Monday, April 30, 2007

today was a good day, and my guts are doing better. today was the first time i was able to bend and clean up toys over and over and over and over. just like always.

almost 90 degrees out though. sheesh. i was a big complainer a few weeks ago, "it's been cold for too long, i can't wait to get outside with the kids and for things to warm up already!" well, i don't want to sound ungrateful but man, 90 degrees, it was a little toasty for me today. 68 would be great.


here's what i was doing yesterday. a photo shoot for litte 'N'. he seriously belongs on a magazine cover. i went to high school with his mom and it was so fun getting together after many years and catching up. even though it was just for the baby i made them stand still for a second to get the cute little family. so fun. and they have a great barn that i will definitely be photographing more people in front of!


Saturday, April 28, 2007

best laid plans

ebertfest is going on right now, it started wednesday evening and ends tomorrow. and darn this surgery in the middle of things meant that i missed out this year. last year i got to see john malkovich and in years past i've listened to bill paxton, billy crudup, and keir dulea talk about their movies in our humble little town.

this year my buddy donita and i were hoping to go see Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Thursday night and see alan rickman who was coming to talk about the movie. i love alan rickman. i have a little crush on him and so wanted to call our friend who organizes the event and ask her if i could volunteer to pick him up at the airport or transport him in my minivan from one place to another. well, this was my master plan before having surgery and barely able to walk upright for the next two days. weeks ago i tried to get tickets the day they went on sale but within hours the advance tickets sold out and my only hope was to stand in line for hours before the movie started Wednesday night to get stand-by seats. my mother even volunteered to stand in line for me but in the end i just didn't think i was up for it. drat.

but i did get tickets for aaron and i too see come early morning and listen to joey lauren adams talk about her film. aaron really liked the movie chasing amy which she starred in and i thought it would be nice for the two of us to go and i got tickets for it a few weeks ago. however, today when i got back from an outing i found aaron with the kids and very concerned about kieran who was coughing and wheezing and breathing in small shallow breaths. we didn't know what to do--we already had the tickets and the movie was going to start in an hour and no matter how little he did he was obviously having a hard time breathing. aaron insisted i should go but i had really wanted him to be able to go, which was why i got the tickets. i wondered if someone else would want them. maybe we could sell them. finally we decided we needed to get kieran to convenient care and we'd forget the movie.

just before leaving the house i grabbed the tickets and as i looked at them i realized that the movie was actually yesterday. so that solved that problem i guess. darn it all.

so kieran's okay, we've suspected he might have asthma but it was masked with croup when he was younger. they quickly got him a nebulizer treatment (and he resisted quite strongly) which improved his pulse oxygen so that was good. we are supposed to do regular nebulizer treatments and steroid medication but we weren't able to get a machine by the time we got there. the doctor very seriously told us that should it happen again they couldn't do steroid shots at convenient care and we'd need to go directly to the e.r. so we're hoping it doesn't come to that. aaron and i aren't panicky parents about illness, our kids are fairly healthy and hardly require more than their usual check-ups so today was definitely a reminder for us to be thankful of how healthy we are overall but it's good to pay attention to know when something's wrong.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

name that movie

Therapist: Are you married?
Patient: I'm divorced.
Therapist: Would you like to talk about that?
Patient: There are two types of people in this world: Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don't. My ex-wife loves him.

Therapist: You understand right? There's no other solution. You won't go away.
Patient: Yes I will.
Therapist: No you won't. You're just saying you will, so that when I don't kill you, you'll show up again and make everyone else in my life think you are wonderful and I'm a shmuck. But I'm not a shmuck, and I'm not going to let you breeze into town and steal my family away just because you're crazy enough to be fun.


i love this movie, and it's on right now.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

getting back on track

well, everything went well yesterday. i was pretty tired all day yesterday and still feeling a bit slow and tender, but i'm hoping that i'll eventually feel better than i have in a long time.

the doctor didn't find endometriosis but said it can still be present but microscopic. instead he found several uterine polyps inside my uterus (duh, they're uterine). one of which was bleeding and he also found brown blood inside my uterus. it probably explains why both recently and on the occasion of surgery he said my uterus felt enlarged. and they seem to be effected by hormones-mine being so out of whack make this condition that much more believable. he removed all of this in a basic D&C, like when one has a miscarriage.

he also removed a cyst we've been monitoring that may have been effecting and pushing on other organs, and then he found another cyst that attached to the end of one of my fallopian tubes and in removing it he had to remove a section of the tube and it won't be functional anymore. i will need to go on shots to end my periods for years to come. makes me a little apprehensive as two side effects are 1) moodiness and 2) weight gain. lovely. i tried this shot once years ago and it did NOT agree with me. i was a complete witch. so watch out people! but i will probably take a mood enhancer simultaneously to help with it, so any of you anti depressant people lurking, tell me what you recommend!

so there it is, in a bit more than a nutshell! probably waaaaaay more than you ever wanted to know about my insides, right? i'm really happy though, this answers questions i've had for a really long time and i like knowing how my body functions, how it's effected my hormone flux, etc. fascinating.

anyhoo, i'm in bed, resting. i don't know why i thought i'd be able to do more today, i feel even more tender and slow than i did after the procedure! it's strange to not be running around after the kids, or hear aaron playing with them downstairs while i just rest, but ultimately i'm excited to recover and feel better in the long run. thanks to everyone who's checked on me, offered to watch the kids (especially my pregnant friend Erika who packed my kids up yesterday and had them all afternoon! can't wait to watch her cute new baby someday though in exchange!)

so after this i shouldn't have to say the word "uterus" this many times again.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


i was hoping to post over the weekend or prior to today, but did i mention how gorgeous it's been for the past three days? haven't been near the computer, just playing outside.

anyway, today marks the 10th week of my period. yep, 10 loooooooong weeks. and i'm on a pill that's supposed to stop my period. seems a bit crazy, right? so, today is the day i have exploratory surgery to find out what's going on and if something's there that shouldn't be, they'll remove it. my hope is that it's easy, they find something, get rid of it, end of story. i will be more disappointed if they come back with nothing and no reason for this.

so keep your fingers crossed that all is well and i'll see ya on the flip side!

joanna :)


well, at body pump class nancy and i decided that it was a great day to go to allerton park, about 25 minutes away. it's very open and lots of lovely gardens to walk through--i made this decision before the class killed my quads and made walking a conscious plan to put one foot in front of the other.

but we went, and i walked and my legs felt okay, and we had a great time. oliver, avi, kieran, and andie just loved it, running all over (or riding on shoulders as the case may be). it was lovely weather and the grounds were beautiful.


body pump

last week my friend nancy mentioned that she was going to be attending "body pump" class at the gym. it just so happens that aaron and i just joined the same gym and i had yet to make an appearance. she tells me i should go, i do the whole, "oh yeah, maybe" thing and then try not to think about it. saturday night we were out (the weather was gorgeous the whole weekend, i think we were outside the entire two days), we get home in the evening and i find a confident message from nancy saying that she will see me in the morning for this body pump class. ugh. i haven't done anything since i just kind of stopped my running regimen last winter and had said i'd need to get in shape before attending a class called body pump. nancy and others who had experienced it insisted that it was pumping weights on a bar and only as hard as you make it depending on the weight you put on. after playing the message aaron says he thinks i should go. he's been listening to me whine about needing to get in shape and hesitantly supports me by telling me to go while trying not to act like he thinks i need to go.

so i surprise myself by showing up, nancy's mouth hangs open when i walk in the door as i'm sure she didn't really think i was going to come. nancy's been doing this class three times a week for five months, she is in awesome shape. i make it entirely clear to everyone in the room that i'm brand new and a total weenie so if i fall over or don't know what i'm doing it's to be expected. i somehow make it through the class but pretty early on as i do squats a kind women behind me tells me my back isn't straight enough and i'm leaning over as i squat and stressing my legs. no wonder i have a severe burning in the front of my thighs. and by fatiguing these muscles, lunges later make me wonder if i will in fact fall over. i feel my legs shake and at times i think there is a beat other than that from the music pulsating through the floor and into my legs because they are shaking. geez. but i survive. the biceps, the triceps, the abs, the gluts, the quads, muscles i didn't know i had, we worked 'em all and i was SO incredibly sore i didn't know if i could walk to the water fountain. i looked like a clown walking up and down the stairs and clinging to the railing in case my legs couldn't support my weight.

so that was body pump. i'd like to go back sometime, if my muscles ever stop burning.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Pearl the Landlord

so hilarious.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

the winner.... Tina!

i'll get started on your doll, yay!

a little late posting, a meeting i had ran late. anyway, i'm excited to make another one of these, and who knows, if i plod along i might still get to make one for each of the other posters as well! thanks for posting a comment and you all should try making one of these, it's so fun!

parked it today

went to the park today, it was lovely out. here are the picture.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

monster fans

okay, sorry i've been MIA. anyway, i'll make a special, one-of-a-kind monster doll for one lucky commenter (below). i'll randomly select of one of you wednesday evening at 8pm and i'll post to let you know who gets it!

pictures from easter

pictures from a week and a half ago, oops. we had a really nice (but cold) easter sunday. we spent the morning with grandma barb, grandpa bob, and aunt julie and we had a visit from aunt judie and cousins wyatt and ryan. we're excited that ryan will be attending college and playing hockey in Lake Forrest and we might get to see him more often. my three boy cousins are big hockey players, if you look closely you might actually be able to see the scar on ryan's neck where someone skated over his neck. fun. anyway, in the evening we had grandpa ed and grandma kris over, along with aunt liz and her boyfriend sam. the kids enjoyed coloring in their new coloring books and we all had a really nice easter evening.

our fam

aunt judie, cousins ryan & wyatt
kieran playing his favorite game, aunt julie playing catcher
andie blowing bubbles

don't take my picture
wyatt, aaron, grandpa bob & andie

andie coloring with sam
liz, sam, & aaron

kieran coloring with grandpa ed
our guy
our girl

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

on a dreary day...

...make an ugly doll!

i keep up with some of the "celebrity scrapbookers" because i'm a total dork like that, and i just love elsie flannigan. one of her blogs had an ugly doll contest, and while i tuned in too late to participate, i decided to try making one today. too fun! i think i'm addicted. i made one for andie (and she promptly ripped some thread) and now kieran's dying for his. i can't wait to make more! if you have a birthday or a new baby you may just be getting one of these puppies!

***i'd love to give one away. if you're interested in an ugly doll post a comment and i'll randomly choose one and send it to you :)

shameless product promotion

love love love these chips/crackers! a family friend brought them to my parents' holiday party and they rock! healthy and tasty. we had the sesame seaweed kind (i know, anything edible with seaweed in the title doesn't scream "tasty", but they are). now i want to try all the rest of them. dying to serve them with salsa or guacamole or humus or something. my mom brought over half a bag recently and i just remembered she left me with the leftovers. ate 'em up and had to restrain myself from lifting the bag to my lips and licking the crumbs out!

Monday, April 09, 2007

recent photographs

here are some shots from recent photo sessions. things are starting to move along with photography and my friend and old college roommate camille is working on a logo and watermark for me. we've been cooking up all sorts of fun design stuff, woo hoo! camille and i lived together in the dorms freshman year, both aspiring to be graphic designers-only i knew from the first day i wasn't competitive enough or even accomplished enough to sketch with charcoal. but it was a blast and we did get to draw nude models (ask me about the time it turned out to be a guy i worked with--never looked at him in the same way again....), and camille and i did get to toss out lines like "well, back to the drawing board!" at 1am and crack ourselves up because it was true. or the time camille fell out of the lower bunk. twice. it was pretty evident that even though we had planned to switch at the semester it was safest for me to keep the top bunk. ahhh, memories. anyway, here are those pictures.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

yay! i didn't even know about this show but now i'm so excited! looks like you can even preview the first two episodes on the website. for a book group a bunch of us read Phillipa Gregory's book "The Other Boleyn Girl" and then most of us became addicted and began reading more in the series of time period. i never thought i'd enjoy historical fiction but these books were so filled with drama and unbelievable events that you can't help but want to read every minute of the day. and the most fascinating thing was how little of what was written was fiction, most of the drama and insanity was accurate.

if this show is anything like what we've read, it's going to be awesome. to bad we don't get showtime. darn it.

**Edited to add: Yay, we have found the Showtime hookup! The future looks bright!

The Tudors

pretty parking lot trees

i love a bright blue sky with some puffy white clouds, but every ones in a while the combination of blue and the perfect cotton ball clouds come together and you can't help but stare at it all day. last weekend this was the case and maybe it was the reason i kept my camera with me and found myself photographing trees in bloom in the Target parking lot!

love 'em!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

last weekend

last weekend we had aaron's aunt sue and uncle niel come visit us. we hadn't met them before, there's a long story to it that i won't get into in an online forum, but in a nutshell aaron's mother and (birth) father separated when he was two and aaron's had no contact with him for the past 30 years. aaron's mom did an absolutely awesome job raising him alone (something that i can't even imagine as a mother) and married aaron's stepfather before aaron and i started dating. we love them to death and weren't thinking our family dynamic would really change much, but then recently aaron tracked down his uncle niel, his dad's younger brother, which led to this recent reunion. sue is aaron's dad's sister and after much e-mailing and phone calls, aaron's "new" family came down for a day trip.

we had a really great day and the kids warmed right up to niel and sue-the jam packed Easter baskets sue brought for the kids didn't hurt either!

it was fascinating to hear about their children and families and to look through pictures of family that aaron was seeing for the first time since he was andie's age. we had already felt so fortunate to have our own wonderful families but meeting niel and sue reminded us that it's never a bad thing to have more wonderful family around you and more people to love and care about you and your children. we hope to head north and visit them the next time and meet cousins aaron never knew he had only months ago.

Monday, April 02, 2007

saturday in the park

spur of the moment we passed by the park and decided to play. the kids had lots of fun and it was great to watch them climb and run and swing and scamper. loved it.

Health Care Management MBA
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