Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Stressing out....

Dan insists that I need to update more so I guess I'll humor him a little. Let's see... where to start first?

Oh yeah, how about starting with the pick-up truck. It's a 91 Toyota and has been leaking oil for awhile. Recently it suddenly started hemorrhaging oil! We would give it transfusions every day and still would be dry by morning. Time for surgery. Karl is a JVS (junior vehicle surgeon) and figured out what part needed to be replaced. After calling most parts places and not being able to find the particular part he needed, he decided to go for a 2nd opinion and get an estimate. The estimate was about $400! Did I mention that the part only costs $11! So the SVS (Senior Vehicle Surgeon) talked to Karl about what steps he needed to take to replace the part - AND gave him the name of a store which sells the part so Karl could work on it himself. This surgery is not an easy one since everything has to be taken out of the truck and out of the way just to get to the part. The patient had to stay up on blocks in ICU over-night since most of it's innards were strewn all over our front yard. Karl has Hazardous Materials classes every day this week and can't take a day off to fix the truck so he has been working on it in the evenings. Justen is the main one who uses the truck and he has been helping his dad do the work. Well, this evening all the parts were put back together and the truck started right up. Karl took it for a test-drive and guess what? THE BLASTED THING IS LEAKING LIKE A SIEVE! For crying out loud! Karl looked and looked at it with his flashlight and it seems to be leaking in a different area then the one place he worked on. He will have to take apart the truck to get to that place too. UGH! Very frustrating. Justen has to miss doing his mission tomorrow since we don't want him driving the truck very far. He can only take the truck to work. Fortunately he works less then 2 miles from here, where his mission is more like 8 or 9 miles away.

Karl is still working on enclosing the carport. It's amazing how much work has to be done on this thing! We had the "intermediate electrical" inspection today but didn't pass. There are a couple of things that Karl need to change. These aren't huge things but it will take more time and work... and of course, more money. Even though we aren't as cold here as many of you gals and guys, it has been cold - down to as low as 29° - and since there is no insulation in the walls of the new room yet, cold air has been coming into the house. Karl put up some make-shift doors to help keep the draft out of our house but it is still seeping in. Jessica has been getting too cold so we turn up the thermostat to keep her warm and then of course our bills go up. We can't put the insulation up until we pass the electrical inspection. We were hoping to have passed the inspection today and been able to quickly put in the insulation the rest of this week but the inspector - and our pick-up truck - had different plans for us.

I am a bit stressed out about a package I sent to someone for Christmas. The package I sent was for two families to help them out with Christmas. If it's any body's fault what happened, it was mine, but mostly it was all a misunderstanding. I spent $40 to sent the package over-night to family #1 and nobody was there to accept the package. According to the tracking record, they left a message for the family to go to the post office to pick it up (last Saturday) and it still hasn't been picked up. The online record said that if it isn't picked up within 5 days (from Sat) then it would be sent back to me. Family #2 has a child in the hospital far away from their hometown and a family member was to pick up items for the child on Monday at the address of the first family, so I sent it over-night so that both families would have it in time for Christmas. I haven't heard anything from family #1 and I realized, after reading through some email, that they may not have been in town over the weekend - in fact, I'm not sure exactly when they were returning. If I had known, again - I should have read email and figured things out, I wouldn't have mailed it over-night and would have saved a few bucks... especially since family #2 has probably already missed out on picking up their gifts before Christmas. Note to self: when wanting to mail packages, don't ASSUME ANYTHING. Be sure to prepare package early and know for a fact that it will be able to be picked up on time! LOL! I could have saved myself a lot of grief by preparing the items earlier and mailing the package sooner. As I said, I am not upset with either family, just mostly with myself for not being on the ball. I am concerned that I haven't heard from family #1 so I emailed them tonight to see if they even knew they had a package waiting to be picked up. I will be very upset if the package gets sent back to me because I really want these families to have the gifts. My kids contributed to the package and I know they genuinely care about those families too. There have been times when USPS has left those messages without enough information or in places where someone wouldn't find them. Hopefully family #1 will get my email and can go and retrieve the package.

Jessica has not felt up to going to school AT ALL this year yet. One of her best teacher's assistants called me and asked if Jess wanted to go to their class Christmas party. Of course Jess asked to talk to the TA and wants to go. The party is tomorrow, on Weds - I say tomorrow because it's not quite 2:30am and I just got her into bed again. School lets out early tomorrow at 11:00am so the party starts at 10:00am. Usually Jess doesn't get up in the morning until 11:00am so it's going to be interesting trying to get her up at 8:45 in order to get her ready to go. I felt really bad for her because she was getting some things ready to put into her backpack to take to school tomorrow and then she was huffing and puffing... she started to cry saying that she didn't feel well. She gets out of breath so easily and tires so quickly. I was able to get her calmed down after a little while and I just hope she feels well enough to go. My heart breaks for her. She has such big hopes and dreams and her body just can't handle hardly anything anymore. I hope she can handle going to see her friends and teachers tomorrow for a little while. It's something she really wants to do. The special Ed teachers have been talking about Jessica and asked me if I want her to graduate this year. She doesn't go to school but a few times a year and they said that she is always welcome to go back to visit. She isn't even doing school work because she fatigues so easily. She is able to do very basic addition and subtraction, she can read at a 2nd - 3rd grade level which is pretty good for special ed. I talked to them about possibly having a small ceremony since I don't think she could handle a large ceremony. When Justen graduated a few years ago they held it out on the center of the football field. Even though the graduation ceremony was held in the evening, the sun hadn't gone down yet and it was HOT! We had a hard time finding a place in the shade for Jess to sit and she was exhausted before it was over. This was before she started having lung bleeds, arrhythmias and had been going to school on a more regular basis. I just can't see her trying to be out on the football field in the sun for the whole ceremony. I was told that they are already looking into having a private ceremony for her and having her teachers and classmates participate. I think it would be a really nice experience for Jessica to be able to wear a cap and gown, have her pictures taken and have a small ceremony just for her. Although, talking about these arrangements makes me realize again how fragile she is and how much she has declined in the last year or so. Technically, she could stay in special ed for another year or even two but if we want her to be able to graduate, we need to do it now (meaning in the spring) before it's too late.

On a good note:
Santa is going to come to visit Miss Jess at our house either Friday or Saturday evening for a little while which is always really nice for her. She really loves those visits since we try to keep her away from the crowded mall and other places where germy kids like to gather. I don't think she needs to be in a long line of children waiting to have a quick visit with Santa. This Santa has come to our house for the past 3 or 4 years and he looks forward to seeing Jessica every year. Of course the boys are always involved too but they don't think they need to believe in Santa anymore.... but Jessica sure does! I love her innocence and her joy in talking to Santa and taking pleasure in the simple things in life.

Speaking of Christmas and packages, etc... I've been running myself ragged trying to get everything ready for Christmas. Every year I always end up wishing I had ONE MORE WEEK to get ready! We are doing minimal decorations this year since things have been so crazy. Jessica has had several doctor's appointments lately and has another cardiology appointment on Thursday. Brandon has an orthodontist appointment tomorrow afternoon too. I usually do most of the Christmas shopping with my friend, Keri and then Karl will help me do the rest but since he's been so busy this year, I've had to run out and do it all. Also, Keri up and moved out of state so I've really missed her this year! (Geesh, Keri, can't Bert just commute? haha!) Karl and I usually wrap gifts together but the way things have been going, I have been doing the wrapping by myself too. I kind of feel bad that Karl hasn't been able to participate in these preparations for Christmas since he usually likes to help pick out fun things for the kids, etc. It's just been such a crazy year! He has really been going to a lot of specialty classes and doing special details with his job... then spending as much time as he can working on the room. I try not to complain about not spending as much time with him nor the huge messes that keep being made with the construction, but it's wearing on me. Hopefully once the insulation is in Karl will be able to relax a little more and not feel so pressured to get it finished. I know, the biggest mess is yet to come. That dry-wall is HORRIBLE, especially when they will have to sand it. Oh boy, I am NOT looking forward to that! But you know.... it will all be worth it. Not only because I will have a nice room of my very own, but because I know that my sweet husband is doing all of this for me. He loves me and I tell him every day how much I appreciate all his work. This evening he came into the house to wash his hands a little before taking the truck out for a test drive. He has smudges and specks of oil on his face and in his hair that I wiped off with a rag. Karl told me that it's little things like this that let him know that I love him. hehe... and I do. He's a cutie - just like a little boy who gets all dirty while playing outside in the dirt (and oil).

Well, that is my whinny update. I feel better just getting all that out. Most of the time I have been very happy that all my kids are home, safe, and mostly happy. Hey, I have teens so of course they aren't going to be ALL happy ALL the time! hehe! I am really looking forward to spending time with family that is coming into town for Christmas and with those that live here too. If all goes as planned, my family will be coming to my house for dinner on Christmas Eve. I think I convince Karl that ham would be nicer (and easier) than a turkey for dinner. On Christmas Day, we are going to drive out to Karl's parent's house for a nice, quiet lasagna dinner which my Mother-in-law is cooking. It will be nice to relax and enjoy a quiet evening with them too.

What is stressing YOU out? (Besides reading this long-winded post?)


Awesome Mom said...

It sounds like things have been crazy for you. When it gets at it's worst just think of how envious I will be when you have your nice big craft room.

Ruth said...

Yep. Things sound a bit crazy for you! I left a "whiney" update at my blog the other day, so I understand. Not that yours was whiney. =o) Maybe over the holidays we can chat and catch up.

Give Jess and hug for me. I hope she is able to go to the party!

Mama Bear June said...

Sending my hugs and prayers your way. God has ensured that I won't stress out with busyness by taking away my health. So mandatory, doctor-ordered rest has been the order of the days. Kendall's surgery went well and we came home the same day. Tonight we had a party to go to. I made an easy treat that took just 20 minutes to make and then took a Marie Callender's Chocolate Satin Pie (so we would only eat one piece and not the whole pie!) :-)

Praying you will have a restful and joyful Christmas.