Believe in the Flowers.

Carol of the Zombie Jesus!

And I guess I apologize for that. I have to go soon, too, so this will undoubtedly be a rather short post. But still!

Here I am.

The last couple of days have been really rough around here. We're being constantly reminded that we're in the midst of a financial crisis and that we don't have enough money for everything, never mind the fact that it is seeming more and more likely that we won't be able to go to Maine like we were hoping at the end of the month (or thereabouts). This has understandably disheartened Col, who was looking forward to seeing his two remaining grandparents (both of his grandfathers) and showing off Gabe to the more ill of the two. We were really looking forward to seeing his parents again, of course, and both of his sisters and his nephews and niece. Oh, and his best friend. You know, absolutely everyone that has any meaning to him. The fact that this much-anticipated and promised trip might not be happening (in fact, probably won't be happening now) has really gotten him down, and the financial pressure we're feeling from every angle has made things that much more difficult to handle.

Thankfully, spring is making a comeback, so at least the weather is trying to cheer us up.

The last couple of days were disgustingly chilly, both in the daytime and at night. We had a freeze warning at one point, and while I never saw any frost, I don't doubt that it happened. It was so cold that we were forced to shut the windows and turn the heat back on, which can kind of make you grumpy when it's almost May. I guess I shouldn't complain, though; when you live in Tornado Alley you'd almost always rather have cold weather than the other end of the spectrum. But that didn't make us feel any better about the fact that it was FREAKING COLD. I couldn't even wear sandals, God.

Add to it that I've still not yet managed to find a job, and that Gabe has wanted Col and nobody else recently, and that has made for one hell of a grumpy husband. The days have been difficult here as Col has put his asshat back on (ha ha ha) and has, by early afternoon or thereabouts, turned into a total dick. I can't really blame him, and I'm not about to fault him for it, but it makes living in an already difficult situation that much worse. I've been trying my best to ignore my exhaustion and have begged here and there for a day to sleep in, but I intend on trying to give Col more time alone and more time without the baby - and time to sleep - so he maybe feels like things are okay to an extent.

I could go on a rant about irresponsibility, and how he doesn't actually take responsibility for himself or any of his problems, but at this point it would be useless. It won't change him, or the fact that he is still in truth a very immature person.

So now, I have go to - Col has to be to work soon and Gabe needs .. A lot. Sigh.

Today started early.

Gabe woke up just after 7 AM and decided that he was done being asleep. Thankfully we coerced him into staying in bed until 7:22, at which point he decided he had had enough and was unable to resist trying to throw himself over both of our limp bodies to an inevitable doom somewhere on the floor below. As such, I conceded and got up with him, though not after a short 'n' sweet guilt session aimed toward Col because at 3:30 AM I rolled over and looked at the clock, then realized that a certain someone still hadn't bothered to come to bed. I can't begin to tell you how much that irritates me, because I swear he does it to piss me off and avoid getting up with Gabe.

So I fed Gabe some oatmeal and a bottle (thank god we're weaning him off of it) and he seemed a little content, though he was understandably ticked that said oatmeal was a little thick this morning. It was an off brand and I guess I didn't add enough milk, but he ate it anyway, nearly a whole package, and choked it down - though not without purposely combing some through his hair first. I had oatmeal too. Wasn't half bad, though I suppose whatever health benefits it had were canceled out by the Mountain Dew I also had. So much for giving up soda.

It is also raining again today. Supposedly there's this whole severe weather risk thing going on, but it's supposed to be cooler and cloudy most of the day, so my assumption is that any bad weather that does dare come will at least not be tornadic, and that's really all I ask. Thus far we've been able to keep the windows open, and the cool last night was enough to turn down the heat in the apartment. Sadly, it's still really humid, but at least it isn't an oven anymore.

So today I have to send Col out to J-Dub to get his graduation papers and hopefully get them filled out and returned before he has to work this evening. I'm not giving him any leeway on this, since they're due tomorrow (to the best of my knowledge) and if he wants to walk next month, they need to be done. No more excuses. One of us needs to graduate from college, even if it's a community college with a two-year associates' degree. And never mind that it took at least four years for either of us to get anything.

So I speed-cleaned last night in preparation for the meeting that happened with only Clara, Bobb, Madelyn, and Madelyn's daughter (who is three months old) in attendance. Clara and Bobb don't get along well at all, and their personalities clash. They're admittedly both very stubborn, set-in-their-ways people, and they ended up facing off several times - though I was proud of Clara for not making the snarky under her breath remarks that Bobb was making. I don't know why he's so convinced that he has to fight to get his point across, though Col pointed out that it's probably an inferiority complex that he doesn't know how to deal with. I hate people like that, though, because he's convinced that everything he says is totally right and the god-given truth, and anyone who doesn't believe him or like his ideas is some sort of idiot and obviously wrong. He has often tried to tell Col and I what to do with ourselves, our home (apartment), and our son - with no regard toward what we think we should be doing with any of the above. It's one of those things that's going to be difficult to deal with, and while I realize that personality clashes are inevitable, I'd rather keep them to a minimum if possible.

In other news, Gabe is walking! He only takes maybe four or five steps at any one time, but he's gaining a lot of confidence while cruising and is less hesitant to take those few steps. He still falls over, though, and I can only assume that's because he still doesn't quite have the balance to continue through, but the fact that he's walking at all is a huge improvement for me.

First, I HAVE A READER! I can't prove that she's sticking around, but it was good to know that someone is listening to my pointless rambling.


Yesterday was my 22nd birthday.

We celebrated it by not doing anything. Mind you, that isn't what I wanted to do, but it's what money allowed. The day was fairly lazy; started with a thunderstorm and ended with the apartment way too hot. I suppose it's what we get for living on the third floor with no windows in the living room and only two windows that happen to be right next to each other in every other room. There's never much of a breeze up here, and when it's actually nice outside it isn't so bad - but in the warmer weather it's horrible. We discussed turning on the air conditioning, but realized it really wasn't worth bothering. That really ticked off Gabe, and we did our best to keep him cool. Today is supposed to be even warmer, and if need be, I'll turn on the air - I just don't want to, knowing how much it will cost.

Later that evening, after the J-dub choir crew finished their concert, they all went out to Village Inn - and thank God that Clara called me to let me know they were going, just like she said she would. By that time, Gabe was already at my mother's house, so all we had to do was hop over that way. We got to see a lot of people - Chaz, J Ray, Clara of course, Esther, and a couple of other people that I know but whose names I have unfortunately forgotten. Met a couple of new people, too, all of whom were incredibly nice and sweet - and one of whom was a DM like Col is, a nice kid named Alex. They talked a little game and I snapped a few pictures, because that kid seriously looks like Daniel Radcliffe and it was hot. Granted, of course, he doesn't look like it in any of my pictures, which was disappointing.

We also found a check in the mail last night from Col's parents. They sent me $50 for my birthday, which was more awesome than I could imagine. It was great of them, it really was, and while Col and I were planning to use it to take me out to dinner to celebrate my birthday late, it turns out we've other more important things to spend it on (like cat food and groceries), so my dinner out will have to wait an undisclosed length of time. On one hand, I'm disappointed - on the other, I'm resigned to the fate that my birthday will remain largely uncelebrated.

On the plus side, I got good sex out of all of it! Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to keep Gabe from spilling his veggie crackers all over the floor. Although with any luck he'll just keep playing with the box...

This whole "raising a kid" thing is way more difficult than they'd have you think.

Magazines, books, websites, friends - they all warn you that you're going to be up late and early and all hours in between, that a child will eat you out of house and home and mean millions of dollars over a lifetime invested into clothes, diapers, wipes, soaps, foods, bottles, and all sorts of dorky accessories (like cribs - what a crock). You buy toys that they'd rather have the boxes of, crib sheets they'll poop on, pretty diapers with characters on them that they'll never see, special bottle brushes (like they give a damn), and everything under the sun, only to pitch or give away 90% of it (we don't have the space to save a lot). They warn you that as your child grows they'll tell you "no" in response to every question or demand, that they'll backtalk you and ignore you even when you're trying to stop them from doing something dangerous. They'll throw their food at you and then refuse to eat, they'll make you wonder if they're really getting enough nutrition to keep you going, they'll destroy everything within reach (and some stuff that isn't). They lack the common sense of an adult, so you learn quickly that there are certain things you would never think of as a health hazard that are downright deadly to a baby that doesn't know any better. They'll tease you with attempts at crawling, walking, self-feeding, and talking, but wait until you aren't in the room or aren't paying attention to take those first few vital steps. Or, worse, they'll wait until you aren't around at all and they're with a relative or babysitter to do something crucial you wish you would have seen. They'll make you cry and rip your hair out, make you wish you had never bothered to get up and dressed in the morning, make you wonder why you bothered going to bed only to not sleep. They'll demand your constant unwavering attention without giving you anything in return. They'll convince you that, really, you shouldn't have bothered being born, because it was kind of a waste in the long run, silly you for bothering.

And then they'll smile or giggle or say "Dada" or "Mama" or hug you and suddenly the clouds will part and the sun will shine and life is worth living again.

Don't you hate that?

Forgot to mention what happened with the weather the other day!

We ended up with a tornado warning that evening and a confirmed tornado passed just north of town. The weather was fairly tame, though, past that, and while we had a torrential downpour, there wasn't much else to speak of.

Now .. To clean the living room. I'm so excited, only not.

I am fat.

I don't like beating around the bush and using the PC terms. They're glorified words that mean the same thing twenty times over: large, obese, overweight, bigger, fluffy. I don't care what you call it, because everyone you're talking to knows exactly what you mean. You're talking about someone who is fat, who weighs more than you and your friends do, who happens to be some ten sizes larger than that model on the front of your magazine. We all know what we mean when we use the politically correct terms, so let's stop poking at the subject and get right down to it.

I am fat.

There, you have it: the Truth. And the Truth is that I am well aware that I'm fat, obese, overweight, whatever. I think I'm what the medical community would call "morbidly obese" while they click their tongues and shake their heads disapprovingly. I think that their head-shaking and tongue-clicking would probably be compounded by the fact that I'm only 21 (almost 22!), a mother, and am already suffering the lifelong effects of my weight: my knees click and crack audibly when I go up or down stairs, I sometimes find it difficult to breathe, and I have to spend a lot of money to actually buy clothing that fits me. I can only barely keep up with my one-year-old as it is, and I know that as time goes on this will only get worse. It will be nearly impossible to teach him to watch what he eats and to be wary of certain ingredients and certain numbers on labels when I don't practice what I preach.

I think that the problem, however, isn't so much that I'm fat, but that people seem to have a lot of misconceptions about the fat portion of the population. I'd like to address some of them, and correct those thoughts.

First, there seem to be a lot of people who are convinced that being fat was somehow a choice for us. These individuals paint a picture of a bunch of skinny, pretty, popular kids sitting around. One day, these kids all make the same decision: to be fat! Right, because, obviously, every child wants to grow up to have full joint replacements before age 50. Because we want to have arthritis, diabetes, joint problems, heart disease, and die twenty years before our average peers are slated to. This isn't something that we all sit down and consciously choose to live with one day. There isn't some long inner decision process that ends in the choice of being fat. We're born bigger and struggle with weight all of our lives. We make bad decisions and turn to food and away from exercise in difficult or stressful situations. Sometimes we fully understand what we're doing, and sometimes - more often than not - it honestly doesn't cross our minds that what we do isn't really the best for our minds or bodies. Trust me: if we constantly thought about what we were doing, we probably wouldn't do it.

For some of us, are difficulties are hereditary. Our parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, and uncles are big. They don't eat right, don't exercise, and never encouraged us to do so either. We've learned all of our lives not so much that being fat is all right, but that we are the way we are and we should accept and embrace that - even if who we are means that we're going to die earlier and live lives full of mockery, pain, and physical difficulties. I think we're given the wrong impression by our parents and teachers; it's inappropriate to make us think that it's all right to be overweight. I'm not trying to say that it's a good idea to encourage children to be tiny and that size 0 is the only size to be, but I know I'm not exactly proud to be massively overweight - and I wouldn't expect any of my children to be, either.

Second, we are not all fat because of what we eat or how we live. For some of us, we have always been this way, and yes, there really are various conditions that cause some of us to be overweight. I'm not writing myself off as one of these people, although I have always been big. I'm just saying - I find it disturbing when disbelieving individuals sit around and say that all obese people choose to be that way. Think before you speak.

Third, and probably finally, it isn't just as easy as deciding one day that you're going to change your lifestyle and boom. It's incredibly difficult to change the way you live, to do a total 180 with your habits and schedules just to incorporate the things you should have been doing in the first place. And not losing weight immediately doesn't label a person a failure - it just means that they're at a plateau or that they need to be doing something different. Losing weight is not a race, it's a slow and difficult process (which is part of the reason some refuse to try to diet and exercise, as they know they won't see immediate results). Someone who is fat might be honestly trying to lose weight right that moment, but they won't always show as such.

I suppose that's all there is to my rant. Mayhaps there will be more later.

Meanwhile, Gabe is choking on his food (corn, green beans, potatoes, fish sticks). Poor kid. Doesn't matter how much I cut it up, he's still coughing!

Guess what is no longer supposed to be that bad today?


Yeah. I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel like an idiot. I should've seen this coming; it almost always happens this way. They say Death Snow and it turns into a sprinkle.

Shell's coming over soon, don't know why. Probably something about the game Colin's trying to start. We have errands to run, though, and only one human in this house has eaten so far and you had sure as hell bet that it isn't Colin or me.

And I have WoW addons to download! ASAP, in fact.

I'm currently in the midst of panicking.

I'd like to think that it's actually rational this time, considering what all of the major networks are saying about the severe weather we're supposed to get tomorrow. I've gone through all the rationalizing techniques I know, while keeping in mind that I am Completely Crazy and thus will not listen to logic right now. I'm obsessively watching maps and staring at the Weather Channel (even though they typically prefer to predict Death Snow than something actually possible), and of course scouring over everything NOAA has to offer, because obviously if I continue obsessively reloading maps of the weather southwest of here right now, I will be made privvy to anything and everything that will be happening tomorrow, without fail, completely accurately.

Yes, I realize it's completely irrational, thank you. But the continual usage of the words "large tornado outbreak" have me more than a little jumpy.

A commercial that was on just now for some kind of combined insurance company has informed me that if an older gentleman who is well-dressed and happens to be carrying a gigantic red umbrella with him stops by to help me in a time of need, I should obviously accept, because he will give me a ride on his huge umbrella and it will be fun.

Anyway. Back to something that makes less sense.

So yeah, I'm going nuts right now. I really don't want to be this bothered, especially since I'm actually starting to feel a little sick to my stomach. I'd even go as far as saying I'm nauseated by this entire ordeal. But it won't stop until Friday comes and I can get up in the morning and know that everything's fine, nothing horrible happened, and everybody's just fine. Which is exactly what will happen, so help me God. Probably doesn't help, of course, that I'm not a religious person and this is the only time of the year that I tend to find Jesus.

Col has to work tomorrow night. Haven't decided yet if I'll be cowering at Mom's house and panicking while she just gives me that insists that I am nuts. Then I'll be informed that I'm overreacting, I mean, honestly, why are you crying? There's nothing to go on about. It's just a thunderstorm. Because belittling my paranoias will totally make me just snap out of it.

May call Sessa and see what she's doing tomorrow afternoon/evening. I might go cower in terror with her, since she at least pretends to be as frightened as I am. Probably only for my sake, but I really do appreciate it. She's the only one that bothers to act like she's terrified, too, so I don't feel quite so irrational about everything.

I'll probably post tomorrow morning about how the predictions have only gotten worse and the forecast is horrible and what will I do?!

All that bad weather we were supposed to get?

Yeah, got moved to tomorrow.

Apparently this is a very not-funny situation, since even the SPC/NOAA/ is freaking out about all this, spewing a bunch of stuff about issuing high-risk warnings for the area tomorrow, but it all depends on morning wind shear or weather or whatever. Not to imply that I don't care, only that there are certain things I still don't understand - and despite being a Spotter (yeah, baby), I don't really understand a lot of the weather.

Naturally, this has me edgy. I don't like bad weather, and I tend to like it even less when it involves times when I won't be around Col. I don't want to have Gabe in this weather, because it makes me feel like something awful could happen. I'm not just worrying for me, anymore - I'm worrying for Gabe because I'll be in charge of him then, and myself, and of course Col while he's at work.

I worry a lot.

Even though I know that none of this will be happening until tomorrow, I'm still in a mini-panic now. I have to, right? Because there is a very real possibility of Something Bad Happening. And if Something Bad does happen, I won't know what to do. I've never been in a life or death situation before, and I'd be just as happy not to start anytime soon. Like, oh, ever.

So here's hoping tomorrow isn't deadly. I'm going to hop over to Mom's after I take Col to work, and probably wash his awesome purple pants that he got from one of his sisters while I'm there. Always good to be useful.

The cell phones were disconnected today.

Their reasoning was some crap about nonpayment of a bill and late fees. I think they're absolutely insane. So I went and paid them $200 that we didn't have, and it still wasn't enough - so until Tuesday, no cell phones.

Gabe is grouchy again today. He's still dealing with a runny nose and a want to touch absolutely everything, even if I've said no twenty times and take away whatever he's playing with. He would have the world think that he's being tortured and beaten if he had his way, judging from the way he screams in retaliation. I know he doesn't feel well, but this is so irritating. Yet another facet of parenthood that they don't bother to tell you about before you start bringing these evil things into the world.

The weather has been cloudy, cold, and rainy all day. Down south in St. Louis it's nearly 70; here, it hasn't even hit 50 today. The severe weather we were supposed to get today has been pushed farther south and to tomorrow. No skin off my back. I could do without it. Although there were a couple of rumbles of thunder this morning...

So now our checking account is under again, we still owe rent and the car payment, and never mind the phone bill and the cell phones. At least we have enough for groceries, and there isn't anything else we're in dire need of.

Stuck at Mom's again this evening while Col's at work. Her leaky roof (and thus leaky ceiling) must be dealt with by laying out rags on the floor and constantly changing them out. Guess who's stuck doing it.

Hope the weather's better wherever you are.

Spring must be coming. Today my allergies are killing me.

I think I was all right until I went outside. It was over, then: the sneezing, the stuffed nose, the itchy everything - it all started once I went outside. I feel like absolute death, and Zyrtec - our old fall-back allergy medication - is thus far doing absolute shit to help this condition. I know I'm not sick, but that doesn't mean I don't feel that way.

Went to Mom's earlier to let her deal with Gabe. I think he has allergies, too - either that, or he's having a reaction to his vaccinations that he had last Wednesday. Either way, he's "sick" himself, and grouchy because of it. To prove it, he's staying up extra-late for the second day in a row. Last night he didn't give up to sleep until 12:30 AM, and here we are, 11:17 PM, and I'm willing to bet that he's going for another try of staying up as late as he can manage. But we've just given him some Benadryl to dry up his sinuses and maybe help get rid of his itchiness (his eyes are getting a little bloodshot), and hopefully it will knock him out, too.

Supposedly we're in for severe weather tomorrow. I hope not. I don't deal well with thunderstorms on my own, especially not bad ones. More on this as it develops.

I had originally intended on coming on today and saying something interesting or insightful, but thus far I simply don't have the drive to do it. Maybe tomorrow will see a change (yeah, right).

Today the in-laws left.

Col and I are both a bit sad and doing what we can to pretend otherwise. I love it when his parents (E & C) come to see us, because when we're here the world's a little brighter. They're both nearing 60, with three other grandkids back up northeast where they live. The three day drive must be difficult on them, but they manage quite happily to come down and go back once a year, or so - though it's never often enough. They're great people in a lot of ways, though I know that Col had his fill of them while living with them. And I've seen why - I know I haven't seen them at their worst, but I've seen them pretty bad. I've heard his complaints, too.

I think it was hardest on E. She hates the idea that one of her grandkids and both of her sons are down here. I don't blame her, even though I'm not really sure what it feels like. I'm sure Col has an idea, since he's the one who moved here, away from the entire rest of his family, to be with me. But me? Eh, I suppose in that sense I'm quite the inexperienced child.

So now? No more full days. We have no more plans, no more guarantees of having something to do, no matter what it is. No more pool and swimming (which will probably irritate us more than Gabe). No more fun people to actually interact with. God forbid, a social life!

We're going to try to organize more group activities. Hopefully we can go back to being the family that we pretended to be so very well while E & C were here.

Today was absolutely beautiful, too. It was the warmest that it has been this year (70 or thereabouts) and the sky was blue with fluffy white clouds almost all day. Yesterday was our first anniversary, and after leaving Gabe with E & C at Bobb's with the rest of the crew, we went out to a local restaurant that I've never been to before. The food was great and even reasonably priced, the service was awesome, and I wasn't carded for my drink (and to think I haven't been carded yet). We decided to keep it a "special place" that we could go to when we wanted to celebrate something. A pity we won't get to go often, but at least we know it's an option. I look forward to going again.

So today we hooked up with J & M after I went to Mom's and did a little laundry. Now we're all sitting around, eating pizza, dealing with a grouchy baby.

Tonight I'm posting from my mother's laptop. It's a horrible conglomeration of stupidity, an Acer creation that Never Should Have Been. It's running Vista - I use the word "running" very loosely here - even though it barely meets the minimum requirements to do so. It's slow and unreliable, and I blame that on the fact that this is a Wal-Mart creation.

In the front room, my mother is getting impatient (as usual) with Gabe. He doesn't deserve it - he's tired! - but she's an impatient person. Always has been. She has always been a lot of things, but I don't think I'll get into that right now.

My duty is to "make the printer work". I have been informed that it doesn't work because "the webpage is bad", not because the ink is probably low or the cartridges are faulty (which is what the current printing job looks like). I am wrong, obviously.. Which is funny, because I'm supposed to fix it. I'm thinking about telling her that the Internet is broken.

Yesterday was a day of extreme knee pain. My left knee proved itself mostly dysfunctional around midday, and I couldn't go up or down stairs - or get out of the car - without wincing and having to limp. By the end of the night, bending it too quickly produced the same sensation, along with a disturbing "pop" that wasn't there before. Not to imply that my knees didn't pop before - they have since junior high - but this is a new pop, a more distinct sound. And of course, you know why this is happening as much as I do. It's because I'm overweight. My body can't handle the stress that I'm putting it through and as such is reacting the way nature has made it to: it is breaking down. I'm a weak link in the food chain, and even though I'm only 21, my body is trying to give in.

Naturally, this means that it's time for a change. So wish me luck.

Meanwhile, tomorrow is my first wedding anniversery. No idea yet what we're going to do, past go out to dinner at some point, and maybe meet my in-laws for breakfast in Hannibal. They leave to go back home on Sunday, probably in the evening, and I'm going to miss them - and I'm ashamed to admit that I'm going to miss the hotel too. Not because it's amazing, but because of the pool and hot tub. For someone like me that's a great source of free exercise, and I'm going to be hurting without it. Not that I won't live. I just can't afford to sign up at the Y or anything, so for now, we go without. But this is nothing new.

The bank account was supposed to close today. Thankfully, it didn't. It's still open and the insurance ($180) is paid - now for the phone bill ($20), the car payment ($450ish), rent ($350), and whatever else. Groceries will have to wait. We also still own AT&T some $120 on top of the next bill and I'm worried that they're going to disconnect our cell phones soon. Usually my mother covers all of the cell phone bill, but she has recently been asking us for more money that we don't have to start paying on it ourselves - and she knows that. Never mind that we bought her a new phone and our own new phones when we were able, never mind everything we already pay ... I shouldn't get bitter like this, I know. It won't help anything.

Gabe is so close to walking now that it isn't even funny. His birthday was last Saturday - did I already mention that? He's so big .. So old .. It's hard to think that a year ago this week I was still in the hospital after having him home for no more than 24 hours. We had to go back because he was so severely jaundiced. Not a good time. But the memories have already faded for us, and he certainly doesn't remember. I don't even think he remembers his shots at the beginning of the week..

At his appointment on Wednesday they said that he was 22lbs 12oz and 29.5 inches long. Impressive, no? I honestly think that he lost weight, but he still eats like a pig and he's incredibly active. I shouldn't be surprised. I don't think that I am.

After Col's off work at 9 PM, we get to go swimming again. Yay!

Our weather has gone back to nasty - in fact, it has been this way since Col's parents arrived from up north (east?). It's cold, rainy, and dreary - and the worst part of all is that it isn't even really raining, just dripping. Enough so that you can't find a good in-between speed on your wipers. I hate that.

Today my mother had lunch with Col's parents. Apparently it went well, although we're both fairly sure that it was a success only because Col's father was down this time, as well - it's a huge improvement over the baby-grabbing episode that happened just under a year ago this month. The cursing and anger that resulted from that really wasn't worth the effort, but it's over and done with now, thank god, and a year has passed and I'd like to think we're all at least a little wiser. I'm somewhat sure (unfortunately) that Col's mom took it upon herself to gloat about the clothes she bought for Gabe, and that she sort of rubbed it in my mother's face that she was probably taking Gabe tonight, but oh well.

Saturday was Gabe's first birthday. People who said they would show up didn't - but that's what I get for 1) using Facebook to invite people, and 2) assuming that people care. My own fault. But we still had a really good time, even though Bobb kind of creeped mom out. Not my problem! There was cake, a cute baby eating it, and a bunch of toys. I also got to see people that I haven't seen in months, which made it that much better.

What else ... Ah, yes, tonight is laundry. I've been putting it off for some time now, since I have to lug it up and down two flights of stairs, into and then out of the rain and car, and do all of said laundry at mom's house. It really bites to live in the attic apartment sometimes, with no hookups and no laundry facilities. But our landlord doesn't seem too concerned about whether or not we're happy here, as long as he gets paid.

Speaking of payments, we're way behind in everything. Well over $1000 in the hole. I was hoping Col's father would win the lottery like he keeps talking about, but he hasn't yet (that I know of). But some lucky soul did.

Off to collect garments and drag them down wet stairs. I hope I don't have to make two trips; my left knee is killing me today. Can't say I'm looking forward to stairs at all. Hopefully tonight we'll swim at the hotel his parents are staying at, after he gets off work. I could use the hot tub. But that won't be until 10 PM or so, and it's only 6:30 now ...