Saturday, September 30, 2006

You gotta love Peanuts

An anonymous reader sent me the link to this Peanuts cartoon. Heh!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Meanwhile, at the baby therapist's office ...

Today WCB had her first physical therapy appointment at the children's hospital downtown. Official diagnosis: She's stubborn.

Well, yeah.

The therapist says that there is nothing wrong with her. She COULD walk; she just doesn't want to. And, after observing the family in action, he said that Jay and I are making it worse by not letting her get frustrated. Can't reach a toy? We'll get that for you, sweetie. From now on, we're supposed to let her do stuff for herself and fall down and cry. We tried it once at the therapist's office, and I almost started crying myself.

We got a bunch of exercises to do at home, and then we go back and see the therapist again in two weeks. Sounds so simple, but WCB is already wise to the exercises and won't do them. For example, instead of holding her hands while she walks, we're supposed to lightly hold her elbows and let go. The second we touch her elbows, her legs go limp like Ray Bolger in The Wizard of Oz. I guess she's going to while away the hours conferrin' with the flowers.

Everything will work out. Nobody crawls to kindergarten. Do they?

Monday, September 25, 2006

Why I can't wait until Halloween

The tiny Ruby Slippers are here!!



A big thank-you to WCB's "Auntie" Barb for sending them from Columbia, MO. They're still a little too big for WCB's dainty little feet, but I am going to MAKE those suckers fit. If you can't tell how tiny they are, here they are compared to my massive adult-sized ones ...



Yes, I own my own Ruby Slippers. Don't make fun.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Jar-Jar vs. Audrey Hepburn

I know nothing about fashion. I guess this was pretty obvious two posts ago when I wrote about wearing snot-covered sweatpants. You don't see those too often on the runways of Milan.

The last time I was even remotely in the know about what was considered cool-looking was back in my junior high and high school days in the late '80s and early '90s. Back then, the big rage was skinny jeans. Really, really skinny jeans. They had zippers on the ankles so you could unzip them to actually get your legs inside, and then re-zip them so they remained snug against your legs. If your jeans didn't have the ankle zippers, you could go the jean-rolling route, where you'd fold over the cuff and then roll the bottom of the jeans up tightly against your ankle. Then you would accessorize with puffy socks that matched the color of your shirt. Of course, all of the cool kids could successfully roll their jeans and get them to stay that way for eight hours straight. Mine would always unravel as I rushed from gym class to Life Science, so I'd have to stop and re-roll in the hallway about five times, lest somebody else see me with denim more than a millimeter away from my ankle and condemn me to social ruin. These were rough times to live in, children.

Back in my day, only the nerdiest of the nerdy would even THINK about wearing bell-bottoms. Maybe if it was "Sixties Day" during homecoming week, you could get away with it, but everyone would still be talking about it the next day.

So you can only imagine my horror, my absolute horror, when suddenly flared jeans came back "in" again about eight or so years ago. It took a while for me to finally break down and buy a pair of "boot cut" jeans, and even then I called my sister practically sobbing. "I look like Jar-Jar Binks!" I wailed.

Just when I had finally gotten used to the Jar-Jar Binks look, just when I was embracing my inner Jar-Jar, what comes back in again? Skinny jeans.

The Gap even has a commercial now proclaiming that they have "skinny black pants". It features Audrey Hepburn dancing around to AC/DC. Oh, good. Because when I think of the body type of the average American woman -- and I'm including myself here -- I automatically think of Audrey Hepburn. It's like looking into a mirror.

But the real wake-up call came the other day when I was walking through the neighborhood with WCB in the stroller. I was wearing my usual daytime uniform of the aforementioned unwashed Snot Pants and a three-year-old souvenir t-shirt from the Bubba Gump Shrimp restaurant in Minneapolis, which was tastefully accessorized with chewed-up -- and not by me -- dried green beans on the shoulders.

Just on the other side of the street, I spotted a high school girl walking home wearing ... exactly what girls wore to high school when I started in 1989: Oversized shirt, denim skirt, tight leggings, and little flat shoes.

This made me think two things: 1) I'm really, really old. 2) If only I had saved all of my clothes from 1989, I would have a small chance at being cool again.

Unfortunately, the only item of clothing I saved from that era is my New Kids on the Block Hangin' Tough 1990 World Tour Official Concert T-shirt, and I could only pull that off if I had an air of irony about me, which I do not. In fact, I have secret hopes that they'll get back together. My favorite one was Donnie.

Anyway, my point, and I do have one, is that I just can't keep up. I'm sure by the time I decide to go for the Audrey Hepburn pants, the Jar-Jar pants will be back in style. I guess I should just sit tight, hang on to my Jar-Jars, and try to scrape the green beans off of my shoulders.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

... but they do have a Wal-Mart

Last month, I wrote about our visit to Yankton, South Dakota. My two best friends from college went to high school there. Much of Jay's extended family lives there. It's about 25 minutes away from where I went to college. I worried a little that calling it "Crankton" would hurt the town's reputation. Turns out that Yankton has much worse PR problems:



If you can't read the small print, it says,

"It's a federal prison in the middle of nowhere. Nobody you know has a clue where it is. There's no airport, no bus station, no Amtrak. In summer, the mosquitoes are mean and hungry because there aren't a whole lot of people around. Commit a gun crime and you're alone. In Yankton."

The line about the mosquitoes is my favorite. "Well, I was going to go on a murderous rampage, but I just can't stand being itchy."

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

How to stop worrying about cancer for a couple days

Spend those couple days trapped in the house with a 16-month-old who has a cold. Make sure this 16-month-old seriously believes that she will NEVER. WILLINGLY. GO. TO. SLEEP. AGAIN. Now you are no longer Amazing Cancer Girl; you are just an ordinary mom with streaks of snot on your sweatpants and splatters of grape-flavored Children's Dimetapp and Yo Baby yogurt on your t-shirt, and the only thing you can really focus on in your sleep-deprived haze is not your cancer but the fact that you are really, really starting to hate the little orange dinosaur on Barney, simply because he is a terrible actor and keeps bobbing his head too much. Don't quit your day job, little orange dinosaur.

It was a welcome break.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Just because it's funny

This photo has nothing to do with anything, but I got it in an e-mail recently and couldn't stop laughing.

I PITY DA FOOL WHO DOESN'T LIKE SOCK MONKEYS!!


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

It's the small things that make me happy

Like really small. Like the size of a postage stamp. Check it out!



YES! A Judy Garland stamp! I almost started crying at the post office this morning, I was so excited. I see they chose a Judy image from the "A Star is Born" era, which is perfect. On the Judy Garland spectrum, this time period is exactly halfway between Cute Judy:



... and "This Is Why You Should Never Do Drugs" Judy:



I can't wait to go send some mail.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

La Vida Myeloma

OK, I realize this will be the third post in a row that mentions my friend DeAnna's online adventures (have you watched Tomzilla yet?), but now I have something stuck in my head that won't go away until I post it on the blog. So here it is.

When DeAnna linked her site to my site, she wrote, "She's my best friend from college and she's got cancer. Tune in and live la vida myeloma!"

La Vida Myeloma. I had to write the words to that song. I had to. There was no choice.

And so, after a day of complete obsession, here it is. (I was going to apologize to Ricky Martin first, but then I thought, no, Ricky Martin still owes all of us an apology for the song "Shake Your Bon Bon." Rhyming "Himalayas" with "C'mon, I wanna lay ya" should be a punishable offense. Possibly by death.) Anyway. The rhythm works best if you pronounce it "my-uh-loma" in your head. Everybody sing!

Livin' With Myeloma
By Cancer Girl

I have a rare condition
Too many plasma cells
Doc feels a premonition
My marrow's shot to hell

She'll make you take your clothes off and go dance with the x-ray
She'll stick a needle in your hip, take lots of blood away
Collect pee for one whole day!

Come on!

Upside, inside out
She's lookin' for myeloma
She will wear you out
Lookin' for myeloma
I know she is well-read
She has a cool diploma
Now there is no doubt
I'm livin' with myeloma
Livin' with myeloma

Woke up at the Mayo Clinic
In a funny patient gown
She pierced my bone and she took my marrow
That scar's gonna hang around

She's not gonna treat me 'til my body goes astray
Now I live a crazy life, gotta worry every day
Will my bones start to decay?

Come on!

Upside, inside out
I'm livin' with myeloma
What's it all about?
Gotta Google myeloma
I know things could be worse
I could be in a coma
But I could do without
This stupid myeloma
This lousy myeloma

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Tomzilla and the goose

In case you didn't get enough of adorable Tom, here's another movie he starred in about a year and a half ago: Tomzilla. It's absolutely chilling the way he ravages that poor town. Children under 18 months are advised not to watch, lest they get ideas.

Also, my friend DeAnna has a new web site: http://www.deannamiller.net/ Everybody check it out!

And now I have to explain this comment on my blog:

Pee Pod: I think that you should dress it up in a skirt and put it next to the goose.

We have a giant goose made out of solid concrete sitting on our front step. It used to belong to my grandmother, but I inherited it a couple of years ago. What is so special about this giant concrete goose, you ask? The goose has more clothes than I do. Yes. The goose has numerous outfits that I dress it up in depending on the holiday or my own whims. Current outfits include the following:

Winter coat and earmuffs
Bumblebee
Chicken
Pink flamingo
Nebraska Cornhusker football player
Vampire (with bloody fangs!)
Nun
Pilgrim
Easter Bunny
"Birthday party" outfit (complete with party hat and noisemaker)
Uncle Sam

I order most of the clothes online from Goose Clothes Galore. I'm thinking of getting it the Rudolph ensemble for Christmas. What do you think?

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Play Doh-a Constrictor

My friend DeAnna made a fun, five-minute movie starring her little boy Tom. It's called Play Doh-a Constrictor, and you can view it on YouTube by clicking here. Tom is not yet three, and he's already famous. I hear he did all of his own stunts.

If you all remember, Tom is WCB's future husband, and we will all be celebrating their wedding at The Mall of America someday. If there are any little girls under the age of three reading this blog, don't get any ideas, ladies. Yes, Tom is a handsome devil, but he is spoken for.

Sometimes, though, I worry that our plan to push them together could backfire. Nobody wants to go out with a guy her parents approve of. Maybe we should use reverse psychology and imply that Tom is bad and dangerous. If any of you run into WCB on the street, maybe you could just hint around that you saw Tom smoking or driving too fast or embezzling funds.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Roundin' Up a Cure

Yesterday's Kansas City Star featured an article about a myeloma fundraiser to be held here in KC this coming Friday. It's called "Roundin' Up a Cure" and is an evening out with a cowboy theme. You can read more about it, buy tickets, or send in a donation here.

The fundraiser is being held in honor of two men who recently died of myeloma. One of them, Robbie Speer, was just 37 years old and lived just two years after his diagnosis at age 35. He had the Chromosome 13 deletion, so unfortunately he had a much more aggressive form of the disease than I do. His story is chronicled in his wife's blog, which tells of his three stem-cell transplants and other treatments. It wasn't until very late in his treatment that he was able to get access to Revlimid, a drug that was still considered experimental and was only available through trials at the time. Now, about 7 months later, Revlimid has been approved by the FDA, and Dr. Hayman says it's most likely the first drug that I'll be treated with, once I need treatment. This just shows how quickly research is moving in myeloma, and fundraisers like this can only help find even better treatments.

Go check it out! Here's the web site again: http://www.roundinupacure.com/

Saturday, September 02, 2006

It could be a hat or a brooch or a pterodactyl

My friend Rachel had an excellent idea: Now that the Pee Pod has entered retirement (at least for a while), we should have a What To Do With the Pee Pod Contest.

Keep in mind that I'm talking about a fresh, unused Pee Pod. This is a gross contest, but it's not that gross. Rachel suggested planting flowers in it. I say it would make an excellent goldfish habitat.

Other ideas?