I don't qualify myself as a good graphic designer. I can manipulate photos and make simple shapes and things. One of my clients wanted something complex. I'm glad they settled for my meager graphic design abilities. While it's not what I would consider a peice of art, it is nice, has the functionality that the client wants.

I am still tweaking the dev page but the function is there even if it doesn't go anywhere, and chances are it won't until I move it to their server. Which won't be till I'm done with the information site. The good thing here is that I can use the base of the splash page as the navigation for the information page. It should work out pretty nice I hope.

Means alot less graphic work for me yay! Now that I've got the majority of it done.

I however cannot work more today as my child decided to trash my house while I was working so now I have to clean up a bit before Shea gets home.

This month has been good to me. I have finished one Freelancing Project for Age of Legends, LLC, with another smaller project for them potentially going to happen. Mind 2 Eye Studio's owner contacted me she's looking to redo her website to match her new business card, I don't know if this means she got married or not but it's good for me either way. And I was showing off my personal portfolio page at DM for a critique on the design to get a few artistic points of view and people who actually know how to critique for the most part and I got a potential client from that. I'm pretty sure I've got the job, the details are just being worked out and such.

I've started writing Cari's background story into a new world. You can check it out at wordpress.com's site. I want a few more readers than just my friends for that. My goal is to write 500 words Monday thru Thursday and if I can the rest of the week. So far I'm on targer for the past two days. Monday was not happening as I had a killer headache.

Speaking of which I'm tracking my headaches again. I think I'm going to start tracking the weather/pressure as well to see if there is some sort of link with my headaches. I've not started tracking pressure yet, that requires me to make a new set up for tracking things, so I'll probably do that this weekend.

The girls are doing well. Samantha is growing fast, she's starting to roll over and she's a very happy baby and a thumb sucker. I find it funny that Kathleen never did find her thumb and hardly used a pacifer, and Samatha uses her thumb to fall asleep almost all the time. It was the pacifier until she found her thumb, but now that she's done that she doesn't like the pacifier.

Both Kel and Nat are pregnant, I'm happy for them both, particularly Nat and Den they've been trying so long.

Help train my Knight
Feed my vampire

1 whole chicken (I prefer peices can be whole)
Your favorite dried herbs
Chicken stock
2 Tsp Flour
Water
White Wine
Lemon Juice

Clean and dry chicken.
Liberally sprinkle your herbs over the chicken peices on both sides.
Place skin side down in roasting pan
Fill pan with chicken stock. Enough to reach half way up most of the chicken in the pan
Place in oven at 400 Degrees for 1 hour
Remove roasting pan from oven and place chicken on a cooking sheet and cook for an additional 15 to 20 miniutes being careful not to burn the chicken. Place the side that was in the chicken broth up.
Mix flour with water until you have a creamy paste. It should not be too thick and all flour should be dissolved.
Pour the four and water mixture into the roasting pan. Place the pan over medium heat and bring to a boil.
Add a little lemon juice (1 tablespoon) and 1/2 c white wine.
Stir gravy until thickened. Add additional flour and water mixture to gravy to reach your desired consistancy.

Serve with mashed potatoes.

You would think that Kathleen would be the better sleeper by now. Nope! Samantha is starting to sleep through a good portion of the night now. Maybe waking up once a night. Where as it takes me about an hour to get Kathleen down, then she's up shortly there after and then can wake up once or twice a night.

Samantha is doing so well. She's starting to look around at everything, she's all smiles, and she's unfortunately going to be a thumb sucker if I can't keep her pacifiier in her mouth. Which she tends to spit out. Whenever I hear her trying to suck on her thumb I promptly find the pacifier and stick in several times before she decides okay it'll work. She slurps on her thumb because she hasn't learned to straigten it out. Though I think she's slowly figuring it out.

Samantha is all smiles with Kathleen comes near and close to her face. She likes her big sister, which is a very good thing. As much of a pain it's going to be with two mobile toddlers, I can't wait for Samantha to start sitting and crawling and walking so she can play better with Kathleen. Kathleen still points out little kids but the excitement level has gone down, I think she's realized she has someone to play with now.

Mommy took the girls outside for the first time this summer a while back. We didn't stay long because the yard still has dangerous areas and part of it you can't see, so I have to leave one of the girls alone while I chase the other or care for the littlest one. It's difficult to do while I'm home alone. Not to mention the grass grows so fast and with the rain the past few days the back yard is now again like a jungle. So we won't be playing outside for a while.

On another note, my folks will be in town on Monday and I'm so looking forward to having them here. I'm planning a small bbq on the 4th, nothing extravagant, just my folks, shea's folks and the four of us. I'll be making steak and chicken, but tonight I'm trying to cook the same exact steaks for our anniversary as a trial run. Hopefully it'll go well. I've never been real good at cooking steaks.

Well, that job I applied for in Web Design didn't pan out. I'm hoping that PHP side of it will still, we'll see. I don't know if I'll get another email or not, but I'll give it a few more days.

I'm thinking I need to get the Graphic Design part of the business upgraded. Either find someone who can do the graphic part or take classes in it. I'm seriously considering both, but its not an easy thing to consider lol. I love the coding part and the visual creativity, but I don't have that creativity down to an art form yet because of my lack of skill I think. Code I know cold. Standards I know.

So we wait and see.

I wonder if not zipping the one php file will be a problem. If it is I'll just reapply in 30 days lol with it zipped and a bit more work done on it. So we'll see.

Shortly after Samantha was born I added her online to Shea's insurance. That tells me I need paperwork and I need to take it to them. Okay no problem. Birth Certificate and Social Security Card come in and on exactly 30 days after she was born we took the paper work in to the office. They said a week. It's now a month and we are getting hospital bills, the doctor bills will soon be rolling in, she's been to the doctor three times. We've had to fill one perscription out of our pocket, thank god it was only twelve bucks.

This is seriously getting annoying. I called a while ago and they said oh we'll get on it, she's already on it. Well get every other damn system updated so I can pay the damn bills or at least get them added to our already existant loan for medical bills coming out of Shea's check. For the love of god it's been over a month. She'll be three months at the end of this month and she's still not covered!

We had a similar issue with Kathleen and then we had to deal with the insurance company to get them to actually pay their share.

Keep the Duck

Well a few weeks ago we splurged a bit on things we needed. The first big purchase was a new bed. Our old King size bed was caving in and very uncomfortable to sleep on. So now we own a Queen size Therapedic matress set. I must say we both LOVE it, and it has a 20 year warantee on it and 10 years of that is full replacement. It's amazing when you can lay down and wake up realizing you never even moved. Granted I have to wake up every 3 to 4 hours, but still to be able to get that relaxed is awesome!

We needed a third tv, yes I say third. We have our living room, our bedroom and one for the kids to watch TV and play their games on when we get the playroom ready. So we bought a 32 inch wide screen LCD HDTV and surround sound to go with it. The only downside to it is that the DVD player is hooked into the surround sound, so you have to watch the volumne late at night when people are sleeping.

Today I applied for a freelancing job as part of a company who pays freelancers to do their work. It supposedly pays $40/hour based on time of completion and quality of work. They require you to take a test and submit it with in 24 hours. It was a cake job. The hardest part was doing the PSD stuff for the design aspect of it. All in all everything took me about 3 hours to do while tending the girls. Samantha needed to be feed in the middle and Kathleen is just all over the place. I really hope I can get into this company it will be so nice to be able to get some work I enjoy doing. It's not that I can't do my own business stuff, but I don't have the time or the knowledge to market myself well so this is basically a good situation. And I can work part-time or full-time at home. Great! just what I needed. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

It seems that Kathleen has taken to pacifers now that Samantha is using them. Almost 2 and she picks up the pacifer.

Samantha is starting to smile and have other facial expressions. Shea got a smile yesterday he was so excited.

We had to hunt for pacifiers for Samantha, she was so picky about them. None of the ones we had from Kathleen's days she would take. I had to buy her a different type altogether. It's a soothie pacifier and she takes it well. I think the texture and shape are more to her liking. She'll actually suck on it now instead of spit it out immediately. I think it's cut back on the amount she wants to eat now too, but we'll see, I think she's just not too hungry today.

A sixteen month old toddler loves to play in the water right? Any chance you get she splashes and plays in the water, it doesn't matter if it's the dog's water bowl, the bathtub or even the toilet, she wants to play in it making a big mess.

We've come to the conclusion that we need to keep our bedroom door and the bathroom door shut so as to keep her out of the toilet not because it's unsanitary, but because she likes to flush it and drop things in it. Now from the title you wonder why I've called it Kathleen and the Cell Phone instead of the Toilet.

Kathleen was playing with my phone, no problem most of the time. I had a new battery now so it shouldn't die as often. So I let her have it, she can only call out on 911 if she by chance happens to do that, as the phone is locked down so only emergency numbers get out. I had to run out and pick up a perscription so I started looking for my phone. I looked for over an hour. Normally I would have found it sooner but because I had a doctors appointment earlier that day my phone was on silent. So that wasn't going to work. I then remembered Kathleen had my phone, and then shortly there after I found Kathleen hovering over a flushing toilet. I put two and two together and realized Kathleen had flushed it down the toilet. Shea didn't think so but I did. Later that evening we started having toilet troubles, and couldn't use it cause it wasn't flushing. Friday morning Shea ripped it up and sure enough there was my phone.

Needless to say I have a new phone now and it's off limits.

If you ask my parents and my husband you'd hear that I love my sleep. High school and college years I slept a good ten hours if I could if not more. When I started work I had to get at least 8 hours of sleep or I would not properly function. When Kathleen was born that all changed. Almost every four hours on the dot she'd wake for feeding. She'd go back to sleep but then I'd be wide awake many nights. It was a struggle to get back to sleep and when I finally do it's time to feed her again or make Daddy's lunch so he can get off to work and get a good parking spot.

Kathleen is older but she's still waking up in the middle of the nights, sometimes hungry other times I don't know what's wrong and only a trip to my bed lets us both sleep more. I was getting more sleep until Samantha was born. Now she's awake every 3 to 4 hours depending on how much she last ate and Kathleen seems to wake up almost at the exact same time. Now you'd think with two parents this would be easy to take care, nope. Samantha doesn't eat from Daddy unless she's starving and Kathleen won't go to sleep when he goes to help her drift back off. So needless to say I've learned to cope with no sleep.

I went from a person who needed eight good hours of sleep to only needing a good restful three hour rest period before I can fully function again. There has been many a night after I've woken up at 3am that I've gotten out of bed. Granted I'm drained by 8pm when Kathleen goes to bed that I generally follow her shortly there after but I've learned to deal so much with the sleep deprivation. I'm surprised at myself and so his my husband.

I've had to learn alot in the past 16 months. And I will continue to learn what makes a day a better place, even if that means changing my habits and changing the way I do things. Change is the hardest thing to accept, but it's something you have to learn to deal with, and so I learn to deal. I love my girls and I wouldn't change my sleep deprived nights for anything.

Enter the Real Mom Truths contest! The winner will receive this amazing 4G iPod Nano and Chocolate gift set, plus a link to their post on True Mom Confessions on Mother's Day!

This Wednesday at the Library in Town they have a story time meant for pre-schoolers. While Kathleen isn't pre-school aged I think I'm going to try to make this Wednesday's story time to see if we can eventually meant some kids her age to play with. She really wants to play with other kids, and well Samantha's not quite old enough yet. A few more months, but I don't want to make her wait.

Depending on how story time goes, I'm considering a Mommy Meetup Group in the area. But we need to see how well this goes for the kiddies this week. We'll see how well it goes.

Last Friday Shea and I went to get our eyes checked, we both got new perscriptions and new glasses in the process. I think mine are messed up as my left eye feels really strained and I get "blurred" vision out of the lens if I don't look out of the correctly. I've also been sick to my stomach shortly after putting them on, which is a sign of my strained vision affecting my so-called equilibrium. I'm not sure how much longer I'm going to wait to see if this all gets better, today Shea gets his new perscription and I think I might talk to them about it. I've never been this "disoriented" with a new set of glasses for this long. I got them two days ago.

Well Kathleen made yet another trip to the doctor's office today. Her cough has gotten much worse, and she now has a sore throat and has messy diapers. They've put her on a cough syrup that helps loosen the mucus and an antibotic. Hopefully this will all help her feel better and not be such a grump.

Samantha had a hard night last night. She is congested and both Shea and I are starting to beleive she's allergic to Diamond or dust or something thats in our bedroom. She sleeps well during the day in her play pen in the living room. There are two things different in there than in our bedroom. The first is there is no carpet, and the second is there is no ceiling fan circulating the air. Today and tomorrow I plan on going thru a massive cleaning spree of our bedroom. Today I managed to get Samantha/my side of the room 100% clean of hair and dust. Hopefully that will help. Tomorrow I will tackle the rest the room and hope that it will clear her up. Other wise we might be getting rid of Diamond *frowns*. I really don't want to but it's not really a choice. I can't have the baby suffering, and that's not a good life for either Diamond or Samantha. But I'm keeping my fingers crossed that a clean house will keep the little one allegery free. *heres to hoping*.

Kathleen has been so grumpy and so "bad" these past few days I have no clue what is wrong. The fever was doing bad things to her attitude, and she's still got a small fever, but not nearly as bad as it was Wednesday. The doctor said she was teething as well, and that's very possible that it's the reason why she has both a fever and is terribly grumpy. But I don't know what to do. I can pay 100% attention to her and she still throws a fit. I'm just thankful that she's been okay with Samantha when I've needed to take care of her. I don't know what is wrong though and I feel so bad that I can't comfort her. Even nap time is hard to get her to sleep. I tried three times today before she took a nap. She thankfully went to bed with out a problem. For that I'm thankful. Samantha's happily in her swing now, hopefully I can get her to bed with out issue soon.

Well the appointment went well yesterday but today Kathleen woke up with a 104 degree fever. I called Shea to have him come home, called the doctor's emergency number as it was 6am when I found out she'd a fever. They told me to keep her cool and give her a teaspoon of children's motrin, which I don't have. So Shea picked up pedalyte, sprite, food and the motrin at the grocery store on his way home. I then turned on the AC which we'd not been running because Samantha's running cool. But she seems to be doing well with the AC on today so that's good.

Kathleen's fever went down shortly after she ate. She's taken three naps today which is a testament to how well she's feeling, cause she hardly naps at all much less three times a day. We are going to wait this out. We'll see how well she's doing tomorrow and if any other symptoms arise. The doctor told us it should be a 24 hour virus, I hope so. And I hope little Sissy doesn't get it, whatever it is. Or us for that matter. Shea's taking tomorrow off too. For more than one reason, he's a test for Cheveron tomorrow evening. But if Kathleeen's still not feeling well I will need the help to manage both of them, as Kathleen really only wants Mommy when she's feeling bad and sometimes she just has to settle for Daddy cause Mommy is busy.

I hope tomorrow will be a better day.

Today both of the girls had a doctors appointment. Kathleen's 15 month well check and Samantha's 2 week well check. Both girls are doing well. Samantha is in the 25th percentile for her weight and height and Kathleen is around the 50th percentile.

Shea's dad helped me take the girls, which was a life saver I wasn't looking forward to chasing Kathleen and keeping Samantha happy at the same time. We were in and out relatively quickly this time. Our appointment was at 10am and we were out at around 11am. Not bad considering I've spent several hours there before.

Since Samantha came home Kathleen has taken on a lot of learning. Not just in caring for her sister but in her vocabulary as well. She can point to her nose and your nose. She's saying Sissy or what goes for it, it's mostly SSSS..SSSS. She says oh uh, hey, hi. She's saying What's this? and Duck or Truck. Not sure which it is since everything right now is duck.

She's learning so quickly. She lets us know when Samantha is crying. She trys to put the CDs in the CD tray in the CPU. She's pouring bottles into cups. She's climbing on to and off of just about everything. Only place she can't get up on really is our office chairs and our bed. She tries to climb into her high chair when it's time to eat. She knows what things are she'll actually get them for you most of the time. She knows what the beeping is when the microwave goes off. She may not be talking yet, but she's definately learning.

Ingredients

  • 18 ounces fresh fettuccine
  • 2 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups grated Parmesan
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 lb of cooked shrimp

Directions:

  1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Drain.
  2. Stir 2 cups of the cream and the lemon juice in a heavy large skillet to blend. Add the butter and cook over medium heat just until the butter melts, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. Add the pasta and shrimp and toss. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of cream, and Parmesan to the cream sauce in the skillet. Add the lemon zest, nutmeg, salt, and white pepper. Toss the pasta mixture over low heat until the sauce thickens slightly, about 1 minute.

Ingredients

  • 18 ounces fresh fettuccine
  • 2 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups grated Parmesan
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper

Directions:

  1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Drain.
  2. Stir 2 cups of the cream and the lemon juice in a heavy large skillet to blend. Add the butter and cook over medium heat just until the butter melts, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. Add the pasta and toss. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of cream, and Parmesan to the cream sauce in the skillet. Add the lemon zest, nutmeg, salt, and white pepper. Toss the pasta mixture over low heat until the sauce thickens slightly, about 1 minute.

Well today the unions voted in the new contract. It's not great, but with no insurance and no money coming in I think alot of people voted yes. As much as I know Shea isn't happy about the new contract we are both glad that he's going back to work on Tuesday. It'll get the girls coverage for their doctor's appointment next Tuesday (I hope), but if not it won't cost as bad as I had thought it would.

But this will allow us to buy a new bed, a new TV and surround sound with the money remaining to fix up the house. We are almost done with the house. It is truly amazing. Just in time for hurricane season. I will not do it again. We really need a new bed, we are going upscale on it this time. We are going to be shrinking down in size from King to Queen in order to get one of those posturepedic type beds. It'll be more expensive but we both agree that it's needed.

Yesterday was a good day for the most part, the night however was a little bad, not horrid, just bad. Kathleen didn't get to bed till midnight, Samantha woke up shortly there after and she needed feeding and took a while to eat enough before falling asleep. I got a few hours more sleep before Kathleen woke up and wouldn't go back to sleep, then Samantha woke up. Kathleen finally calmed down enough to rest for a few minutes so I thought she was sleeping. Shea decided it was better to keep Kathleen awake, which means I have to stay awake as well. So needless to say I'm struggling to stay awake. I think I'm gonna take a nap in about two minutes when I'm done typing this up, lol.

I think our loads of company played a big part in Kathleen's sleep pattern, she didn't get her normal nap time in and slept far longer than she should have when she did go down. That and she's becoming like her father an insomniac. But I was glad to see our company. Sin and Ara and their boys stopped by. It was good seeing them for a little while, it'll be nice to have real life friends who live with in visiting distance. As they were getting ready to leave, Shea's Aunts and cousin showed up with her granddaughter who is 6 months older than Kathleen. It was good seeing them, they got to see the house too which is nearing finishing but not quite yet done.

All in all we are going to have an interesting, all of us tired and grumpy. Not going to be fun, only one who isn't grumpy is Samantha lol.

While I was in the hospital I was dreading coming home to Kathleen and Samantha, Diamond and Shea and me, all living together happily in some semblance of normalacy. I was terrified I was going to have a break down. Yesterday went okay, we had a few rough spots.

Last night was hard. Not for any particular reason. I just had a concern with my own health and that kept me awake and worried on top of having to wake up for both Kathleen and Samantha. But I made it through the night okay, and I'm fine this morning after talking to my doctor's nurse.

But today went rather well considering. We had wanted to go out to Walmart and get a few more things we needed, but Samantha really shouldn't be out in public just yet so we decided not to go. I may have to go sooner than she can go out though, we are having bottle nipple problems. The two different kinds I have available for Samantha aren't working well. So I had to go back to the prepackaged ones that come with the ones we got from the hosiptal that are disposable. I don't have many of them left so I'll have to figure something out before then. She's having to work to hard and isn't getting enough to eat I don't think. We'll figure something out.

Kathleen has been real good with Samantha today. Yesterday she wanted Mommy while I was feeding her sister. Today she climbed into my lap and has tried to help feed Samantha and petted her and gave her kisses. It's really sweet if hard to handle, but I'm doing it on my own so that's a good sign, Kathleen is being gentle, so that's good. Diamond is still not sure of Samantha, she's still freaking out when the baby cries. But then Kathleen also lets me know the baby is crying too.

Shea's been gaming most of the day so it's almost like I'm home alone, but not. It helps get into a feeling of what it'll be like. I don't look forward to the day I have them all alone.

The strike is still going on and we have to figure out what to do insurance wise. This is not going to be good. I really wish Shea would take care of it, but instead he's relying on me, I don't know why. On Monday I hope to ask him to take care of it, since he won't do the easy thing and just COBRA it. I know it's expensive but I know the coverage and it works. We really need this strike to be over soon.

April Second will start the beginning of a new life for me and mine. Now that Samantha has joined us and Kathleen is more than able to start doing more things with us, we hope to begin a new diet regime and some exercise. Most of it will be light stuff to begin with and I don't intend this to be a starve myself diet or a fad diet. It's a change of life and I'm going to learn how to eat well and right and exercise. I don't eat badly, just a few things I shouldn't eat but do, and the most important thing I think is the exercise. I've got several different cardio things to try and a strength training set coming soon to help with that as well. I'm looking forward to most of the cardio. I have a Baby and Me fitness dvd and a dancing dvd for me and Kathleen. Shea and I hope to start walking every night with a double stroller at the local walk track near us.

We'll see how well it goes. I think it's going to be a push to get Shea going, but I'm gonna work out a 4 week meal plan for myself that fits the nutritional needs as well as losing weight needs for myself. We can work on Shea's while he's home but we'll have to figure something out in order to make this all work out when he goes back to work.