Tuesday, April 25, 2017

We Survived The Twin Cities!

I'm most definitely an introvert.
I'm also a country girl. I'm so glad that the one time we thought about moving to a city, we weren't able to. I am seriously grateful. At the time it was disappointing but really I didn't have a lot of disappointment about it because deep down, I know I wouldn't be happy there. But seriously, I'm so grateful to still be living our simple, quiet, peaceful country life!

This past weekend, we spent three nights - THREE - in the Twin Cities. W.O.W.
I've been down there before, and actually was alone and had to do my own driving, so it's not that bad. I go to the MACHE conference for homeschooling. This was my 4th year, though 2 of those were only in Duluth. You are allowed to take babies under 18 months so baby came with me when I was there on Friday. It wasn't so bad, but the carrying of bags is always a problem for me! But still, I thought he wouldn't be too bad in a class or two. NOPE. That was not going to happen. I tried one for about 5 minutes. They record the classes or it might not be so big a deal. Though, apparently, they haven't discovered the beauty in high technology. See, my husband has a headset that he can use to make phone calls, and he can literally be using a chainsaw and I won't hear it. So why can't these people/places figure out how to get a sound system/mic system that doesn't pick up baby noises in the BACK of the room? I mean, it's not like I'm the kind of person who always sits in the front row or something! 

Anyway. So I will have to be ordering recordings of the seminars I wanted to hear because they were GOOD ones. "What do I do with a Resistant Learner", "What about THAT Child" and especially "Attention Obsessive Compulsive Perfectionist Control Freaks". :P 

Anyway, Friday evening we had to get to the MOA because the Sea Life had a homeschool week special rate! SUPER low. So we went. And we survived! We also had long promised our son a trip to the Lego store to pick bricks from the wall. Bonnie even got her own cup full with pink and purple legos! She was pretty happy about that! And they got their own hand made minifigure. We made it to the MOA, and out, and didn't have too much trouble - except the afraid of heights husband who was freaking out the whole time especially at diner when we had to eat on the third floor, right above the Lego store. I got chipotle! Yay! 

Saturday we had some time before the one seminar I really wanted to go to, so we went to Como Zoo! That zoo is always fun and they had Earth Day things there too so we got some free seeds and stuff too! I always end up feeling bad for the giraffes who have such a small enclosure, especially when they are inside all winter! I hope someday they change that and allow them to have more room!

Then we tried to go to the conference again. I really only wanted to go to one seminar (the Obsessive Compulsive one), so Hubby was going to just somehow man all three kids somewhere - probably the car. HAHA.
We get down in that area, and there's thousands of people, and a bunch of loud music and stuff. Some hockey event. No parking. Nowhere to even drop me off, and hubby didn't want to do it anyway. So we gave up, we were all hungry, it was lunch time anyway. So we headed out, found the nearest Perkins and had lunch, then headed to Apple Valley where we had gotten another (better) hotel for the last night of the weekend. 

That was a really good day/night. We just relaxed in the hotel, took a walk and then went to Panera Bread for dinner - someplace we'd never been. WOW is that place amazing. Went to the pool and relaxed. Well, that evening littlest baby fell into the sink counter thing and chipped his front tooth! :( Poor baby. it didnt look too bad, so it's not like I tried calling around at 9 pm for someone to check him out (though now trying to find someplace to check him out I kinda wish I had had the energy to find someone on emergency basis or something). It has to be filed down so I'm hoping I'm going to find someplace to look at it and file it down since its a bit of a scratch when he nurses.

Anyway, next day, we have a normal morning and check out, planning on heading to the MOA again because we also got special homeschool rate tickets to the Crayola Adventure! It was 9:30, and the mall apparently doesn't open until 11. So, since it was literally right there, we made a last minute stop at the MN Zoo! Left there right after lunch, and went to the MOA. Crayola was wild, although I could have sworn somewhere it said "make your own crayon" when they really mean "make your own label for a crayon we already have". But the kids had a lot of fun doing all of that stuff there, and we got three tins of markers and crayons of our choice (coolest part was you can indeed fit one of every color they had there into the smallest tin). 

We had dinner (Yay for discovering Panera Bread, although I sure could have used another stop at Chipotle) and got out of there around 6 or something. We go out to the car, and we knew when we left the car that the planes were going right over the parking garage, so we looked and sure enough you can see right up the runway from there, so we took some time there and watched planes take off. It's like a bus station, one every 2 minutes or something! Like a well oiled machine, planes coming in from the left, and taking off right toward us, crossing paths, so it seems, but never with any trouble whatsoever. It was kinda cool! With just a few potty stops we got home around 11. 

Now recovery mode! I'm completely worn out. My head hurts. Muscles are sore from constant baby carrying and walking! Crazy how that happens, and I guess I must be getting old and lazy because I don't remember that happening so badly before, though I've never spent three days carrying babies either. That, and pillows in hotels are never good it seems like! I must remember to bring my own pillow from now on. 

But we survived the MOA! TWICE! We have literally never gone, I don't think. (I've been when I was a kid a few times. Camp Snoopy was better.) And this weekend we went TWICE. That's crazy! Got all unpacked (I think) and supposed to start back at the school work this afternoon. whew. Lots of emails to sort, and phone call to make (waiting to hear back from a place to see little baby chipped tooth). Checkbook work to do.

And I hope that we don't have to go anywhere for a month. Except the tooth filing I hope to have done for the baby, the MNsure application meeting we have tomorrow... blegh.

Now, we have to pray like crazy that we did not run into any germs, because I do NOT want to deal with sicknesses.

One more thing!
As we were going home, we opened the windows and hubby noticed at some point it felt like it was getting a bit cooler, and sure enough it was - it had dropped some 20 degrees! See, in the Twin Cities, it had been in the 70s all weekend. We knew that it had snowed a bit at home, but we didn't really realize that when we got north of White Bear Lake, it would be so cold! Here's a map or 2:

Seriously wild! There are even a couple of rogue temperatures in there, I can assure you at no point was that one spot in the 60s. Which means that other spot was for sure not in the 70s either. I even have my doubts over that one 40 degree mark up there too.
This post is taking me 2 days to write, so I'll update one little thing: we went to the person to help us with our MNsure and the kids and adults in our case are screwed up. The adults are closed because we didn't send in the renewal. The kids are open, they are through MA instead of MNcare, so I have to call MNcare, see if we can renew, and if not, I have to call the county to cancel the kids before we can reapply. What a mess they have made of this system! That is absolutely rediculous. :( 

But anyway. We are mostly recovered, though it has been quite a battle trying to get some school work done again. Fighting it, and today we had to leave for that meeting, so its extra bad. I hope we get back on track tomorrow. We are already behind this week.

Just keep swimming...

Monday, April 3, 2017

The Haircut

So, we've been kinda celebrating.
Celebrating my husband's hard working paying off, how hard he works for us and how he's finally achieved a dream of working for himself, with his own truck. He's done so well! Now that he's on spring break (when road restrictions go on so you can't haul as much, around here called 'breakup') we have been doing some things to celebrate.

We bought a new fridge. Ours is as old as the house (1997 or something like that), and it has started to just run and run and run and the temperature didnt seem quite right. The water in the door had stopped working well, a seal or something would leak if we used the water, tho we were still using ice. And we knew it was time. We also wanted something bigger. We got a new dishwasher. We knew that was on the list next too, but what spurred it right now was the price. There was one there that was on discount because it had a ding in it, and we were even offered a bigger deal on it over the marked price, so SOLD!

We also spent a weekend away, which we often do this time of year whether we should or not, because after a long winter it is just time to do that. On our way, my hubby wanted a haircut, something I usually do but hadn't had the time to do lately. So all of us (except baby) got a haircut. #2 B and I had gotten one not that long ago, I think January, but I thought we would go for at least a little trim. I thought #2 B wanted to go for a summer bob, but I think she was too worried about it? I don't know. She got a shoulder length.

Me, I was going for a certain look:

What I got was:

The back is super short. Like, my son's haircut. That freaked me out the most. I've had bobs like this in the past, a couple times. But never have I ever had it this short anywhere on my head, nor had I wanted it this short.
I did ask for VB's haircut, but I was thinking of the more grown out version. I guess it wasn't even on my radar that she had started it out this short. :P I was still thinking I'd come out with shoulder length in the front, but it's cheek to chin length now.

Well, I followed myself through stages of greif. What I learned is that you don't always go through them and get over it. You go through them, then you go through them again. Sometimes you don't go through them in the same order, sometimes you get depression first. 

Anyway. I'm glad to say that I think I am finally through it. What got me through it was yesterday I ended up finally looking for pictures of what I wanted, and I had an easier time finding the short short version, instead of the longer version. So at least I know when I said "like Victoria Beckham had a while back..." I know what she saw in her mind. And, that the cut I wanted is only a couple inches off, and I will still get it! 

If nothing else, it taught me I need to be more merciful to my husband. You know how you tell people things to make them feel better about something they don't like? My hubby doesn't like his gray hair. I'm a bit younger, so I don't share his problem (yet, they are starting to show up tho...), so I guess I can't really understand. But I don't care, I like him as he is. I'd like him as a dyed blonde too, which is what he always used to do. I married an older man, and I prefer that. :P But he really doesn't. He just doesn't like it. I just didn't like this cut either. And telling me it was fine didn't help at the time either.

Mostly, this haircut was unexpected and a huge irreversible change. Aspies don't like that. Especially, I would say, with their appearance. It's hard enough when something changes outside of yourself. I think that's much worse when it's a part of you, especially when it was a change you didn't ask for and didn't expect.

But given time, space, safety to cry, we get through it. The comments of how good it looks didn't help me feel better, but it helps now. At least I don't look weird. Well, at least no one tells me I do.