Thursday, May 24, 2012

i've got nothing

i've got nothing to write but i do have some super fun beginning of summer photos that were too awesome not to post. this is where my mother says "she doesn't write anything anymore, she just takes pictures."

(insert eye roll and sigh)

hey, there are three of you and i am doing my best.

 rollin' in my 5.0

 i feel like jack is going to be pretty happy about this picture some day

 the bug was cold and completely shut down. 
an excellent note for future references. 
next time you get out of line, your'e getting the hose.

 there's a snake in my boot!

 mad love between these two

 best. photo bomb. ever.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

for those about to rock

i have an endless amount of love for the three of you and the day i became a mother, my entire world shifted. it was as if all of the stars aligned, the world became more clear, and my purpose in this life, obvious. you make me all hearts, flowers, sunshine, rainbows, warm and fuzzy. but nothing, nothing, makes me feel more alive than live music.

i spent the better part of today with a van halen hangover after attending their show last night. i get up and nothing gets me down, except rocking all night and not sleeping all day. all of the songs and diamond dave have been dancing in my head. it was the first, and probably last, time i have seen them play. i went with the usual suspects, my rock and roll partners in crime; tracy, angela and tiffany. we've had the concert routine down forever, complete with where we are going to stop, what we are going to drink and the ceremonial bag of funyuns from the platte city quick trip on the way home. we are creatures of habit that way, and we like it. i've spent decades "touring" with this crew and have countless stories, from countless concerts; most of which, i can't share with you until you are much, much older and my parents aren't reading this blog.

as i was sitting through eddie van halen's 9 minute guitar solo, i started thinking about how amazing it is to see a big show. its almost as if, the entire auditorium becomes one big, living breathing unit of awesomeness. its one of those few venues in life where everyone is on the same team, rallying around the same thing and just looking for fun. "don't need nothing, but a good time, and it don't get better than this," says bret michaels and damn, is he right. (for the record, i have lost track of how many times i have seen poison live, but i've been doing that concert since he had all of his own original hair!)

check out this 80's relic from last night! he was clearly more van hagar! 
pretty sure he went home and watched fast times at ridgemont high after the show!

nine minutes is a long time for a guitar solo and i had enough miller lites last night to become contemplative and in the moment. i love the rush of those first few notes of a song you know, a song you love. and when the crowd sings so loud and in unison, it sounds like one voice. i love how you feel every beat of the drum kit, every riff of a guitar and how the base resonates through your body. but no one is as magical as the front man. jon bon jovi's teeth are so white and glistening, i want to lick them. david lee roth marched and twirled around last night like a drum major leading the charge. vince neil always makes me laugh. and steven tyler? are you kidding me? i saw him rocking spandex cut-out pants just three years ago and he is 64! ah, the middle aged rocker, riding it out for one more retirement check.

clearly, i love to rock and my heart really belongs to the hair bands, but i've been all over the board with this concert gig. i've seen the piano man and tiny dancer duel it out on baby grands. i've doned a parrot head and wasted away in margaritaville. been a part of janet's rhythm nation. had a contact high at a counting crows concert. heard the lightning crash at a live show. been thunderstruck at ac/dc. felt the groovy, stinky breeze at widespread panic. i even bought into the crunchy, granola, lesbian thing at the lilith fair. i've seen garth brooks hang from scaffolding, the dixie chicks stomp their way into being obsolete and pure country from george strait. i've watched def leppards one arm drummer do a solo, angus young spin on the floor in his school boy uniform and now, eddie pop his collar displaying his rock god status. i've been a joker, a smoker, a midnight toker. i've seen fire and i've seen rain, i've seen sunny days that i thought would never end and the headache that comes from enjoying it all too much the night before.

and i always can't wait for the next one.

the stones are the only big players left on my bucket list, though i'd like to journey down memory lane with u2 one more time. talk about the soundtrack to a life, i can trace a slug of memories back to bono and the edge. my "if only's" would be (obvious) the beatles, led zepplin and damn you, axl rose and your craziness! because that one could still happen if he hadn't danced with mr brownstone too long. oh and queen! i would give me left arm to have seen freddie mercury promenade on stage! (okay, maybe more like a finger, or a part of a finger, but definitely lots of money!)

in those eddie shredding moments last night, i thought about how much i hope some day you will be to have these experiences too. i want you to hear a song and be transported back to a moment, a feeling and there is no greater way to do that then live. and then, i thought about how expensive this little hobby will be if you do it on my dime! hopefully you will work to support your concert habit, like mommy does. when i put on make up and get dressed in something other than mommy clothes,  jack will instantly say, "are you going to work? dinner? a party? a concert?" i hope you go to many concerts!

you only live once, kids, so you better make it rock.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

for sale by mother

i'm on the verge of selling vivian with this house, so i thought it best i sit down with a huge glass of wine and end the day on a positive note. we had two playdates today and i spent the afternoon getting the house ready to show this evening. its an overwhelming task, like shoveling while its still snowing. we are going on 60 days of our house being on the market and it hasn't gotten any easier to make this place sparkle with all three of you in tow. i feel guilty for the constant barking "don't touch that" "no toys out" "no books" "sit on the bed" "don't even look like your thinking about touching something!" its daunting and hard on ALL of us.

before i started all the cleaning, i read the prayer to st joseph and i am hoping he throws some miracles my way. there is another st joseph buried in the front yard some place- i stuck him under the for sale sign two years ago when the house was on the market, your dad took the sign out to mow and we have no idea where he is. tonight, i prayed to the spare st joseph also. come on! big money! no whammies!

my patience has worn thin this evening and no one was listening. its so frustrating! i hate being the barking mom. it makes me feel horrible. it makes you feel horrible. and it sucks.

i am going to wrap up the ugly end to this evening with some cute pictures of your little faces. tomorrow will be better.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

happys mothers birthdays

 i call this one "i'm sixty and i know it"

"sixty is the new crazy"

today is may 13th which is always your grandma's birthday, but today it happens to be mother's day, also. i have been contemplating this blog all day trying to come up with something clever and cute; after all she is my only mother and this is a big special day for her. usually when i spend too much time thinking about these things, i end up flat, not funny and regretfully boring.

in need of some desperate help on my material, i did a quick internet search. i simply typed in the word "mother" and these are the definitions i found.

  "a person who might have raised you, normally a woman"
  "over-protective, bossy female type"
  "woman who constantly bitches at you for random shit you probably didn't do, to achieve her miserable self-fulfillment"

and my personal favorite:
  "term of profanity used by most civilizations in the world"

clearly none of these definitions were about my mother! *wink*

it's difficult to define my mother, although if i had to, it would be something more like this:

  "a small statured creature, who is both strong and gentle, firm and soft, difficult and easy. she's sometimes quiet, never reserved. she's always busy, doing nothing and everything. she's the biggest supporter, the worst critic, the most honest and least dramatic. more than anything she is always a champion of fun, patron of humor and ambassador to smiles. she's heart-ful, kidney-less. the hostess with the mostest. the cruise director. the grand dame of it all. and boy, can she raise some amazing children"

i could go on and on with a list of her attributes, but as the old saying goes, "to know her, is to love her." she's loved by the so, so many, but none as much me.

i had the most amazingly fun childhood all because of this woman. when i look back over those years, i remember all the pumpkin pies with faces, the colored deviled eggs at easter, the water gun fights, the late night pastas, the every day costumes. but the most vivid memories i have are those of her smiling, of her laughing. my mother gave of herself and i am so appreciative of all the little, every day moments.

in the words of vivian today, "happys mothers, birthdays, grandma!" I love you, momma!

 "two out of three ain't bad"

she will most definatly kill me for including these pictures but for the last week, every time i look at them i crack up. i mean, out loud, crazy person, laughing out loud cracking up. i just don't do that. ever. so i know by the time these books are in your hands, you, too, will be cracking up. go ahead, try and make your own captions, because its really, really fun. to her credit, your'e pretty blessed to have a grandma who really plays with you and is still willing to go down a hot, dirty slide! (sorry old lady grandma!)

 this one, i call "weekend at friday's"

and this one is the "sliding casket" 
she just needs on her sunday best and a strand of pearls! 
the kiss casket has nothing on this playground original. meierhoffers can thank me later- it's soon to be all the rage!

Friday, May 11, 2012

born to do it

i've found with blogging, and with life, if you allow the moment to pass, thoughts and feelings become less vivid, less fresh. instead of lounging around on this friday night, i find myself drawn to the computer.

i've avoided blogging much about my brother's story regarding his health but as of this week, his story is becoming my story. long, long ago in 1981 obgyn's did not screen mother's for the strep b virus. its a very common thing for a mother to carry, i tested positive with both vivian and eleanor's pregnancies. now they add an antibiotic to your iv cocktail and things remedy themselves. in 1981, no one detected my mom was carrying the virus and thus she passed it along to tim. initially it made him very sick and he was life flighted to children's mercy. i remember all of this in static flashbacks. being dropped off in the middle of the night to my aunt vicky's, wrapped in a mustard yellow blanket, and the days that followed were chaotic. i sensed even at four that something was awry.

i remember him coming home and the first few years being dicey with his health. he had asthma and a penchant for danger, which landed him in the hospital from time to time. as he grew, his health improved and he developed into my mischievous, ornery little brother. around the age of 10 or 12 it became evident that he was having some new "issues" and after multiple test at children's mercy, the kidney problems surfaced. we managed to maintain with medicine for a while and things were great! when he turned 15, the onset of puberty and being an adolescent started taking a toll on him and in a matter of months, his health rapidly decline to the point of kidney failure. it was at this point, we discovered the beta strep had produced long term damage to his kidneys. as tim was wrapping up his freshman year we were gearing up for a family transplant.

my dad was set to be the original living donor and literally weeks before they were set to go, an ultrasound revealed a potential problem. nothing like having the rug pulled out from underneath you at the last minute! but my mom is a champion and she happily stepped up to the plate. on september 22nd fifteen years ago, my mom gave my little brother a kidney.

the surgery went great and with the exception of a little hiccup that november, so did his recovery. he bounced completely back to being my little shit brother. i endured more than my fair share of his high jinx and pranks through out high school and college. life has been going swimmingly for tim for so long. . . and then last summer he started to not feel so great.

if you have followed any of this blog, you will recall the bottom totally dropping out around here last july. i was tip toeing around with a placenta previa, trying my best to avoid bed rest. my dad retired from his job. my parents sold their house too quickly. my grandmother passed away. and the whole time i was keeping this deep, dark secret that tim's health was declining and we knew, he was going to need another kidney.

and i knew, i wanted to give him one. 

the day after burying my grandmother, i had a c-section delivering sweet baby eleanor into this world. she was the brightest spot in a dismal summer! its horrible to say now, but i was thrilled to be on pain meds, in a hospital room, tucked away from the world while i recovered. too much had happened and i was trying my best to endure.

so fast forwarding through this year, tim's managed to maintain his health despite the declining kidney function. he soldiers on, because that is what he has always done and that is just the kind of man he is. some days i look at him and i wonder if he is in pain and if he even realizes what its like to feel really good. he kicks ass at his job every day. he volunteers. he hangs out with his friends. he harasses me. he lies to my children and tells them he works for willy wonka and that there are ninjas that live in the hillyard building. he carries on.

but i am his only sibling, his only sister, the only one in this world genetically similar to him. and i know. i know he doesn't feel awesome and i know some days, he is just going through the motions. and it kills me. it absolutely breaks my heart. because he is funny, he is kind, he is all of the beautiful stuff in this world and he deserves the opportunity to just feel good, damn it.

that's where i come in.

we always joke that he has two mothers, which is the bonus of potentially having two kidney donors! i remember thinking it was very heroic of my mom and what an amazing mother she was to give him the gift of life twice! in fact, i used it all the time as leverage, like "come on, buy me these boots, you gave tim a kidney, its the least you can do." its always been taken in stride, but now, here i am ready to do the same thing and it seems less heroics and more of just the right thing to do. the only thing to do. for my only brother, my best friend, the nicest thing my parents ever did for me.

i'd be lying if i said i wasn't a little scared. i know its going to be painful and hard on my entire family. i am not going to be able to lift any of my babies for 6 weeks and that really sucks. but what is even scarier is imagining my world without my brother in it, so i, too, am going to soldier on.

tim and i have always had this little inside joke, im not even sure where it came from but we always say "born to do it!" today for some reason, i had this light bulb moment, and i know i was born to do this. there is no way to ever repay him for the amount of joy he has brought to my life, but i am hoping this gesture will allow him to continue. i'm going to do this for him, but it's really a gift i am giving myself.

i love you, super-wonder-bro! let's do this!