, where we pull out all the stops, and do big in-depth series and specials to lure viewers. I pitched a pretty good idea for a series of stories to one of my bosses. I wanted to explore how big of a problem prescription drug abuse is in our area, and why it is such a problem here.

I had been thinking about it for awhile, ever since I heard an interview on NPR. I thought about who I would interview and how I would put it together. One of my bosses had already assigned me another project on bullies. So, she thought it would be over-working me for me to do both. She wanted to hand my idea to another reporter, and I could "mentor" her through it. I was less than excited by this prospect. After all, it was my idea, and I know I would have to do ton of work, and she would get the credit. She's a very nice person, and I like working with her, but I just hate to hand over the story.

Now, I wonder if I am being selfish or if I just have pride in my work? The latest arrangement is that we are sharing the series, and I will teach her as we go. I wish I could just help her with her own piece, and her own idea, instead of giving up my own. I am sure I am being a brat, but it is just irritating the hell out of me.

Anyway, work is going to be the farthest thing from my mind for the next few days. We are off to our anniversary trip tomorrow. I have an 80-minute massage awaiting me. Excellent.


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Vacation interrupted

T and I celebrate our fourth anniversary this weekend. It's hard to believe it's been four years already. Feels like 40, or at least that's what I tell him. :) We are going away to this beautiful lodge in Northern Oregon on the Columbia River. We will get massages and hike and have nice dinners. Of course, Q will be with us, so it won't exactly be romantic and peaceful, but it still should be fun.

We are taking Thursday and Friday off to enjoy a long weekend, but then something got in the way. I found out last week that the interview day for the business exchange to Argentina that I am applying for is this Saturday. I tried to tell the organizer that I was going to be out of town, but she responded that this was the only day, and perhaps I should apply next year. Ouch. I thought with a week and a half notice there would be a little flexibility, but apparently not. A part of me thought, Oh well, screw it. I was having a hard time deciding whether to apply for this, so now my mind is made up. But, I came around, and now we are planning to leave Hood River super early so I can make my interview. Sigh.

I also found out there are ten people applying for three or four positions. That does not exactly leave me flush with confidence. I will have to sit in front of a panel of interviewers and be pummelled with questions. Pretty much my nightmare. But, I know I need to try, and it would be such a great experience. I need to seize the opportunity, even it it messes up my vacation.


Monday, August 20, 2007

104 candles

Four years ago I did a story with a 100-year-old man celebrating his 101st Christmas. He was such a neat guy, with so many interesting stories. His family invited me to his 104th birthday this past weekend. We went to wish him a happy day. He definitely seemed older and had a harder time hearing and speaking. But, he still feeds the fish every day in their backyard pond. He is doing pretty damn good for 104. I was impressed. We told him we would see him next year for 105!

That night we went to a charity event at a winery. We just got tickets through our station, otherwise we would not have ponied up the $75 a ticket. Some people have far too much money. People were bidding ridiculous amounts for auctioned items. They must feel such pressure though to constantly donate. Not that I exactly feel sorry for the filthy rich, but it must get old to always have people holding their hand out to you.

We are almost through with the first season of "Lost" on DVD. I always felt like I missed the boat on the show, so T and I are jumping on board. It is wonderful to have the instant gratification of finishing one episode and starting the next one without waiting a week. There is no way we will be caught up by the time the next season starts though.

T tweaked something in his back when we were running yesterday. He was walking like the 104-year-old and couldn't lift anything heavier than Q. He stayed home from work today and actually went to a chiropractor, which neither of us has ever done.

This morning I was scrambling to get out the door for my 8:00 a.m. yoga class, T was limping around the house, Q was in fussy, over-dramatic heap on the floor, and then the cat escaped. Gotta love those mornings.


Thursday, August 16, 2007

Waiting for baby

One of the blogs I read raised an interesting question. So, I thought I would hijack it and make it my own. You can read her (probably more eloquent) take here.

She asks what your biggest regret is. She says hers is waiting to have kids, and she mentions other women who said they wished they would have had more kids.

I really believe more women are going to feel like this in the coming years. Women now seem to think they have all the time in the world to have children, but biologically that is just not true, and it could be a devastating realization down the road.

I always seemed to want to have kids a little earlier than T, so we compromised, but still started earlier than most of our friends. I told him I want to finish having babies by the time I am 35, because it is better for my body and there is less chance of birth defects.

I know timing is often based on chance. You never know when you are going to meet the person you actually want to have babies with. And, you have to juggle money, career, and education. But, I think many women are convinced now they should get married in their 30's and not even think about children until they are 35. That's just going to lead to more fertility treatments and the issues they bring. I also think too many couples think fertility treatments are the silver bullet. They are not guaranteed.

It is wonderful that women are so encouraged to pursue a career these days. You are much less likely to be looked down upon for continuing to work after becoming a mother (though it definitely still happens). I just think many women are going to inadvertently choose career over family.

Women have to be aware that their situation is very different from men's. There never seems to be a perfect time to have children, but you just want to make sure you don't wait until it is too late.


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Yoga and Cheetos

A woman approached me in yoga this morning to ask if I would be willing to teach yoga to her husband's high school volleyball teams. She says it would be about 50 high school girls. She asked what I would charge. I wasn't sure how to respond. I've never faced that question before. I think I will do it though. It certainly should be interesting. Maybe I will become a yoga entrepreneur and get rich and retire. Maybe.

I am obsessed with the song "Vindicated" by Dashboard Confessional. If you have not partaken, please do. You will not regret it. I become obsessed with songs and then I must listen to them repeatedly until I am sick of them. I am the same way with food. My latest obsession is Natural Cheetos. They are wonderful, cheesy, puffy bits of goodness. I took them to my moms' group this morning and said they were "healthy Cheetos." If they say natural, they must be healthy right?


Doctor's appointments

Q and I both had them today. His was his 15-month check-up. He got two shots and a full examination. The doctor is a bit concerned that he is not walking yet and that he just recently started pulling himself up and moving around. I was kind of sad to hear that. He said he was pleased with Q's words, but wanted to check his motor development. Q, of course, was born six weeks early, but has caught up in size and most other areas. Our doctor is going to refer us to a child development center through the hospital where he was born.

I just hope everything is OK. It kind of gives me a sick feeling, when I think about it. It seems like he is so close to walking though! He pulls up on his chubby little feet and tries to let go! I guess it will be good to know for sure how he is developing.

After Q's check-up, I went to my Lasik appointment. My eyes are still changing since I am out of my rigid gas permeable lenses. I have to wait for them to stabilize. They dilated me which I HATE. They put some super dilation drops in that keep me looking like a stoned owl for five hours. I wasn't the safest driver on the way home. How can they expect you to function like that? I have a follow up in two weeks without dilation, thankfully.

My new boss is not too bad. He is older than I expected with white hair. Apparently, he loves to teach people, and I have been yearning for that. I was six minutes late for our staff meeting with him yesterday. Great impression, huh?

I have several trips coming up. In two weeks, T and I will celebrate our fourth anniversary at a lodge a few hours from here. I am taking a 3-day weekend trip to Las Vegas in September, and then we are going to Boston for T's sister's wedding in October. I love to have things like that to look forward to.


Monday, August 13, 2007

Vacation post-mortem

I am back home this Monday morning, watching a "The View" re-run waiting for Q to get tired and take a nap, so I can too!

We got in after midnight last night, and I had to get up before 7:00 for yoga this morning. In a nutshell, our trip was fun, but it is nice to be home. Our flights were actually all remarkably smooth which is a rarity lately. Q had a little trouble on a few flights, but for the most part did okay. Our flights were all on time, and every piece of luggage made it.

My high school reunion was more fun than I expected. The girls mostly looked the same. The guys were a bit harrier and fatter. I was proud of how my speech went. After a few cocktails, my nerves mostly faded away, and I got some good feedback. I am pretty happy with where I am and how I look ten years after high school graduation. I like my life much better now than I did then, but isn't everyone angst-ridden in those years?

We were in constant motion for the family reunion part of the trip. We went to a baseball game, the state fair, ran a 5K, went to Discovery World, a big farmers' market in the state capital, got a professional family picture, saw "The Bourne Ultimatum" in this sparkling new dinner theater, went to the zoo, and had lots of gourmet dinners courtesy of my very talented mom.

Q, T, and I all slept in the same room. Q woke us up early every morning by standing up in his crib and calling to us over the end of the bed. It was ridiculously cute, but it is nice to have him back in his own bed.

I was great to see my new nephew, my sisters, my parents and grandparents, and to see all five little boys play together.

Our huge unwieldy group ranging in age from newborn to mid-80's was a source of frustration. I realize I much prefer smaller groups. It's too hard to make a decision in those huge groups, and you just can't please everyone.

One other thing I could have done without was those judgemental little comments so common in my family. I heard a few too many times that Q should be using a fork already, and my hair was a little flat, and I am lucky T takes care of Q so I can go to work. I tried to let it all just sail right by without bothering me, but I think I did make a few snap comments in response.

That's all expected in a family vacation though isn't it? The enjoyment and the irritation wrapped into one. T and I have a long weekend planned for our anniversary next week. That will be our truly relaxing vacation.

We have a meeting with the new boss today. Should be interesting.

Now for a nap.


Friday, August 3, 2007

Leaving on a jet plane

I am so ready to get on that plane. It has been an interesting and trying day.

I have one co-worker who is constantly passive aggressive. Our desks are connected, so it is a daily battle. She is just rude and snooty. We were getting ready at the same time in the bathroom today, and I tried to make friendly conversation with her. She gave me one word answers and wouldn't look at me. I called her on it, and she actually apologized. I NEVER call her on it. I was actually kind of shaking when I did it, but I am glad I did. I was being nice. I don't deserve that kind of rudeness. She was sickening sweet to me the rest of the day.

I am a person who does not like confrontation. It makes my heart race and my hands shake. But, besides that little interaction, I also had another confrontation. I disagreed with how we were treating a story concerning the body of a soldier returning from Iraq, and I told my manager how I felt. She disagreed and said she would not change it, but she did say I could ask our new boss (who's above both of us). I have exchanged about three words with this guy. I went into his office with my heart pounding and hands shaking (I'm a wuss), and told him I wasn't comfortable with how we were handling the story. He actually agreed with me and told the other woman to change it. I was so happy I stood up for what I believed.

When those situations usually arise, I tell T and tell him to handle it. He worked overnight and wasn't here during the day, so I was on my own! But, I did it, and made both of us proud. I need to grow a little more of a back bone apparently, but at least I had one today.

I am about half-packed. Our flight leaves in exactly 7 hours and 42 minutes at 6 a.m. I figure I will get about 3 hours of sleep. Not fun, but it sure will be nice to get away from it all for a week!


Wednesday, August 1, 2007


I am getting nervous about giving my speech at my high school reunion. I am not sure that I actually have something interesting to talk about. I first wrote my speech in bullet points. I attempted to rehearse in front of T, but that just made me laugh. So, I turned my back to him and enlightened the cats. T yawned excessively loudly three times, which really pissed me off. I mean, I think you can yawn without making noise! We had a little tiff over that. He said I was over-reacting. I said he shouldn't yawn so loud.

I decided to go ahead and write the speech out, but not read it word for word. I think the theme is OK. I talk about how the meaning of "home" means different things for different people, and how its meaning has changed for me over the years.

I just second guess myself a lot. I worry people will think I am talking about myself too much. It might be surprising, but I am not a huge fan of public speaking. I don't mind talking to a camera, but, an audience of prying eyes makes me uneasy. I usually feel comfortable a few minutes in. I think a drink or two this weekend will speed up the process.

I am forever curious why I choose jobs that put me in front of people, even though it's not a place I love to be. On air and in front of an aerobics class, I have people watching me. Am I a masochist? Do I really just crave attention? Am I just trying to prove something?

I am been shy since I was a little girl. I would put my chin down to my chest and ignore adults when they spoke to me. I wasn't allowed early admission to Kindergarten, because I was just too shy. My parents must have been shocked when I announced my career plans.

I always think challenging myself to take public speaking opportunities will make me better and eventually my nerves will dissipate. It hasn't happened yet.

My good friend emailed me and said she had been asked to introduce me this weekend. That adds to my stress. I just don't want people to expect a lot. I just have a constant low self-esteem versus big ego battle. Am I alone in this?