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Spring Pictures

Finally got Natalie's school spring pictures back last week. It's one
of the rare times she gets to wear street clothes to school. I can't
believe how fast my baby is growing up - and how grown up she looks
with waxed brows and her hair all done up. Makes me feel old just
looking at it!


Food, Friends & Fun

It's official, we are going to Disney World. I found an awesome 3 bedroom, 2 bath rental house with a private pool that accepts pets just minutes outside of WDW. We'll be there to celebrate 4th of July, and I'm sure it will be not only hot as hell, but freaken packed! I don't really care much cause our last trip to Disney was the best vacation Ruben has ever had. I think we'll be doing Disney for 4 days (a park each day) and some time at Seaworld and Universal. I'm so excited I can't wait!!! Every since we got our income tax return, I just been dying to book a vacation. So now the accommodations are all set, I just need to purchase park tickets. This will be Danny's first trip to Disney, and though he's not one for rides, I still think he will have a helluva good time.
It seems like time is just flying by. Summer break is right around the corner already. Ruben's mom will be here the weekend after school lets out. I'm really looking forward to the visit, and not just cause she cleans. In the years since my mom passed, I've really grown closer to my MIL.
This past weekend it seems like all we did is eat with our friends around the corner. Friday night Ruben played poker with Rene, while Arlene, I and the kids ate Mo's Pizza. They had never had Mo's before, but I'm pretty sure it lived up to the hype. Arlene and I sat out on the porch all night and had a few drinks. I'm reluctant to build a screened in porch here, yet for some reason I truly love sitting on Arlene's. It's so peaceful with the fountain, wind chimes and fans. I'm just not sure if I'll feel the same come the dead of summer though. Saturday Ruben cooked up some carne asada and once again we ate together. Ruben wanted to make something for them since Rene is always making enchiladas and feeding us. After dinner we sat and watched part of the NFL Draft. Sunday we were back over there again for food. Rene got 3 racks of ribs and cooked them up. By time I ate them and all the fixin's I felt sick cause all I did all weekend was feast. We keep it up and we'll all get fat! But can you really turn down good food and the company of friends? I think not.
Saturday afternoon we did a bit of running around, as we had to buy the meat for dinner and some other groceries. Along the way we stopped at Barnes & Noble to pick up some books. I purchased the first 7 Sookie Stackhouse novels - I've already completed book 1, I'm starting book 2, and I just ordered books 8, 9 & 10 (8 & 9 are pre-sales) from Amazon. The Sookie Stackhouse Series, or Southern Vampire Series is what HBO's TrueBlood is based off of. I've never really watched the series, but now that I am reading the books I think I may have to just as soon as season 2 starts up again. The books are more adult than Twilight, similar in several ways - and very good. My friend Heather recommended them to me. Besides, I figure reading is good exercise for my fogged up brain.
Lately I've been contemplating returning to work, though I'm not sure how that would work. I mean would the expenses really be worth it - and what would I do? I honestly don't know if I could return to accounting as I've been out of it for too long, and I'm much too stubborn to just be a drone. I'm a leader, not a follower. I don't know if I could find a job that's not bottom rung. I doubt I would qualify for much of anything as it's been 4 1/2 years since I worked. I just keep thinking how nice it would be if we had another income. I've got a bad burning desire to buy a new car, and what I want isn't cheap. I've been yearning for a new Camaro, Tahoe, Challenger, Charger or Durango, plus I'd like a new truck for Ruben - but I love not having a car payments. We're also toying with the idea of getting new windows; though I am not thrilled at the cost of replacing 30 windows! We have so many remodeling projects we'd like to do, but this economy just stinks. My kitchen needs updating bad, and every time I see those damn Electrolux commercials I want to rush out and buy the whole lot! I mean seriously - a washer & dryer that only takes 36 minutes, and a cooktop that boils water in 90 seconds? I want it all bad. I boiled eggs yesterday to make deviled eggs for dinner, and the water never really boiled, and I had them eggs on the stove for an hour!
I'd love to find some other freelance writing opportunities, but I'm not sure where to find them at....besides, I've been struggling a bit this month trying to write a piece for MBCN. On the upside, MBCN just recently named me as an expert. Something I've been trying to achieve for over a year now. I like helping women faced with breast cancer, I have a lot of knowledge to share - I just want more money, need more money. There's so much I want to do, but I don't want debt. I guess what I want is to have my cake and eat it too, which I know is not realistic. Why can't I just hit the lotto already? Of course you got to play to win, so that could be part of the problem as to why I'm not on my way to being a millionaire. LOL.


Bridge Traffic

I truly hate being stuck on the Huey P. The bridge is so narrow it's
sickening and to make it worse they have it closed to one lane. Making
it worse is the fact that it shakes, and your trapped between a train
and the mighty Mississippi. But I'm glad they are working hard to
expand it. Just wish the work would go faster!


Roaming Armidillo

Ran out to pick up some dinner and this critter walked right in front
of me. My first instinct was to run it over but I didn't want guts on
my tires. I was afraid to get any closer for fear of rabies.
Now that I'm back from Wendy's and Natalie is out playing she just
called from the neighbors house saying she saw it over there. Must
live around here.

A New Spin on Photo Sharing

I found this over at Lora's blog today, and figured that I'd pass it along. Be sure to check it out - I posted a too cute picture of my pup sleeping on my hubby's pillow yesterday.

A fellow blogger, Jiggins, started this new project called "On the Go Photo Blog"... where anyone can upload their mobile photos to share with the masses. I think it's brilliant! More photos are being added every day - so why don't you join us? You can send your photos - whatever you find interesting, beautiful, something that speaks to you - from your mobile phone to - it's really that easy! Come check it out! :)LoraLoo, Suburbia Las Vegas, Apr 2009


Flashbacks and Other Stuff

This past week Ruben and I learned that we were tagged in some photos someone posted on Facebook. For those of you that don't know the story of how Ruben and I came to be, we met through a group of friends; a local Vegas chat room on AOL that would get together twice a week for drinks and fun. We both had many friends within this group, but as time passed we lost touch with most of them. Some people from the group you could go your whole life without ever speaking to again, and others remain very good friends even a decade later. We always managed to have a good time, believe me the proof is in the pictures. An old friend from the group posted a large batch of photos from back in the day that got quite a few of us reconnecting and reminiscing. Ah, the good ol' days. It's hard to believe it's been about 12 years since we met. It was good to see where some of our old friends ended up. Surprisingly, most of them moved away from Vegas like we did. While I was online, I decided to check out some other photos from people I know. I came across a batch from my step-father's recent birthday. We no longer talk, and from the looks of it I don't see that changing anytime soon either. One of the pictures he had posted was of him and his new girlfriend, to which he labeled "the love of my life." Just seeing it made me sick. My mom passed away not even 3 years ago. They were approaching their 17th wedding anniversary when she died. So if this new woman is the love of his life, then what the fuck was my mom? Needless to say the photo was very upsetting to me. It brings back too many painful memories, and it makes me wonder if she is at peace. My friends around the corner are great believers in ghosts and spirits. We've had talks before about it all and she has asked me if I thought my mom was happy with things. I've never sensed otherwise, but I think if she was pissed off, I wouldn't be the one she'd be haunting. Then again, as the note on this picture suggests, it would seem that she knew she wouldn't be coming back and was okay with the thought of him dating again. I just don't think she'd like the way he went on to treat her kids.

It's been a busy weekend here. Yesterday morning we drove out to Slidell to eat at Cracker Barrel. It ended up being a horrible experience. From now on I think we'll stick to dining at the Gonzales location. The drive there was a sad reminder of Hurricane Katrina. There is still so much property damage along the Lakeside area. It's heart breaking. Our old Six Flags just sits there and rots. There was some talk with Disney to buy the lot, but so far no sale. It would be nice if the park could re-open, but that area of town is pretty much a ghost town. Not much has changed in the last 3 1/2 years. Needless to say we didn't do much following breakfast. There weren't a whole lot of places to stop at on the way back.
Last night we went out to eat with our friend around the corner. Went to the Chinese buffet up the street. They serve all kinds of seafood on the weekends. It was our first time there and I was impresses. It was really good. So good I can't wait to go back - but it will have to wait. For now we are planning on grilling up some carne asada next weekend, which we don't get to do nearly as often as we'd like.
Ruben just left for Shreveport. He'll be gone most of the week, which sucks. He'll be working a graveyard shift installing games cause all his techs are in a training class or something this week. It's been about 8 years since he played tech. I don't have much going on this next week except for a follow-up appointment with my plastic surgeon. I'm hoping to get some answers as to when the swelling will go down and when I'll smooth out. The left side has a few bumpy areas, and I'm having some tingling and pain across my chest and under my arms. I'm curious when I can go bra shopping. Since they are smaller than what I wanted, I need to buy a good push up bra to make the best of them. I just think I'm too swollen to be wearing one just yet. Overall I think I am becoming more satisfied with the implants. I feel like I have nothing, but it's because they are virtually weightless - and Ruben and I agree that they feel very natural. I'm surprised at how soft they feel. I still wish they were bigger, but I don't think I'd be willing to go through more surgery for that. My only other option would be a flap procedure and after this last surgery I just think I'm done. Nine breast surgeries are enough!
I'm glad Natalie goes back to school tomorrow. A week off school is too much to handle right after surgery! Thank goodness Danny is here to help! Now that he's planning on staying we have to work on teaching him to drive, getting him licensed (though I don't really know what vehicle he'll drive) and getting him a job so he can get into school and get his certification for computers or whatever it is he wants to do. I'm wondering if he lives here while he goes to school, if I can claim him on my taxes next year?


Checkin' In

Here it is almost a week post-op. The pain has lessened considerably over the last few days. I have weird pain in my right arm depending on how I move it - it hurts to try to raise my arm or straighten it. I am uncomfortable every single second cause of these damn drain tubes. I cannot wait for them to be removed. They've finally slowed down enough that maybe they can be pulled tomorrow. I'm looking forward to being able to lay on my side again. With the pain these tubes cause it's really difficult to focus on much else, and to be honest none of my incisions really hurt much. The drains have stitches right there to hold the tubing in place, so with each move my skin is tugging at those stitches and it hurts like hell. The incisions on my chest concern me a bit. They are a little lumpy - puckered. Obviously my chest is swollen post-op, and until my incisions heal none of it will look right. I'm worried that I set my hopes too high. I'm worried I set myself up for disappointment. Things will never be the same, and I know and accept that (I think) - I just worry that I've went through all this pain for nothing. I currently have the biggest implants approved, yet they are only a fraction of the size they need to be. I feel flat chested, like I don't have anything. I'm worried that I'll never be happy with my post-op results. I think in my head I just pictured that reconstruction surgery would make it almost like cancer never happened or something and that's just not a realistic approach. All I can do is wait it out, time will tell ultimately what I look like post reconstruction - and I just need to be patient and remind myself that results do vary greatly, that things will never be the same, and the most important thing of all is that I am alive. It's hard when you've thought about this day for the last 4 years. I worry that just as I am getting out of a depressive funk, the results will set me back. I don't want to be depressed again. So for now I just breathe, and hope for the best. I know that the sooner I get these tubes pulled the sooner I will be feeling better. I see my surgeon on Wednesday, maybe then I can get an idea of how long till I am healed. Hope for the best....


I hate needles!

It's already been a morning of anxiety hell. The gown is
uncomfortable, the room so warm I feel ill then it was time for the
IV. Obviously I panicked. Turns put it was barely a prick. They used a
small gauge IV since it went in my hand. Now I'm just waiting to go
back which should be soon. Wish me luck.


Pictures from the Picnic

Here are some of my favorite pictures from yesterday's picnic at City Park in Baton Rouge. The park there was beautiful, the weather gorgeous, and the food was awesome!

Up until yesterday I had never really cared much for Crawfish, but the ones we had were huge and very tasty. I came home exhausted and slightly red from enjoying too much sunshine. The weather started out a bit breezy - it was 78 and perfect. Not too hot and not too humid. All in all a perfect day!

Now I'm trying desperately to fold laundry and somewhat organize this chaos before I shower and turn in early. I have to be at the hospital at 5:30. Can't wait! Enjoy the pix, will check in when I'm feeling lucid.


Snap Happy

I'm getting LOTS of good pix on my Sony. It's a beautiful day here in
Baton Rouge. The weather is perfect for a picnic. Not too hot. Not too
humid. And luckily the park isn't overcrowded either. I'll post more
as I can.
Hope you're having a beautiful Saturday as well!

Here's Lunch

40 pounds of crawfish getting prepped to cook.


Pictures from the party

Here are a few pictures from the birthday party we attended last Saturday. Tomorrow we have a company picnic to go to in Baton Rouge.....really hoping the weather stays nice for it. I'll be sure to snap lots of pix and post them on Flickr just as soon as I can! Some of the kids having fun in the bouncy house; Natalie riding the birthday girl's new scooter; and a crawfish the boys caught in the ditch.


Who knew

When's the last time you browsed the card section of Walgreen's? I'm
looking for a card and I come upon a section of cancer/recovery cards.
Wow, what's next divorce cards?