Why My Christmas Kind of Sucked

Sure, there were parts of Christmas that were a lot of fun, like watching Lucy open her presents, but the rest of it was pretty darn miserable.

The Tuesday before Christmas, I had a Reclast infusion. Reclast is a medicine for osteoporosis, and as a once-a-year medicine, I was happy to choose that over the weekly pills. I sat in the infusion room and played on my iPhone for about 45 minutes, and then it was off to the lab to have 15 — yes, FIFTEEN — vials of blood drawn.

Then, I headed home. I was feeling fairly light-headed, which I attributed to the fact that I had just had FIFTEEN vials of blood drawn on an empty stomach (I kind of didn’t have any time before my appointment to eat). I grabbed some french fries and a Coke to see if that would help, and relaxed on the couch when I got home.

The next day, I still felt bad. I would get very light-headed and dizzy, and I started to get nauseous. That night, I spiked a fever. We called my rheumatologist’s office and were told that if the symptoms lasted several days post-infusion to call my primary care doctor. We thought for sure I’d be feeling better by Thursday.

Unfortunately, I was much worse. By then, I couldn’t even sit up without feeling like I was going to pass out. My primary care doctor worked me in, and we headed off soon after I got up. I almost passed out sitting in the chair to have my vitals taken, and they sent me directly to the ER. They offered to call an ambulance, but Joe said he would drive me. I kind of wish we’d taken them up on the ambulance because then I would have gone right back!

We waited for a while (no surprise there) before finally being called back. I was feeling H-O-R-R-I-B-L-E. A friend of ours came to get Lucy (so grateful!), and we settled in for the day. Because we were there the WHOLE day. I had a chest x-ray done (during which I almost passed out because I had to stand), I had a CT scan done, I had a EKG done and I had blood drawn. The best part was the IV meds (although the nurse took out the IV from where she originally placed it and moved it, which kind of sucked). The zofran really helped with my nausea, and the morphine eased some of the EXCRUTIATING pain in my joints and muscles (what? I didn’t mention that before? Yeah, apparently that’s one of the side effects, too). However, nothing seemed to help the light-headedness and dizziness.

When we got home, I walked Joe through some of the things I needed to do as guest editor for one of the Patch sites (and, yes, I had been working from my phone while in the ER) and just rested. The ER doctor gave me a prescription to help with the dizziness, and it really did work. It was a lifesaver. We laid low at the house, and Joe helped me with work again on Friday. Because he’s awesome like that.

On Saturday, we headed up to my parents’ house. I was feeling OK, but I would start to feel bad again if I’d been on my feet too long. After our traditional Christmas eve dinner, I was feeling pretty dizzy, so I took a pill. However, it knocked me out. As in, I could barely keep my eyes open while we opened presents. I was so tired it was painful. It hadn’t done that the previous day, so I was pretty surprised.

I went to bed for the night around 8:30 p.m., and the pill knocked me out so much that I didn’t even hear Lucy and her
cousins running around the door to my parents’ living room for 30 minutes. Wow.

Sunday was a little better in the respect that I wasn’t super tired because I chose dizziness over being knocked out and missing Christmas dinner. I ended up taking a pill after dinner, and I slept the whole way home. Heaven.

Oh, and did I mention my dad was in pain from hurting his shoulder (for which he’ll be having surgery next week), and knocked out at times from pain meds? Yeah. He missed all of Christmas eve, which sucked because it is his favorite night of the year.

Now, I seem to be pretty much back to normal, and I couldn’t be happier. I won’t be taking Reclast again, though. My doctor and I will have to come up with another plan next year. My next post will be much more upbeat — Christmas pictures!

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I love Christmas. I’ve always loved it, but it’s so much more fun now that I have a little one. Honestly, I don’t even care about exchanging gifts with Joe this year (although, I think we’ll be getting each other something small). I just want to throw everything I can into getting things for Lucy.

Part of me feels like I might have gone a little overboard but, considering I’ve only spent $30 on her gifts, I really think I did a great job getting some great deals.

Her “big” gift is a drawing table with chairs. We found this Dora the Explorer table at Wal-Mart that you can actually draw on with dry erase markers and then erase everything off. It’s $10 cheaper in-store, which is awesome. She is going to LOVE this.

I don’t really do the Black Friday shopping thing, but this year on our way home from my parents, I stopped by our Kmart to see if they had any of the Mega Bloks that were on sale for $9.99. I think they usually run around $25 or so. I got the last bag (which happened to be the pink set I wanted), and we were in and out in about 10 minutes. Score! However, I accidentally left them in the kitchen when I brought them in a few nights ago, and Lucy found them. We let her play with them and were going to put them up and hide them after that, but she loves them SO much that we decided not to. At least I know it was a good choice!

Since Lucy unintentionally got one of her gifts early, we wanted her to have something else to open under the tree. I had read another blogger’s post about magnetic dress up dolls and how much her 2-year-old loves them, so we decided to get a set for Lucy as well. I think this will be great to take to restaurants and to church to keep her quiet. I used some Amazon gift cards from Swagbucks to get them from Amazon, so that cost me nothing out of pocket!

We also got her a magnetic hide and seek board because she is big into puzzles right now, which I also used Swagbucks Amazon gift cards to pay for, and an alligator xylophone, which I got with my Huggies reward points.

It’s not too shabby of a haul for $30. Pretty much all the gifts I bought this year were either through awesome daily deals (on Black Friday, I got 4 $80 necklaces for $1 each, which will go into the stash for next year) or with gift cards from Swagbucks. The less I spend out of pocket, the better!

A Visit to Santa’s House

Did you know that Santa lives in Cherokee County, Ga?

Well, he does, and this weekend we took Lucy to see him and Mrs. Claus. We were amazed from the moment we drove up and saw the light display in Santa’s yard. It was incredible, and little Miss Lucy didn’t want to leave when it was finally time to head home.









We had to coax Lucy to go into Santa’s workshop by telling her there were lights inside. However, she tried to make a run for it when we got to the door, so we had to force her to go in. She calmed down when I told her she would get a treat after she saw Santa (because he was giving out candy canes), but when it was her turn to sit on Santa’s lap, she L-O-S-T it. I wish we hadn’t already printed our holiday cards because this picture is a winner.


We took two other pictures. Want to see them?



Yep. Not much different. I’m hoping next year will be the magic year when she won’t cry when we go to see Santa.

After we left Santa, we went back outside to see the lights again and then had to try to coax Lucy into the main house to see Mrs. Claus. That went just as well as the visit with Santa. Lucy was pretty calm when we were watching the train circle around the village that was set up, but Lucy wouldn’t go anywhere near Mrs. Claus. On our way out, though, she had fun looking in the different rooms.




At the entrance to the main house was a Christmas countdown clock.


We had a lot of fun, and Lucy cried when we left. She wanted to keep looking at the lights. I can’t wait to take her back next year!


We had a very nice, low-key Thanksgiving. Joe was selected to be part of the NASA Tweetup for the Mars Rover launch, so he was in Florida over the holiday. I packed up myself and Lucy, and we headed to Tennessee to spend the holiday with my family.

I didn’t take a lot of pictures, probably because I was so busy solo-parenting (and I now have SO much respect for single parents). We got up there mid-afternoon on Wednesday and just hung out and relaxed that night. On Thursday, my brothers, sister-in-law and nephews all came over for Thanksgiving dinner. Lucy was excited because she loves her cousins Harrison and Marshall. Maybe that excitement is why she only ate a few bites of her lunch. She did, however, eat almost an entire piece of Aunt Oriona’s pumpkin pie.

After lunch, the kids and Oriona rocked for a while on my grandparents’ porch swing.

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And then, they all played outside since it was such a nice day. (And, the kids had popsicles, which explains Lucy’s purple mouth.)





Before Ryan, Oriona and the kids left, Lucy had to give Harrison a hug.


We headed back mid-morning on Friday, and Joe finally got home on Saturday. We missed him a lot, but he had SO much fun, and it was definitely a once in a lifetime experience.

Halloween Fun

Boy, did we have a fun Halloween! I’m sure you won’t be surprised to see what Lucy dressed as.


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Yep. She was the cutest Tigger EVER. Pretty much everyone we passed oohed and aahed over here, although a few called her a tiger and one even called her Tony the Tiger. Really? Sigh.

We started our day at 3 p.m. with the annual Downtown Trick or Treating event. Lucy did AWESOME. We walked the entire downtown, and she walked most of the way herself. And, she insisted on carrying her bag herself. It was adorable.




The best part for Lucy was the bouncy house that a church set up in the plaza. The kids were limited to three minutes, and Lucy did really well coming out afterward, even though she was a little confused. When her time was up, she said, “Hop? Hop?” It was really cute.



And, of course, we had to get a family picture.


After Downtown Trick or Treat, we grabbed a quick dinner at Taco Bell and then hit the Publix shopping center for more trick or treating. Publix had a little haunted house set up, and Lucy loved it. She touched all the skeletons and thought it was great.

Then, we headed to a friend’s subdivision to let her see Lucy all dressed up and do a bit more trick or treating. By this point, Lucy was getting pretty tired, so Joe carried her most of the way.

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When we got home, Lucy had to go through her loot. She had fun pushing it around and pulling out all the lollipops (her favorite candy). She also LOVED it when Daddy threw the candy up in the air.




It was a great day, and I can’t wait until next Halloween!

Celebrating the 4th

We celebrated the 4th of July by having Lucy participate in her first parade! My radio station co-sponsors the parade with a local civic group, so I had to be there for the festivities. And, this year, they included a wagon parade for kids at the front of the parade, so we entered Lucy. We decided on that at the last minute, so the decorations on her wagon weren’t great. Oh well…we’ll do better next year!




Lucy was pretty enthralled with everything going on.


Tigger and George came along for the fun. There were hugs.


Apparently, they were not very well-behaved.


Get back in the wagon!


We got there about an hour or so before the parade started, so by 9 a.m., Lucy was D-O-N-E with the wagon.


Daddy had to hold her. And, yes, he had to carry her for the entire 2-mile parade. Best Daddy ever.


I have a lot to catch up on. Next, I’ll tell you all about the NKOTBSB concert!