That Time I Forgot My Vacation

Posted on Apr 3, 2013 in Travel Traumas, Uncategorized

That Time I Forgot My Vacation 4

I realize I’ve been a bit MIA recently.  Damon was gone on detachment in Australia for three weeks, the better part of which either Elisabeth and I were battling illness at home in Japan.  We’ve been busy with other things as well: I hosted Damon’s squadron for Easter brunch, which brought out first-birthday party levels of Diana Craziness.  And we’re going on vacation to Beijing tomorrow.  Which I sort of forgot about.

Okay, I didn’t actually forget about it.  I just kind of pushed it to the back of my mind.  Party planning will do that to me.  Easter brunch > Beijing vacation.  That’s not really true.  Only sometimes in my head it is.  I know, I’m twisted.  To be fair, we did have a very helpful travel agent organize pretty much our entire trip.  All I had to do was approve our itinerary and fill out unholy amounts of paperwork to secure our visas.  Let me tell you, securing visas to China is no easy feat.  Especially when you have a toddler who does not want to have her visa photos taken.  See below.

Maybe she doesn't want to go to China?

Maybe she doesn’t want to go to China?

So last night I had a moment of, “Oh, crap!  We’re leaving for China in two days and I don’t even have a guidebook!”  Who goes to a foreign country for the first time without even a guidebook?  I could say I’m just really adventurous and like to fly by the seat of my pants, take the road less traveled, see where life takes me.  But that’s not true.  I like a plan.  And I like guidebooks.

So today’s quest became about finding a guidebook.  But first I had a spouse club meeting.  Then I had a luncheon planning committee meeting.  Then I had to go pay some road tax.  I have no idea what exactly a road tax is, all I know is that paying for it is a somewhat tedious process.  First I had to wait in a long line to present all sorts of documentation that proves… I dunno.  That we have insurance?  That our car is fit to be on the road?  Whatever, I passed.  Then I had to wait in a second long line to actually pay the tax.  I got to my turn, only to realize I’d forgotten my wallet in the car.  Fantastic.  Once I retrieved my wallet and paid the road tax, I had to wait in a third long line to receive a decal proving I’d paid.  Or something like that.  This time I got to my turn, only to discover that my Power of Attorney had expired.  I won’t get into how this is wrong on so many levels, but for some reason I need my husband’s Power of Attorney to get a little decal and stick it on our car.  So, yeah.  An hour of fun in lines, and no decal for me.

But at least now I could go buy my guidebook.  And do all sorts of other pre-trip errands that I left for the day before the trip (because I forgot about the trip).  I was successful in procuring a guidebook.  Thank goodness.  But the other errands, not so much.  Because right after I purchased the guidebook, I got a call from Elisabeth’s daycare informing me that she had a fever of 102.

Well, *expletive*.

Babies and fevers and air travel don’t mix.  Babies and fevers and air travel to China especially don’t mix; once you land in China, they (whoever “they” are) use some scanner thingy to take your temperature.  If you are caught trying to enter their country with a fever, they… I actually have no idea what they to do the infected air travelers.  Nor do I want to find out.

After rushing to pick up my ailing daughter, I immediately called our medical clinic and got an appointment to secure her some antibiotics.  I don’t think Elisabeth ever fully recovered from her ear infection a couple of weeks ago.  Probably because I accidentally spilled half of the bottle of amoxicillin down the drain.*  (I did try to get her prescription refilled, but the doc on call said it wasn’t necessary.)  So this time I wasn’t messing around.  Ear infection or no, I wasn’t leaving for China without meds for my baby.

Luckily the doctor that saw us was the same doctor that treated Elisabeth last time, and determined that more antibiotics were in order.  Potential medical crisis, averted.  (I have spent time in German and Thai hospitals; I have no desire to spend time in a Chinese hospital).

But my day was shot.  Sick kid > errands.  Piles of laundry awaited to be folded.  Suitcases remained unopened.

And then I shattered a glass, just because it was one of those days.

And then when I was cleaning up the shattered glass, I looked up at Elisabeth (who I had strapped in her high chair lest she slice herself on shards of glass – see, I AM a good mom!) and she was eating a napkin.  Now I’m pretty sure my kid is going to be the weird one who eats glue in class.  *Sigh*

I think this (very unplanned) vacation is coming at a good time.

Don’t worry, I’ll be back soon enough.  I have lots to update you all on, like why you shouldn’t offer to host a brunch for 40-50 people just because you have cute decor you want to display.  And why my husband is awesome.  (Hint: it relates to highchairs.)  But now, I must go pack.


*May I suggest not trying to balance a crying baby in one arm and a bottle of antibiotics in the other at 11:30PM after indulging in a few adult beverages.

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The Good Stuff

Posted on Mar 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

I stopped nursing Elisabeth last week.  And it couldn’t have happened at a better time.  Because shortly thereafter, I came down with (Elisabeth passed along to me) a nasty cold.  And for the first time since I was pregnant – the first time in TWO YEARS – I was able to take real meds.  When you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, your medicinal options are pretty much restricted to Tylenol.  And most of the time, Tylenol just doesn’t hack it.  Oh, there’s also Benedryl.  However if you like to be conscious during the day, Benedryl is not always a good choice.  Now, though – now my options for Over The Counter meds were endless! Giddy with excitement, I hit up the drug store.  I peered up through watery eyes at the rows and rows of pills, sprays, and syrups.  I carefully inspected the labels between sneezing fits.  With so many possibilities, how would I choose?  Multi-symptom cold medicine?  Cold & Flu gel caps?  Drowsy or non-drowsy cough syrup?  I noticed a bright orange label affixed on many of the boxes: “DMX”.  What was this DMX?  I saw you could only buy two of these products at a time and that ID was required for purchase.  I still had no idea what it was, but clearly it was the good stuff.  I grabbed the Robitussin with the mysterious “DMX” label and a package of Dayquil and Nyquil capsuls for good measure. Back at home I eagerly ripped open an individual Nyquil dosage.  Dang they make those little packets hard to open!  Had those tiny, perforated lines always been so hard to tear, or had my hands grown weak after two years of medicinal abstention?  I eventually pried open the package and swallowed the pills.  That night was glorious.  Instead of waking five, six times with a hacking cough, I only awoke two.  The wonders of modern medicine! Early in that morning – 4AM or so – I needed another dose.  But it was too late to take another Nyquil.  Damon was gone* and I had a child who would be awake in...

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(Re)Name My Blog

Posted on Mar 17, 2013 in Uncategorized

Hey Folks, This blog is about to undergo a major redesign.  To go along with the new look, I’m going to need a new name.  But here’s the thing: I’m no good with titles.  That’s why half of you readers probably don’t get Non Om Mom now.  I need your help. I’ve appealed to you before.  Perhaps you remember when I asked you to Name My Baby and Name the Grandparents.  I sure do!  You guys were awesome, offering up loads of wonderful suggestions.  So I’m appealing to you again.  (Re)Name my blog. You’re probably all, “Dude.  Diana.  Start naming your own s*** already!”  I get it.  I get your frustration.*  I do.  But really, this is not my thing.  I can’t condense all my brilliance into a witty, memorable, AND succinct title.  It’s too daunting a task.   So I repeat – I. Need. Your. Help. We’re going to make this fun.  We’re going to make this a contest.  This is how it’s going to go:  All you readers submit your suggestions for a new blog title.  If I choose your title**, you will receive an Amazon gift card.  BAM!  Who doesn’t love Amazon!?  Nobody! Okay, well, don’t get too excited yet.  It’s only going to be a $20 Amazon gift card.  I’m not made of money, people!  But do you know how much crap amazingly awesome stuff you can get for $2o on Amazon!?  So much amazingly awesome stuff!  Go on, get excited again!   A really easy contest to win $20 on Amazon!  Woohoo! Now that you’re appropriately psyched, put your thinking caps on.  Just this time, I’m going to request that you don’t leave your submission as a comment.  Please go to my Contact page and email me your suggestion.  Multiple entries are welcome!  And if your friends or family are smarter and funnier than you***, please feel free to pass this contest along so they can enter, too. I wasn’t going to offer any guidelines for the title – I’m curious to see what title you think reflects this blog without my influence.  However I will...

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The Only Workout Song You Will Ever Need

Posted on Feb 10, 2013 in Uncategorized

It’s February.  Which means your resolve to uphold your New Year’s Resolution is probably waning.  Actually it’s mid-February, so that resolve is probably completely gone. If your resolution happened to involve working out a) please stop crowding my gym classes every January and b) it’s your lucky day, because I am here to re-motivate you! A good playlist can do miracles for your workout.  Perhaps you’ve read about the motivational power of music or seen articles highlighting the best songs for getting your exercise on.  Last November, my friend Sarah posted her list of top 10 workout songs.  While I’m sure this list is excellent, I am not actually familiar with much of the music listed because at the time Sarah posted it, I was listening exclusively to the N Sync Christmas Pandora station.  But it got me thinking: What would my perfect playlist be? Oh, poor, poor me.  I already knew the answer – I’ve known it for years!  It’s just that since Elisabeth came along my running routine has been inconsistent at best, so I had forgotten. For shame!  I’d probably be running monthly marathons by now had I remembered!  But I must not dwell on what could have been.  Instead, right here, right now, I’m going to share a secret with you. Brace yourself.  This is going to revolutionize your workout. You don’t need an entire playlist to get you through a workout, you need only one song.  What song, Diana?  What song?! The only song you will ever need ever again* is: Celine Dion’s, “It’s All Coming Back To Me Now”. *Crickets* Okay, you’re confused, I get it.  Celine Dion? For my workout?  Just trust me.  Go get your iPod or smartphone or whatever it is you listen to your music on these days and give Ms. Dion a listen. But I don’t have Celine Dion in my music library.  She’s lame.  LIAR!  Falling into You was a magical album.  I know you secretly love it.  This is now the second time I have declared my love for Celine on this blog, and if I...

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Posted on Dec 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

I don’t really know where to start. I never post about “serious” things on this blog.  I am an opinionated person, but I very intentionally stay away from headlines, politics, etc. because this blog for me – and hopefully for you readers – is a way to get away from all that.  It’s supposed to be a lighthearted look into my life as a new mom, a way to find the funny in the everyday.  But there just doesn’t seem to be a lot of funny right now. I had a load of things I wanted to write about – and I will, eventually – but I can’t get the Sandy Hook tragedy out of my head.  Sitting down to write about my daughter’s birthday party knowing those 20 children will never have another birthday party seems somehow disrespectful.  And utterly heartbreaking. I feel at a loss.  Every time I see another news report on Newtown or a profile of a victim, I fight to keep my composure (not very successfully).  Honestly, I’ve tried to avoid it, cowardly though that may sound, because it becomes overwhelmingly painful to try to process this tragedy.  I wonder, if this had happened before Elisabeth was born, before I was a parent, would it feel so intensely personal?  And then I realize that as horrible as I feel – someone with no personal connections to that community – I cannot begin to comprehend how the families of those killed must feel.  How do you comfort those families? How do you honor those precious children and their brave educators? I don’t know.  All I know is now that I’m a parent, the idea of anything happening to my daughter is single-handedly the most terrifying, gut-wrenching thought.  I pray fiercely that she will never be exposed to such violence or tragedy, that she will be able to hold onto childhood innocence for as long as possible.  And now my heart has broken over and over not only for those children and teachers so senselessly killed and their families, but also for all those children who...

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The Night Stalker Strikes Again

Posted on Oct 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

The Night Stalker.  That’s what my parents have named Elisabeth.  That, and Demon Baby.  You can probably guess how our nights have been going lately. My brain is too muddled from lack of sleep to remember if I ever shared with you how I sleep trained Elisabeth.  In case not, here’s a recap:  The child resisted sleep with all her power.  After months of Elisabeth SCREAMING before every nap time (no matter how much rocking, cuddling, singing, etc.) for sometimes upward of an hour, falling asleep in my arms and then waking the moment I placed in her her crib (over and over and over again), taking naps that averaged 20-25 minutes, and waking up several times throughout the night, I had reached the end of my rope.  I decided the best option for all parties involved would be to sleep train the kid, and the method I chose was Ferber’s.  Otherwise known as (mistakenly, in my opinion) the “Cry It Out” method. I can hear the gasps now!  How could she!  That cruel, cruel mother!  That poor child is ruined!  Here’s how I see it.  Elisabeth was crying before every nap and every bedtime anyway.  So instead of letting her cry in my arms for an hour I let her cry in her crib for 20-30 minutes while I periodically checked on her, until she fell asleep on her own.  And after a couple of days, the crying stopped.  And she slept.  And stayed asleep.  And I slept.  AND IT WAS GLORIOUS. -Sigh-  It was a nice month while it lasted. Since traveling to the states, Elisabeth’s sleep has been all sorts of messed up.  I had hoped that once the initial jet lag had worn off and we had settled down from our travels around the country, she would simply slip back into her sleep trained ways.  I should know better than to ever assume such silly things… No, no.  Instead we have the Night Stalker/Demon Baby.  The non-sleeping baby has returned with a vengeance.  The baby who thinks 30 minutes constitutes a nap.  Unless of course...

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