Friday, June 29, 2007

Technological Hyperventilation

You don't realize how necessary . . . dependent . . . addicted you are to modern technology until it is ripped against your will from your clutching, clinging white knuckles. That happened to me today. I have two computers with Internet access. I got a new one last year for ME, and moved my other one downstairs for the boys to use for school and for me to use for school record keeping and such. Some time ago, I started having problems with it . . . long story . . . I let my anti-virus lapse for a very short time, and I thought something got on it. Now I think it was just spyware that slipped past my system. Anyway, when I upgraded to Internet Explorer 7 the whole Internet thing went kaplooie, and I lost Internet Explorer. Can't access it at all. Couldn't even get it back by doing a system restore and going back to IE6. But no worry, I still had my beloved America Online. Problems kept continuing to develop--nothing serious, just annoying little things that I'm too technologically impaired to figure out how to fix, and then after one of my ignoramous fix-it attempts, I deleted something important from the AOL file, and you guessed it! No AOL. Ugh.

So for months now, I've been meaning to backup files and take the stupid computer to my dear friends' computer genius father-in-law (are ya confused yet?), to get it cleaned up, fixed, whatever. But of course, it's the kids' computer, and I still have mine, so no rush. Right? Well very early in the wee hours of the morning I got on my precious, only to discover an error message about the system back-up battery. So this morning I spent ALL morning on the phone with Dell working on figuring out what is wrong. And guess what. It needs a new battery. Which I can't change. So I have to wait for a special technician to come out and change it. Which will take a few days. And we "drained the battery power" to discover this is the problem, so my precious won't even boot up and stay on. Do you see the problem here? I have NO INTERNET!!!

No, I'm not at the library blogging right now. No, I'm not at a friend's house either. I finally got some motivation to reinstall the AOL software on the downstairs computer so now it works!!! Hooray! But only after I had a major withdrawl panic attack, wondering how I would live without blogs for a few days, and whether I had put my Webkins to sleep and how the little virtual pet would fare without me to check on him each day, and what the hootie I would do without a computer to play with and talk to for as many as THREE days!!! Yes, I did near hyperventilate.

I'm embarrassed to say that I also said all of these goofball things to my bestest friend, who just laughed at me (not with me, 'cause I was having a breakdown, not laughing). Oddly enough this was the same best friend who I was discussing the excesses in material things that plagues America and how shameful we are in our greed and spending while so many people in the world are starving . . . .

Is there a computer patch . . . or gum or something ? 'Cause I think I need it.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Sometimes They're Just No Fun

Why why why do boys have to ALWAYS one-up each other? Why?

I ate my ice cream.
I ate my ice cream faster.
I ate my ice cream faster, got a brain freeze, and still ate it fast.
I ate my ice cream faster, got a brain freeze, but I ate it faster.

I was here first.
I was here before you even came downstairs.
I stood here all night, so I was here first.
I was born right on this very spot, and haven't moved since except to go to the bathroom, so I got here first!

Then there's the one-up that makes no sense to me whatever.

I have five guns.
I have twelve guns.
I have twenty guns, three bombs and a tank.
I have a nuclear weapon.

"MOM!!! Josh said he can use any eight powers he wants, but I only get to use two of mine, and they can't include super-strength or heat vision! Mom! Tell him to let me use my powers!"

Uuuugggghhhh! Quit it already! There are NO mountains in Florida, so ya can't be king of it!

OK, here's the twist in my house. I do sometimes like to play "one-up," but I'd really like it to be a little more fun. 'Cause here's how it goes at my house:

I'm hungry.
I'm hungry too.
I'm hungrier than you. I could eat a cow.

(Ok, at this point, I'm looking for an animal a little bigger, until we get to something like the Great Blue Whale and run out of big animals. What do I get?)

I'm hungry infinity times to heaven and back. (Game over.)

Guess there's no point even trying to cook for that appetite. Why can't we just have fun imagining what we could eat?????

Makes a Mother Proud . . . .

Tonight, AJ was inventing a new computer. Something about it was small enough to fit on your wrist . . . I don't know, I didn't get it all. (After all, I don't invent computers! I can hardly use them!) Meanwhile, his brother Stephen was programming another computer with a new language . . . or ability . . . or something like that (once again . . . me and the computer . . . enough said).

All at once, AJ decided he wanted to use FOUR of his powers (never was really sure exactly what they were, but I caught something about stretchy, strong, and fire), but the problem with this was that in whatever contract they signed, Josh got to use double the powers of AJ . . . or more of them . . . so that meant Josh got to go to EIGHT of his. Somehow Stephen got short-changed in the deal, 'cause no matter what, he only got to use one power at a time. But . . . he had his computer!

Exactly how many powers do you need to fight off bad guys?

And if you have super powers, why on earth do you need computers?

Friday, June 15, 2007

Hard Lesson

The Lord and I have been going round and round about me slipping into a serious night-owl habit. I have just had a hard time sleeping, and it's become extreme. It is complicated by the fact that I don't have to be up early, so the boys and I are staying up very late, and getting up quite late in the morning. (Yes, alas. I'm passing on this wonderful character quality to my children.) I'm always prone to this, but with summer, it has been even harder to discipline myself to go to bed. The last few days my time in the Word has really convicted me of the need to work on this, so I've been asking God for help, knowing I just can't overcome this on my own. We all know we should be careful what we ask for, right?

This morning the Lord did indeed wake me up earlier . . . to the sound of the dog yacking amidst dueling alarm clocks. Oh goody! Won't describe it here for those of you who are weak-stomached (I used to be one of you. Then I had children.), but let's just say there was't much since she hadn't eaten all night. So I raced through the house, down the stairs and through the kitchen to let her out before she did it again (her favorite place to lose it is in the tracks of the sliding glass door--a fun clean-up, let me tell you). I made it in the nick of time.

So my eyes are sooo droopy right now, and I feel like going back to bed, but I'm not . . . cause I don't want another lesson.

Friday, June 08, 2007

The Million Dollar . . . DOG!!!

Yes, that is what I've adopted. Not only is he crazy. . . not only does he destroy everything he finds near the floor . . . but now? He has allergies! I had noticed him chewing on his feet a lot and saw that the hair was thinning and that they were a little red. Since I've found a more or less inexpensive vet, I figured I should get it checked out. So we took Nate yesterday and he has a yeast infection combined with a bacterial skin infection and yeast in his ears resulting from allergies!!! Fortunately Walmart now offers $4 perscriptions, even if the meds are for a dog! My poor pup has to be bathed twice a week, have drops in his ears two to three times a day, have his feet wiped with special medicated pads two to three times a day, and has a med given in the morning and two at night. Or maybe I should say poor mom has to wash the dog twice a week, wipe down doggie paws several times a day, put drops in the ears, and trick him into taking pills in the morning and night all for allergies. Sorry buddy, but I'm not spendin' much more on ya. You'll just have to scratch!

Maybe I should consider contributing to Social Security in his name. Then in a few years, we could afford his medical care. And if the government argues with me? I'll tell them that Walmart took a prescription for him!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

So Many Libraries, So Little Time

Yes, we have joined yet another library. You know you have a bit of a problem with books when you have three different cards from three different library systems in your wallet, and there's books on all of them. (Ok, I'm not quite that bad; I only have books on two of them.) Actually the rationale goes like this: I have a card at the library system in the nearby college town. In this library there are no limits, no late fees, you get the books for a month and can renew them twice, and the library we go to is HUGE!!! The new card is from the next county, which is a large county with lots of branches and has a very efficient system for transferring books and placing holds. Plus the library we went to had a tremendous amout of books on tape and video recordings to pick from, AND they have downloads available online for check-out. Also the nearest libraray isn't over an hour away, a definite perk. Since we started our monthly trek to college town to visit the library there, the boys have become ravenous readers, and can barely keep up with what we check out.

So there you have it. We could literally borrow hundreds of books at a time. It's almost as good as getting new books to own!

Yes. We Adopted a Crazy Dog.

Nathan has taken lately to barking at himself. Why you ask? Late at night, he sees his reflection in the glass door and goes crazy. A couple nights ago, he barked at himself for over an hour.
Until I put him in the crate.
I didn't want to but it had gotten late.
I told him, "Please stop. Don't bark, Nate!"
For a half hour I tried to wait!

OK, enough!!! No more Dr. Suess! Sorry.

Anyway, he's also still chewing up EVERYTHING!!! He ruined a brand new pair of sandals the other day. I've found countless pencils, marbles, legoes, plastic animals, other shoes and socks, and everything else in his mouth. And he just thinks he owns everything, including me I think. He has claimed my bed, my pillow, my lap, my couch, anything he can lay on or defend, he does it. Nevertheless, he does still love Princess, and he's so stinkin' cute, so we put up with a lot and love him anyway.

I have yet to find anything that makes me regret the decision to adopt him. He is just a bundle of boundless energy and curiosity . . . kinda like his owner.

Sorry. We're Currently Unavailable . . .

. . . we're out of this world. Instead we are visiting the Webkins world. My deepest appreciation for the very thoughtful woman at church who thought she was giving us something nice when she gave each of my boys a Webkins animal. While it was a very thoughtful gift (because I could see how hard it was for her to part with the Webkins she let me choose from for the boys), she inadvertantly spread her addiction. We now spend an inordinate amount of hours on the computer each day feeding, dressing, bathing, and earning money to buy stuff for our virtual pets!!! OK, yeah. The real ones (dogs) haven't been played with for days (weeks?). And chores here? To care for the REAL people who live in THIS house? Ummm . . . no.

Never fear. Mom didn't get a Webkins, so she's safe. Right? Wrong. I Webkins-sit. For my children. Whether they want me to or not.

"Hey! Get off the computer so I can earn fake money to buy fake stuff and fake food for a fake pet that isn't even mine!!!"

Why can't I come up with some kind of goofball idea that people will pursue with a frenzy so I can make millions? Of course, in order to do that, I have to log off the Webkins world. Isn't happening anytime soon.