Friday, July 18, 2008

You ask, I answer. Or bullshit my way through if I don't know. Which happens a lot.

Yep, it's that time once again ... when I accept that I am a total loser who will never respond individually to the comments, so I throw my answers all together and try to claim it as an actual post. Shhhhh, maybe no one will notice.

Diva Dunn asks:
OK - my only question is - How do you manage to go through all of this, raise three children, run the house, update a Blog daily, AND manage to respond to questions? You completely amaze me! I get a cold and I farm my ONE child off on my mother, hire someone to clean the house and don’t check my email for a week!

Diva Dunn, did you read my previous post about finding maggots in my van? Obviously “housekeeping” is not high on my list. And my daughter was suspended from school earlier this year … it appears “managing my kids” isn’t something I’m particulary good at, either.


How's Blaine?
Is Kellen still in the closet (literally, not sexually!)?
Are you going to get another dog?
Diane in Cincinnati

Diane, that’s nice of you to ask about Blaine. He is ….. ok. Tweaking pain meds, still trying to find what will work best for him in a new house/town/environment with new humidity/allergy/wind challenges, but overall I think he is better the past week or two than he’s been since we got here.

Kellen, yes, is still in the closet (literally, not sexually) although we do have a remodel guy coming to “take a look” and “see what our options are” which loosely translates into “can we afford to put up a wall and put in a door and turn the storage shelves into someplace for him to hang his clothes and actually give the kid a bedroom as opposed to a closet?”

Also, yes, dog coming soon. It could be TOMORROW and it still wouldn’t be quick enough for our children, though.


Grandma J asks: How's your kitty? I'm curious about how a lifelong dog person adapts to having a cat. :))

Grandma J, must admit, I am not head over heels in love with the cat. We feed her (him? We don’t even know) and she (he?) rubs her (his?) little body against our legs when we are in the garage ---- we’re also fixing to put one of those little swinging kitty doors into the garage so the poor thing can get outside. She prefers to stay in the garage but I’m worried she’ll get trapped in there and have a heat stroke during the day. But, I’m just not feeling the love. I think it’s difficult to break a lifetime habit of dog-loving-ness. Although I am worried about how getting a new dog might affect the cat because even though I don’t love, love, love her with all my heart, I do feel a sense of responsibility towards her at this point. And, I stepped on her tail today and she squawked and I felt really, really, really, really terrible and guilty. So maybe she’s growing on me.


Stacey from MN: I'm the nosey type who wants to know the why's. Like if your marriage was already rocky, as I assume it must be if you get divorced during the 9 months of the surrogates pregnancy, why would you have gone forward with surrogacy at all? Was a spouse caught cheating or something worse? I realize you cannot answer that since it didn't happen to you, nor is it any of my business, I'm just that kind of nosey.

Stacey, you’re right, I can’t presume to know what happened in those situations because they happened to other people. I can tell you that statistically, many couples do not survive infertility. (Ironically, many couples also do not survive a serious health crisis, let alone two …. Hmmmm, makes me wonder if Blaine and I are truly in love, or just too lazy to go searching elsewhere.) Just like many couples “have a baby to fix things”, I’m sure there are couples that resort to surrogacy for the same wrong reason.


Liz in Sumner asks: Kristie - thanks for your answers, I appreciate it! But, maybe you've already covered this and I missed it - are ALL surrogacies accomplished with the surrogate's eggs never being used? Because waaaaay back in the dark years, there was the "Baby M" thing, and I think it was a surrogacy situation but that the surrogate's own egg was used.....but, can't remember for sure now

Liz, the majority of surrogacies are accomplished via a “gestational surrogate” situation, meaning the surrogate carries the baby and the IM’s egg is used, or an egg donor is used. “Traditional” surrogacy happens when a surrogate uses her own egg and then places the child for adoption with the family she is carrying for. It is not as common as gestational surrogacy, and yes, the “Baby M” case is what comes to mind, which is unfortunate, considering there have been thousands of SUCCESSFUL traditional surrogacies, resulting in thousands of happy new families, but why on earth should GOOD news ever get any exposure??? (she said sarcastically)


Anonymous asks: Will we ever hear about the suspension?

Um, no. It is now officially known in our household as “the subject that we don’t discuss.” Although if this helps shed a little light on it, the suspension was fair, and just, and she deserved it …. But after learning the facts, she was not punished any farther in our house, so that should tell you a little something about it. Here’s another funny note, though ….. despite not starting at this school until November, and despite being suspended for that one day, she somehow got a perfect attendance record at the end of the school year – how funny is that?


Jojo asks: What DID you have for dinner last night?

Oh my gosh, we went to a friend’s house and they grilled teriyaki chicken and the best potatoes I’ve ever had in my life, and fruit salad, and then ice cream sundaes for dessert. It was pretty much fabulous.


Pam in Princeton asks: We had a Sonic open here in town in the last 3 months. We stopped by there yesterday for drinks and a kid’s corndog meal, and my husband asked me if he was supposed to tip the girl who brought our order to the car. I didn't think so, but maybe I'm wrong.... Do you tip at Sonic?

Pam, you know, for a long time I didn’t know this either. But yes, I do tip the carhops. As long as it’s less than fifty cents or so, I’ll just round up and let her keep the change. Although 90 percent of the time it’s just me in the car and I go through the drive-through, which means I don’t tip. Occasionally if it’s the entire family, and we’re ordering food and drinks, and then normally the carhop has to make an additional trip to our car for an extra spoon or more ketchup or whatever, I will hand over a full dollar.


Leeann says: So I agree with all your commenters. Where did you get your suits? Send a link to which ones you chose!

Leeann, I went to Woman Within, which is a chubby girls online shop.


Jeri asks: What ever happened to Soccer camp? Did you let the kids bail out after they found out it was actually work?

Jeri, heavens no! We paid a hundred dollars apiece for them to enjoy the privilege of running and sweating and dying in the summer heat and there was no way they were bailing. Although once they discovered there was a concession stand where they could buy PowerAde and Air-Heads on their break, they were happy to go and not complaining as much.


Connie asks: Okay just curious and hope its okay to ask for feedback on your site? How do you activate the GPS on a phone and how do you make the phone keep a record of all incoming and outgoing texts even if they erase? For us, cell phones have been a mixed blessing. Our kids (20,18 and 16) text incessantly, but we can also get ahold of them at any time and visa versa.

Kristie-Brian and I (especially me) really enjoy your site. We really laughed at your post about Sonic and Steve. I have been "lurking" since you all's 20 year reunion. Thanks for the laughs and info.

Connie, OH MY GOSH! It is fabulous to hear from you, although I am stunned that you and Brian have a twenty-year old --- how is that even possible? I remember when you guys had just started to date back in high school …. And now you have a twenty-year old????

Anyway, I asked Louis about the GPS feature since he is the one who told me about it. He said he has since learned it is not as anonymous as he thought. Apparently once it is turned on (at the store, I think?) then he can go online with a password and their provider has a site that will give him the exact location of the phone. (Notice it doesn’t give him an exact location of HIS DAUGHTER, but just of her phone …. Although he says since it’s attached to her arm, that’s no problem.) But, apparently the site sends her an automatic text to let her know someone has checked the location, because now she sends HIM a text afterwards to ask if he’s checking up on her. Ahhh, life with teenagers.

Hey, at lunch with Louis and Steve earlier this week we were talking about the next reunion coming up ….. hopefully I’ll see you and Brian next year! Take care in the meantime (and Kelly says to tell you HI!!)


Grandma J asks: And, I have to ask...but you don't have to answer, I didn't know M lived in the same town, do you guys see each other?

Grandma J, yes, we see each other fairly often, although in between life and work and kids, not as much as I would like. Sometimes they come here for dinner, sometimes we go out, occasionally just she and I will go out for dinner and a movie. Although I will never, never, NEVER forget what she did for us, I don’t think of her as “Brayden’s birthmom” anymore …. Now, I just consider her a friend that I’m lucky to have. Speaking of which, M, if you're reading this, when are we going to the movies again??? And tell D that the birthday gift is on its way. :)


Do you mix cream with your Amaretto or do you drink it straight up on the rocks? Glad you had some time away with your girlfriends this weekend, so good for the soul!
RM in MA

RM in MA, I hereby gift you with the best amaretto recipe ever. E.V.E.R. In the history of the world. Drink one; thank me later.

Amaretto Slushies

7 C water
1 C sugar
1 (12 oz) frozen lemonade
1 (12 oz) frozen OJ(no, I have no idea why you would go into a diabetic coma)
2 C (or more, you know, if you’re an alkie like me) Amaretto

Heat water, stir in sugar until sugar is dissolved. Add all other ingredients. Freeze in plastic container overnight. Then scoop slushie mixture into glass, and top off with Sprite or 7-Up. (Or again, more straight amaretto, hello Alcoholics Anonymous, my name is Kristie)


Debbie says:

I almost posted about competitive soccer last time, but everyone seemed so excited, I didn’t want to sound negative, but here goes:

Many times, these teams get hold of the newbies without explaining what this entails. It is a huge time and money commitment. You are lucky that Kellen scored a goal in the first game. Hopefully, they will play him. I have friends that flew their family from Florida to California just to watch their son ride the bench the entire tournament. There is no minimum playing requirement, so these kids only play when they don’t have enough players or when their team is way ahead. I’ve even heard it mentioned that they will be used as “tackle dummies” for the stronger kids during practice. I have spent many years on the soccer board and have personally witnessed trainers talking kids who have never even played the game into signing on to club instead of rec. You can imagine what their experience was like.

Debbie, trust me, all the possibilities you’ve mentioned have crossed my mind. We had our first practice tonight, and despite the fact we forgot to bring a soccer ball -- to soccer PRACTICE -- thereby making a stellar first impression, I’m still fairly hopeful about things. It is an 8v8 league, and there are only eleven boys on the team, so the coach already said they will all get tons of playing time. In fact, his concern is more that they be in better shape than they are now, because each of them will play for most of the game. For Kellen’s first practice tonight, the boys had to run a mile and a half (did I mention it was 93 degrees outside?) Any boy who finished in more than fifteen minutes had to stay after practice to run some more, and talk to the coach. Luckily, Kellen finished in twelve …. But as I handed him his water bottle as he completed the run, he looked me right in the eye and asked, “Are we going to have to do that every night??? Because I can’t.” I thought, “Uh-oh, that’s not good.” But by the end of practice he was laughing and feeling more comfortable and said afterwards that it was fun. I also sat with four other parents tonight and while they all definitely know more about the league than I do, and more about soccer, and quite possibly more about life in general, they weren’t obnoxious or overbearing … so like I said, I’m hopeful to avoid the situations you mentioned. And if not, you know, we’ll just cut bait and consider it a lesson learned the hard way.


Trish in VA asked:

um, what happened to the "fun laid back group of parents" that you mentioned earlier? no snacks? geez! and whoever would have thought that soccer could involve so many fees?!?!

Trish, yeah, see my reply above to Debbie. No snacks, but they did seem pretty laid back tonight. And hey, the *parents* were eating snacks, so I should fit in just fine!


Briana says: BTW, if you've still got that survey you sent out for your reunion, I'd love to have a copy. Our reunion is coming up in August and I think it would be fun to see people's answers.

Briana, I’ll post that next!


Cindi says: It sounds like you had a great time! Next time you talk to him, ask him when Sonic is going to venture into east central Ohio...I've never been to a Sonic before. Were those gift cards in the picture? And did you actually go to Sonic for lunch or somewhere else?

Cindi, no clue about the east central Ohio part, but yep, those were gift cards. I used most of them today buying lunch for my kids and my nephews …. NOT exactly what I had in mind. Ha! And yes, I went to Sonic for lunch, but not a regular Sonic … I met him at the Sonic headquarters in downtown OKC and ate in the employee cafĂ© they have in their building. It was quite fun, actually, and I felt very “inner sanctum” as Steve met me at the reception area and cleared me with security for entry. He also introduced me to someone older than him, who I thought might be his boss, and I blurted out that I was the biggest Sonic fan in the world. Then realized I sounded like a total knob so decided to shut up.


Rebekah from Prior Lake, MN, asks:
we are Sonic Virgins so I am asking for advice ... what is the best item(s) to get from Sonic for the very first ...

Rebekah, some of my favorite food items are the breakfast burrito with bacon, the chicken strips and country gravy, the tator tots, and my ultimate favorite, the onion rings. My kids love the hot dogs, corn dogs, and you just can’t go wrong with their drinks. We also all love the Blast dessert (ice cream mixed with candy.) Yum, I’m getting hungry just thinking about it!


Cindy in Virginia asks: Did he invite you over to meet the family?

Cindy, I went to school with his wife, also. She was several grades below me and was actually good friends “back in the day” with my younger sister. I’m sure many years ago I probably gave her and my sister rides to the mall, and valuable tips on how to navigate high school, and now, twenty five years later, I’m stalking her husband for Sonic gift cards.


Patty House said...

The women on that website are NOT plus sized. Why can't they put real women on there so we can see how the suits *really* look? I do see one I like though. I might have to order it!


Trish in VA said...

I agree with Patty- that always drives me crazy with clothes sites! But thanks for the link- I've already been checking out the shoes!

I laughed when you called the suspension "the subject that we don’t discuss" because we have one of those in our family too- involving my sister and being sent home from church camp (not as hard to do as it may sound).

Glad to hear Blaine is doing a little better!

Oh- and we are getting a Sonic!!! (well, 45minutes away, but that is closer than before, so I'll take it!)

Anonymous said...

Kristie, we can go to the movies anytime. As a matter of fact there are several out right now that I want to go see. The Dark Knight (batman), Get Smart (which Brandon said was hilarious) and Mamma Mia! (yes I admit it, I like musicals!)

And you know, I still have not been to the Cheesecake Factory, so maybe we could go there afterwards and gorge ourselves on cheesecakes!
My favorite desert. Cheesecake makes me happy :)

And if you still need practice by November 8th for photography, you really can practice at Tierney's wedding. The only thing is that it is going to be at a winery in Luther. (yeah I know, tell me about it!) I'm hoping to have a much nicer/bigger camera by then. How much are those classes anyways?

Gotta run, since I am suspossed to be working!


p.s. I have pics for you from Lauren's wedding.

lizinsumner said...

Kristie - great post, great answers! So glad to hear Blaine is doing well - I worry about him (his health, I mean!). One more question: I'm a clueless, pacific northwesterner(sorry, but not my fault - I was born here), and someday when my son is out of school, I'd like to leave the state and live elsewhere. All we ever hear about the midwest up here is TORNADOS!!! Do you guys down there all have storm cellars or basements or something for when those storms hit? Because they SURE look scarey! And, how are the bugs? We're (relatively!!) bug-less up other words, nobody uses Orkin on a regular basis.....

Cindi said...

Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions! I'm glad to hear that Blaine is doing...ok. Hopefully he will be feeling even better in the coming weeks or months.

I do have one more question you ever read other blogs? Leave comments?

I don't know how you'd have time, unless your request for 36 hour days was approved. And if it was, let me know what to do to get it approved. They keep turning mine down.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the answers, Kristie! Can't wait to see pics of the new doggie!!! Dogs rule!

Diane in Cincinnati

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to try the drink recipe. It is in the 90's here, and will be all weekend, so it appears to be the perfect drink on such a hot weekend (I am all about excuses to concoct a new alcoholic beverage!)
RM in MA
P.S. Thanks for the tip about adding more amaretto, not sure I would have thought about that myself.....right. Hello, my name is.......

Anonymous said...

Thanks for answering all the questions and leaving the website. Now how's the quality of those clothes as some of them are kind of cute? I think you're great.

Anonymous said...

My son was suspended in high school for slugging a teammate of his. He totally deserved it. Fighting/hitting is not tolerated at all and I agree.

by the way, he hit his friend/teammate because his friend/teammate called his sister a "fat ******" Use your imagination. Needless to say, my son served his punishment, but deep down, not to be broadcasted, we were quite proud of him

Rayven, 2x Gestational Surrogate said...

I think the Q&A session definitely counts as a blog post! Heck, it counts as a mega post since it's so long and must have been so time consuming to write.

Thanks for a good read.