Sunday, August 22, 2010

Friday, August 20, 2010

Thursday, August 19, 2010

He rubs the lotion on his skin...


I have dryish skin. I have a weird thing about my feet. They need to be soft and never ever dry. I can't use the word most people use to say "not dry" because it's on my list of words I don't like. (I have a running list I will post soon). So everyday before I leave the house I apply a non-scented light lotion to my feet. Then before I go to bed I wash them in the sink, if you want to visualize that.

So Henry sees me applying lotion often. He always wants some too. Yesterday, while I had Carlos The Puppy outside, Henry helped himself to my Vaseline Intensive Care, most of the bottle. Then last night he managed to reach the twins' nurses' bottle of Keri Lotion. He was moisturized to the max.

Yesterday, we went to the boardwalk with my brother and his kids. Lije had the most awesome hairdo in a 100 mile radius. The rides were closed because of the 47 raindrops that landed within an hour. So we went into two arcades. The first one was excessively over-crowded. Milo was having all kinds of sensory overload issues. We left. My brother wanted a beer at the boardwalk's saloon. So we wandered around their accompanying arcade for another full hour of premier merrymaking.

Mamie spent about $5 on Skee Ball and won one miniature eraser shaped like a cake, the ones the kids are collecting these days.


Mamie and her big cousin rejoicing...


I ordered my nephews a magnificent waffle sandwich, the deluxe because I'm an incredible aunt. My niece and I split one with coffee ice cream, and Mamie got a giant bag of cotton candy in pink. Yuck. One of our nurses ordered a slice of pizza that was the size of a large beaver. I regret not getting a pic of that.
So in just two hours we had a great day. Mamie got to stay at the boardwalk with her cousins while I returned home with the boys for our nurse's shift end.

Have a great day!

Love Ms. Crabass

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I ate two plates of linguini with clam sauce and a photo from 2005's Halloween...

So I said I took a series of these Halloween theme pics? Here's the first one taken in 2005, the twins' first Halloween not spent in a hospital. And Mamie's first Halloween ever. They were little Caesars. It's been my favorite costume so far.

Little Caesars

I ate two bowls of my father's awesome linguini with clam sauce, scallops and squid. We had dinner there tonight because my brother and his kids came down from Vermont today. They'll stay until Friday and my niece will stay behind here for a week. I'm sure I've have some stories about this. Tonight my brother was insisting that any adult riding a bicycle without any gear has a DUI.

Well I'm kind of dog-tired. haha that's a pun. I'm tired of this dog. He's damned cute but it's really just an extra chore, and I knew to expect this. But still it doesn't change the fact that it's still another thing to do...take him out, bring him in, feed him, rub his belly. Plus I am not used to this dog smell so I'm adding at least 16 more hand-washings to my day. That's like 32 minutes if I was singing the Happy Birthday song. Carlos is really unusually calm and obedient, I'm impressed.


Love Ms. Crabass

Monday, August 16, 2010

I have 2 minutes to introduce you to Carlos, and then some talk about Halloween costumes......


I wanted to wait a couple more years to get the kids a dog. But seeing how much Lije loves my aunt's Jack Russells and my brother's mutt, I got the idea that it might be cool to get a dog now. Right now, as in before the cold weather hits. I certainly wouldn't want to train a puppy in the winter.
So here's Senor Carlos. He's half Wire-haired Fox Terrier, half Puggle. And a Puggle is half Beagle, half Pug. I think he looks exactly like such a mix.
He's very sweet and super calm. I love a calm dog. My last dog, Murphy- the best dog ever- was a Brittany, but unlike a Brittany he was super chilled and indifferent towards most people and other animals. I loved, loved that about him.
Today we're going to find one of our local dog parks after a stop at Petco- where the pets go (I have to say that every time) - where we're going to look at the chewy, squeaky toys. I'm really hoping the novelty of a puppy doesn't wear off too fast. I'll try and get pictures with my real camera.

Also, today is the twinkies last day of school for the summer. That signals the end of summer and time to consider Halloween costumes. (I have been so gung-ho on portraying Gilligan's Island for years now. Milo must be Gilligan and Lije, the Skipper.   We'll see. I know at this age they love being their own thing.
Here is one photo of the series of the years I had a theme pre-Henry. I think this was the second year, they were, obviously, cave kids. I'll get around to posting the other classics.


This year has gone way too fast and I dig that in a way. Because of the years between babies I spent in the house, depressed and anxiety-ridden, I feel like this is the first day of the rest of my life.

Love Ms. Crabass

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I just gave my toddler a giant marshmallow to eat so I can write this post about nothing...

I don't remember what we did Friday. Oh yes, I dropped my MIL off at the train for her trip back home to Tallahassee. Mamie (not really quite her name) cried for 20 minutes straight, I felt sorry for her because she knows she won't see her paternal grandma for maybe another year or two.

Then we took a trip to Wegman's, our favorite supermarket. When I say "we" I will usually mean my mother (Grammy), Mamie and myself...and if we absolutely have to, baby Henry. In this case Henry was included in our trip to "Weggie's" for lunch (sushi) which followed with a short trip to the park before heading home to meet the short bus.


This park is good for pleasing me in the sense that we're usually alone, if not, almost alone. It's on the water with a spectacular view which makes it often windy in the summer. The bad part about the park is it's on the water. No physical barrier between the jungle-gym and the beach. Except the 100 yard head start Henry has before I can catch him, which seems to be good enough notice for me to start chasing him before he reaches the other side of the river. And the sand. The sand is dirty. Not like the sand on the other side of the inlet where the ocean is. Just disgusting dark brown, clumpy sand with miscellaneous man-made debris.  

Friday was uneventful, but not Saturday. We took the kids to Clark's to get shoes for the new school year. Turns out, my 8 year-old twins' feet are smaller than their 5 year-old sister's. She's a US12, Milo's an 11 while Lige is just a 9.5. I am assuming that must be because he doesn't walk...? Lige's feet are the best, they're always kissable and soft- never rough from walking on the ground, or smelly like my other kids' feet. There're certainly advantages to having a child with moderately-severe cerebral palsy. Another is, he can't always escape so fast when I'm kissing and squeezing him.

Oh, about the shoe shopping, it didn't go well at all. Henry hadn't had his nap and he was crazed. He was getting the twins all worked up and there was no chance of us *not* being that family. I had my mom and our nurse with us, as well as the 4 kids. You'd think with the twins strapped in their wheelchairs and Mamie being her typically well-behaved self, that the 3 of us adults could keep a handle on Henry. Not so. Somehow he left the store without any of us seeing.  
A woman, who'd been watching us this entire time, with empathy and kindness, even trying to crack some exhausted-parent-jokes, had witnessed Henry split. The next thing I saw was her announcing he'd left as she ran out the door and caught him running towards the parking lot. O.m.g. I was embarrassed, all eyes were on me, but more so annoyed that my two adult helpers were not being reliable as I was trying to fit and choose shoes for my four kids.  
Of course, it really is ultimately my responsibility, and certainly not the twins' nurse's job...but my mom...well, she's older now and gets distracted easily. I don't know. It's basically just frustrating to go out with all these guys at one time.  I admit it, I don't have a comfortable grip at this stage.

Oh cool, Henry didn't even eat the marshmallow...they're Mamie's thing. I don't do marshmallows either, Henry.


Love Ms. Crabass

Friday, August 13, 2010

Wholesale shopping and stopping to feed the birds in the city-by-the-sea......

Paternal grandma was visiting from Florida this week. Yesterday was her last full day here. So after my spoiled trip to Costco- spoiled because I don't care for "shopping" with Mr. Crabass at all - he takes the long ass way through the aisles to get only what he needs but won't stop to look at anything the rest of us find interesting - we took Grandma over to the boardwalk in Asbury Park. Not being from New Jersey, I don't think she's ever been to Asbury before this but was able to appreciate the fallen beach resort for it's fascinating, bittersweet history and current struggle for it's rebirth.

Had I been told previously that our trip there was mainly to the boardwalk candy store for salt water taffy I would have warned her the price per pound is 8 times the amount one can get the same box of taffy 6 blocks in from shore at the Foodtown. (which I knew for certain she'd be interested in knowing!) But that's one of the oddball traits of that side of the family. Plans are whispered and a sudden trip takes place with a vague announcement of destination, usually leaving it's victims unprepared- in this particular case I didn't know to bring my camera as I thought we were just going to Costco. So hence the 2 megapixel cell phone quality photos.


We walked past the murals and went into a few shops but really only had about 30 minutes before heading home to meet the Twinkies' school bus. But I must say, one of my favorite things is being at the beach on a cloudy, storm-dangling kind of day.

Then my parents gave Grandma a farewell dinner last night, of scallop and shrimp scampi on top of linguini with my famous (I made it twice) Frozen Margarita Pie. Lige tore apart the magazines, Milo perpetually signed his current movie obsession, Paulie...which we don't own, it happens to come on HBO whenever we're at the 'rents house. But he settled on Sleeping Beauty in the end.

The inspiration for my recipe came off the lid of the Oikos greek yogurt, but this is what I've done:

Margarita Pie

1 graham cracker pie crust
8 oz light cream cheese
1 cup vanilla greek yogurt
4 tbs sugar
a little less than 1/4 cup liquid margarita mixer
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (the 2nd time I used Nellie and Joe's Key Lime Juice which was extra tart, which I like)

I mixed the last 5 ingredients in my Vitamix on Var 6. Poured into pie crust and froze for a few hours. Topped with whipped cream shortly before serving.

Everyone claims they love it, I'm still not sure if they're just being supportive.

Love Ms. Crabass

Thursday, August 12, 2010

14 Days Later...

It's been quite a busy summer. I know, everyone's summer is busy. But mine hasn't been this busy, in a fun way, in 8 years. The boys having their trachs removed has opened a lot of doors for opportunity. Swimming (that's Milo in the pool above), beach, boardwalk, Pop & Grammy's house, the mall, the outlets, the supermarket, the park- when the air quality is safe. I've never taken all 4 kids anywhere by myself.
Now, I can take them a few places by myself as long as I know I'm going somewhere where I have help and an extra set of eyes. Such as my parents' house. Lije will dart for the nearest bookcase and start flipping pages at sonic speed, tearing a few innocent bystanders out. This is fine as long as it's not a book you actually want all the pages to.
Milo, will run to the closest television. He'll already have a movie in mind and sign it an inch from your face until you get your arse up and put that particular movie in the player. That won't last long as he really only enjoys the opening scene and the closing credits of mostly every film. But oddly enough he'll watch any movie that's on HBO at the moment, even if he has the DVD, it's more exciting to watch it spontaneously. And I totally get that. As a kid I remember freaking out on hearing the first note of any Duran Duran or Culture Club song that came on the radio. It sounded so much better than when playing it purposefully on my cassette player.

So it happens to be raining today, all day supposedly. Which brings me back here to blog on my sad, lonely blog with my 5 followers. Hi followers! I know you guys think I suck at blogging. It's ok, you all know I hate winter with a fiery fervor. I'll be seeking the comfort of my nylon, synthetic something-or-other ergonomically-correct computer chair from the first day of the last leaf falling. I only come out when there's leaves on the trees, is what I'm trying to say.


Up there's a pic of Lije eating lunch apres swimming. I really need to get my hands on that water-proof camera we apparently own. Do they make those in digital nowadays? I need one of those. I *love* seeing my baby boys in the water, up to their chins! I can't tell you how long I've dreamed of this day.

I think there's only a few days left of school for the summer session. I'll be planning the Twinkies' 8th birthday party. While I'm not much of a party planner these days, I'd really like to do something nice for their first birthday sans tracheostomy. I'm throwing around having a party on the beach but it makes me too nervous with the unpredictable weather in the beginning of September, our northeaster season.

Any ideas? I am not into having it at a "place". Such as a Chuck E. Cheese's or other petri dishes. I'd like to keep it ungimmicky. It really just ends up being my brothers' families and their teenage kids, my 3 BFFs and their families, a friend with her son from school...if I was really brave I'd invite the two moms I like at school, their sons are autistic. Milo's in the autism program because he shares a lot of traits due to his extreme prematurity. But Milo's very social and is never aggressive. He likes to comfort the kids who are having behaviors- which can get him hurt one day. If Milo could talk he'd say that's the price you pay for being awesome.

Ok, have to go sit out in the rain with everyone for whatever reason they want to...

Love Ms. Crabass

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

3 days later...and then some stuff about 2002

The last 2 days we had some visitors in town. My brother and his family came down from Vermont. My SIL is is awesome, and they have 3 kids under 13. We spent most of the day Monday and Tuesday at the beach and lots of time in the water which was a comfortable 70 degrees.

My brother spent 99.9% of the time talking about sharks and the who, what, and why of their prompt for attacking. He kept appraising which unlucky swimmer was out the furthest. He wondered if we should pay them, and how much would be appropriate to offer someone to act as shark bait for us. We spotted "Shark Bait Couple"...since couples kissing are always most likely going to be attacked by a shark. There was all kinds of shark- related nonsense coming from him at all times. My brother likes to "tell a joke until it isn't funny and then keep telling it until it's funny again".

I could never live in Vermont. If I could semi-reasonably move in the near future it would be to the eastern seaboard of Virginia or North Carolina. I love a good portion of the south, and I certainly wouldn't be heading any more north than I already am. This has to do with temperature and the less snow I see and cold I feel, the happier I am. I wouldn't even consider the west coast no matter how much I love it, I just can't imagine being far from my family and from Manhattan. And it's not like we have the flexibility with two disabled children to wander around from place to place.

I spent a little over 3 months "living" in Norfolk when my Twinkies were born, unexpectedly, while vacationing at my parents' (then) home in Duck, NC. Hated it at first considering the horrible circumstances, but left absolutely loving the city. The people were so good to me, the food ended up being just fine and it was charming.

This is me and one of my twins in Norfolk in 2002- what ended up being the longest "vacation" ever:

My Beautiful Baby A
Love Ms. Crabass

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Test post. Testing. Testing. 1,2,3. 1,2,3, doing the batty bat.
ya HOO
This is me circa late 70's. One of my first dance recitals. It was jazz, but I forget the song. Dancing was my childhood hobby.

So I'm going to try and catch up this blog little by little, with some of the entries of the journal I kept when I became pregnant with the Twinkies in 2002. I might even post from my older journals pre-2002.

The Twinkies are identical twin boys who were born 3 months early. So we have some outstanding and lifelong issues concerning their health and daily functioning. In the words of my third child, my daughter now aged 5, to a total stranger ..."two of my brothers are 7 years-old and they're medical". She also has a third brother, 3 years younger than her. She describes him by saying "...I love him very much. He's always very, very mad and he bites people".

So it's raining here. It's late afternoon and we were headed to the beach for a frolic. But now we're not going. So I can practice writing in my new electronic journal.

I wish I had more time to figure out how to create a decent template for this blog because I do realize it's quite bland. But hey, I have 4 kids. And I think we might be getting a dog soon. I don't know, we'll see. That's a big step and I don't want to be *that* person who gets a dog as a novelty and then ignores him. I love dogs.

So I'm always reading a book. I need it to fall asleep at night. That, and melatonin...sometimes benadryl if I drank any form of caffeine later than 2pm. I used to read only non-fiction, mostly biographies, but now I'm more open to fiction. I prefer gothic fiction, ghost stories and the classics. I can also talk about books, if I feel like it. And I love films: indie, dramas, foreign, comedies, suspense... I have a Netflix account and I'm always up for good movie suggestions. If you want to be my Netflix friend please send me a note. I only have 2 friends on Netflix.

I'm not a writer, but I'll try not to annoy grammer-phobes with incorrect apostrophes and misspellings. But I will be typing quickly and publishing as I do have 4 kids and soon a dog.

Did I mention only one of my kids can talk? Two use sign language. Three can walk. One can swim. One screams and cries a lot. Four scream just for fun. Two look exactly alike. One has green eyes. Four are the cutest. Three and a half are very well-behaved. Two are very laid-back and even-tempered. One craves attention every second of the day. One likes to be alone in a room where no one else is. One is obsessed with Scooby-doo. One loves unicorns and pink. One loves books...loves to tear them to pieces.

I'll see what I can do about posting everyday.

Love Ms. Crabass